The world’s highest mountain range, Mount Everest is 0.86m higher than had been previously officially calculated, Nepal and China have jointly announced.
Until now the countries differed over whether to add the snow cap on top. The new height of Mount Everest is 8,848.86m.
China’s previous official measurement of 8,844.43m had put the mountain nearly four metres lower than Nepal’s. Everest stands on the border between China and Nepal and mountaineers climb it from both sides.
According to the officials at Nepal’s department of survey, surveyors from both countries had coordinated to agree on the new height.
Debate over the actual height of the peak has intensified in recent years over concerns that it might have shrunk after a major earthquake in 2015.
However, disagreements have also focused on whether snow covering the summit should be included.
Earlier in 1990, an American survey used GPS technology to settle on 8,850 metres, with a two metre margin of error, a height that became widely recognized.
Later in 2005, a Chinese expedition determined the “rock height” of the mountain as 8,844.43 metres – a figure Nepal shunned in favour of a slightly taller “snow height”.
The new agreement puts an end to the dispute between the two countries whose border runs across Mt. Everest’s summit point.
Chinese leader Xi Jinping said the two sides were committed to jointly protecting the environment around Everest and cooperating in scientific research.
Mount Everest is known as the the world’s highest mountain only in terms of distance from sea level. The peak which rises the tallest into space from Earth’s centre is Ecuador’s Chimborazo.
Moreover, Hawaii’s Mauna Kea is a taller than both from top to bottom, but as it is much of under the sea, we do not count it as the highest peak.