Nepal might shift Everest base camp fearing melting glacier

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The government of Nepal is thinking hard about whether or not they should shift the base camp of Mount Everest because increased human activity and global warming are making the current location pretty unsafe. A senior official in Nepal said so on Friday, June 17, as reported by news18.

The current base camp is located at an altitude of 5,364 metres atop the Khumbu glacier and during the climbing season the traffic is as much as 1500 people who gather in that space.

Due to this large number and increasing thinning of the glacier due to global warming, Nepal’s tourism director Surya Prasad Upadhyay said that the current location is fast becoming unsafe.

He further said that in an informal meeting of the department, several officials discussed the possibility of shifting the base camp of the world’s highest peak. He said that since it was an informal meeting no action was taken on this matter and they are yet to identify a potential new location.

A number of researchers have stated that based on their research that several glaciers near the Everest summit seem to be thinning too quickly. It has to be noted that glaciers present in the Himalayas serve as an important contributor to water resources for million of residents in South Asia.

Depressingly, researchers in Nepal warned that the highest glacier atop the Mount Everest could disappear as early as the middle of this century and that ice cap on top of the Earth’s tallest mountain, which is nearly 2000 years old is thinning at a rate that can only be termed alarming.

In December 2002, Nepal and China announced that Mount Everest was taller by 86 centimetres after a remeasurement of the peak, which is now said to be 8,848.86 metres. The previous measurement was conducted by India, nearly six decades ago in 1954.

For the unversed, Mount Everest stands tall between the borders of Nepal and China and mountaineers from both countries climb the peak from both the sides.

While in Nepal Mount Everest is known as Sagarmatha, the Chinese call it Mount Qomolangma, which is the Tibetan name for the world’s tallest mountain.

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