Crucial research at the top of the Earth

Publish Time: 2022-05-11 Author: From: China Daily

On May 4, a Chinese expedition made it to the top of Mount Qomolangma. This is the first time that a team of Chinese scientists has reached 8,000 meters above the sea level, while the automated meteorological device they installed on the northern side of the mountain, which is 8,830 meters above the sea level, is the highest in the world.

Scientific research on the Tibetan Plateau is of great significance. In terms of water resources, it is the origin of many giant rivers, cultivating millions of square kilometers of arable lands. In terms of ecology, it has a span of over 8,000 meters between the highest point and lowest point which means it is rich in biodiversity. In terms of climate, it coordinates the seasonal winds of the whole Earth, casting an incomparable influence upon the global climate.

The Tibetan Plateau is therefore a vital ecosystem, as well as being a key air-conditioner of the Earth.

The central government launched its first comprehensive scientific study of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau in the 1970s. The current one, which has already lasted five years and involves the highest number of team members and the most advanced equipment so far, is the most comprehensive yet and will provide key information for the sustainable development of the Tibet autonomous region.

The team’s efforts highlight China’s scientific research capabilities and technological progress, and will help answer questions such as will the ice cap above 8,000 meters on Qomolangma melt due to the rising temperatures? What negative effects does air pollution have on this peak? What is the ecological system like 8,000 meters above sea level? The newly established observatory system on Qomolangma will hopefully answer all these and provide fully detailed, data-supported answers to these questions.

China has always been devoting efforts toward protecting the ecology and environment on the Tibetan Plateau. With more research to be done on Qomolangma, China will continue to make its contribution to the global scientific research endeavors.

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