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China plans rail tunnel through Mt. Everest

A few weeks ago, we reported on China's rail connections to Western Europe, and not long after that on Russia's interest in a new trans-Siberian road and railroad that could link Europe to North America. Now, China is giving serious consideration to extending its rail lines from Tibet under the mountain to Nepal and eventually India.


Maybe this isn't really just the age of air transport!

A scene along the rail line in Tibet that would be extended. Photo: Wikimedia / Henry Chen 


The new line, if built, would be a tremendous opportunity for China, the world's second-largest economy, to ship its goods in new directions. Nepal is already a major trade partner, and China has invested heavily in infrastructure products there. The "if built" aspect includes serious engineering issues, including not only the mass of the mountain but the fact that the Himalayas are geologically "young" and some amount of settling and shifting would have to be allowed for. 


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