The Royal Navy has revealed that an uninhabited island has been incorrectly marked on the map for 85 years.
On Thursday evening March 10, HMS Spey confirmed that the location of the remote island – located in the Pacific Ocean – had been incorrectly marked on the map for 85 years.
Henderson Island is one of four volcanic islands in the southern Pacific Ocean that make up the Pitcairn Islands.
New images of the islands were created using radar and GPS satellites, and compared to existing maps, the exact position of the island did not match, Sky News reports.
The results revealed that since 1937 sailors had been using a map that incorrectly indicated that Henderson Island was a mile north of his actual place of residence.
In light of the revelation, Lt. Michael Royle explained: “Theoretically, the image returned by the radar should be exactly over the mapped feature – in this case, Henderson Island. I found this was not the case – the radar overlay was one mile from the island, meaning the island was plotted in the wrong position when the map was first produced.
“The notes on the map indicate that it was made in 1937 from aerial photographs, implying that the aircraft which took the photos was slightly off in its navigation calculations.”
New Zealand is located 3,200 miles (5,149 km) southwest of the Pitcairn Islands, with Chile 3,600 miles (5,793 km) to the east.
Although mislabeled on the map, Henderson Island was last visited in 2018.
In order to assess the impact of plastic waste on the ocean, HMS Montrose conducted an environmental survey.
The results concluded that Henderson Island – which is roughly the size of Oxford – is currently “the most polluted island in the world” due to debris being swept up and dumped onto its coastline by the Pacific Ocean. About 270 objects are reported to end up littered on its beaches each day.