Encyclopedia > Geography of Turkmenistan

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Geography of Turkmenistan

Location: Central Asia, bordering the Caspian Sea, between Iran and Kazakhstan.

Geographic coordinates: 40 00 N, 60 00 E

Map references: Commonwealth of Independent States

Area:
total: 488,100 sq km
land: 488,100 sq km
water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly larger than California

Land boundaries:
total: 3,736 km
border countries: Afghanistan 744 km, Iran 992 km, Kazakhstan 379 km, Uzbekistan 1,621 km

Coastline: 0 km
note: Turkmenistan borders the Caspian Sea (1,768 km)

Maritime claims: none (landlocked)

Climate: subtropical desert

Terrain: flat-to-rolling sandy desert with dunes rising to mountains in the south; low mountains along border with Iran; borders Caspian Sea in west

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Vpadina Akchanaya -81 m (note - Sarygamysh Koli is a lake in north eastern Turkmenistan whose water levels fluctuate widely; at its shallowest, its level is -110 m; it is presently at -60 m, 20 m above Vpadina Akchanaya)
highest point: Ayrybaba 3,139 m

Natural resources: petroleum, natural gas, coal, sulfur, salt

Land use:
arable land: 3%
permanent crops: 0%
permanent pastures: 63%
forests and woodland: 8%
other: 26% (1993 est.)

Irrigated land: 13,000 sq km (1993 est.)

Natural hazards: NA

Environment - current issues: contamination of soil and groundwater with agricultural chemicals, pesticides; salination, water-logging of soil due to poor irrigation methods; Caspian Sea pollution; diversion of a large share of the flow of the Amu Darya into irrigation contributes to that river's inability to replenish the Aral Sea; desertification

Environment - international agreements:
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Hazardous Wastes, Ozone Layer Protection
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: landlocked

See also : Turkmenistan



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