Sudan Geography

What is the terrain and geography like in Sudan?

Overview:

Sudan, a vast, sun-baked land, gained independence in 1956, following the end of the Anglo-Egyptian condominium. It is the largest country in all Africa, stretching almost one million square miles. To the north are the Libyan and Nubian Deserts. In mid-country, a band of rocky semi-desert reaches from the Chad border eastward to encompass the range of arid mountains along the Red Sea coast and the Ethiopian border. The southern half consists of savanna and swampland grading into semitropical forests along the Democratic Republic of Congo and Uganda borders. Although arable, fertile land is available (37 %), but little (1.5 %) is cultivated because of inadequate irrigation.

Through these diverse regions flow the White and Blue Niles, which converge at Khartoum. The Nile system, with its major tributaries-the Bahr al Ghazal, Sobat, and Atbara-is the primary water supply for northeastern Africa. Most cultivation in the north of Sudan depends on these rivers, but farther south, rainfall is sufficient for cultivation and grazing.

The river is navigable only in certain areas. The Bahr al-Arab, flowing west to east, forms a natural frontier. Another, more formidable obstacle to the south is the Sudd, an immense 12,000 square miles of swamp floating vegetation into which the White Nile expands before reverting to river again.

Geography - note:

dominated by the Nile and its tributaries

Climate:

Khartoum is usually hot and dusty. During May, June, and July, daily high temperatures average around 100 F or higher, with frequent dust storms called "haboobs." July, August, and part of September are not as hot, with rare but heavy rainstorms (average 8 inches yearly) and continuing haboobs. From November until April, daily temperatures range around 95 F; nights, around 70 F, are pleasant. Cool weather at night and in the early mornings sometimes requires light sweaters or blankets.

Sudan Use of Natural Resources

Sudan Environment

Climate:

Khartoum is usually hot and dusty. During May, June, and July, daily high temperatures average around 100 F or higher, with frequent dust storms called "haboobs." July, August, and part of September are not as hot, with rare but heavy rainstorms (average 8 inches yearly) and continuing haboobs. From November until April, daily temperatures range around 95 F; nights, around 70 F, are pleasant. Cool weather at night and in the early mornings sometimes requires light sweaters or blankets.

Terrain:

generally flat, featureless plain; mountains in far south, northeast and west; desert dominates the north

Natural Resources:

petroleum; small reserves of iron ore, copper, chromium ore, zinc, tungsten, mica, silver, gold, hydropower

Natural Hazards:

dust storms and periodic persistent droughts

Irrigated Land:

7,297 Square Miles
18,900 Square Kilometers

Environmental Issues:

inadequate supplies of potable water; wildlife populations threatened by excessive hunting; soil erosion; desertification; periodic drought

Environment - International Agreements:

party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Sudan Geography

Geographic Location Africa
Total Area 718,719 Square Miles
1,861,484 Square Kilometers
Land Boundaries 4,195 Miles
6,751 Kilometers
Irrigated Land 7,297 Square Miles
18,900 Square Kilometers
Border Countries Central African Republic 1,165 km, Chad 1,360 km, Democratic Republic of the Congo 628 km, Egypt 1,273 km, Eritrea 605 km, Ethiopia 1,606 km, Kenya 232 km, Libya 383 km, Uganda 435 km
Coastline 530 Miles
853 Kilometers
Geographic Coordinates 15 00 N, 30 00 E
Terrain generally flat, featureless plain; mountains in far south, northeast and west; desert dominates the north
Highest Point 3,187 Meters
Highest Point Location Kinyeti 3,187 m
Lowest Point Location Red Sea 0 m
Natural Resources petroleum; small reserves of iron ore, copper, chromium ore, zinc, tungsten, mica, silver, gold, hydropower
Time Zone UTC+3 (8 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
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