Tunisia Geography

What is the terrain and geography like in Tunisia?

Overview:

The Republic of Tunisia lies at the northernmost tip of Africa, a strategic location that throughout history has made it a crossroads between Europe and the Middle East. Tunisia, Morocco, Algeria, and northwestern Libya form the Maghreb (the West, in Arabic), an area of common history, language, ethnic groups, and culture.

Tunisia has 1,000 miles of Mediterranean coastline. Northern Tunisia is the most heavily populated part of the country, mountainous (although elevations rarely reach 3,000 feet), and relatively fertile; this area was the breadbasket of the Roman Empire. The north also claims Tunisia's one major river, the Medjerda. Central Tunisia is a semi-arid highland with poor soil, little rainfall, and scant population. The south is arid and barren, except for occasional oases, as it merges with the Sahara.

Geography - note:

strategic location in central Mediterranean; Malta and Tunisia are discussing the commercial exploitation of the continental shelf between their countries, particularly for oil exploration

Climate:

Tunisia's climate is temperate with generally mild winters and hot summers. The countryside is quite green in winter and spring; and becomes dry and brown in summer. Winters are are short, rainy, humid and chilly. The temperature is rarely below freezing. Snow falls in the northwestern mountain region. Summers in Tunis are characterized by high temperatures, occasionally reaching 120°F, with an average humidity of 60% to 70% during June, July, and August; evenings are pleasant. From mid-May until mid-October, the sky is usually cloudless and little rain falls. In an average year, only 120 days have any rainfall.

Tunisia Use of Natural Resources

Tunisia Environment

Climate:

Tunisia's climate is temperate with generally mild winters and hot summers. The countryside is quite green in winter and spring; and becomes dry and brown in summer. Winters are are short, rainy, humid and chilly. The temperature is rarely below freezing. Snow falls in the northwestern mountain region. Summers in Tunis are characterized by high temperatures, occasionally reaching 120°F, with an average humidity of 60% to 70% during June, July, and August; evenings are pleasant. From mid-May until mid-October, the sky is usually cloudless and little rain falls. In an average year, only 120 days have any rainfall.

Terrain:

mountains in north; hot, dry central plain; semiarid south merges into the Sahara

Natural Resources:

petroleum, phosphates, iron ore, lead, zinc, salt

Natural Hazards:

NA

Irrigated Land:

1,533 Square Miles
3,970 Square Kilometers

Environmental Issues:

toxic and hazardous waste disposal is ineffective and poses health risks; water pollution from raw sewage; limited natural fresh water resources; deforestation; overgrazing; soil erosion; desertification

Environment - International Agreements:

party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands

signed, but not ratified: Marine Life Conservation

Tunisia Geography

Geographic Location Africa
Total Area 63,170 Square Miles
163,610 Square Kilometers
Land Area 59,984 Square Miles
155,360 Square Kilometers
Water Area 3,185 Square Miles
8,250 Square Kilometers
Land Boundaries 885 Miles
1,424 Kilometers
Irrigated Land 1,533 Square Miles
3,970 Square Kilometers
Border Countries Algeria 965 km, Libya 459 km
Coastline 713 Miles
1,148 Kilometers
Geographic Coordinates 34 00 N, 9 00 E
Terrain mountains in north; hot, dry central plain; semiarid south merges into the Sahara
Highest Point 1,544 Meters
Highest Point Location Jebel ech Chambi 1,544 m
Lowest Point -17 Meters
Lowest Point Location Shatt al Gharsah -17 m
Natural Resources petroleum, phosphates, iron ore, lead, zinc, salt
Time Zone UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
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