Iraq: Geography - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Iraq: Geography

Location  Middle East, bordering the Persian Gulf, between Iran and Kuwait

Geographic coordinates  33 00 N, 44 00 E

Map references  Middle East

Area  total:437,072 sq km
land:432,162 sq km
water:4,910 sq km

Area - comparative  slightly more than twice the size of Idaho

Land boundaries  total:3,631 km
border countries:Iran 1,458 km, Jordan 181 km, Kuwait 242 km, Saudi Arabia 814 km, Syria 605 km, Turkey 331 km

Coastline  58 km

Maritime claims  continental shelf:not specified
territorial sea:12 nm

Climate  mostly desert; mild to cool winters with dry, hot, cloudless summers; northern mountainous regions along Iranian and Turkish borders experience cold winters with occasionally heavy snows that melt in early spring, sometimes causing extensive flooding in central and southern Iraq

Terrain  mostly broad plains; reedy marshes along Iranian border in south with large flooded areas; mountains along borders with Iran and Turkey

Elevation extremes  lowest point:Persian Gulf 0 m
highest point:Haji Ibrahim 3,600 m

Natural resources  petroleum, natural gas, phosphates, sulfur

Land use  arable land:12%
permanent crops:0%
permanent pastures:9%
forests and woodland:0%
other:79% (1993 est.)

Irrigated land  25,500 sq km (1993 est.)

Natural hazards  dust storms, sandstorms, floods

Environment - current issues  government water control projects have drained most of the inhabited marsh areas east of An Nasiriyah by drying up or diverting the feeder streams and rivers; a once sizable population of Shi'a Muslims, who have inhabited these areas for thousands of years, has been displaced; furthermore, the destruction of the natural habitat poses serious threats to the area's wildlife populations; inadequate supplies of potable water; development of Tigris-Euphrates Rivers system contingent upon agreements with upstream riparian Turkey; air and water pollution; soil degradation (salination) and erosion; desertification

Environment - international agreements 
party to:Law of the Sea, Nuclear Test Ban
signed, but not ratified:Environmental Modification

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