The Geography of Estonia

The Geography of Estonia

Estonian Geography

Location: Eastern Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea and Gulf of Finland, between Latvia and Russia

Geographic coordinates: 59 00 N, 26 00 E

Map references: Europe

Area: total: 45,226 sq km land: 43,211 sq km water: 2,015 sq km note: includes 1,520 islands in the Baltic Sea

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than New Hampshire and Vermont combined

Land boundaries: total: 633 km border countries: Latvia 343 km, Russia 290 km

Coastline: 3,794 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm exclusive economic zone: limits fixed in coordination with neighboring states

Climate: maritime, wet, moderate winters, cool summers

Terrain: marshy, lowlands; flat in the north, hilly in the south

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Baltic Sea 0 m highest point: Suur Munamagi 318 m

Natural resources: oil shale, peat, phosphorite, clay, limestone, sand, dolomite, arable land, sea mud

Land use: arable land: 12.05% permanent crops: 0.35% other: 87.6% (2005)

Irrigated land: 40 sq km (2003)

Natural hazards: sometimes flooding occurs in the spring

Environment - current issues: air polluted with sulfur dioxide from oil-shale burning power plants in northeast; however, the amount of pollutants emitted to the air have fallen steadily, the emissions of 2000 were 80% less than in 1980; the amount of unpurified wastewater discharged to water bodies in 2000 was one-20th the level of 1980; in connection with the start-up of new water purification plants, the pollution load of wastewater decreased; Estonia has more than 1,400 natural and manmade lakes, the smaller of which in agricultural areas need to be monitored; coastal seawater is polluted in certain locations

Environment - international agreements: party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulfur 85, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: the mainland terrain is flat, boggy, and partly wooded; offshore lie more than 1,500 islands

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