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Greece Geography Profile

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Location
Southern Europe, bordering the Aegean Sea, Ionian Sea, and the Mediterranean Sea, between Albania and Turkey
Geographic coordinates
39 00 N, 22 00 E
Map references
Europe
Area
total: 131,957 sq km
land: 130,647 sq km
water: 1,310 sq km
Area - comparative
slightly smaller than Alabama
Land boundaries
total: 1,110 km
border countries (4): Albania 212 km, Bulgaria 472 km, Macedonia 234 km, Turkey 192 km
Coastline
13,676 km
Maritime claims
territorial sea: 12 nm
continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
Climate
temperate; mild, wet winters; hot, dry summers
Terrain
mountainous with ranges extending into the sea as peninsulas or chains of islands
Elevation extremes
mean elevation: 498 m
lowest point: Mediterranean Sea 0 m
highest point: Mount Olympus 2,917
note: Mount Olympus actually has 52 peaks but its highest point, Mytikas (meaning "nose"), rises to 2,917 meters; in Greek mythology, Olympus' Mytikas peak was the home of the Greek gods
Natural resources
lignite, petroleum, iron ore, bauxite, lead, zinc, nickel, magnesite, marble, salt, hydropower potential
Land use
agricultural land: 63.4% (2011 est.)
arable land: 19.7% (2011 est.) / permanent crops: 8.9% (2011 est.) / permanent pasture: 34.8% (2011 est.)
forest: 30.5% (2011 est.)
other: 6.1% (2011 est.)
Irrigated land
15,550 sq km (2012)
Population distribution
one-third of the population lives in and around metropolitan Athens; the remainder of the country has moderate population density mixed with sizeable urban clusters
Natural hazards

severe earthquakes

volcanism: Santorini (367 m) has been deemed a Decade Volcano by the International Association of Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth's Interior, worthy of study due to its explosive history and close proximity to human populations; although there have been very few eruptions in recent centuries, Methana and Nisyros in the Aegean are classified as historically active

Environment - current issues
air pollution; air emissions from transport and electricity power stations; water pollution; degradation of coastal zones; loss of biodiversity in terrestrial and marine ecosystems; increasing municipal and industrial waste
Environment - international agreements
party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Sulfur 94, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Treaty, 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, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds
Geography - note
strategic location dominating the Aegean Sea and southern approach to Turkish Straits; a peninsular country, possessing an archipelago of about 2,000 islands

Source: CIA World Factbook
This page was last updated on Friday, November 27, 2020

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