Ethiopia: Geography

Posted: February 14, 2008 in Uncategorized

GEOGRAPHY

Size: About 1,221,900 square kilometers; major portion of easternmost African landmass known as Horn of Africa.

NOTE–The Country Profile contains updated information as available.

Topography: Massive highland complex of mountains and dissected plateaus divided by Great Rift Valley running generally southwest to northeast and surrounded by lowlands, steppes, or semidesert; northeastern coastline of about 960 kilometers along the Red Sea. Great terrain diversity determines wide variations in climate, soils, natural vegetation, and settlement patterns.

Climate: Elevation and geographic location produce three climatic zones: cool zone above 2,400 meters where temperatures range from near freezing to 16° C; temperate zone at elevations of 1,500 to 2,400 meters with temperatures from 16° C to 30° C; and hot zone below 1,500 meters with both tropical and arid conditions and daytime temperatures ranging from 27° C to 50° C. Normal rainy season from mid-June to mid-September (longer in the southern highlands) preceded by intermittent showers from February or March; remainder of year generally dry.

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