Geography of Malta

Geography of Malta

The geography of Malta is dominated by water. Malta is an archipelago of coralline limestone, located in the Mediterranean Sea, approximately 93 kilometres south of Sicily, Italy, and approximately 300 km north of Africa. Only the three largest islands -- Malta, Gozo and Comino -- are inhabited. Other (uninhabited) islands are: Cominotto, Filfla and the St.Paul's Islands. The country is approximately 316 km² in area. Numerous bays along the indented coastline of the islands provide good harbours. The landscape of the islands is characterised by low hills with terraced fields. The highest point, at 253 metres, is the [ Ta' Zuta] on mainland Malta. The capital is Valletta.

Geographic coordinates:

Map references:Europe

"total:"316 km²
"land:"316 km²
"water:"0 km²

Area - comparative:slightly less than twice the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries:0 km

Coastline:140 km

Maritime claims:
"contiguous zone:"24 nautical miles (44 km)
"continental shelf:"200 m depth or to the depth of exploitation
"exclusive fishing zone:"25 nautical miles (46 km)
"territorial sea:"12 nautical miles (22 km)

Climate:Mediterranean with mild, rainy winters and hot, dry summers

Terrain:mostly low, rocky, flat to dissected plains; many coastal cliffs

Elevation extremes:
"lowest point:"Mediterranean Sea 0 m
"highest point:"Ta'Dmejrek 253 m (near Dingli)

Natural resources:limestone, salt, arable land

Land use:
"arable land:"38%
"permanent crops:"3%
"permanent pastures:"0%
"forests and woodland:"0%
"other:"59% (1993 est.)

Irrigated land:10 km² (1993 est.)

Natural hazards:NA

Environment - current issues:very limited natural fresh water resources; increasing reliance on desalination, the slaughter of migratory birds on migration during unregulated hunting

Environment - international agreements:
"party to:"Air Pollution, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
"signed, but not ratified:"Biodiversity, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol

ee also

* Malta

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