Geography of Denmark

Geography of Denmark
Geography of Denmark
Continent Europe
Region Northern Europe
Coordinates 56°00′N 10°00′E / 56°N 10°E / 56; 10
Area 43,094 km2 (16,639 sq mi)
98% land
2 % water
Borders Total land borders:
68 km
Highest point Møllehøj
171 m
Lowest point Lammefjord
-7 m

Denmark is located in Western Europe (it is one of the Nordic countries) on the Jutland peninsula and several islands in the Baltic sea. It borders both the (Baltic Sea) and the North Sea along its 7,314 km (4,545 mi) tidal shoreline (including bays and inlets), whereas the general coastline is much shorter, at 1,701 km (1,057 mi)[1], as it would, among other geographical features, not include most of the 1,419 offshore islands (each defined as exceeding 100 square meters in area) and the 112 mile long Limfjorden, which separates Denmark's second largest island, North Jutlandic Island, 4,686 square km in size, from the rest of Jutland. Denmark has 443 named islands[2], of which 72 are inhabited (as of 1 January 2007 (2007 -01-01), Statistics Denmark). Denmark's size is comparable to that of Nova Scotia. Denmark has a 68 km border with the German state of Schleswig-Holstein. Denmark experiences a temperate climate. This means that the winters are mild and windy and the summers are cool. The local terrain is generally flat with a few gently rolling plains. The territory of Denmark includes the island of Bornholm in the Baltic Sea and the rest of metropolitan Denmark, but excludes the Faroe Islands and Greenland. Its position gives Denmark complete control of the Danish Straits (Skagerrak and Kattegat) linking Baltic and North Seas. The country's natural resources include petroleum, natural gas, fish, salt, limestone, stone, gravel and sand.



Land use

60% of the land in Denmark is arable.
  • Arable land: 60%
  • Permanent crops: 0%
  • Permanent pastures: 5%
  • Forests and woodland: 10%
  • Other: 25% (1993 est.)

Irrigated land: 4 350 km² (1993 est.)

Natural hazards

  • Flooding is a threat in some areas of the country

Current issues

Denmark's towns and cities
  • Air pollution, principally from vehicle and power plant emissions
  • Nitrogen and phosphorus pollution of the North Sea
  • Drinking and surface water becoming polluted from animal wastes and pesticides

International agreements

  • Party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides,
    Air Pollution-Sulphur 85, Air Pollution-Sulphur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Marine Life Conservation, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling
  • Signed, but not ratified: Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol

Transnational issues

Maritime claims

map showing the location of Denmark including the Faroe Islands and Greenland (pdf)
  • Contiguous zone: 24 nmi (44.4 km; 27.6 mi)
  • Continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
  • Exclusive economic zone: 200 nmi (370.4 km; 230.2 mi)
  • Territorial sea: 12 nmi (22.2 km; 13.8 mi)

Other issues

  • Iceland disputes the Faroe Islands' fisheries median line.
  • Iceland, the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland dispute Denmark's claim that the Faroe Islands' continental shelf extends beyond 200 nautical miles or about 370 km.
  • The Faroe Islands continue to study proposals for full independence.
  • Uncontested sovereignty dispute with Canada over Hans Island in the Kennedy Channel between Ellesmere Island and Greenland.
  • Denmark and Poland have failed to reach an agreement settling the boundary between the two countries.
  • Denmark is currently investigating the extent of the continental shelf of Greenland, in the hope that Greenland's Exclusive Economic Zone can be expanded. One of the areas investigated is the geographical North Pole.


Climate chart of Copenhagen.


About a quarter of Danes live in the capital Copenhagen. Denmarks population is 5,529,270 based on a 2009 study


See also


  1. ^ World Book Encyclopedia, publishing year 1974
  2. ^ Islands in total and named islands

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