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Lesotho Geography
Location:
Southern Africa, an enclave of South Africa
Geographic coordinates:
29 30 S, 28 30 E
Map references:
africa
Area:
total: 30,355 sq km
water: 0 sq km
land: 30,355 sq km
Area - comparative:
slightly smaller than Maryland
Land boundaries:
total: 909 km
border countries: South Africa 909 km
Coastline:
0 km (landlocked)
Maritime claims:
none (landlocked)
Climate:
temperate; cool to cold, dry winters; hot, wet summers
Terrain:
mostly highland with plateaus, hills, and mountains
Elevation extremes:
lowest point: junction of the Orange and Makhaleng Rivers 1,400 m
highest point: Thabana Ntlenyana 3,482 m
Natural resources:
water, agricultural and grazing land, some diamonds and other minerals
Land use:
arable land: 10.87%
permanent crops: 0.13%
other: 89% (2001)
Irrigated land:
10 sq km (1998 est.)
Natural hazards:
periodic droughts
Environment - current issues:
population pressure forcing settlement in marginal areas results in overgrazing, severe soil erosion, and soil exhaustion; desertification; Highlands Water Project controls, stores, and redirects water to South Africa
Environment - international agreements:
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection
signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea
Geography - note:
landlocked, completely surrounded by South Africa; mountainous, more than 80% of the country is 1,800 meters above sea level
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