CountryFacts.com > South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands > Geography
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South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands Geography
Location:
Southern South America, islands in the South Atlantic Ocean, east of the tip of South America
Geographic coordinates:
54 30 S, 37 00 W
Map references:
antarctic region
Area:
total: 3,903 sq km
note: includes Shag Rocks, Black Rock, Clerke Rocks, South Georgia Island, Bird Island, and the South Sandwich Islands, which consist of some nine islands
water: 0 sq km
land: 3,903 sq km
Area - comparative:
slightly larger than Rhode Island
Land boundaries:
0 km
Coastline:
NA km
Maritime claims:
territorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive fishing zone: 200 nm
Climate:
variable, with mostly westerly winds throughout the year interspersed with periods of calm; nearly all precipitation falls as snow
Terrain:
most of the islands, rising steeply from the sea, are rugged and mountainous; South Georgia is largely barren and has steep, glacier-covered mountains; the South Sandwich Islands are of volcanic origin with some active volcanoes
Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
highest point: Mount Paget (South Georgia) 2,934 m
Natural resources:
fish
Land use:
arable land: 0%
permanent crops: 0%
other: 100% (largely covered by permanent ice and snow with some sparse vegetation consisting of grass, moss, and lichen) (2001)
Irrigated land:
0 sq km (1998 est.)
Natural hazards:
the South Sandwich Islands have prevailing weather conditions that generally make them difficult to approach by ship; they are also subject to active volcanism
Environment - current issues:
NA
Geography - note:
the north coast of South Georgia has several large bays, which provide good anchorage; reindeer, introduced early in the 20th century, live on South Georgia
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