The Development of Djibouti

Topics: Water, Djibouti, Sea level Pages: 4 (1438 words) Published: March 4, 2013
The Development of Djibouti
A country’s development depends on many factors; mainly the physical and cultural features of the nation. My selected country is Djibouti. Located in the Horn of Africa and bordered by Ethiopia and Somalia and the Gulf of Aden on the East, Djibouti has a total land area of approximately 22,000 kilometers and is dry, desolate, bare and covered by igneous rocks and dust from centuries of volcanic activity. Sharp cliffs, deep ravines, burning sands and thorny shrubbery mark the landscape. 90 percent of the terrain is desert, 9 percent is pasture land and less than 1 percent is forested.

The topography of the land can be divided into three geographic regions: coastal plains, mountains and inland plateaus. A narrow coastal plain rises inland to less than 200 meters (650 feet) above sea level. A series of mountain ranges extend from the coastal plain to the Ethiopian highlands, with a peak elevation of approximately 2,000 meters (6,600 feet). The inland plateau rises from 300 to 1,500 meters (1,000 to 5,000 feet) above sea level. Lake Assal, a salt lake 130 kilometers (80 miles) west of Djibouti City and about 140 meters (470 feet) below sea level, is the lowest point on the African continent. Lake Abbe (west of Djibouti City) has hot water springs and jagged chalk needles rising up to 46 meters (150 feet). Djibouti has several active volcanoes; the last to erupt was Ardoukoba in 1978. Three tectonic plates diverge near Djibouti; this results in significant volcanic activity in parts of the country and frequent, small earthquakes. Flash floods can occur during or after almost any rain. Narrow valleys called wadis are usually filled with loose, dry materials. When sufficient rain falls in these valleys, dangerous, raging torrents quickly develop. Muddy water pushing rocks and boulders is conveyed into the wadis and can flow all the way to the Gulf of Aden. Djibouti's desert climate has two seasons. The hot summer (May through...
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