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Iceland Geography 1996

    • Location:
      Northern Europe, island between the Greenland Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, northwest of the UK

    • Map references:
      Arctic Region

    • Area:

        total area:
        103,000 sq km

        land area:
        100,250 sq km

        comparative area:
        slightly smaller than Kentucky

    • Land boundaries:
      0 km

    • Coastline:
      4,988 km

    • Maritime claims:

        continental shelf:
        200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin

        exclusive economic zone:
        200 nm

        territorial sea:
        12 nm

    • International disputes:
      Rockall continental shelf dispute involving Denmark, Ireland, and the UK (Ireland and the UK have signed a boundary agreement in the Rockall area)

    • Climate:
      temperate; moderated by North Atlantic Current; mild, windy winters; damp, cool summers

    • Terrain:
      mostly plateau interspersed with mountain peaks, icefields; coast deeply indented by bays and fiords

    • Natural resources:
      fish, hydropower, geothermal power, diatomite

    • Land use:

        arable land:

        permanent crops:

        meadows and pastures:

        forest and woodland:


    • Irrigated land:
      NA sq km

    • Environment:

        current issues:
        water pollution from fertilizer runoff; inadequate wastewater treatment

        natural hazards:
        earthquakes and volcanic activity

        international agreements:
        party to - Air Pollution, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands; signed, but not ratified - Environmental Modification, Marine Life Conservation

    • Note:
      strategic location between Greenland and Europe; westernmost European country; more land covered by glaciers than in all of continental Europe

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