Lesson 19

Theme 19: Kazakhstan. General characteristic. Mineral resources of Kazakhstan.


1. Geography

2. Economy

3. Political system


Kazakhstan lies in Central Asia, northwest of China; a small portion west of the Ural (Zhayyq) River in eastern-most Europe. The total area is 2,724,900 sq km. It takes the 9th place in the world. Border countries are China 1,533 km, Kyrgyzstan 1,224 km, Russia 6,846 km, Turkmenistan 379 km, Uzbekistan 2,203 km. Climate is continental, cold winters and hot summers, arid and semiarid. Terrain: vast flat steppe extending from the Volga in the west to the Altai Mountains in the east and from the plains of western Siberia in the north to oases and deserts of Central Asia in the south. Elevation extremes: the lowest point: Vpadina Kaundy -132 m, the highest point: Khan Tangiri Shyngy (Pik Khan-Tengri) 6,995 m. Natural resources: major deposits of petroleum, natural gas, coal, iron ore, manganese, chrome ore, nickel, cobalt, copper, molybdenum, lead, zinc, bauxite, gold, uranium. Natural hazards are earthquakes in the south; mudslides around Almaty

Environment - current issues: radioactive or toxic chemical sites associated with former defense industries and test ranges scattered throughout the country pose health risks for humans and animals; industrial pollution is severe in some cities; because the two main rivers that flowed into the Aral Sea have been diverted for irrigation, it is drying up and leaving behind a harmful layer of chemical pesticides and natural salts; these substances are then picked up by the wind and blown into noxious dust storms; pollution in the Caspian Sea; soil pollution from overuse of agricultural chemicals and salination from poor infrastructure and wasteful irrigation practices

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