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Chad:
Geography

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Chad Page


Background
Definition
Chad, part of France's African holdings until 1960, endured three decades of civil warfare as well as invasions by Libya before a semblance of peace was finally restored in 1990. The government eventually drafted a democratic constitution, and held flawed presidential elections in 1996 and 2001. In 1998, a rebellion broke out in northern Chad, which has sporadically flared up despite several peace agreements between the government and the rebels. In 2005, new rebel groups emerged in western Sudan and made probing attacks into eastern Chad, despite signing peace agreements in December 2006 and October 2007. Power remains in the hands of an ethnic minority. In June 2005, President Idriss DEBY held a referendum successfully removing constitutional term limits and won another controversial election in 2006. Sporadic rebel campaigns continued throughout 2006 and 2007, and the capital experienced a significant rebel threat in early 2008.
Location
Definition
Central Africa, south of Libya
Geographic coordinates
Definition
15 00 N, 19 00 E
Map references
Definition
Africa
Area
Definition - World rank and map
total: 1.284 million sq km
land: 1,259,200 sq km
water: 24,800 sq km
Area - comparative
Definition
slightly more than three times the size of California
Land boundaries
Definition
total: 5,968 km
border countries: Cameroon 1,094 km, Central African Republic 1,197 km, Libya 1,055 km, Niger 1,175 km, Nigeria 87 km, Sudan 1,360 km
Coastline
Definition
0 km (landlocked)
Maritime claims
Definition
none (landlocked)
Climate
Definition
tropical in south, desert in north
Terrain
Definition
broad, arid plains in center, desert in north, mountains in northwest, lowlands in south
Elevation extremes
Definition
lowest point: Djourab Depression 160 m
highest point: Emi Koussi 3,415 m
Natural resources
Definition
petroleum, uranium, natron, kaolin, fish (Lake Chad), gold, limestone, sand and gravel, salt
Land use
Definition - World rank and map
arable land: 2.8%
permanent crops: 0.02%
other: 97.18% (2005)
Irrigated land
Definition
300 sq km (2003)
Total renewable water resources
Definition
43 cu km (1987)
Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural)
Definition
total: 0.23 cu km/yr (17%/0%/83%)
per capita: 24 cu m/yr (2000)
Natural hazards
Definition
hot, dry, dusty harmattan winds occur in north; periodic droughts; locust plagues
Environment - current issues
Definition
inadequate supplies of potable water; improper waste disposal in rural areas contributes to soil and water pollution; desertification
Environment - international agreements
Definition
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping
Geography - note
Definition
landlocked; Lake Chad is the most significant water body in the Sahel


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