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Finland:
Geography

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Background
Definition
Finland was a province and then a grand duchy under Sweden from the 12th to the 19th centuries, and an autonomous grand duchy of Russia after 1809. It won its complete independence in 1917. During World War II, it was able to successfully defend its freedom and resist invasions by the Soviet Union - albeit with some loss of territory. In the subsequent half century, the Finns made a remarkable transformation from a farm/forest economy to a diversified modern industrial economy; per capita income is now among the highest in Western Europe. A member of the European Union since 1995, Finland was the only Nordic state to join the euro system at its initiation in January 1999.
Location
Definition
Northern Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea, Gulf of Bothnia, and Gulf of Finland, between Sweden and Russia
Geographic coordinates
Definition
64 00 N, 26 00 E
Map references
Definition
Europe
Area
Definition - World rank and map
total: 338,145 sq km
land: 304,473 sq km
water: 33,672 sq km
Area - comparative
Definition
slightly smaller than Montana
Land boundaries
Definition
total: 2,681 km
border countries: Norway 727 km, Sweden 614 km, Russia 1,340 km
Coastline
Definition
1,250 km
Maritime claims
Definition
territorial sea: 12 nm (in the Gulf of Finland - 3 nm)
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive fishing zone: 12 nm; extends to continental shelf boundary with Sweden
continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
Climate
Definition
cold temperate; potentially subarctic but comparatively mild because of moderating influence of the North Atlantic Current, Baltic Sea, and more than 60,000 lakes
Terrain
Definition
mostly low, flat to rolling plains interspersed with lakes and low hills
Elevation extremes
Definition
lowest point: Baltic Sea 0 m
highest point: Haltiatunturi 1,328 m
Natural resources
Definition
timber, iron ore, copper, lead, zinc, chromite, nickel, gold, silver, limestone
Land use
Definition - World rank and map
arable land: 6.54%
permanent crops: 0.02%
other: 93.44% (2005)
Irrigated land
Definition
640 sq km (2003)
Total renewable water resources
Definition
110 cu km (2005)
Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural)
Definition
total: 2.33 cu km/yr (14%/84%/3%)
per capita: 444 cu m/yr (1999)
Natural hazards
Definition
NA
Environment - current issues
Definition
air pollution from manufacturing and power plants contributing to acid rain; water pollution from industrial wastes, agricultural chemicals; habitat loss threatens wildlife populations
Environment - international agreements
Definition
party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulfur 85, Air Pollution-Sulfur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - note
Definition
long boundary with Russia; Helsinki is northernmost national capital on European continent; population concentrated on small southwestern coastal plain


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