Tanzania Geography and Population

Tanzania – Geography

Tanzania – geography, the country consists of a coastal plain, the central plateau 750-1500 m altitude and highlands against SV, west, and north NV 1500-2300 m asl in the highlands and especially around the Rift Valley are numerous volcanoes (including Kilimanjaro, 5895 m, Africa’s highest mountain). Over 53,000 km2 are covered by lakes, including large parts of Victoria, Tanganyika, Malawi andand Lake Rukwas. The climate is tropical with great solar radiation and characterized by southeast winds with one or two rainy seasons and 400-2000 mm of rainfall per day. year. Most precipitation falls on the coast and on the southeastern slopes of the highlands; at least on the central plateau. Lake Victoria, which is the world’s third largest lake, is so large that local rainfall is formed. Temperatures are 25-29 °C on the coast, 21-24 °C on the central plateau, 15-20 °C in the highlands, and downhill on the highest volcanoes.

Landscape. Most of the country is covered by the savanna and steppe of the central plateau, which is rich in wildlife in the national parks. In the coastal zone there are mangrove forests and swamps. The coral reefs along the coast have a rich fauna. There are tropical and temperate rainforests in the highlands and vegetation-poor alpine landscapes on the highest volcanoes. Soils vary widely and only a small part of the country has good agricultural land. In the high-lying areas are younger volcanic rocks with high fertility. The drier central plateau has low humus sandy soils, which are generally not very fertile. On the coastal plain are barren sandy soils and river plains with better soils, whose fertility is, however, reduced by periodic floods.

Most rivers are small and originate in the rainy mountains, but also three of Africa’s major rivers, the Nile, Congo and Zambezi, have spring rivers in Tanzania. Many of the rivers have great potential for both hydropower and irrigation. Freshwater lakes, swamps and salt lakes are found in lowlands and in the Rift Valley.

Geology. The central plateau consists of more than 1.5 billion. years old, degraded granite, migmatite and gneiss mountain chains; the coastal plain is made up of sea deposits. Both are on the African Plate, which for 20 million. years ago, an eastern and western fissure was broken, united in Lake Malawi with the formation of tombs, highlands and volcanoes.

Population and occupation

When the colonial period began, most of the land was occupied by Bantu farmers, Masai nomads and Arab traders. The German colonial power operated plantations in the Northern Highlands. The British colonial power had the first power over both Tanganyika and Zanzibar. The British deprived the ethnic groups of land ownership and further developed the plantation economy established by the Germans with an infrastructure organized around the export ports of Dar es Salaam, Tanga and Zanzibar. Protected areas were established in 25% of the territory. Many of these now lie as national parks, constituting approximately 15% of the area. The Tanzanian state took control in 1964, retained ownership of the land, expanded the protected areas and moved millions of small farmers to new Ujamaa villages. The population is young and the birth rate is one of Africa’s highest. However, increased mortality due to HIV/AIDS and malaria has reduced population growth in the early years of the 2000’s; in 2003, it was estimated that 8.8% of the adult population was affected. Half of the population lives below the poverty line with large differences between city and country. With a dream of a better life, many go to the fast-growing cities. Many cities were founded by Arabs and Germans; the largest are Dar es Salaam, Mwanza, Dodoma, Tanga and Zanzibar. Urban development lacks political control and the strongest interest groups often dominate the development. Many urban areas are without electricity, sewerage and renovation. Drinking water is often infected and a lot of wastewater runs off the surface.

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Unclear land laws and increased pressure on natural resources are the cause of many conflicts between the government, purchasers, urban dwellers, smallholder farmers and semi-nomads, each with their own requirements for the area, of which only 5% is arable land. Agricultural production takes place in a mix of self-sufficiency, barter and market economy with a high degree of self-financing. 90% is grown as mince with limited use of pesticides and fertilizers. The main crops are maize, millet, cassava and rice, while coffee, bananas, tea, sisal and cashews are important sales crops.

The different types of forest are used for many purposes. 90% of the country’s energy consumption. Fishing and mining are of local importance.

Tourism is especially linked to the famous national parks of Serengeti, Ngorongoro and Kilimanjaro, all of which contain wild game. The number of tourists in the country has increased from 200,000 in 1992 to over 600,000 in 2005. For culture and traditions of Tanzania, please check allunitconverters.

Developments in mining have given the country a hope of greater export revenue in the future. In 2001, gold exports from the Bulyanhulu mine near Mwanza began, and in a few years Tanzania could become the world’s fourth largest exporter of gold. Refugees from neighboring countries, especially Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo, also pose a financial burden. In 1999, the number of refugees was estimated to be over 0.5 million.