Geography of China

According to the nature of flora and fauna, China is usually divided into eastern and western parts. The eastern part is distinguished by the richness and diversity of flora. In the direction from north to south, several vegetation zones are revealed in it. In the north, the Amur basin is dominated by taiga forests in the regions of the Greater and Lesser Khingan and in the Changbaishan mountains, where Dahurian larch, Korean cedar and other coniferous and broad-leaved species grow. To the south, up to the Qinling Range, broad-leaved forests (oak, linden, maple, walnut) predominate, as well as mixed forests, where conifers are also found among broad-leaved tree species. To the south of the Qinling Range there is a zone of subtropical forests, consisting of several species of laurel, camellia, magnolia, cunnigamia. In the extreme south, including the province of Yunnan, tropical forests and savannas grow. In the western part of China, the vegetation cover is monotonous and consists mainly of drought-resistant shrubs. The richest vegetation is west of Khingan in Inner Mongolia, where the steppe zone is located. In the deserts of the Gobi, Alashan and Takla Makan, there is no vegetation at all, there are only shifting sands or rocky deserts. Plots of forest are available only in mountain valleys in the Tien Shan and Kunlun. Most of the Tibetan Plateau has only vegetation adapted to conditions of low temperatures, lack of soil moisture, strong winds and solar radiation. Only in the eastern part of the highlands are mountain meadows and steppes common, and in the valley of the Tsangpo (Brahmaputra) river there are even coniferous forests. In terms of the diversity of wild animals, China occupies one of the first places in the world. Wolf, fox, live in Northeast China raccoon dog, bear, tiger, lynx, as well as hare, weasel, squirrel, marmot, chipmunk, wolverine, ferret, weasel and ermine. In Western China, animals of the desert and semi-desert, such as the jerboa, hamster, ground squirrel, marmot, live mainly in the steppes – gazelle, in the deserts – goitered gazelle, as well as Przewalski’s wild horse and kulan. Tibet is inhabited by alpine animals such as orongo antelope, rams, yaks, certain types of rodents – hare, gray hamster, Tibetan bobak and predators – Tibetan bear, lynx, wolf and red wolf. A distinctive feature of the animal world of Southwestern China is the presence of a large and small panda, which is not found in other parts of the world, and feeds exclusively on young bamboo sprouts. In southern China, such tropical animals as loris, gibbon, giant squirrel, flying dog, Malayan palm civet are widely represented.

China has deposits of almost 150 known minerals in the world. The main source of energy in China is coal, its reserves in the country account for 1/3 of the world’s reserves. Coal deposits are mainly located in North and Northeast China. The largest coal reserves are concentrated in the province of Shanxi (30% of the total reserves) – Datong and Yangquan coal mines. Oil is another important source of energy resources. The main oil fields are located in Daqing and Liaohe (Northeast China), Shengli on the Shandong Peninsula, Zhongyuan in Central China, as well as in the Northwest in the provinces of Shaanxi, Gansu, in the Qaidam Depression (Qinghai Province) and in the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous area. In addition, in the 1980s oil reserves were discovered in the coastal regions of China on the continental shelf of the Bohai Gulf, Yellow and South China Seas. Natural gas fields are located in the Sichuan province and in the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region (XUAR). On the basis of gas fields in the XUAR, the construction of the West-East gas pipeline from the XUAR capital Urumqi to Shanghai was completed.

Proved reserves include metals such as iron, manganese, chromium, vanadium and titanium. All of them, with the exception of titanium, are in sufficient quantity, although high-grade iron ore and manganese ore are few. Most of the iron ore reserves are located in Anshan (Liaoning Province in the northeast), as well as near the city of Wuhan in Hubei Province and in Panzhihua (Sichuan Province). China is among the world leaders in reserves of a number of non-ferrous metals – tungsten, tin, antimony, zinc, molybdenum, lead and mercury. In terms of reserves of rare earth metals, China surpasses all other countries in the world combined.

According to allcitycodes, the climate of China is exceptionally diverse, due to the vastness of the territory, complex terrain and the influence of the ocean. China is located within three climatic zones – temperate, subtropical and tropical. Within the temperate zone, there are notable differences between its parts. For example, the average January temperature in Heihe (Heilongjiang Province) is -24.8°C, in Taiyuan -7.7°C, and in Xi’an -0.6°C. In winter, the temperature in China is lower than in other countries located at the same latitude, and in summer it is much higher. For example, Tianjin and Lisbon are located at 39° north latitude, but in Tianjin the average January temperature is -4.1°C, and the lowest is -22.9°C, while in Lisbon the average January temperature is +9.2°C, and the lowest –1.7°C. Due to the high altitude, the climate in Tibet is similar to the Arctic. The general picture of the annual distribution of precipitation is characterized by their decrease from the southeastern coast (1000–2000 mm) to the interior regions of the northwest (100–200 mm). Eastern Xinjiang, which is located in the center of Eurasia, is the arid center of China with an annual rainfall of less than 50 mm. Toksun County in the Turfan Depression has an annual rainfall of only 3.9 mm.

Geography of China

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