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Southwest Asia.

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Presentation on theme: "Southwest Asia."— Presentation transcript:

1 Southwest Asia

2 Landforms Divide the Region
Southwest Asia is mostly desert The land ranges from coastal plains to snow peak mountains Forms a land bridge between Asia, Africa and Europe The region is situated on the edge of a huge tectonic plate Part of the Arabian Peninsula is pulling away from the rest of Africa

3 Arabian Peninsula Arabian Peninsula
Separated from Africa by Red Sea, on Southwest and rest of Asia by the Persian Gulf Rea Sea is part of the Great Rift Valley Rub Al-Khali is largest sand desert in the world Much of the Arabian Peninsula is covered by plains. People living on Arabian Peninsula adjusted by living nomadic lives in search of water

4 Anatolian Peninsula Anatolian Peninsula– occupied by Turkey, marks beginning of the Asian continent Much of Anatolia is a plateau, some areas for agriculture, some for livestock Both the Arabian and Anatolians Peninsula are on strategic waterways Red Sea-connected to the Mediterranean Sea by the Suez Canal Bosporus Strait and Dardenelles Strait-connects the Black Sea to the Aegean Sea and Mediterranean Sea (important for trade with Russia) Strait of Hormuz-connects the Persian Gulf with the Indian Ocean. This is important because this allows access to the oil fields of Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, and Iraq



7 Plains and Highlands Arabian Peninsula is a plain
Few activates occur here Most of the land is barren (empty) with some low hills, ridges and wadis – riverbeds that remain dry except during rainy seasons Most of Iran is a plateau surrounded by mountains. It is isolated and very high. The land is very arid. The surrounding the plateau can produce some crops. Northern Plain of Afghanistan is a well-watered area that is surrounded by high mountains (which isolate it from other regions)


9 Mountains Rugged mountains divide the land
Hindu Kush mountains (isolate Afghanistan from Pakistan) Mountains have a series of caves Zagros Mountains – Western Iran (isolate it from the rest of Southwest Asia) Elburz mountains-northern Iran (separates Caspian Sea from Iran) Taurus Mountains – separate Turkey from the rest of Asia In spite of these barriers, people, ideas, goods still spread. One of the ways they spread is water.


11 Water Bodies Region is surrounded by bodies of water.
Important for trade and access to other parts of the world The region is arid so few rivers flow the entire year Tigris and the Euphrates Rivers Called the “Fertile Crescent” Worlds first civilizations developed here Valleys are fertile, well- watered and good for agriculture Jordan River Forms the boundary between Israel and Jordan Dead Sea – Land locked salt lake. Only bacteria can live there. Lowest place on earth. It is 1,349 feet below sea level



14 Resources Oil (most important resource)
Found on the Arabian Peninsula, Iran and Iraq Also found along coast of Persian Gulf and in Persian Gulf itself More than ½ of the world’s oil comes from the Middle East OPEC Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries Regulate supply and prices of oil

15 Resources Water The most valuable resource in Southwest Asia
Turkey, Iran, Lebanon and Afghanistan water is plentiful It is harnessed for hydroelectricity Elsewhere water is a scarce resource that must be constantly guarded and carefully used Other resources such as coal, copper, potash and phosphates

16 Arid Lands Southwest Asia is extremely arid (dry)
Receive less than 18 inches of precipitation a year Most of the land is covered in sand dunes and salt flats. Rivers do not flow year-around Vegetation and animals living in the desert can survive on little water and in extreme temperatures. Irrigation is important

17 Other types of Climate Mediterranean climate Highland climates
Land is green and lush Highland climates Areas in the mountains of Southwest Asia have a cool climate

18 Deserts Limit Movement
Rub al-Khali (empty quarter) Largest Sand desert in the world Called “place where no one comes out,” is a vast desert Size of Texas. The temperature can exceed 150° degrees Fahrenheit Sand dunes up to 800 feet high An–Nafud desert Has several oasis Has severe sandstorms and brutal heat Syrian desert separate coastal regions of Lebanon, Israel, and Syria from Tigris and Euphrates valleys Negev desert occupies Israel, produces crops through irrigation

19 Rub al-Khali

20 Salt Deserts Lands in the rain shadow of a mountain range are usually arid In Iran, mountains block rain and dry winds increase evaporation. So when winds evaporate the moisture in the soil, chemical salts remain creating salt flat Past-e Kavir – central Iran Past- e Luf –eastern Iran

21 Semiarid Lands On the edge of the desert are semi-arid (partly dry) lands Warm to hot summers with enough rain for shrubs and grasses Cotton and wheat can be grown here Good pasture for animals In Turkey they herd mohair goats

22 Well-watered coast lands
Along the Mediterranean and across most of Turkey, hot summers and rainy winters create good climate for fruits, olives and vegetables Farmers can grow crops year round Tigris and Euphrates flood yearly Site of intensive farming Turkey and Iraq have created dams along rivers to provide irrigation all year.

23 Providing Precious Water
Critical resource is water Fresh water is available only in small amounts and not consistently To meet the needs of large farms and from growing population, countries must construct dams and irrigation systems.

24 1. Drip irrigation places water just at the root zone,
reducing evaporation of precious water. This system is located in the Negev Desert in Israel. 2. A bag of water is collected by using this pump. It is a part of a qanat—a system of underground brick-lined tunnels and wells that collect runoff water from the mountains. 3. This irrigation canal in Oman has delivered water for over a thousand years. The canals are carefully maintained to provide water for agriculture. 4. A noria—or waterwheel run by the flow of water or by animal power—is used to lift water from the river to the fields. These two are located in Syria on the Orontes River.

25 Dams and Irrigation systems
Ancient practices for providing water work well for small fields but are not efficient for large-scale farming Dams and Irrigation systems must be constructed Examples: Turkey is building a series of dams and a man-made lake using water from the Euphrates River Countries downstream are mad because they will lose the use of water Some countries even threaten war. Israel National Water Carrier Project in Israel carries water from the north to the south. It is used for drinking and irrigation. Is a source of international conflict because water sources flow through many countries

26 Modern Water Technology
Drip irrigation – using small pipes that slowly drip water just above ground to conserve water Desalinization-removing salt from water using sophisticated treatments Not used for farming/used for waste water Waste water is treated Expensive Fossil water – water from aquifers. But only years of that supply remains.

27 Oil from the Sand Fields discovered in Southwest Asia contain about ½ of all petroleum reserves in the world. Petroleum is the source of gasoline for cars, heating oil, and used to make fertilizers and plastics. Southwest Asia is a very important region economically.

28 Forming Petroleum Dead plant and animal remains mingled with sand and mud on the bottom of the sea over time, pressure and heat transformed the material into hydrocarbons , which form the chemical basis of oil and natural gas Oil and gas are trapped in rock Engineers use sophisticated equipment to extract, or remove oil

29 Early Exploration Industrialization and the invention of the automobile made petroleum a highly desired resource. First oil discovered in Southwest Asia was in 1908 in Iran In 1938, oil companies found more oil fields in the Arabian Peninsula and Persian Gulf In 1948, oil companies discovered portions of what would become one of world’s largest oil fields at al-Ghawar. The field contains more than ¼ of Saudi Arabia’s reserves of oil

30 Transporting Oil Crude oil- petroleum that has not been processed
Refinery – converts the crude oil into useful products Pipelines transport the crude oil either to refineries or to ports where oil is picked up by tankers and moved to other places for processing.

31 Risks of Transporting Oil
Oil spills Largest oil spill was in 1991 240 million gallons spilled into the Persian Gulf during Gulf War Pipes are monitored for drops in pressure to check for leaks Ocean-going tankers are at a much higher risk for causing pollution. Collisions or running aground

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