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"That's a big ass desert!"
-Marco Polo when crossing the Qizil Kum Desert
UzGeography
Location: Central Asia, north of Afghanistan

Geographic coordinates: 41 00 N, 64 00 E

Map references: Commonwealth of Independent States

Area:
total: 447,400 sq km
land: 425,400 sq km
water: 22,000 sq km

Area—comparative: slightly larger than California

Land boundaries:
total: 6,221 km
border countries: Afghanistan 137 km, Kazakhstan 2,203 km, Kyrgyzstan 1,099 km, Tajikistan 1,161 km, Turkmenistan 1,621 km

Coastline: 0 km
note: Uzbekistan borders the Aral Sea (420 km)

Maritime claims: none (doubly landlocked)

Climate: mostly midlatitude desert, long, hot summers, mild winters; semiarid grassland in east

Terrain: mostly flat-to-rolling sandy desert with dunes; broad, flat intensely irrigated river valleys along course of Amu Darya, Sirdaryo, and Zarafshon; Fergana Valley in east surrounded by mountainous Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan; shrinking Aral Sea in west

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Sariqarnish Kuli -12 m
highest point: Adelunga Toghi 4,301 m

Natural resources: natural gas, petroleum, coal, gold, uranium, silver, copper, lead and zinc, tungsten, molybdenum

Land use:
arable land: 9%
permanent crops: 1%
permanent pastures: 46%
forests and woodland: 3%
other: 41% (1993 est.)

Irrigated land: 40,000 sq km (1993 est.)

Natural hazards: NA

Environment—current issues: drying up of the Aral Sea is resulting in growing concentrations of chemical pesticides and natural salts; these substances are then blown from the increasingly exposed lake bed and contribute to desertification; water pollution from industrial wastes and the heavy use of fertilizers and pesticides is the cause of many human health disorders; increasing soil salinization; soil contamination from agricultural chemicals, including DDT

Environment—international agreements:
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Ozone Layer Protection
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography—note: along with Liechtenstein, one of the only two doubly landlocked countries in the world

(Source: CIA World Fact Book, 1993)