2014 China’s
Geography Powerpoint
Size in
Comparison to the USA
Size & Latitude
Globalization & Diversity: Rowntree,
Lewis, Price, Wyckoff
Comparing China & the U. S.
United States
3.7 million
square miles
3.6 million
square miles
Main physical
Main River
Yangtze / East
- West
Mississippi /
North – South
East Coast
East Coast
North - South
East - West
China versus USA
United States
3.7 million square miles
3.6 million square miles
Main physical barrier
Main River
Yangtze / East - West
Mississippi / North – South
East Coast
East Coast
Connectivity problems
North - South
East - West
• China has more than 1.2 to 1.3 billion
people, making it the most populous
• The population density is over 110
people per square kilometer
• 90% of China’s population lives on less
than 40% of the land
• China is multi-ethnic: Han, Manchu,
Mongol, Turkish, and Tibetan
• The majority of ethnic minorities live in
the northeast, northwest, and southwest
• Mongols are one of the largest minority
group in China
• Made up of more than 50 ethnic groups
• Speak several languages and dialects
Effects: China’s Size
• Eventually, overcrowding and shortages of food and
shelter will be major issues
• Population Control Policies
– Families can have no more than 1 child
– One-couple, one-child policy – couples were given
special rewards such as better housing and pay
– Couples who didn’t follow faced fines and wage cuts
• Results
– Rural families rarely followed the policies
– More children allowed more workers on the farm
– Policies have slowed population growth
– Tiananmen Square Massacre in 1989
Effects: Cities of China
• China has more than 50 cities with
populations of half a million or more
• Coastal Shanghai is the largest city in
China with a population of around 15
Effects: China’s Demographic Issues
• The problems of controlling it...
– The population exploded after 1949.
– Population control was secondary.
– Mao Zedong saw numbers as a workforce and a way to fight the
Soviet Union and the United States.
– Calls for women to “breed for the motherland”.
• Population distribution
– Excessive concentration:
• 50% of the population lives on 8.2% of the land.
• Bulk of the population along the coast.
– East China accounts for 90% of the population.
– 56%, about 728 million, are living in mountainous areas.
– High density rural areas.
Barriers of China
China’s Geographic Barriers
For thousands of years, the ancient
Chinese thought they were pretty much
alone on the planet, except for the
barbarians to the north, the Mongols.
China’s natural
barriers to the west,
south, and east
helped protect
these early people
from invasion.
Geographic Barriers
• Physical barriers in China cover 80%
of the country
–Gobi Desert
–Mongolian and Tibetan Plateaus
–Himalayan Mountains
Natural Borders and Barriers
• The Gobi Desert in northern
China separates the country
from its neighbors.
• Rugged mountains make up
Western China.
• Qinling Shandi, an important
mountain range, separates N.
China from S. China
China’s Geographic Barriers:
– Natural protective barriers
– Distance
– Inward looking (central kingdom) with minor
incidences of cultural diffusion
– Effects of one ocean
• A history of emperors who restricted use of
the coastline, except in local circumstances
• Today the ocean is playing a major role in the
economic (and cultural) transformation of
coastal China.
Globalization & Diversity: Rowntree,
Lewis, Price, Wyckoff
How was China isolated from other
civilizations because of it’s geography?
• The high Tibet-Qinghai Plateau made contact
with lands to the southwest of China difficult
• The dry Gobi & Taklimakan Deserts made
contact with lands to the northwest of China
China was protected & isolated from outsiders
by deserts & the Himalayan Mountains and the
Pacific Ocean to the east (Three natural
The Chinese referred to
themselves as the
“Middle Kingdom” & rarely
traded with outsiders. Why?
Middle Kingdom and
Geographic Barriers
• What is the “Middle Kingdom?”
–Geographic barriers like mountains and
seas cut China off from other lands
–They had no knowledge of other cultures
like Greece, Rome, India, or Egypt
–They thought that they were at the center
of the world and called themselves the
“Middle Kingdom”
Climate of China
Climate and Vegetation
• East Asia’s climate is often described as
– 7 different climate regions cover East Asia.
– 5 major climate regions:
• Semiarid, arid, humid subtropical, humid
continental, and highlands.
• East Asia’s climate is influenced by:
– Monsoons: a wind that changes directions
with the change of seasons.
China, Mongolia, and Taiwan have a
range of climates and natural resources.
1. Southeast region
Tropical with warm to hot climate
Monsoons bring heavy rains in the summer.
Typhoons strike the southeast coast in the summer and fall.
2. Northeast region
Dry and cold climate
3. North and west region
Mainly dry climate
Temperatures vary and can get both very hot and very cold.
Weather and Temperature
Different regions of China
have different climates.
 The Northeast has a cold
and dry climate
 The Northwest is made up
of dry desert.
 The Eastern Plains
experience heavy rainfall.
 The Southeast has a
tropical climate. It is the
wettest region. During the
monsoon season they can
get up to 250 inches of
Climate and Vegetation
• The climate affects what plants
will grow in East Asia.
–Bamboo is a plant grown in
southern China and Japan.
• It is reliable because of its ability to
stand seasonal differences in
temperatures and rainfall. It can also
survive dry spells.
• Southeast Asia waterways, main trade routes between India and China
• Two most important: Malacca Strait between Malay Peninsula, Sumatra;
Sunda Strait, between Sumatra, Java
• Control of these, other important trade routes, brought wealth and power
• Monsoons, seasonal winds, shaped trade
• Winds blow northeast in the summer and southwest in the winter
• Ships relied on monsoons to sail from place to place, often had to wait in
port until winds shifted to resume the voyage
• Many Southeast Asian port cities became important economic centers
Climate and Vegetation
• Climate also affects the diet in East Asia.
• Rice: grows best in warm weather.
–In Southern China rice is grown and eaten.
• Wheat: grows best in cool weather.
–In Northern China people eat more things
made from wheat, such as noodles.
China’s Vegetation
• Agriculture is the most important economic industry of
China, employing over 300 million farmers. China ranks first
in worldwide farm output, primarily producing rice, wheat,
potatoes, sorghum, peanuts, tea, millet, barley, cotton, and
• About 75% of China's cultivated area is used for food crops.
• Rice is China's most important crop, raised on about 25% of
the cultivated area.
• Wheat is the second most-prevalent grain crop, grown in
most parts of the country, but especially on the North
China Plain.
• Other crops include sweet potatoes in the south, white
potatoes in the north, and various other fruits and
• Tropical fruits are grown on Hainan Island, apples and pears
are grown in northern Liaoning and Shandong, and citrus
fruits are grown in South China.
• Typhoons or cyclones are tropical storms
that occur in the Pacific Ocean.
• In the northern hemisphere they rotate
counter clockwise.
• In the southern hemisphere they rotate
• These storms cause enormous damage in
coastal areas and countries with low
Ring of Fire
• Part of Asia is on The Ring of
Fire; an area around the Pacific
Ocean where many tectonic
plates meet.
• This area is at a greater risk for
having earthquakes and active
Rivers of China
China’s Rivers
The development of civilization in early China was aided by features like long
rivers, fertile soils, temperate climates, and isolated valleys.
Rivers, Soils, Climates
• China’s first civilizations
developed in river valleys
• Annual floods deposited rich
soil, loess, on flood plains
• Two major rivers supplied
water for the earliest
• Valley of Huang He particularly
fertile due to loess
– Chang Jiang, also called
– Huang He, or Yellow River
– Both flow east from Plateau of
Tibet to Yellow Sea
– Fine dusty soil
– Carried into China by desert
Impact of Rivers
Most of eastern China covered with fertile soils; some regions better suited
than others for growing certain crops
Southern China—warm, receives plenty of rainfall, excellent region for
growing rice
Further north—climate cooler, drier; suitable for grains, wheat, millet
Combination of rivers for irrigation, fertile soil for planting allowed Chinese
to thrive, as did China’s relative isolation
Mountains, hills, desert protected China from invasion
Himalaya Mountains separate southern China from India, rest of southern
Asia; vast Gobi Desert prevented reaching China from west
The Rivers of China
• China has three major rivers that begin
in the Himalayas and flow into the East
China Sea or Yellow Sea.
Yellow River
Yangtze River
West River
Chinese Name
Huang He
Chang Jiang
Xi Jiang
Impact of the Rivers on China’s History
and Development
• Early civilizations developed near rivers
• China had a few rivers that provided resources
to be successful
– Chang Jiang River (longest river)
– Huang He River
– Yangzi River
• China’s rivers overflowed just like others we
have studied
– Provides fertile soil for farming
• The Huang He River is also known as the Yellow
River because of the Loess
– Loess is yellow-brown soil that the Yellow River
carries along
China’s Rivers
■ 1- Huang He (Yellow River).
• Can carry up to 40%
sediment weight (highest in
the world).
• Subject to flooding,
especially in its delta.
• Changed course many
■ 2- Chang Jiang (Yangtze).
• Longest river, China’s main
street (6,300 km).
• Flood of 1998 left 14 million
■ 3- Pearl River delta system
• Most productive and
sustainable ecosystem in the
• Rice paddies and fish ponds.
■ 4- Heilong Jiang (Amur).
• China's border with Russia.
• River systems
– Huang He (Yellow) -Named due to yellow
– silt the river carries
– Chang Jiang (Yangtze)
• Longest river in Asia - Major trade route since ancient times
– Xi Jiang (West River)
• Runs in South China
China began along the Yellow (Huang He)
& Yangtze Rivers in the North China Plain;
Only 10% of China is suitable for farming
The Yellow River flooding was
unpredictable & was called
“China’s Sorrow” because its floods
often destroyed entire villages
Yellow or Huang He River
Yellow River
Second longest river in China
Runs 3395 miles long
Often called the cradle of Chinese civilization
Much of the lower reaches of the Yellow River
are not navigable
• The huge amount of silt the river carries is
deposited in these lower regions raising its
bed above ground level in the flat North China
Yellow River
• Devastating floods
• To reduce effects of flooding, have built earthen
dikes or walls long the river to protect crops
• Dikes slowed river’s flow and causes silt to
deposit on bottom of river
• Silt levels grew higher, so Chinese build higher
• Chang Jung---an engineer in the 1st century BC
proposed a solution to the flooding but everyone
ignored him
Yellow River
• Chinese kept building higher dikes to prevent
• Huang or Yellow River now flows 12 feet
above the surrounding lands due to the dikes
• Flooding still continues every few years when
dikes break and crops are destroyed and many
people die
• Rainfall in the area is unpredictable and
contributes to flooding
Yellow River
• What is “China’s Sorrow?”
– The river was unpredictable and dangerous and
often killed
– The river also brought life through fertile soil
– Destructive floods would come without warning
– To control the flooding the people built dikes or
walls that hold back water
Huang He River (Yellow River)- China’s Sorrow
Some 10 million people drowned or died of famine & disease as the
result of the catastrophic floods (1887-1943).
Yellow River and Flooding Issues
– Erosion on the Loess Plateau
• Huang He’s sediment burden from the Loess
–Loess – a fine, wind-blown deposited material
»Light tan color accounts for the old name,
Yellow river and Yellow Sea
–Loess is fertile, but vulnerable to erosion when
• Loess Plateau - one of the poorest parts of China
Globalization & Diversity: Rowntree,
Lewis, Price, Wyckoff
Yangtze or Chang Jiang or Yangzi
Yangtze River
Yangzi (Yangtze) River in Central China
China’s largest waterway, 3rd longest in the world
Flows for 3,434 miles (6,300 km)
The Chinese say, “if you haven’t traveled up the great
Yangtze River, you haven’t been anywhere.”
Considered the lifeline of China
Cuts a deep channel in the valley
Large ships can navigate 600 miles up stream
Small ships can navigate 1,700 miles up stream
Yangtze River stretches through nine provinces. The city of
Shanghai is known as the gateway to the Yangtze.
Yangtze River
• Changjiang in Chinese
• Means “long river”
• Creates a basin of more than 2,000 miles from west
to east and a basin of more than 600 miles from
north to south
• Drains into the South China Sea
• Carries more water than any other river in China
• The land area of Yangtze River valley is 19% of the
total land in China.
• The total population of Yangtze River valley is 358
million, nearly 35% of the national population
Yangtze River
• Open to navigation all year round
• Three Gorges is dangerous to navigate due to
the currents and shallows…why they built the
dam there
• Feeds into Lake Dongting, the second largest
lake in China
• Eventually flows into the sea near China’s
largest city of Shanghai
Many earn a living from fishing on the river. How will the dam affect them? About 350 million
people live near the Yangtze River and its 700 tributaries. The lives of the people living near
the Yangtze are affected in some way everyday by the river. Dangerous floods kill people and
livestock living near the river.
This is what the Yangtze valley looks like at the moment
River boat cruises, like this one, is way of life for many and is how they earn a living.
What will happen to these people when the project is finished?
Almost all of the boating traffic in China is on the Yangtze River.
Grand Canal
Rebuilding China’s Empire
The Sui Dynasty Reunites China
• Sui Dynasty’s greatest
achievement was the
Grand Canal, which links
the Chang Jiang (Yangtze
River) and the Huang He
(Yellow River).
• Shipping products on the
Grand Canal helped unite
China’s economy.
Some 2,500 years ago
the ancient Chinese took
the trouble to build a
canal to link the Hwang
He with the Yangtze.
Later on they even extended the Grand Canal north to
Peiping and south to Hangchow, making the whole
canal 1,200 miles long.
Part of the Grand Canal is now silted up. But the part
between the rivers is still used. It is an everlasting
reminder of what marvelous engineers the Chinese
were long ago.
Grand Canal System
• The Grand Canal
Tonghui Canal
Yongji Canal
(Sui and Yuan)
Yellow Sea
Old course of
the Yellow River
Yongji Canal
Jiao-Lai Canal
Jizhou Canal
Tongji Canal (Sui)
East China
Luoyang Kaifeng
Bian Canal
Yangzhou Canal
(Song and Yuan)
Jiangnan Canal
(Sui, Song and Yuan)
400 km
– Achievement of Imperial
hydrological engineering.
– First segments completed
around 602 AD (Sui Dynasty).
– At its peak during the Ming
Dynasty (1368-1644 AD).
– Totaled about 2,500
kilometers, 1,700 still in use
– Grain distribution through
the empire, notably its
General Information
• Largest ancient canal
• Took six years
• Sui Dynasty
– Wendi initiated
– Sui Yangdi finished
– North/South China
• Millions of forced
Results of Grand Canal
• The Grand Canal allowed the integration of
the Yangzi Valley with northern China and
contributed to the economic and cultural
development of eastern China.
• Many routes converged on Chang’an
including the Grand Canal.
• Chang’an became the center of the tributary
• This city also had over one million residents
with restaurants, inns, temples, mosques, and
street stalls.
• The different neighborhoods were walled and
locked at night to prevent crime reminiscent
of today’s “gated communities.”
Results of Canal
Lots of grain shipped to Beijing
Rice and food crop sent north
Cultural exchanges/unity
Main artery of transportation and
communication for north/south
China’s Grand Canal: North-South
Transportation System
feat that is
upgraded for
greater use
in the coastal
growth zone
Globalization & Diversity: Rowntree,
Lewis, Price, Wyckoff
Present Benefits
Shipped goods
Recently refurbished
Less crucial to
Chinese economy
Plains of China
North China Plain
North China Plain
Is in eastern China
Many people live there
It is the center of agriculture and industry
Much of China’s food is produced there
Lands on the plain have LOESS or yellowbrown soil that blows from the desert
• Crops like soybeans, wheat, and cotton are
grown on terraces or platforms of earth like
• Beijing, the capital of China, is on the plain
North China Plain
• Flat region of grassland in Inner China
• Climate is fairly mild
• Warmer than the areas to the north and
cooler than areas to the south
• Sometimes called the “Land of Yellow Earth”
due to the yellow limestone silt known as
• Plains cover 12% of China, River basins cover
Why did most early people settle on
the North China Plain?
1. The Tibet-Qinghai Plateau and Northeastern
Plain are too cold and dry for agriculture
2. The Northwestern Deserts are too dry for
3. The heavy rains of the Chang Jiang Basins may
have made farming difficult
4. The North China Plain was ideal because it has
water, fertile soil, and a moderate climate
What did the North China Plain offer
to the early people that settled
• Huang He (Yellow River) was a source of water
for farming
• Silt from the flooding of the river helped to
fertilize the land
North China Plain
– Flooding in Northern China
• Northern China Plain has long been plagued with
floods and droughts
–Worst floods caused by Huang He (Yellow
–Huang He carries a huge sediment load
(suspended clay, silt, sand); is the world’s
muddiest river
–Many dikes, but it’s still “the river of China’s
Globalization & Diversity: Rowntree,
Lewis, Price, Wyckoff
North China Plain
Effects of Plains: Agriculture in
“Brown” China vs. “Green” China
Pasture and Oasis
Double-crop rice
SOURCE: Topic 5: “The Awakening Giant” by Dr. Jean-Paul Rodrigue, Dept. of
Economics & Geography, Hofstra University.
Below – Southern China rice
Above – North China Plain
(Temperate Climate) farming.
Pasture and
Wheat Dominant
Rice Dominant
Double-crop rice
Agricultural diversity
 North: continental
climate growing wheat,
sorghum and corn.
 South: subtropical
climate growing rice.
 A China of the West with
pastoralism and oasis
 China feeds
approximately 25% of
the world’s population
with approximately 7%
of the world’s arable
Agriculture and Industry
• More Chinese work in
agriculture than in any
other industry.
• China is a leading producer
of several crops.
• China’s main farmlands are
in the eastern plains and
river valleys.
• Only about 10 percent of
China’s land is good for
farming, but a large labor
force enables China to
produce a lot of food.
• Industry in China is
growing rapidly.
• China produces everything
from satellites and
chemicals to clothing and
• Industry and
manufacturing are the
most profitable part of
China’s economy.
South China
China’s Agricultural Issues
■ Recent problems
• Increasing the agricultural output:
• Agricultural output increased significantly in the 1990s due to reforms.
• About 10 million new mouths to feed each year with declining agricultural
• Production of grain is diverted to livestock (meat) and other produces (e.g.
• Traditional land structures have reach optimal capacity:
• Output cannot be increased without the usage of modern techniques such
as machinery and fertilizers.
• Farm size is too small (less than 1 hectare per household in coastal
• Limited investments in agriculture by the peasant.
China’s Agricultural Issues
• Land ownership:
• Peasants do not own the land they use (collectivization).
• With reforms, most of the land has been rented.
• Peasants victims of high taxes and arbitrary expropriation.
• Urbanization, industrialization and transport:
• Decreased agricultural land in the most productive areas.
• Speculation around cities towards golf courses and leisure centers at the
expanse of agriculture.
• The state is investing less in agriculture.
• Local authorities are more interested by business (more taxes).
• Dependency:
• China is now a net importer of grain.
• By 2030, China would need to import the current global grain production.
Mountain Ranges of China
China’s Mountain Ranges
• Mountain Ranges
– Many in the area
– Himalayas
• Separate China from India
– Kunlun Mountains
• West China
– Source of China’s two
great rivers
» Huang He (Yellow)
and Chang Jiang
Kunlun Mountains
China’s Mountain Ranges
• Mountains cover 33% of China
• There are five main mountain
• We are going to focus on
Himalayan Mountains
Himalayan Mountains
• The most important mountain range in Asia is
the Himalaya Mountains.
• The Himalayas separate India from China.
• The Himalayas block clouds that are formed
by monsoons from entering Western China.
• The Himalayas isolate Tibet and make
transportation difficult.
China’s natural barriers include huge mountains. The
Himalayas are very rugged, with ten of the tallest peaks in
the world.
Extends more than 2, 400km in an arc shape along the
Chinese-Indian and Chinese-Nepalese borders
Mount Everest is the highest mountain in the world.
Kunlan Mountains
Kunlan Mountains
• One of the longest mountain chains in Asia
• Extends across western China and the Tibetan
• The highest mountain is the Kunlun Goddess
at 23, 514 feet.
Tien or Tian Shan Mountains
Tien or Tian Shan Mountains
• A large mountain range located in central Asia
• It is positioned to the north and west of the
Taklamakan Desert near the border of
Kyrgystan and western China
• The highest peak is Victory Peak at 24,406 feet
Altay or Atlai Mountains
Altay or Atlai Mountains
• A mountain range in east-central Asia where
Russia, China, Mongolia, and Kazakhistan
come together
• The highest mountain is Belukha at 14,784
Plateaus of China
Inner Mongolian Plateau
Inner Mongolian Plateau
• Is a combination of prairie, mountain, and
• Suitable for raising sheep
• Extremely dry weather good for growing
melons and grapes
Yunnan-Guizhou Plateau
Yunnan-Guizhou Plateau
• In the southwest
• Sharp elevation
• Used terraced farming due to steep landgrade
Tibetan Plateau
Tibetan Plateau
• In southwest China
• Made up of high and super-high mountains
and massive highlands
• Averaging height of 13,000 to 15,000 feet
above sea level
• Highest point of plateau is Mount Everest
• People on the Tibetan Plateau live mostly in
the river valleys
• In the summer, herders move their tents to
new pastures
Tibetan Plateau
Rocky area of China with mountain ranges
People who live here are called the Zhuang
Zhuang are nomads
The climate and food here are very different
The Tibetan Plateau is sometimes called the Roof
of the World due to the Himalayas
World’s largest plateau
Region is bitterly cold place to live
There are only about 50 days a year without frost
Snowstorms are common, even in July
Tibetan Plateau
Tibetan Plateau
In the southwestern part of Outer China
Also known as the Tibet-Qinghai Plateau
Covers about ¼ of China
Rocky land surrounded by towering mountains
Since it’s so high, the climate is very cold and
the air is thin and dry
• Natural vegetation consists of sparse scrubs
and grasses
• Antelopes and yaks roam the area
Tibetan Plateau
• Dry, desolate region punctuated by mountains
and isolated lakes
• Embraces the Himalayan Mountains, the
Kunlan Mountains, and the Tahseh Shan
Loess Plateau
Loess Plateau
• One of the least inviting landscapes in China
• Was once covered by forest but is now largely bare except in areas of
• Everything is gritty yellow: the mountains, the cliffs, the houses
• Sometimes the conditions are like the Dust Bowl in Oklahoma
• On some barren slopes, without trees or a bush in sight, are the
slogans “Make the Green Mountain Even Greener”
• There have been problems of sinkholes in the area
• May 2005: a huge sinkhole swallowed 11 houses in Jixian County
• 16 people escaped the 80 meter wide, 1250 meter long hole
• Many farmers live in caves carved out of the Loess cliff sides
• Some farmers even dig down into their fields and make homes
Great Wall of China as
Geographic Barrier
The Great Wall
4,000 miles long
30 feet wide
The Great Wall
•Several walls were built
over a long period
•Protection from Mongol
horsemen from the north
– communication system
engineering feat – they
claim it can be seen from
orbit in space
Globalization & Diversity: Rowntree,
Lewis, Price, Wyckoff
Great Wall of China
• Ancient Chinese started building the
fortifications as early as the 8th century BC to
help in their military efforts against nomads in
the north
• The first emperor of the Qin Dynasty from
221-206 BC connected the existing walls into a
single system known as the Great Wall
• The Great Wall was periodically rebuilt, with
the most current wall dating to the Ming
Dynasty from 1368-1644 AD.
Deserts of China
• Asia is home to 3 of the world’s largest cold
– Chang Tang, on the Plateau of Tibet in China
– Taklimakan Desert
– Gobi (Mongolian for "waterless place")
• The Gobi Desert is one of the
driest deserts in the world.
• In the Gobi, there is at least the
hope of water, although an oasis is
• The Taklamakan Desert, China's
other desert, is nicknamed the Sea
of Death.
• It offers poisonous snakes,
frequent sand storms, boiling
days, freezing nights, and intense
water shortages.
• The Sea of Death is not a small
desert. In fact, it is the second
largest desert in the world.
Gobi Desert
Gobi Desert
Gobi Desert
Stretches over 500,000 square miles
Covers part of China and Mongolia
Has very few sand dunes
Most of the desert is stony
Surface is made up of small pebbles and tiny
bits of sand
• Vegetation is sparse
• Plants tend to be small and widely spread
The Gobi Desert
• The largest desert in this area is the Gobi
• The Gobi Desert is formed by orographic
• South Asia gets rain from the monsoons but
the Himalaya Mountains block the rain from
entering Western China.
• Most of Western China and Mongolia are in a
rain shadow.
Gobi Desert
• The Gobi Desert is the largest desert in Asia and
the fourth largest one in the world.
• It covers parts of northern and northwestern
China and of southern Mongolia.
• It is about 1,610 kilometers at its widest point,
and it is about 36 times larger than Taiwan.
• One of largest in the world
• In China and Mongolia
• Covers more land than Texas and California
Gobi Desert
• The temperature in the Gobi Desert changes quickly,
and at night it can be up to 38ºC colder than it was in
the daytime.
• In winter the temperature can go down to -45ºC , and
in summer the temperature can be as hot as 50ºC.
• There are also very big snowstorms and sandstorms
that make living in the Gobi Desert difficult.
• Although it is a desert, the Gobi Desert is home to
many types of desert animals, including brown bears
and wolves.
• Some people also live there, but life is difficult and
more and more inhabitants are moving away.
Gobi Desert of Mongolia
Gobi Desert
• Unlike many other deserts, much of Gobi Desert
is not covered with sand, but with rock.
• The Gobi Desert was the home to the Mongols,
who built the huge Mongol Empire across China
about eight hundred years ago.
• The famous Silk Road linking China with the West
also runs through this desert.
• In 1271 AD, Marco Polo traveled the Silk Road to
China through the Gobi Desert.
Taklamakan Desert
Taklamakan Desert
• Covers about 105, 000 square miles
• Considered one of the most dangerous
deserts in the world
• Huge sand dunes shift and change as the wind
• Sandstorms arise with stunning speed
• Legend says that two armies and 300 cities are
buried 600 feet beneath the sand dunes
• Desert is too dry for much vegetation
Taklamakan Desert
Taklamakan Desert
Taklamakan lies in the center of the Tarim
Basin, and the Basin is at the south of
Xinjiang which is in north-western China.
Taklamakan Desert
• It has 337.6 thousand square kilometers and
it is almost ten times bigger than Taiwan.
• It is 1000km long and 400km wide.
• It is the second largest moving-sand desert on
the earth just next in area to the Sahara
Desert in Africa.
Sea Of Death
• In the Uygur language,Taklamakan means
“never get back if you go in”.
• Hence it is known as “Sea of Death ”.
• Because of the size of the desert ,shortage of the
water resource and easily changeable weather
condition, exploring the desert has been a game
of death.
Taklimakan Desert of China
Rich Oil Resource Found
• In recent years, the finding of the oil fields is the
main reason for the government to construct the
• For instance, they mine oil out from the oil field of
塔中, which is a new prospect in the center of
Natural Resources of China
Natural Resources
• China’s Natural Resources:
– Many mineral resources
• Coal, copper, tin, iron, and oil
• One of the largest coal suppliers in the world.
– Hydroelectric power (water)
• The Three Gorges Dam:
– Located on the Chang River
– Built to produce more hydroelectric power
– Control flooding
– Aquaculture:
• farming of fish, shellfish, and seaweed.
China’s Natural Resources
• China has a large and varied stock of natural resources.
• The variety of different landforms, soil conditions, and
climate patterns offers many different kinds of
opportunities for agricultural production.
• A tremendous range of food and industrial crops can be
grown, and this makes it possible for China to keep
imports to a minimum.
• Natural resources: coal, iron ore, petroleum, natural
gas, mercury, tin, tungsten, antimony, manganese,
molybdenum, vanadium, magnetite, aluminum, lead,
zinc, uranium, hydropower potential (world's largest)
• From:http://www.student.britannica.com/comptons/ar
• From:http://www.indexmundi.com/china/natural_reso
Natural Resources
• Using the Land
– Little Farmland:
– Many mountains and plateaus
– East Asian’s farm every bit of land to feed its
• Farmers:
– cut terraces: a flat area in a hillside that allows more space to
grow crops.
– use double cropping: growing two or more crops on the same
land, in the same season, and at the same time.
 Water resources
 Rivers and seas
 Large energy resources
 Petroleum, coal, natural gas
 Human resources
 than anywhere else in the world!!

2013 China’s Geography Powerpoint