Europe and the Russian Zone
A Quick Review
Europe -- Definition
There are many definitions of Europe. The
textbook has one, the Coloring Book has one,
and I have another. In general, I consider
Europe to be those countries of western
Eurasia that lie west of the Former Soviet
Europe: Peninsulas on a Peninsula
Europe is NOT a
separate continent.
Rather, it is a peninsula
of the Eurasian
Major Peninsulas of
Scandinavian, Jutland,
Iberian, Italian, and
Europe’s Northerly Orientation
•Much of Europe lies north
of 40°N, which bisects the
Iberian Peninsula.
- This means summer
days AND winter nights
are long.
Scandinavia is land of the
midnight sun
Europe: Principle Mountains & Rivers
Principal Mountain Ranges:
• Pyrenees
• Alps
• Apennines
• Carpathians
Principal Rivers
• Danube – longest river of
non-Russian Europe
• Rhine – most important
commercial waterway of
Principle seas and lakes: what is the
significance of each?
Baltic Sea
North Sea
Mediterranean Sea
Adriatic Sea
Black Sea
Subregions of Europe
You have already learned
the European countries
for the map quiz, but to
make it easier to
remember them, it is
easier to break them up
into subregions. My
subregions are a bit
different than the text’s.
Northern Europe
Northern Europe
includes the island of
Iceland, Denmark (on
the Jutland Peninsula and
adjacent islands),
Norway and Sweden (on
the Scandinavian
Peninsula), and Finland,
which shares a long
border with Russia.
Western Europe
Typically Western
Europe includes the
British Isles (United
Kingdom and the
Republic of Ireland), the
Benelux Countries
(Belgium, Netherlands,
and Luxembourg),
France, Germany,
Switzerland and Austria.
Eastern Europe
South of the Baltic Sea
lies Poland, the Czech
Republic and Slovakia
(once a single country
known as
Czechoslovakia), and
The Balkans
Eight countries lie on the
Balkan Peninsula between
the Adriatic and Black
Seas. Slovenia, Croatia
(shaped like a C), BosniaHercegovina, Yugoslavia,
and Macedonia once made
up a single country called
Yugoslavia. Tiny Albania
faces the heel of Italy while
Romania and Bulgaria face
the Black Sea.
Four countries lie
predominantly in the south
along the Mediterranean
Sea. These are Portugal
and Spain on the Iberian
Peninsula, Italy, and
Russia’s Northerly Orientation
Notice how much of Russia
lies north of the Arctic
Circle. Again, summer
days AND winter nights
are long. The Arctic
Ocean is ice covered for
much of the winters
leaving much of Russia
effectively landlocked.
Russia and
Russia is almost a rectangle with few major peninsulas.
Its largest peninsula is the Kamchatka Peninsula,
located in Russia’s Far East.
Russian Zone:
Principle Mountains
& Rivers
•Caucasus (landform?)
•Urals (landform?)
Principal Rivers
• Volga – if you extend Europe all the way to the Ural
Mountains, it is the longest river of Europe. It is certainly
the most important river of Russia, but not the longest.
• Notice the huge rivers that flow from south to north across
Siberia. These are among the biggest rivers in the world.
Baltic Sea
Black Sea
Caspian Sea
Aral Sea
Lake Baikal
Arctic Ocean
What is the significance of each?
The Former Soviet Union
The former Soviet Union consisted of fifteen republics.
It is easier to learn them if you group them. Each group
of countries constitutes a distinctive subregion.
Baltic States
The Baltic States –
Estonia, Latvia and
Lithuania – lie on the
Baltic Sea. Remember
that they are in
alphabetical order from
north to south.
Kaliningrad, which lies
west of Lithuania, is an
exclave of Russia.
European Republics
These three republics lie
between Europe to the
west and Russia to the
east, the Baltic States to
the north and the Black
Sea to the South. Note
that Belarus and
Moldova are landlocked.
These three
republics lie between
the Black Sea to the
west and the Caspian
Sea to the east,
Russia to the north
and Turkey and Iran
to the South. Note
that Armenia is
landlocked, while
Georgia fronts the
Black Sea and
Azerbaijan fronts the
Central Asian
These five republics –
Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan,
Kyrgyzstan and
Tajikistan – lie between
the Caspian Sea to the
west and the China to the
east, Russia to the north
and Iran and Afghanistan
to the South. Note that
all but Kazakhstan and
Turkmenistan are landlocked. K
Here’s a little different view of the tectonic
plates. What are the 3 types of tectonic
plates. Describe the location of each that
affect either Europe or the former Soviet
region. What areas are the most tectonically
What landform is best associated with plate boundaries?
Remnant Mountains
Isolated Volcanic Landform
Laurasian Shield
Rifted Shield
Sedimentary Cover – North European Plain vs. Siberia
What rock types, minerals and soils are associated with
Note: These two maps do NOT use the same numbering schemes.
What are the different landforms?
Western Europe has west coast mid-latitude climates.
About 20°E (central Poland), you move into east coast
mid-latitude climates.
- Where?
- Temperature and
precipitation patterns?
- Agriculture?
Marine West Coast:
- Where?
- Temperature and
precipitation patterns?
- Agriculture?
Western Europe is relatively warmth
despite its northerly location. Why?
Western Europe is
relatively warmth
despite its northerly
location. Why?
North Atlantic Drift
Lots of peninsulas mean
more proximity to
moderating influence of
The Russia Zone does not enjoy these
advantages. What will be the result of
Why do the Mediterranean and
Marine West Coast Climates Extend
So Far Inland Compared to North
Humid Subtropical
- Where? - Temperature and precipitation patterns?
- Agriculture?
Humid Continental
- Where? -Temperature and precipitation patterns?
- Agricutlure?
- Where?
- Agriculture?
- Where?
- Agriculture?
-Temperature and precipitation patterns?
-Natural Vegetation?
-Temperature and precipitation patterns?
-Natural Vegetation?
Undifferentiated Highland
- Where?
- Temperature and precipitation patterns?
- Agriculture?
- Where?
- Temperature and precipitation patterns?
- Agriculture? Russian Steppes
The North European Plain is an
agriculturally productive, densely
populated region, that has been a
major thoroughfare through history.
North European
Plain vs. Siberia
Siberia, though mineral-rich, is sparsely populated and very
difficult to traverse. What’s the difference?
What are the climates?
What factors best explain birth
What factors best explain death
What is the main direction of
voluntary immigration?
Central Asia has a crude birth rate of 23 and a crude
death rate of 8. What is its RNI? What is its doubling
Russia has a crude birth rate of 10 and a crude death
rate of 15. What is its RNI? What is its doubling time?
What factors predict wealth?
Europe has a per capita GDP of about
$27,000. The richest 10% of the
population controls about 25.2% of
the wealth. The poorest controls
about 3%. What is the per capita
GDP of the poorest 90%?
What factors predict arithmetic
population density?
Belarus has about 10 million
people living in 200,000 square
kilometers. 30% of the land is
arable. What is its arithmetic
population density? What is its
physiological population density?
What do most of the people of
Europe do for a living?
What do people of the Russia
zone do for a living?
What is the spatial link between
language and religion in Europe?
What is the Slavic Coreland? What
forms the boundaries of the
What religion and language
family dominate the Coreland?
Describe the distribution of
languages and religions outside
the Coreland?
Major Events:
Medieval Agricultural Revolution
Introduction of Paper
Bubonic Plague
Printing Press
Columbian Exchange
Protestant Reformation
Century of Religious Wars
Industrial Revolution
European Union
Slavs, Vikings
Byzantine Influence
Growth of Russian Empire
Czarist Russia
Enslavement of Serfs
Opportunities/Threats of European
Russo-Japanese War, WWI
Rise of Soviet Union
Drawing Borders
WWII & Cold War
Role of Oil
Collapse of Soviet Union
Balkanization & Ethnic
Rise of Militant Islam