Important World Mapping: Part 3

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Relevance: World Geography- geographical features and their location. 


United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS)


The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) is an international agreement that was signed on 10th December 1982.

  • UNCLOS also is known as the Law of the Sea Convention or the Law of the Sea Treaty defines the rights and responsibilities of the nation towards the use of the world’s oceans. 
  • UNCLOS is the only international convention that stipulates a framework for state jurisdiction in maritime spaces. It provides a different legal status to different maritime zones.
  • It provides the backbone for offshore governance by coastal states and those navigating the oceans.
  • It not only zones coastal states’ offshore areas but also provides specific guidance for states’ rights and responsibilities in the five concentric zones.
  • It divides marine areas into five main zones namely- Internal Waters, Territorial Sea, Contiguous Zone, Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), and the High Seas.
  • The Law of the Sea Convention also establishes guidelines for businesses, the environment, and the management of marine natural resources.  
  • The High Seas are considered “the common heritage of all mankind” and is beyond any national jurisdiction.
  • States can conduct activities in these areas as long as they are for peaceful purposes, such as transit, marine science, and undersea exploration.
  • The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) regulates activities in international waters, including sea-bed mining and cable laying.
  • It lays down rules for the use of the ocean and its resources but does not specify how states should conserve and sustainably use high seas biodiversity.
  • No overarching treaty exists to protect biodiversity or conserve vulnerable ecosystems in the oceans.
  • In 2018, the United Nations started talks on a 2020 treaty that would regulate the high seas, which cover half the planet yet lack adequate environmental protection.


Yellow Sea


The Yellow Sea is a marginal sea of the Western Pacific Ocean located between mainland China and the Korean Peninsula and can be considered the northwestern part of the East China Sea.

  • It is one of four seas named after common colour terms (the others being the Black Sea, the Red Sea, and the White Sea), and its name is descriptive of the phenomenon whereby fine sand grains from the Gobi Desert sand storms, that descend annually from the north, turn the surface of its waters a golden yellow.
  • There are 3 countries that border the Yellow Sea– China, North Korea, and South Korea. 


Lake Vicotria


Lake Victoria, also called Victoria Nyanza, the largest lake in Africa and the chief reservoir of the Nile, lying mainly in Tanzania and Uganda but bordering on Kenya.

  • Its area is 26,828 square miles (69,484 square km). 
  • Lake Victoria is Africa's largest lake by area, the world's largest tropical lake, and the world's second-largest freshwater lake by surface area after Lake Superior in North America.
  • The lake is the source of the Nile River.


South China Sea


The South China Sea is a critical commercial gateway for a significant portion of the world’s merchant shipping, and hence is an important economic and strategic sub-region of the Indo-Pacific.

  • It is also the site of several complex territorial disputes that have been the cause of conflict and tension within the region and throughout the Indo-Pacific.
  • Its bordering states & territories (clockwise from north) are the People’s Republic of China, the Republic of China (Taiwan), the Philippines, Malaysia, Brunei, Indonesia, Singapore, and Vietnam.
  • It is connected by Taiwan Strait with the East China Sea and by Luzon Strait with the Philippine Sea.
  • Geographically, the South China Sea plays a significant role in the geopolitics of the Indo-Pacific. 
  • Their recent economic growth has contributed to a large portion of the world’s commercial merchant shipping passing through these waters.


The Lithium Triangle


The Lithium Triangle is a region of the Andes rich in lithium reserves around the borders of Argentina, Bolivia, and Chile.

  • The lithium in the triangle is concentrated in various salt pans that exist along the Atacama Desert and neighboring arid areas.
  • The area is thought to hold around 54% of the world's lithium reserves.
  • Chile is the current major producer, but deposits of Lithium are found in the entire Andes region.
  • Bolivia alone accounts for a massive 60% reserves of lithium of the world
  • India has set a target on achieving an all-electric car fleet by 2030 and has in recent years started reaching out to the ‘Lithium Triangle’ in South America.
  • In India, Almost 100% of Li-ion batteries or cells are imported.
  • These batteries are commonly used in portable electronic devices, solar power plants as well as electric vehicles due to their high energy density and high charge and discharge rate capabilities, as compared with other types of batteries such as Ni-MH or Lead Acid.
  • India is in the process of setting up large lithium-ion battery plants, the Lithium Triangle countries have offered to meet India’s growing demand.


 Antarctic Treaty System


The Antarctic Treaty and related agreements, collectively known as the Antarctic Treaty System (ATS), regulate international relations with respect to Antarctica, Earth's only continent without a native human population.

  • For the purposes of the treaty system, Antarctica is defined as all of the land and ice shelves south of 60°S latitude.
  • The treaty entered into force in 1961 and currently has 54 parties.
  • India became a member of this treaty in 1983.
  • All human activities on the continent are regulated by the Antarctic Treaty.
  • The treaty sets aside Antarctica as a scientific preserve, establishes freedom of scientific investigation, and bans military activity on the continent.
  • The treaty was the first arms control agreement established during the Cold War.
  • Since September 2004, the Antarctic Treaty Secretariat headquarters has been located in Buenos Aires, Argentina.



Apennine Mountains

The Apennines or Apennine Mountains
 are a mountain range consisting of parallel smaller chains extending 1,200 km along the length of peninsular Italy.

  • In the northwest, they join with the Ligurian Alps at Altare.
  • The Apennines are among the younger ranges of the Alpine system and, geologically speaking, are related to the coastal range of the Atlas Mountains of North Africa.
  • The majority of geologic units of the Apennines are made up of marine sedimentary rocks that were deposited over the southern margin of the Tethys Sea, the large ocean that spread out between the Paleo-European and the Paleo-African plates during their separation in the Mesozoic Era.


The Pampas

The Pampas are fertile South American lowlands that cover more than 1,200,000 km2 and include the Argentine provinces of Buenos Aires, La Pampa, Santa Fe, Entre Ríos and Córdoba; all of Uruguay; and Brazil's southernmost state, Rio Grande do Sul

  • The climate is temperate, with precipitation of 600 to 1,200 mm that is more or less evenly distributed throughout the year, making the soils appropriate for agriculture. 
  • Summer temperatures are more uniform than winter temperatures, generally ranging from 28 to 33 °C during the day.
  • However, most cities in the Pampas occasionally have high temperatures that push 38 °C, as occurs when a warm, dry, northerly wind blows from southern Brazil. 
  • Winters are generally mild, but cold waves often occur. Normal temperatures range from 12 to 19 °C during the day, and from 1 to 6 °C at night. 
  • Human activity has caused major changes to the wildlife of the Pampas. Species such as the puma, rhea, and Pampas deer have lost their habitats especially due to the spread of agriculture and ranching.



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