Chad Geography

Chad encompasses large parts of the Chad Basin, which is filled with clay and sand deposits from Tertiary and Quaternary, and is surrounded by flat bedrock thresholds with higher plateaus.

Chad's geography

The image showing the entire volcanic structure is taken from the International Space Station, 3415 meters above sea level.

In northern Chad lies the volcanic Tibesti mountain massif, which reaches over 3000 meters above sea level. The highest mountain is Emi Koussi with 3415 meters above sea level. To the south, the landscape alternates between the mountain desert, the gravel desert and a rolling sea of ​​sand desert.

Centrally located in the country lies the Bodele sink, a former seabed, which today is completely dried out. The Desert Party (Sahara) gradually moves into the Sudan Plateau, which extends across the continent. Here lies the drainless Chad Sea, which, 5000-500 years ago, covered an area many times larger than today’s lake (Megachad). The main streams come from the rivers Chari and Logone.


Chad’s large expanse, 1,284,000 square kilometers, means that there are major climate differences in the north-south direction. The climate in the north is dominated by the subtropical high pressure belt; here it is desert with an annual rainfall of less than 50 millimeters. The mountainous regions of Tibesti have some more rainfall, often in the form of heavy showers, which give way to the oases in some valley areas. About 15 ° the annual rainfall is about 300 millimeters, it falls in a short rainy season between May and September. Both the amount of rainfall and the duration of the rainy season are increasing to the south, where steep climates dominate. The southernmost part is dominated by the equatorial rain belt with rainy season April – October. The annual rainfall is around 1000–1200 millimeters.

Chari, after merging with Logone, by N'Djamena

Farther north, winters are cool with average temperatures for January below 20 °C in the lowlands, towards around 25 °C, and sometimes slightly higher in the south. The warmest period falls at the beginning of the rainy season, i.e. in April-June. The average temperatures then reach 30–35 °C, the highest in the north.

Tibesti Mountains. Landscape east of Bardai, Chad

Geography and environment

Chad covers a land area of ​​1.28 million square kilometers. It is slightly more than three times larger than Norway and the fifth largest country in Africa. The land has no borders to the sea (in English this is called landlocked ), but has approx. 6,000 kilometers border neighboring countries Libya, Sudan, Central African Republic, Cameroon, Niger and Nigeria.

In northern Chad most of the territory is desert (Sahara). In the far north of the country, on the border with Libya, the desert is characterized by beautiful mountain formations. The highest mountain in Chad, Emi Koussi, (3415 m asl) is in this area. Both gold and uranium have been found in northern Chad. In 2018, commercial exploitation of gold began in the Tibesti province, leading to major conflicts with the local population. The savannah dominates the south of the country.

Only a small part of Chad (about 5 percent of the territory) has enough rainfall and good enough land for agriculture. Most farmers grow smaller quantities of millet, different types of beans and vegetables. The Chad Sea west of the country is gradually drying in, causing problems for both agriculture and fishing, as well as Boko Haram creating insecurity through its sudden and violent attacks on villages and people.

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