Mediterranean Sea Facts

Mediterranean Sea Facts
The Mediterranean Sea is located between Southern Europe and North Africa, often considered part of the Atlantic Ocean but in reality it is a separate water body. Almost completely surrounded by land the Mediterranean is bordered on the south by Africa, the east by the Levant, and the north by Anatolia and Southern Europe. The word 'Mediterranean' is derived from the Latin word 'mediterraneus' which means 'in the middle of land'. The Mediterranean Sea covers approximately 965,000 square miles with a narrow 8.7 mile wide opening to the Atlantic Ocean called the Strait of Gibraltar.
Interesting Mediterranean Sea Facts:
The average depth of the Mediterranean Sea is 4,900 feet. Its deepest point is 17,280 feet, in the Ionian Sea's Calypso Deep.
Countries with coasts along the Mediterranean include Turkey, Tunisia, Syria, Slovenia, Spain, Montenegro, Monaco, Malta, Libya, Lebanon, Italy, Israel, Greece, France, Egypt, Cyprus, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Algeria, and Albania.
During ancient times the Mediterranean Sea was an important transportation route. It remains an important transportation route today.
Ancient civilizations that lived along the Mediterranean include the Phoenicians, Greek city states.
When Darius I of Persia conquered Egypt he had a canal built to link the Red Sea to the Mediterranean Sea.
The Mediterranean Sea has become a major route for migrants. It is estimated that in 2015 more than one million people used the Mediterranean Sea to migrate to Europe.
Major cities along the Mediterranean Sea include Algiers, Alexandria, Nice, Marseille, Athens, Tel Aviv, Bari, Rome, Venice, Beirut, Tripoli, Tangier, Gaza City, Tunis, Mersin, and many more.
Subdivisions of the Mediterranean Sea, which are smaller water bodies contained within the sea, include the Strait of Gibraltar, the Alboran Sea, the Balearic Sea, the Ligurian Sea, the Tyrrhenian Sea, the Ionian Sea, the Adriatic Sea, and the Aegean Sea.
The largest islands in the Mediterranean Sea include Sicily, Sardinia, Cyprus, Corsica, Crete, Euboea, Majorca, Lesbos, Rhodes, and Chios.
The Mediterranean Sea basin was formed when the African and Eurasian plates converged, during Late Triassic and Early Jurassic periods.
It is believed that the Mediterranean Sea was filled with water in under two years, roughly 5.3 million years ago due to the Zanclean flood.
Climate change may result in the water level of the Mediterranean Sea to rise, which could have a negative impact on drinking water supplies and the displacement of as many as half a million people in Egypt alone.
Pollution is a major problem in the Mediterranean Sea, resulting from sewage, mineral oil, mercury, lead, phosphates, and marine debris.
Approximately 220,000 merchant ships cross the Mediterranean Sea each year, some with hazardous cargo that would result in serious environmental damage if leaked.
The Mediterranean Sea is a major tourist destination for people from all over the world.
The European Environmental Agency has stated that the 65% of fish stocks in the Mediterranean are below safe biological levels due to overfishing.
Because of the narrow connection to the Atlantic Ocean the tides in the Mediterranean are limited.
The water in the Mediterranean Sea is slightly saltier than the Atlantic Ocean because of the narrow connection and evaporation.

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