While it may be the smallest state with an area
An international research team from Sweden, Estonia, France, and the United States has recently conducted important research with the purpose of counting the world’s lakes. They used satellite imagery and computerized mapping technologies, and their important study is the first one that reliably counted all the lakes in the world. Following are 11 important facts you should know about the world’s lakes.
- There are about 117 million lakes in the world that have a surface area of 0.2 hectares or more. 0.2 hectares is about the size of one a half Olympic swimming pools.
- The lakes cover around 3.7% of the Earth’s non-glaciated land surface. That amounts to about 5 million square kilometers or 1.9 million square miles. That’s roughly half the size of Canada.
- If you add the lengths of the shorelines of all the lakes in the world, that amounts to 250 times the length of the equator. That’s about 1 million kilometers, or 621,372 miles, about 2.6 times greater than the distance from the Earth to the Moon.
- 90 million lakes are between 0.2 and 1 hectare in surfaces area. They only represent 0.27% of the non-glaciated land area, or 7.3% of the total surface of the world’s lakes.
- 22 million lakes larger than one hectare are located between 60°N and 56°S. They represent 1.4% of the Earth’s non glaciated land surface.
- Around 5 million lakes are located North of 60°N or South of 56°S.
- The greatest concentration of lakes in the world is between 45°–75°N.
- 85% of all lakes, amounting to half of all the lakes’ area are located at altitudes lower than 500 meters above sea level.
- The biggest lake in the world, the Caspian Sea, was actually excluded from the study. That’s because many consider it a sea, and at 371,000 square kilometers in surface area, it is far greater than any other lake. The Caspian Sea is also salty
- Speaking of which, the largest freshwater lake in the world is Lake Superior, with a surface area of 82,103 square kilometers.
- The deepest and largest freshwater lake in the world is Lake Baikal, in Siberia. It has a maximum depth of 1,642 meters and it could hold all the water of all the American Great Lakes combined.
Catalin Trif is a lake enthusiast and blogger. He is also addicted to travel and his guitar. Visit Lakepedia for more information on the world’s lakes.