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After centuries of Danish, Swedish, German, and Russian rule, Estonia attained independence in 1918. Forcibly incorporated into the USSR in 1940 - an action never recognized by the US - it regained its freedom in 1991 with the collapse of the Soviet Union. Since the last Russian troops left in 1994, Estonia has been free to promote economic and political ties with the West. It joined both NATO and the EU in the spring of 2004, formally joined the OECD in late 2010, and adopted the euro as its official currency on 1 January 2011.


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Geography

Location
Eastern Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea and Gulf of Finland, between Latvia and Russia

Geographic coordinates
59 00 N, 26 00 E

Map references
Europe

Area World Ranking: 133
Total 45,228 sq km
Land 42,388 sq km
Water 2,840 sq km
Note
Includes 1,520 islands in the Baltic Sea

Area - comparative
Slightly smaller than New Hampshire and Vermont combined

Land boundaries
Total 633 km
Border countries Latvia 343 km, Russia 290 km

Coastline
3,794 km

Maritime claims
Territorial sea 12 nm
Exclusive economic zone
Limits fixed in coordination with neighboring states

Climate
Maritime; wet, moderate winters, cool summers

Terrain
Marshy, lowlands; flat in the north, hilly in the south

Elevation extremes
Lowest point Baltic Sea 0 m
Highest point Suur Munamagi 318 m

Natural resources
Oil shale, peat, rare earth elements, phosphorite, clay, limestone, sand, dolomite, arable land, sea mud

Land use
Arable land 12.05%
Permanent crops 0.35%
Other 87.6% (2005)

Irrigated land
40 sq km (2003)

Total renewable water resources
21.1 cu km (2005)

Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural)
Total 1.41 cu km/yr (56%/39%/5%)
Per capita 1,060 cu m/yr (2002)

Natural hazards
Sometimes flooding occurs in the spring

Environment - current issues
Air polluted with sulfur dioxide from oil-shale burning power plants in northeast; however, the amount of pollutants emitted to the air have fallen steadily, the emissions of 2000 were 80% less than in 1980; the amount of unpurified wastewater discharged to water bodies in 2000 was 1/20 the level of 1980; in connection with the start-up of new water purification plants, the pollution load of wastewater decreased; Estonia has more than 1,400 natural and manmade lakes, the smaller of which in agricultural areas need to be monitored; coastal seawater is polluted in certain locations

Environment - international agreements
Party to
Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulfur 85, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
Signed, but not ratified
None of the selected agreements

Geography - note
The mainland terrain is flat, boggy, and partly wooded; offshore lie more than 1,500 islands


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  Estonia (Tallinn):


  GPS points from Estonia (Tallinn)

Iyzaku Ida-virumaa

Haljall Laane-virumaa

Kaluvere Khaapsaluskiy Rayon

Klein-rogo Harjumaa

Svyatogo Ioanna Jarvamaa

Valgesoo Polva

Werder Point Khaapsaluskiy Rayon

Tyravere Tartumaa




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