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Physical Environment
Importance of Knowing
Asia stands out with the rest of the
continents on two facts. Its great
size and enormous population. It
is home to more than half of the
world's people.
The history of Asia is the story of
the genesis of anthropology,
religion, culture, and civilization,
geopolitics, economics,
astronomy, astrology, philosophy,
the arts, literature, military
science, mathematics, medicine,
and even the so-called “mother
Filipinos must know that Asia
was superior to West until
about 500 years ago
 China for example led the world in
developing technology when the
Romans were still building their
 The fact that Europeans wanted
goods (silk, tea, porcelain,
spices, etc)
 Also, the Chinese regarded
Europeans then as “barbarians”.
East and West
The East (Orient) is the Asian
World, said to be the region of
the rising sun.

The West (Occident) is the

Europe, said to be the region of
the setting sun.
In1980, Russian geographers
even went so far as to mark the
boundary between East and
West in the Ural mountains by
placing a stone cross on the
highest pass in the route
connecting Tiflis (Tbilisi) and
This mountain pass was called
Krestovie Pereval (Pass of the

The cross bore the word "Asia"
on the side facing east and the
word "Europe" on that side
facing west.
Asia, World's Largest
Ofthe seven continents in the
world, Asia is the largest.

Itstotal area is 17 million miles,

one third of the land surface of
the earth and with 60 percent
of its population.
Seven Continents in the
Asia, World's Largest
Asia is bordered on the north by
the Arctic Ocean, on the south
by the Indian Sea, on the east
by the Pacific Ocean, and on
the west by the Ural Mountain,
Caspian Sea, Black Sea and
Aegean Sea.
Asia, World's Largest
It is separated from the Americas
by the narrow Bering Strait, and
from Africa by the man-made
Suez Canal. In the southeast, it
is linked by the tropical islands
like stepping-stones to
Sub-regions of Asia
East Asia - also called the Far East,
this sub-region includes China,
Japan, Mongolia, North Korea, South
Korea and Taiwan.

South Asia – includes
Bangladesh, Bhutan, India,
Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and
Sri Lanka.

Southeast Asia – includes Brunei,
Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia,
Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore,
Thailand, Timor- Liste and Vietnam.
 Southwest Asia
 It includes Afghanistan,
Bahrain, Cyprus, Iran, Iraq,
Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon,
Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia,
Syria, and Turkey, United Arab
Emirates, Yemen.

North Asia - includes Armenia,
Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan,
Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan,

Physical Features
Ithas the world's tallest and
deepest areas, the wettest and
driest places, some of the most
productive barren places on
Asia has towering snow-capped
mountains, cool plateaus,
verdant valleys, arid deserts,
extensive forests, cascading
waterfalls and historic rivers.
The mountains are the mighty
Himalayas (abode of Snow), the Ural
mountains, and the Caucasus range.

Ural mountains
The Caucasus Mountain Rage is famous in song
and story, for it was on its rocks, according to
Greek mythology, where Prometheus was
chained by the irate Zeus for giving the fire of
the gods to mortal men.
Physical Features
Asia has many peninsulas which
stretch out like the arms of an
octopus, notably India,
Indochina, Malaya, Korea and
Kamchatka. These contain
excellent harbors and bays.
Physical Features
Rivers serve as highways of
commerce and
communications. Three of these
rivers drain into the Indian
Ocean - Indus River, Ganges
River, and the Human So
(Yellow River). The Yangtze
River and the Si Kiang drains
into the Pacific Ocean.
Indus River
Ganges River
Yellow River
Yangtze River
Physical Features
One mighty river, the Mekong, runs
through three of Asia's "rice bowls"
(Burma, Thailand and Vietnam) and
joins the South China Sea.

The historic Tigris and
Euphrates, flow down into the
Persian Gulf.
Physical Features

Tu n d ra - a frozen soilcovered by snow most

o f th e ye a r a n d stre tch in g fro m 1 5 0 -5 0 0 km
Steppes - a forest which gives what
to semi-dessert areas which stretch
from Arabia to Mongolia. The lack of
rain and vegetation encourage a
nomadic lifestyle.
Physical Features
Conditions in southern Asia are
different. Nine-tenths of the
population live in fertile river
valleys and lower hills
cultivated for crops.
Climate and Rainfall
Asia has all kinds of climates
known to man ranging from the
freezing cold of Siberia's arctic
region to the scorching heat of
the Western Asian deserts.
Rainfall is extremely scarce in
North Asia, abundant the
Southeast and South and
relatively little in the Middle
Climate and Rainfall
The town of Cherrapunki in
Assam, India, holds the world
record of the heaviest annual

The Philippines holds the world
record of the heaviest 24-
hour rainfall recorded on
October 17, 1967.
One of the driest deserts in earth is
Kara Kum in Turkmenistan (Soviet
Central Asia).
Climate and Rainfall
Siberia holds the world record of
the lowest temperature
registered in 1892.
Asia has both temperate and
tropical climates. In the north,
temperate climate is felt in the
very cold winters and very hot
The coldest part of the world in winter is
found in Siberia. To the south, there is no
cold season, only a cooler season.
The climate in Southern Asia is
dominated by the "monsoon", an Arabic
word for rainy season when several
months of the year bring heavy rainfall.
In the Philippines, heavy rain and
stormy winds are called "typhoons" a
Chinese word for strong wind.
Asia's Rich Natural Resources
but Poor People
Sixtypercent of the world’s oil
reserves and fifty percent of the
world coal deposits lie beneath
Asian strata.
The Middle East, Brunei and
Indonesia virtually float on a
sea of oil.
Asia's Rich Natural Resources
but Poor People
China produces 50% of the
world's supply of antimony (a
mineral used in light bulbs).
China and Siberia are rich in coal
and natural gas deposits as well
as oil.
Malaysia is the world's greatest
producer of rubber and tin.

Asia's Rich Natural Resources
but Poor People
Indonesia is the greatest
exporter of kapok, pepper, and
The Philippines ranks 1st in
coconut and hemp production,
2nd in sugarcane and 5th in
90% of the world's rice comes
from Asia.
Asia's Rich Natural Resources
but Poor People
Burma, Vietnam, Thailand and
the Philippines are the greatest
"rice bowls" of the world.
Most of the world's supply of
teak comes from the jungles of
Borneo, Burma, Cambodia, and
Asia's Rich Natural Resources
but Poor People
Bangladesh is the leading
producer of jute, a tough fiber
for making sacks.
The world's supply of tea comes
largely from Sri Lanka and
Asia houses one fourth of the
world's forests. The vast forests
of Siberia and tropical forests in
Southeast Asia total to 2.7
billion acres.
Asia's Rich Natural Resources
but Poor People
Unfortunately, most Asians
remain poor despite their
continent's rich natural
resources. Some reasons are:
◦ some resources are not yet
◦ the developed resources are
mostly controlled by Western
multinational companies and not
by Asian entrepreneurs
◦ the environment is not protected
from natural or man-made
Asia's Rich Natural Resources
but Poor People
Although Asia has 60% of the
world's population, it only
accounts for 17% of the world's
production and industry. Thus,
Asians generally did not earn
enough to feed, clothe, house
and care for themselves in the
same standards as Westerners
Asia's Rich Natural Resources
but Poor People
Asian countries mostly rely on
foreign technology and capital.
The rich forests in Asia are
suffering the fastest rate of
destruction in the world due to
illegal logging, crude farming
and forest fires.
There is great variety in Asian
vegetation because of the
diversity in climates.
It is in the southern part of Asia
where most vegetation and
agriculture thrive.
Rice, wheat, soy beans, and
other important crops are
cultivated here.
The tropical south also produces
coconut, rubber, tea, tobacco,
and other products valuable for
export to the world.

The native animals of Asia are as
varied as its climate and
On the Arctic coastal and tundra
are found the polar bears, the
seal and the domesticated
The brown bear, wolf and other
furbearing animals have their
home in the taiga (the vast
coniferous forests of Siberia).
Antelopes, gazelles and camels
(work animal of the desert).
Not found elsewhere in the world
is the yak, the native goat of
Tibet, and the Angora goat of
The tropical region of Asia is
inhabited by tigers (only found
in Asia), leopards, monkeys and
Tibetan Yak
Angora goat of Anatolia
The elephant has been
domesticated to move heavy
goods, especially in India and
Sri Lanka.
Many brickfields are tilled with
the help of the carabao or
water buffalo.
Natural Wonders
The Nepal-Tibet border looms the
world's highest peak, Mt. Everest
(29,028 feet) along the Himalayan

Natural Wonders
The world's lowest land area is the
Dead Sea (303m below sea level)
which is actually a salt lake in the
Israel-Jordan border.

The largest ocean is the Pacific
which washes the eastern
shores of Asia.
The world's deepest ocean depth is the
Philippines Deep along eastern

Natural Wonders

T h e la rg e st b a y in th e w o rld is In d ia 's B e n g a l
The Caspian Sea in Siberia is
the largest lake (inland sea) on
Lake Baikal, also in Siberia, is the
world's deepest lake.
The world's largest archipelago is
Indonesia consisting of more than
3,000 islands.
The world's longest strait is the famous
Malacca Strait, between Malaysia and
Indonesia, which extends for 485 miles.
The narrowest strait in the world is the San
Juanico Strait between the islands of Samar
and Leyte in the Philippines.
Man-made Wonders
The Great Wall of China is the
most colossal edifice ever
fashioned by human hands. It
was built by Emperor Shih
Huang Ati as a defensive
rampart against the marauding
Tartans. It took more than 10
years to finish and more that
200,000 men labored on the
gigantic project.
Man-made Wonders
Because thousands of workers
died during the construction of
the Great Wall, many were
buried in it that is why it is also
the world's largest cemetery.
The Great Wall of China is the
only man-made structure
visible from the moon.
Man-made Wonders
The Ifugao rice terraces is
another Asia's man-made
wonder. Built about 2,000 years
ago, these terraces escalate
like colossal stairways into the
clouds. If placed end to end,
they would extend more than
22,500 km, eight times longer
than China's Great Wall or more
than half the circumference of
the earth.
Man-made Wonders
The Taj Mahal (Crown of the
Palace), a magnificent marble
tomb in Agra, India is hailed by
Western writers as the most
beautiful and perfect of all
buildings in the world.