Atacama Desert

An elevated arid region located in northern
Chile, extending over 384 square miles (1,000 km2) south
from the border with Peru. The desert is located 2,000 feet
(600 m) above sea level and is characterized by numerous dry
salt basins (playas), flanked on the east by the Andes and on
the west by the Pacific coastal range. The Atacama is one of
the driest places on Earth, with no rain ever recorded in
many places, and practically no vegetation in the region.
Nitrate and copper are mined extensively in the region.
The Atacama is first known to have been crossed by the
Spanish conquistador Diego de Almagro in 1537, but was
ignored until the mid-19th century, when mining of nitrates
in the desert began. However, after World War I, synthetic
nitrates were developed, and the region has been experiencing
economic decline.
Post a Comment

Post a Comment