The entire world is divided into different zones on the basis of the climate that prevails there. There are regions where the temperature can even freeze your breath. Also, there are some regions where you can fry an egg. Well, jokes aside, today we will talk about the Arctic Circle and the 8 Arctic countries. Did you happen to hear about which Asian country has land within the Arctic Circle and what country owns the Arctic Circle? If not, nothing to worry about. We will discuss every topic in this article.
1. What is the Arctic Circle?
The term arctic was taken from the Greek word arktikos which actually means of the Bear with reference to the northern constellation. One of the two polar circles that are situated in the north of the 5 major latitude circles shown on the Earth is known as the Arctic Circle. The southern circle is the Antarctic Circle.
One distinctive feature of the places on this Artic circle is experienced on the December Solstice and June Solstice. On the December Solstice, there will be no sunrise, and it will be the shortest day of the year. On the June Solstice, the day will be the longest with the sun not setting till late. (See What are the Effects of Latitude on Climate?)
2. What is the Size of the Arctic Circle?
Roughly, the Arctic Circle is expanded into an area of about 16, 000 kilometers (9,900 miles) in circumference. The northern portion covered under the Arctic Circle is stretched in an area of 20, 000, 000 kilometers square (7, 700,000 square miles) which makes up about 4% of the surface of the Earth. (See What is Imaginary Line?)
3. What is the Climate of the Region?
You are moving closer to knowing which Asian country has land within the Arctic Circle. As the name suggests, the regions are cold, but the coastal areas are an exception with a mild climate. This is because of the Gulf Stream, which makes these areas ice-free for the entire year. However, during summers the interior regions are warm, and the temperature can be as high as 30°Celsius (86°Fahrenheit). But the winters are cold with the average temperature -50°Celsius (-58°Fahrenheit) and sometimes even below this. (See What are the 5 Features of the Earth?)
4. What is Northern Light?
The northern lights are the greenish-blue lights that appear in the clear night sky in swirling rivers. Sometimes they are vivid and other times they are hardly visible. They are also known as the Aurora Borealis which can occur as a result of the interaction between the magnetic field of the Earth and the solar winds.
In the Arctic Circle, the northern lights are visible from late August till early April (autumn and spring equinoxes). But the best time to witness this beauty is during September, early October, and March.
5. When is The Midnight Sun Visible in The Arctic Circle?
The term midnight sun is used when the sun appears in the sky at midnight. This natural phenomenon is witnessed in the northern regions of the Arctic Circle and towards the south of the Antarctic Circle. It is most likely to appear in the summer months. During the summer solstice in the Arctic Circle, which is most likely on the 21st of June, you can witness this. And the midnight sun will last for longer hours if you move more towards the North Pole. The information about which Asian country has land within the Arctic Circle is just around the corner. (See How many Suns are in the Universe?)
6. What is the Location of the Arctic Circle?
Currently, the Arctic Circle runs 66°33’ 49.2” towards the north of the Equator. The latitude of the circle is dependent on the axial tilt of the Earth. However, there is a change in the margin of more than 2° after a period of 41, 000 years. This happens due to the tidal forces happening due to the orbit of the Moon. According to scientists, at present, the Arctic Circle is drifting north at the speed of 48 feet (14.5 m) per year. (See How much of the African Continent is Covered with Desert?)
7. Which Areas does the Arctic Circle pass through?
Take a look at the list below for all the places through which the Arctic Circle passes.
- Arctic Ocean
- North Asia
- Northern America
- Scandinavian Peninsula
8. What are the 8 Arctic Countries?
The land within the Arctic Circle is occupied by 8 countries. Together they are known as the Arctic 8. According to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), which was adopted in 1982, specific laws and orders were laid down for the oceans of the world and their resources. You are close to knowing which Asian country has land within the Arctic Circle, but before that take a look at the 8 Arctic countries mentioned here:
- The Kingdom of Denmark
- The Russian Federation
- The United States
9. Which Continent is a Part of the Arctic Circle?
Based on the region covered under the latitudinal and longitudinal extent of the Arctic Circle, there are 3 continents, namely Asia, Europe, and North America. The following countries are from these continents:
- North America – The United States and Canada
- Europe – The Kingdom of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden
- Asia – The Russian Federation (Eastern Europe and Northern Asia)
10. Which Asian Country has Land within the Arctic Circle?
Due to the continuous continental shift experienced worldwide, the places held by various countries in the Arctic Circle keep on shifting. As a result, other than the 8 states already having their place in the Arctic 8, there are new observers also, like India, China, and Germany. However, to answer which Asian country has land within the arctic circle, let me tell you that till now, the Asian country is Russia, which has the most land in Asia as per their claims. (See How Many Countries Share a Border with Germany?)
11. Which Country holds the Most Land in the Southern?
Towards the south of the Arctic Circle is Iceland. So, besides reading about which Asian country has land within the arctic circle, note that according to the researchers, a major part of the land mass of Iceland is towards the southern Arctic Circle. These landscapes are a mix of rich agricultural lands, stark peaks, and barren fields. Must read How many Countries are there in Antarctica?
12. What Country owns the Arctic Circle?
The United States of America claims to own the Arctic Circle but, as per the Law of the Sea, also known as, the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), no one owns the North Pole. It was a treaty that is by now signed by more than 150 countries of the world that prohibits them from exploiting the region. In fact, there is no land to own to start with. However, every country that shares a border on the Arctic Circle has started claiming some waters of the Circle. (See Is Hawaii in the Northern Hemisphere?)
13. Why are Countries claiming the Waters of the Arctic Circle?
According to the estimates of the United States Information Administration, the seabed of the Arctic Ocean is the house for an estimated 90 billion barrels of oil which makes it about 13% of the undiscovered oil reserves of the world along with 30% of untapped natural gas of the planet. However, these are just estimates without any concrete evidence, then also, countries are trying to reach out further into the ocean. (See What Continent is Dubai in?)
14. Which Country has the Most Reserves in the Arctic Circle?
According to the treaty of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), the countries who have signed it will have the right to exploit the resources from the seabed of the Arctic Ocean, but only up to 370 kilometers off their shorelines towards the ocean. Therefore, none of the states own any of the mentioned reserves.
However, if a country provides evidence that a particular geological feature present on the seabed is a piece of their geographical landmass, then the country can get an extension of about 321.86 kilometers (200 miles). But this claim will be accepted or rejected after the research conducted by the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf.
So, today along with which Asian country has land within the Arctic Circle you got to know about the 8 Arctic countries. Also, the fact behind what country owns the Arctic Circle and the reason for it too. (See What is the Difference between Tropical and Polar Regions?)