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LATIN AMERICA

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  1. LATIN AMERICA THE PHYSICAL GEOGRAPHY OF LATIN AMERICA

  2. LATIN AMERICA: WHAT MAKES IT A REGION? STRONG SPANISH AND PORTUGUESE INFLUENCE ON LANGUAGE AND CULTURE BLEND OF NATIVE AMERICAN, AFRICAN, AND EUROPEAN HERITAGE MOSTLY TROPICAL AND SUBTROPICAL CLIMATE WORLD’S LARGEST AREA OF TROPICAL RAINFOREST

  3. LATIN AMERICA: THE LAND • KEY TERMS: • CORDILLERA • ALTIPLANO • ESCARPMENT • LLANO • PAMPA • HYDROELECTRIC POWER

  4. THE LAND • Western Hemisphere, South of the U.S. • 8 million sq.mi. • 16% of Earth’s surface • Middle America (Mexico to Panama) • Caribbean • South America- largest landmass in Latin America

  5. MOUNTAINS AND PLATEAUS • Extension of the Rockies • Mexico- Sierra Maestra • Central and South America- Andes • Location on the Ring of Fire • Earthquakes and Volcanoes still affect the area • Why did people move there? • Cooler climates • Natural resources- water, volcanic soil, timber, and minerals • Rugged terrain = isolated communities

  6. MIDDLE AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN • Sierra Maestra- Mexico, on the Mexican Plateau • The Carribean Islands • Are mainly volcanic peaks • Andes Mountains • 4,500 miles long covering the West Coast of S.A. • Longest and highest mountain range • Some peaks over 20,000 ft • Is a cordillera system- separate mountain ranges that run parallel to each other • In Peru • Andes encircle the altiplano, or high plain

  7. THE ANDES MOUNTAINS

  8. THE BRAZILIAN HIGHLANDS • Eastern S.A.- broad plateaus and valleys • Ex: MatoGrosso Plateau • Brazil, Bolivia, Peru • Ex: Brazilian Highlands • Warm climate • Good for raising cattle • Ends in an escarpment- steep slope plunging into the Atlantic Ocean

  9. MATO GROSSO PLATEAU: BRAZIL

  10. LOWLANDS AND PLAINS • Brazil has the longest strip of coastal plain • Northeastern Brazil to Uruguay • Escarpment forces the Brazilian people to live on the coast • Llanos- inland grassland • Colombia and Venezuela • Pampas- in Argentina and Uruguay • Grazing land for cattle and livestock • Fertile soil- wheat and corn production

  11. ESCARPMENT

  12. WATER SYSTEMS • Transportation of goods and people • Mostly in South America • Amazon River • Headwaters in the Peruvian Andes • Empties into the Atlantic • Over 4,000 miles long • Carries 10x the amount of water volume than the Mississippi • Paraná Paraguay and Uruguay Rivers • 2nd longest river system in Latin America

  13. WATER SYSTEMS (cont) • Used for hydroelectric power • Rio Grande • Largest river in Middle America • A.K.A.- Rio Bravo del Norte • Panama Canal • Man made on the Isthmus of Panama • Used to get from the Atlantic to the Pacific • Lakes • Titicaca- Peru and Bolivia • Maracaibo- Venezuela (Oil fields)

  14. PANAMA CANAL

  15. NATURAL RESOURCES • Oil- Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Sea • Orinoco River- (Venezuela)- Gold • Peru and Mexico- Silver • Colombia- Emeralds • Chile- Copper • Jamaica- Bauxite = aluminum

  16. CLIMATE AND VEGETATION • KEY TERMS: • Tierra Helada • Puna • Tierra Fria • Tierra Templada • Tierra caliente • Canopy

  17. CLIMATE ZONES

  18. ELEVATION AND CLIMATE • Climate affected more by elevation than location relative the Equator • Have vertical climate zones • Tierra Helada-Andes Mts • Puna- cold zone w/grass; cattle graze here • Tierra Fria • Potatoes and Barley • America’s highest climate zones • Tierra Templada • Coffee and corn main crops • Tierra Caliente • Bananas, sugar, rice, cacao

  19. CLIMATE AND VEGETATION REGIONS • Most of L.A. is tropical w/lush vegetation • Tropical wet • Dominates most of the region • Rainfall from the prevailing winds = moisture from the Atlantic • Mostly lands in the Amazon Basin • Rainforests • Trees grow close to one another forming a canopy • Dense layers of leaves • Sunlight does not reach the floor • Many species live here

  20. Tropical Dry • Southwestern Mexico, Caribbean Islands, and North Central South America • High temperatures, rainfall, drought • Soils not too fertile but flooding has helped move sediments

  21. Humid Sub-Tropical • Southeastern South America • Short winters • Heavy rain during Summer • Short grasses • Today: Alfalfa, corn, and cotton

  22. DRY CLIMATES • Northern Mexico, Peru, Chile, and Southeastern Argentina • Desert climate and vegetation • Ex: Atcama desert • In some places here rainfall has never been recorded • Vegetation • Cacti- due to lomas (dense sea fog) that comes over the area • Steppe • N. Mexico, N. Brazil, South Central S.A. • Hot Summer, cool Winter, grassy