topography, climate and economy
Topography and Climate
Ethiopia’s altitude ranges from mountain peaks of over 4000 meters above sea level in Semien Mountains, to 100 meters below sea level in the Dallol Depression of Afar. The Great Rift Valley that runs from Mozambique to Syria divides Ethiopia into two parts, this rift valley separates the western and the eastern highlands; and these highlands gradually descend to the lowland areas in the east, west, and south of the country. Much of the country consists of high plateau and mountain ranges, which are dissected by numerous streams and rivers.
Despite its proximity to the equator, Ethiopia’s high altitude ensures a temperate, moderate climate. The average daily temperature ranges from 18-25 degree centigrade. There are two rainy seasons in Ethiopia, the irregular short rains from January to early march and long rain stretching from June to mid-September .May is the warmest month and usually a time of bright sunny days.
Agriculture is the mainstay of the economy. It is estimated that about 85% of the employment is generated directly and indirectly by agriculture .The service and industry are the second and third main sectors after agriculture in terms of contribution to the country’s gross national product. Coffee is Ethiopia’s main export product followed by oil seeds, flower and vegetables.