Key Facts about Rhine River

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Parts of the Rhine River in south Germany remained closed to shipping recently after heavy rain and melting snow increased water levels.

About Rhine River

  • It is the 12th longest river in Europe, stretching approximately 1,230 kilometers from its source in Switzerland to its mouth on the North Sea in the Netherlands. 
  • It is the largest tributary of the North Sea.
  • Origin: It originates from the southeastern part of the Swiss Alps in the Canton of Grisons, Switzerland.
  • Drainage Basin: This transboundary river drains an area of about 185,000 square kilometers and flows through six countries: Switzerland, Germany, Austria, Liechtenstein, France, and the Netherlands.
  • Course: It flows in a northward direction from its sources in Switzerland through the other five countries, and then turns west into the North Sea.
  • Names: It is known by different names depending on which country it flows through. Some of its names include Rhein (Germany), Rijn (Dutch), Rhin (French), Rhenus (Latin), and Renos (Celtic).
  • Tributaries: Some of the notable tributaries of the Rhine River include Aare, Tamina, Moselle, Erft, Rein da Tuma, Plessur, Rotach, and Wiese. 
  • The major cities along the Rhine include Basel (Switzerland), Cologne, Bonn, Duisburg, Mainz, Leverkusen, and Neuss (Germany), Strasbourg (France), and Rotterdam and Utrecht (Netherlands).
  • It facilitates industrial transportation and supports industrial production, with about 20% of the world’s chemical industries manufacturing along the river. 

Q1) Which are the countries bordering the North Sea?

The countries that surround the North Sea include the United Kingdom, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, and Norway.

Source: River Rhine in south Germany remains closed to shipping