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a peninsula on the western shore of the Caspian Sea, opposite the eastern extremity of the Greater Caucasus, in the Azerbaijan SSR. It extends 60 km into the sea and is up to 30 km wide. It is composed mainly of Neocene and Anthropogenic deposits. The surface is a rolling plain (elevation, 50–165 m) with brachyanticlinal rises and mud peaks (up to 310 m high in the west) and with undrained hollows that have solonchaks and salt lakes; there are patches of shifting sands. There are rich deposits of petroleum and natural gas.
The climate is dry and subtropical. The average January temperature is 3°C, and the average July temperature is 25°C. The total annual precipitation ranges from 140 mm in the southwestern part to 250 mm in the north. Strong winds (the nord) are frequent. The plant life is of the ephemeral semidesert type, with grassy vegetation in the winter.
The Apsheron Peninsula is an important industrial region, with petroleum-extraction and petroleum-refining industry Vineyards and melon crops are widespread on the floodplains (the flooding is due to subterranean water).
N. A. GVOZDETSKII
The balneological health resorts of Surakhany and Shi-khovo (with hot—64°-65° C—mineral springs, a balneological clinic, and a hospital); the climatic seaside health resorts of Mardakian, Buzovna, Zagul’ba, and Vil’giakh (with solar and fresh-air therapy, sea bathing, a sand beach, childrens’ sanatoriums—a tuberculosis sanatorium, a sanatorium for those suffering from rheumatism, and a bone and tuberculosis sanatorium—a vacation home, and Pioneer camps); Pirshagi (with a great deal of greenery, therapeutic grapes and figs, and Pioneer camps); and Turkiany (with a vacation home) are located on the western shore of the Caspian Sea, near Baku.