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It is also close to the United States (the state of Alaska), Sweden, and Japan across relatively small stretches of water (the Bering Strait, the Baltic Sea, and La Pérouse Strait, respectively).
Russia has an extensive coastline of over 23,000 miles (37,000 kilometers) along the Arctic and Pacific Oceans, as well as the Baltic, Black and Caspian seas.
The lowest point is the Caspian Sea, at 28 meters below sea level.A small part of Black Sea coast around Sochi is considered in Russia to have subtropical climate.Russia has thousands of rivers and inland bodies of water, providing it with one of the world's largest surface-water resources.From north to south the East European Plain is clad sequentially in tundra, coniferous forest (taiga), mixed forest, broadleaf forest, grassland (steppe), and semidesert (fringing the Caspian Sea) reflecting the changes in climate.Siberia supports a similar sequence but lacks the mixed forest. Environmental issues include air pollution from heavy industry, emissions of coal-fired electric plants, and transportation in major cities; industrial, municipal, and agricultural pollution of inland waterways and seacoasts; deforestation; soil erosion; soil contamination from improper application of agricultural chemicals; scattered areas of sometimes intense radioactive contamination; groundwater contamination from toxic waste; urban solid waste management; and abandoned stocks of obsolete pesticides.