Utah, abbreviated UT or Ut., Is a state in the United States, one of the mountain states in the west. Utah borders Nevada in the west, Idaho and Wyoming in the north, Colorado in the east and Arizona in the south. In the south / east – in the so-called Four Corners – Utah also borders New Mexico. This is the only place in the United States where four states have a common border point.
Utah has a total area of approx. 219,900 km2, and has 3,101,833 residents (US Census, 2017). Utah was listed as the 45th state of the United States on January 4, 1896. The capital and largest city is Salt Lake City.
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Geography and climate
The north-south mountain range of the Wasatch Range (approximately 3500 m asl) forms a topographic distinction between the hilly Colorado Plateau in the east and the monotonous and arid Great Basin plain in the west. Here lies Great Salt Lake, the last remnant of the great Bonneville Lake. Southwest of the lake is the pure desert, the Great Salt Lake Desert.
In the east and south-east, the Colorado River intersects with deep canyons. Here you will find some of America’s most amazing landscapes preserved by the creation of a number of national parks. The most famous are Arches, Bryce Canyon, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef and Zion. This portion of the state is bounded to the north by the Uinta Mountains with Utah’s highest mountain of Kings Peak (4,123 m).
Utah has a dry, continental climate. Salt Lake City has an average temperature of 21 °C in July, –2 °C in January, and 400 mm of precipitation annually. In the mountains, pine and spruce grow, otherwise shrubs are the usual vegetation type. Utah has large irrigation facilities, which make desert areas cultivable.
High birth rates and large numbers of immigrants have led Utah to be among America’s highest growth rates; the population increased by 38 per cent in the period 1970–1980, 18 per cent in 1980–1990, 29.6 per cent in 1990–2000 and 24 per cent in the period 2000–2010.
The majority of the population resides in the metropolitan area between Ogden in the north and Provo in the south, in the so-called Wasatch Front. Of the population, 90.9 percent are white – including 13 percent Hispanics – the rest are Indigenous, Black / African American (1.4 percent), and Asian (US Census, 2017). Nearly 91 percent live in cities and towns (2010).
The largest cities are the capital of Salt Lake City, West Valley City, Provo, West Jordan, Orem, Sandy, Ogden and St. George. There are three universities, the largest being the Mormon Church’s Brigham Young University in Provo, also in Salt Lake City and Logan. The most important church community is the Mormons, which comprise 62 percent of the population (2010).
Utah sends two senators and four representatives to Congress in Washington DC.
Agriculture is dependent on irrigation, with the cultivation of hay, wheat, barley, oats, potatoes, sugar beets and fruit. Livestock production is important, and just over two-thirds of agricultural income comes from animal products: Utah has approx. 777,000 cattle, 732,000 pigs, 287,000 sheep and 3,814,000 poultry, of which about 75 percent are turkey. (2012).
Utah has vast mineral resources and is the world’s leading producer of beryllium. Extraction of gold, silver, copper, lead and molybdenum is also significant. There are large reserves of coal, petroleum and natural gas; moreover, uranium, zinc, iron ore and phosphate are extracted.
The industry includes iron and steel mills, metal industry, chemical industry and petroleum refineries. In addition, there is the aerospace industry, as well as manufacturing of fine mechanical equipment in Ogden and Salt Lake City.
Two-thirds of the land is owned by the federal state.
From around the year 400 AD, a peacock culture of land-cultivating rockers flourished in present-day Utah, but these residents left the area in the 13th century, probably due to prolonged drought. After them came several groups of nomadic bison hunters, among other out, which gave the state its present name.
Utah got its first permanent settlement in recent times in 1847, when groups of Mormons settled on Great Salt Lake. The area fell to the United States after the Mexican-American War in 1848, and in 1850 was named Utah Territory. Utah was admitted as the Union’s 45 state first in 1896, after polygamy among Mormons officially was abolished in 1890.