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Kivu, lake, 1,042 sq mi (2,699 sq km), 55 mi (89 km) long, on the Congo-Rwanda border, E central Africa; highest lake in Africa (4,788 ft/1,459 m). It is drained by the Ruzizi River, which flows S into Lake Tanganyika. Beneath the lake lie vast reserves of methane gas (and carbon dioxide) which have not been exploited; localized natural releases of the gases sometimes asphyxiate individuals. Lake Kivu is a tourist center. Goma, Congo, on the N shore, is subject to the eruptions of nearby Mt. Nyiragongo.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: African Physical Geography

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