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    Panama Geography - 2002

      Location Middle America, bordering both the Caribbean Sea and the North Pacific Ocean, between Colombia and Costa Rica

      Geographic coordinates 9 00 N, 80 00 W

      Map references Central America and the Caribbean

      total: 78,200 sq km
      water: 2,210 sq km
      land: 75,990 sq km

      Area - comparative slightly smaller than South Carolina

      Land boundaries
      total: 555 km
      border countries: Colombia 225 km, Costa Rica 330 km

      Coastline 2,490 km

      Maritime claims
      contiguous zone: 24 NM
      exclusive economic zone: 200 NM
      territorial sea: 12 NM

      Climate tropical maritime; hot, humid, cloudy; prolonged rainy season (May to January), short dry season (January to May)

      Terrain interior mostly steep, rugged mountains and dissected, upland plains; coastal areas largely plains and rolling hills

      Elevation extremes
      lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m
      highest point: Volcan de Chiriqui 3,475 m

      Natural resources copper, mahogany forests, shrimp, hydropower

      Land use
      arable land: 7%
      permanent crops: 2%
      other: 91% (1998 est.)

      Irrigated land 320 sq km (1998 est.)

      Natural hazards occasional severe storms and forest fires in the Darien area

      Environment - current issues water pollution from agricultural runoff threatens fishery resources; deforestation of tropical rain forest; land degradation and soil erosion threatens siltation of Panama Canal; air pollution in urban areas; mining threatens natural resources

      Environment - international agreements
      party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling
      signed, but not ratified: Marine Life Conservation

      Geography - note strategic location on eastern end of isthmus forming land bridge connecting North and South America; controls Panama Canal that links North Atlantic Ocean via Caribbean Sea with North Pacific Ocean

      NOTE: The information regarding Panama on this page is re-published from the 2002 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Panama Geography 2002 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Panama Geography 2002 should be addressed to the CIA.

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    Revised 30-Jan-03
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