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Nicaragua Geography

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

    Geographic coordinates: 13 00 N, 85 00 W

    Map references: Central America and the Caribbean

    Area:
    total: 129,494 sq km
    land: 120,254 sq km
    water: 9,240 sq km

    Area—comparative: slightly smaller than the state of New York

    Land boundaries:
    total: 1,231 km
    border countries: Costa Rica 309 km, Honduras 922 km

    Coastline: 910 km

    Maritime claims:
    contiguous zone: 25-nm security zone
    continental shelf: natural prolongation
    territorial sea: 200 nm

    Climate: tropical in lowlands, cooler in highlands

    Terrain: extensive Atlantic coastal plains rising to central interior mountains; narrow Pacific coastal plain interrupted by volcanoes

    Elevation extremes:
    lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m
    highest point: Mogoton 2,438 m

    Natural resources: gold, silver, copper, tungsten, lead, zinc, timber, fish

    Land use:
    arable land: 9%
    permanent crops: 1%
    permanent pastures: 46%
    forests and woodland: 27%
    other: 17% (1993 est.)

    Irrigated land: 880 sq km (1993 est.)

    Natural hazards: destructive earthquakes, volcanoes, landslides, and occasionally severe hurricanes

    Environment—current issues: deforestation; soil erosion; water pollution; Hurricane Mitch damage

    Environment—international agreements:
    party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands
    signed, but not ratified: Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Environmental Modification, Law of the Sea

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Revised 1-Mar-99
Copyright © 1999 Photius Coutsoukis (all rights reserved)