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Panama Geography 1996

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

    • Map references:
      Central America and the Caribbean

    • Area:

        total area:
        78,200 sq km

        land area:
        75,990 sq km

        comparative area:
        slightly smaller than South Carolina

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

    • Coastline:
      2,490 km

    • Maritime claims:

        territorial sea:
        200 nm

    • International disputes:

    • Climate:
      tropical; 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

    • Natural resources:
      copper, mahogany forests, shrimp

    • Land use:

        arable land:

        permanent crops:

        meadows and pastures:

        forest and woodland:


    • Irrigated land:
      320 sq km (1989 est.)

    • Environment:

        current issues:
        water pollution from agricultural runoff threatens fishery resources; deforestation of tropical rain forest; land degradation

        natural hazards:

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

    • 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

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