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Cape Verde Geography

Cape Verde    Geography Top of Page
Location: Western Africa, group of islands in the North Atlantic Ocean, west of Senegal
Geographic coordinates: 16 00 N, 24 00 W
Map references: World
Area: total:  4,033 sq km

land:  4,033 sq km

water:  0 sq km
Area - comparative: slightly larger than Rhode Island
Land boundaries: 0 km
Coastline: 965 km
Maritime claims: measured from claimed archipelagic baselines

contiguous zone:  24 NM

exclusive economic zone:  200 NM

territorial sea:  12 NM
Climate: temperate; warm, dry summer; precipitation meager and very erratic
Terrain: steep, rugged, rocky, volcanic
Elevation extremes: lowest point:  Atlantic Ocean 0 m

highest point:  Mt. Fogo 2,829 m (a volcano on Fogo Island)
Natural resources: salt, basalt rock, pozzuolana (a siliceous volcanic ash used to produce hydraulic cement), limestone, kaolin, fish
Land use: arable land:  11%

permanent crops:  0%

permanent pastures:  6%

forests and woodland:  0%

other:  83% (1993 est.)
Irrigated land: 1,500 to 2,000 hectares (1999)
Natural hazards: prolonged droughts; harmattan wind can obscure visibility; volcanically and seismically active
Environment - current issues: overgrazing of livestock and improper land use such as the cultivation of crops on steep slopes has led to soil erosion; demand for wood used as fuel has resulted in deforestation; desertification; environmental damage has threatened several species of birds and reptiles; overfishing
Environment - international agreements: party to:  Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping

signed, but not ratified:  none of the selected agreements
Geography - note: strategic location 500 km from west coast of Africa near major north-south sea routes; important communications station; important sea and air refueling site


Countryfacts Information Courtesy: CIA Worldbook

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