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Jamaica Geography Profile 2018

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LocationCaribbean, island in the Caribbean Sea, south of Cuba
Geographic coordinates18 15 N, 77 30 W
Map referencesCentral America and the Caribbean
Areatotal: 10,991 sq km
land: 10,831 sq km
water: 160 sq km
Area - comparativeabout half the size of New Jersey; slightly smaller than Connecticut
Land boundaries0 km
Coastline1,022 km
Maritime claimsmeasured from claimed archipelagic straight baselines
territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: 200 nm or to edge of the continental margin
Climatetropical; hot, humid; temperate interior
Terrainmostly mountains, with narrow, discontinuous coastal plain
Elevation extremesmean elevation: 18 m
elevation extremes: lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m
highest point: Blue Mountain Peak 2,256 m
Natural resourcesbauxite, gypsum, limestone
Land useagricultural land: 41.4%
arable land 11.1%; permanent crops 9.2%; permanent pasture 21.1%
forest: 31.1%
other: 27.5% (2011 est.)
Irrigated land250 sq km (2012)
Population distributionpopulation density is high throughout, but increases in and around Kingston, Montego Bay, and Port Esquivel
Natural hazardshurricanes (especially July to November)
Environment - current issuesheavy rates of deforestation; coastal waters polluted by industrial waste, sewage, and oil spills; damage to coral reefs; air pollution in Kingston from vehicle emissions
Environment - international agreementsparty to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - notethird largest island in the Caribbean (after Cuba and Hispaniola); strategic location between Cayman Trench and Jamaica Channel, the main sea lanes for the Panama Canal

Source: CIA World Factbook
This page was last updated on January 20, 2018