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Cameroon:
Geography

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Cameroon Page


Background
Definition
The former French Cameroon and part of British Cameroon merged in 1961 to form the present country. Cameroon has generally enjoyed stability, which has permitted the development of agriculture, roads, and railways, as well as a petroleum industry. Despite a slow movement toward democratic reform, political power remains firmly in the hands of President Paul BIYA.
Location
Definition
Western Africa, bordering the Bight of Biafra, between Equatorial Guinea and Nigeria
Geographic coordinates
Definition
6 00 N, 12 00 E
Map references
Definition
Africa
Area
Definition - World rank and map
total: 475,440 sq km
land: 469,440 sq km
water: 6,000 sq km
Area - comparative
Definition
slightly larger than California
Land boundaries
Definition
total: 4,591 km
border countries: Central African Republic 797 km, Chad 1,094 km, Republic of the Congo 523 km, Equatorial Guinea 189 km, Gabon 298 km, Nigeria 1,690 km
Coastline
Definition
402 km
Maritime claims
Definition
territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
Climate
Definition
varies with terrain, from tropical along coast to semiarid and hot in north
Terrain
Definition
diverse, with coastal plain in southwest, dissected plateau in center, mountains in west, plains in north
Elevation extremes
Definition
lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
highest point: Fako 4,095 m (on Mt. Cameroon)
Natural resources
Definition
petroleum, bauxite, iron ore, timber, hydropower
Land use
Definition - World rank and map
arable land: 12.54%
permanent crops: 2.52%
other: 84.94% (2005)
Irrigated land
Definition
260 sq km (2003)
Total renewable water resources
Definition
285.5 cu km (2003)
Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural)
Definition
total: 0.99 cu km/yr (18%/8%/74%)
per capita: 61 cu m/yr (2000)
Natural hazards
Definition
volcanic activity with periodic releases of poisonous gases from Lake Nyos and Lake Monoun volcanoes
Environment - current issues
Definition
waterborne diseases are prevalent; deforestation; overgrazing; desertification; poaching; overfishing
Environment - international agreements
Definition
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - note
Definition
sometimes referred to as the hinge of Africa; throughout the country there are areas of thermal springs and indications of current or prior volcanic activity; Mount Cameroon, the highest mountain in Sub-Saharan west Africa, is an active volcano


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