Belize



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Belize Geography 2008


Location: Central America, bordering the Caribbean Sea, between Guatemala and Mexico
Geographic coordinates: 17 15 N, 88 45 W
Map references: Central America and the Caribbean
Area: total: 22,966 sq km land: 22,806 sq km water: 160 sq km
Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Massachusetts
Land boundaries: total: 516 km border countries: Guatemala 266 km, Mexico 250 km
Coastline: 386 km
Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm in the north, 3 nm in the south; note - from the mouth of the Sarstoon River to Ranguana Cay, Belize's territorial sea is 3 nm; according to Belize's Maritime Areas Act, 1992, the purpose of this limitation is to provide a framework for negotiating a definitive agreement on territorial differences with Guatemala exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Climate: tropical; very hot and humid; rainy season (May to November); dry season (February to May)
Terrain: flat, swampy coastal plain; low mountains in south
Elevation extremes: lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m highest point: Doyle's Delight 1,160 m
Natural resources: arable land potential, timber, fish, hydropower
Land use: arable land: 3.05% permanent crops: 1.39% other: 95.56% (2005)
Irrigated land: 30 sq km (2003)
Total renewable water resources: 18.6 cu km (2000)
Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural): total: 0.15 cu km/yr (7%/73%/20%) per capita: 556 cu m/yr (2000)
Natural hazards: frequent, devastating hurricanes (June to November) and coastal flooding (especially in south)
Environment - current issues: deforestation; water pollution from sewage, industrial effluents, agricultural runoff; solid and sewage waste disposal
Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands, Whaling signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - note: only country in Central America without a coastline on the North Pacific Ocean

NOTE: The geography information regarding Belize on this page is re-published from the 2008 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Belize Geography 2008 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Belize Geography 2008 should be addressed to the CIA.