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    Sierra Leone Geography - 2004

      Western Africa, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean, between Guinea and Liberia

      Geographic coordinates:
      8 30 N, 11 30 W

      Map references:

      total: 71,740 sq km
      land: 71,620 sq km
      water: 120 sq km

      Area - comparative:
      slightly smaller than South Carolina

      Land boundaries:
      total: 958 km
      border countries: Guinea 652 km, Liberia 306 km

      402 km

      Maritime claims - as described in UNCLOS 1982 (see Notes and Definitions):
      territorial sea: 12 NM
      continental shelf: 200 NM
      contiguous zone: 24 NM
      exclusive economic zone: 200 NM

      tropical; hot, humid; summer rainy season (May to December); winter dry season (December to April)

      coastal belt of mangrove swamps, wooded hill country, upland plateau, mountains in east

      Elevation extremes:
      lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
      highest point: Loma Mansa (Bintimani) 1,948 m

      Natural resources:
      diamonds, titanium ore, bauxite, iron ore, gold, chromite

      Land use:
      arable land: 6.76%
      permanent crops: 0.78%
      other: 92.46% (1998 est.)

      Irrigated land:
      290 sq km (1998 est.)

      Natural hazards:
      dry, sand-laden harmattan winds blow from the Sahara (December to February); sandstorms, dust storms

      Environment - current issues:
      rapid population growth pressuring the environment; overharvesting of timber, expansion of cattle grazing, and slash-and-burn agriculture have resulted in deforestation and soil exhaustion; civil war depleting natural resources; overfishing

      Environment - international agreements:
      party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Law of the Sea, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
      signed, but not ratified: Environmental Modification

      Geography - note:
      rainfall along the coast can reach 495 cm (195 inches) a year, making it one of the wettest places along coastal, western Africa

      NOTE: The information regarding Sierra Leone on this page is re-published from the 2004 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Sierra Leone Geography 2004 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Sierra Leone Geography 2004 should be addressed to the CIA.

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    Revised 21-May-04
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