Kiribati Geography

What is the terrain and geography like in Kiribati?

Geography - note:

21 of the 33 islands are inhabited; Banaba (Ocean Island) in Kiribati is one of the three great phosphate rock islands in the Pacific Ocean - the others are Makatea in French Polynesia, and Nauru; Kiribati is the only country in the world to fall into all four hemispheres (northern, southern, eastern, and western)

Climate:

tropical; marine, hot and humid, moderated by trade winds

Kiribati Use of Natural Resources

Kiribati Environment

Climate:

tropical; marine, hot and humid, moderated by trade winds

Terrain:

mostly low-lying coral atolls surrounded by extensive reefs

Natural Resources:

phosphate (production discontinued in 1979)

Natural Hazards:

typhoons can occur any time, but usually November to March; occasional tornadoes; low level of some of the islands make them very sensitive to changes in sea level

Environmental Issues:

heavy pollution in lagoon of south Tarawa atoll due to heavy migration mixed with traditional practices such as lagoon latrines and open-pit dumping; ground water at risk

Environment - International Agreements:

party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Whaling

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Kiribati Geography

Geographic Location Oceania
Total Area 313 Square Miles
811 Square Kilometers
Land Area 313 Square Miles
811 Square Kilometers
Coastline 710 Miles
1,143 Kilometers
Geographic Coordinates 1 25 N, 173 00 E
Terrain mostly low-lying coral atolls surrounded by extensive reefs
Highest Point 81 Meters
Highest Point Location unnamed location on Banaba 81 m
Lowest Point Location Pacific Ocean 0 m
Natural Resources phosphate (production discontinued in 1979)
Time Zone UTC+12 (17 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)

note: on 1 January 1995, Kiribati proclaimed that all of its territory was in the same time zone as its Gilbert Islands group (UTC +12) even though the Phoenix Islands and the Line Islands under its jurisdiction were on the other side of the International Date Line
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