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Geography of the Honduras

Map Page 1136
Area 43,278 square mile (112,090 square kilometer)
Population 6,669,789
Capital Tegucigalpa
Highest Point 9,416 foot (2,870 meter)
Lowest Point 0 m
GDP per capita $2,600
Primary Natural Resources timber, gold, silver, copper, lead, zinc.

Honduras is located right in the heart of Central America, sharing borders with El Salvador, Nicaragua, and Guatemala. Most of the people are considered mestizos, or of a mixed heritage of white and Amerindian. The country’s area includes the 3 Caribbean islands ceded to the country by the United States in 1971, Roatan, Utila, and Guaranja. Honduras’s topography is varied, with mostly highlands through the central part of the country, flanked by coastal, tropical coasts. Currently, 7.7 percent of the country is preserved by the government, and includes tropical rainforest and fragile coastland. Education at the primary level is free and compulsory; the literacy rate for both men and women is about 30 percent. Healthcare is very poor, and conditions are some of the worst in the Western Hemisphere. The life expectancy is about 67 years old. Like its neighbors, Honduras possesses an enormous amount of natural resources in its rainforests and coastline. One of the most precious of these resources, and also the source of notorious conflicts with Nicaragua, is the Miskito coast of the southern portion of the Honduran Caribbean coast. This preserved forest, which is home to the Miskito indigenous group, is under partial jurisdiction of the Honduran government. Home to thousands of fish and bird species, this untouched “biogem” presents an opportunity for the country to develop sustainable tourism in its lesser developed regions. Another natural resource of Honduras, and likewise a source of contention with its neighbors, is the Gulf of Fonseca, which is located on the western coast. El Salvador and Nicaragua also share a border with this gulf, creating a dynamic of competition and culpability for aquaculture and pollution. Shrimp farming has proliferated in the gulf, creating environmental degradation for native wild species as well as tremendous coastal development. Since 3 countries share the gulf, conflicts often arise when fishing harvests are diminished; addressing problems of over-fishing and water pollution to alleviate small harvests becomes a game of finger pointing. Political life in Honduras has been tenuous and complex. Original settlements of the warlike Lencas and Jicaques were taken over by Spanish colonizing forces in 1524. Despite declaring its independence in 1838, Honduras’s government has still suffered economic and political forces, such as America’s United Fruit Company, that lie outside its boundaries. United Fruit Company had a long presence in the Caribbean and was notorious for its enslaving conditions of Honduran workers whose lands were monopolized and whose livelihoods were at the mercy of the huge corporation. The company has since left the country and been broken up, but present-day fruit distributors, like Dole and Del Monte, provide hauntingly familiar dynamics between their mass production and local communities.
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    Geography of the Nicaragua

    BORDERED by Costa Rica and Honduras, Nicaragua is the largest country in Central America.
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    Geography of the Guatemala

    THE REPUBLIC OF GUATEMALA is located in Central America and is bordered by the Pacific Ocean, the Gulf of Honduras, otherwise
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    Geography of the El Salvador

    THE REPUBLIC of El Salvador is located on the Pacific Ocean in Central America, between Guatemala and Honduras. It is the
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    Geography of the Central America Free Trade Agreement

    THE CENTRAL America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) is a treaty between the United States and the countries of Central America
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    Geography of the Belize

    Belize ("BELICE” IN SPANISH), formerly the Settlement of Belize in the Bay of Honduras (prior to 1862), British Honduras
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