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The Pacific coast of Colombia
Marrugo-González, A.J.; Fernández-Maestre, R.; Alm, A.A. (2000). The Pacific coast of Colombia, in: Sheppard, C.R.C. (Ed.) Seas at the millennium: an environmental evaluation: 1. Regional chapters: Europe, The Americas and West Africa. pp. 677-686
In: Sheppard, C.R.C. (Ed.) (2000). Seas at the millennium: an environmental evaluation: 1. Regional chapters: Europe, The Americas and West Africa. Pergamon: Amsterdam. ISBN 0-08-043207-7. XXI, 934 pp., more

Available in  Authors 
Document type: Review

Keyword
    Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Marrugo-González, A.J.
  • Fernández-Maestre, R.
  • Alm, A.A.

Abstract
    The Colombian Pacific coast is characterised by abundant rain, a high tidal range of up to 5 m, low salinity and tsunamis. Being tropical it has warm temperatures but an absence of hurricanes. The area has two seasons: a rainy and a dry season. There is a general south-north coastal drift along a coast which is made up of a wide mixture of sandy areas, both eroding and accreting, and cliffs, both sedimentary and igneous. Several different water masses converge in this area, some of which carry high nutrients and hence generate a high productivity. Marine habitats are varied and include reefs and beaches, which grade into extensive mangrove forests and into lowland coastal forests. Some of the latter are still extensive, though large areas have been removed, built upon or otherwise impacted in recent years. Most of the area has low pollution contamination from industry or towns, and maintains a very rich biodiversity and high productivity. However, the area is very poor in human terms. There is enormous under-development, and poverty and health problems are severe compared with other areas of the country. Urban centres likewise are comparatively poorly developed. However, this coast is a peaceful area in comparison with other parts of the country that have suffered from serious and complex confrontations between governmental forces, drug dealers, different insurgent groups and private justice groups. This is because of the difficult climatic and geographic conditions of the area, and because of the general poverty of the region.

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