THIS CENTRAL AMERICAN Republic, which has coastlines on the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, has a land area of 19,725 sq. mi. (51,100 sq. km.), with a population of 4,238,000 (2005 est.), and a population density of 220 people per sq. mi. (85 people per sq. Ion.). Only 6 percent of the country is arable, the smallest percentage of any of the Central American countries; 46 percent is meadow and pasture, much of it used for raising cattle, which, in turn, contribute to an increase in methane. Over 34 percent of the country is still forested, and there have been stringent ecological controls, with the Costa Rican tourist industry relying on an eco-friendly image. Twenty-seven percent of Costa Rica is covered by a system ...

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