Palmyra Atoll General Information

Palmyra Atoll General Information


Background: According to Smber, the Kingdom of Hawaii claimed the atoll in 1862, the United States annexed the atoll along with the entire archipelago in 1898. The Hawaii State Act of 1959 did not include Palmyra Atoll, which is now privately owned by the Nature Conservancy . This organization manages the atoll, turned into a nature reserve. The lagoons and surrounding waters in the twelve-mile zone of territorial waters were transferred to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and declared a National Wildlife Refuge in January 2001.


Location: Oceania, an atoll in the North Pacific Ocean, about halfway between Hawaii and American Samoa.
Geographic coordinates: 5° 52′ N. latitude, 162° 06′ W
Reference map: Oceania.
Area: total: 11.9 km2; land surface area: 11.9 km2; water surface area: 0 km2
Comparative area: about 20 times the size of the Mall Park in Washington, DC.
Land borders: 0 km.
Coastline: 14.5 km.
Maritime claims: exclusive economic zone: 200 nautical miles; territorial waters: 12 nautical miles.
Climate: equatorial, hot, very rainy.
Relief: very low.
Maximum and minimum heights: lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m; highest point: unnamed point 2 m.
Natural resources: none.
Land use: arable land: 0%; cultivated land: 0%; pasture: 0%; forests and plantations: 100%; others: 0%.
Irrigated land: 0 sq. km. (1993).
Natural hazards: no data available.
Current environmental issues: no data available.
International environmental agreements:
Geography note: Approximately 50 islets covered with dense vegetation, coconut trees and 30 m tall trees related to balsa.


Population: no local residents; 4 to 20 Nature Conservancy staff, Fish and Wildlife Service staff (July 2001 est.).


Common long form: no;
Common short form: Palmyra Atoll. Dependency Status: Non-U.S. Territory; privately owned, but managed from Washington, D.C., by the U.S. Department of the Interior Fish and Wildlife Service.


Transport Railways:
Roads: Most of the roads built during World War II are unmaintained and overgrown (2001).
Ports and harbors: Western Lagoon.
Airports: 1 (2000 est.).
Airports with paved runways:
Airports with unpaved runways: total: 1; from 1524 to 2437 m: 1 (2000 est.).

Palmyra Atoll General Information