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Rond˘nia - Geography

Rond˘nia was the Brazilian State with the fastest population growth in the recent past; in 1950, population was 37,000 and in 1990, it had jumped to 1,100,000. In the 1980s, the population grew at rates over 20 percent yearly, a figure never seen before or after, in Brazil; Brazilians from all regions migrated to Rond˘nia. The economy grew also very fast, but so did the social problems, as the governments could not cope with the needs of health, education, safety, etc of so many newcomers.

Climate predominating in Rond˘nia is tropical humid. Temperature is high all along the year, with averages around 26 degrees Celsius. Pluviosity ranges from 1,900 mm in the south to 2,500 mm in the north.

The profile of Rond˘nia shows three distinct zones. A littoraneous strip, with altitudes under 100m. Most of the state lies on the highlands, extension of Braziian Central Plateau. On top of the plateau, there is a chain of moutains which cuts the state from southeast to northwest, which receives the names of Chapada dos Parecis and Serra dos Pacaßs Novos.

About 70% of Rond˘nia are covered by the Amazon forest; the top of the "chapadas" is covered by savannahs (or cerrados, in Portuguese). Because of the fast growth of the population and economoy, the forest zone of Rond˘nia is one of the most affected by human presence.

The state of Rond˘nia has three environment protected zones: the Parque Nacional dos Pacaßs Novos (6,764,000 hectares); the Biologic Reserves of Jaru and GuaporÚ (947,000 ha); and the National Forest of Rond˘nia (300,000 ha).

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