Clipperton Island General Information

Clipperton Island General Information

General: This isolated island was named after John CUPPERTON, a pirate who made the island his secret hideout in the early 18th century. Annexed by France in 1855, it was captured by Mexico in 1897. According to, an arbitration eventually awarded the island to France, who took possession of it in 1935.


Location: Central America, North Pacific atoll, 1,120 km south of Mexico.
Geographic coordinates: 10° 17′ N. latitude, 109° 13′ W
Reference map: Area
: total: 7 km2; land surface area: 7 km2; water surface area: 0 km2
Comparative area: about 12 times the size of the Mall Park in Washington, DC.
Land borders: 0 km.
Coastline: 11.1 km.
Maritime claims: exclusive economic zone: 200 nautical miles; territorial waters: 12 nautical miles.
Climate: tropical humid, average annual temperature from 20 to 32 C0, rains from May to October.
Relief: coral atoll.
Maximum and minimum heights: lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m; highest point: Clipperton bluff 29 m.
Natural resources: none.
Land use: arable land: 0%; cultivated land: 0%; pasture: 0%; forests and plantations: 0%; others: 100% (corals).
Irrigated land: 0 sq. km. (1993).
Natural Hazards: Tornadoes happen.
Current environmental issues: no data available. Note to the section “Geography”: the reef has a length of about 8 km.


Common long form: no;
Common short form: Clipperton Island; local long form: no; local short form: lie Clipperton; former: Passion Island. Dependency state: possession of France; administered by France from French Polynesia by the High Commissioner of the Republic.


Economic Overview: While 115 species of fish have been found in Clipperton Island territorial waters, the only economic activity is tuna fishing.

Clipperton Island General Information

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