TAIWAN: OUR MOTHER LAND
by Ching-Chih Chen
TAIWAN is an island nation with a land area of about 14,000 square miles, i.e. about the size of West Virginia, and estimated population of over 23 millions, or 1/12 of US population, in 2004. It is situated in the western Pacific Ocean and separated from southern China by the 100-mile-wide TAIWAN STRAIT.
The heavily forested hills and mountains of central and eastern Taiwan reach their summit at YU SHAN (13,113 feet); there are about 70 peaks exceeding 10,000 feet. The broad coastal plain in the west supports most of the island's population and is the chief agricultural zone. Natural disasters such as TYPHOONS AND EARTHQUAKES are common. Taiwan has a semitropical climate and rainfall ranging from moderate to heavy. With abundant sunshine and rainfall, the island is AGRICULTURALLY VERY PRODUCTIVE. Today, in terms of land use, arable land accounts for 24% of total land area, while forests and woodland still take up 55% of Taiwan. (Full Article)