24.7% —or about 2,713,000 hectares—of Cuba is forested.

Change in Forest Cover: Between 1990 and 2000, Cuba gained an average of 37,700 hectares of forest per year. The amounts to an average annual reforestation rate of 1.83%. Between 2000 and 2005, the rate of forest change increased by 24.7% to 2.28% per annum. In total, between 1990 and 2005, Cuba gained 31.8% of its forest cover, or around 655,000 hectares. Measuring the total rate of habitat conversion (defined as change in forest area plus change in woodland area minus net plantation expansion) for the 1990-2005 interval, Cuba gained 31.3% of its forest and woodland habitat.

Biodiversity and Protected Areas: Cuba has some 637 known species of amphibians, birds, mammals and reptiles according to figures from the World Conservation Monitoring Centre. Of these, 33.8% are endemic, meaning they exist in no other country, and 13.0% are threatened. Cuba is home to at least 6522 species of vascular plants, of which 49.5% are endemic. 0.9% of Cuba is protected under IUCN categories I-V.


Cuba: Forest Cover, 2005
Total Land Area (ha)10,982,000
Total Forest Area (ha)2,713,000
Percent Forest Cover24.70%
Primary Forest Cover (ha)-
Primary Forest, % total forest-
Primary Forest, % total land-
Other wooded land (ha)260,000

Cuba : Forest types
Tropical (% forest area)100%
Subtropical (% forest area)0%
Temperate (% forest area)0%
Boreal/polar (% forest area)0%

Cuba: Breakdown of forest types, 2005
Primary forest (ha | %)--
Modified natural (ha | %)2,319,00085.5%
Semi-natural (ha | %)--
Production plantation (ha | %)230,0008.5%
Production plantation (ha | %)164,0006.0%

Cuba: Change in Forest Cover
Forest 1990 (ha)2,058,000
Forest 2000 (ha)2,435,000
Forest 2005 (ha)2,713,000
Annual Change 1990-2000 (ha | %)37,7001.83%
Annual Change 2000-2005 (ha | %)55,6002.28%
Total Change 1990-2005 (ha | %)655,00031.83%
Change in rate (%)24.65%
Primary 1990 (ha)-
Primary 2000 (ha)-
Primary 2005 (ha)-
Annual Change 1990-2000 (ha | %)--
Annual Change 2000-2005 (ha | %)--
Total Change 1990-2005 (ha | %)--
Change in rate (%)-
Other 1990 (ha)254,000
Other 2000 (ha)264,000
Other 2005 (ha)260,000
Annual Change 1990-2000 (ha | %)1,0000.39%
Annual Change 2000-2005 (ha | %)(800)-0.30%
Total Change 1990-2005 (ha | %)6,0002.36%
Change in rate (%)-176.97%
Other 1990 (ha)347,000
Other 2000 (ha)342,000
Other 2005 (ha)394,000
Annual Change 1990-2000 (ha | %)(500)-0.14%
Annual Change 2000-2005 (ha | %)10,4003.04%
Total Change 1990-2005 (ha | %)47,00013.54%
Change in rate (%)-2210.41%
Forest area+Wooded Area-Plantations
Other 1990 (ha)1,965,000
Other 2000 (ha)2,357,000
Other 2005 (ha)2,579,000
Annual Change 1990-2000 (ha | %)39,2001.99%
Annual Change 2000-2005 (ha | %)44,4001.88%
Total Change 1990-2005 (ha | %)614,00031.25%
Change in rate (%)-5.57%

Cuba: Primary
Primary or "old-growth" vegetation
Primary Forest 2005 (ha)-
Other primary wooded land 2005 (ha)-
Other primary wooded land 2005 (ha)0
Undisturbed vegetation 2005 (% land area)0.00%

Cuba: Forest designation
Ownership of forest land, 2000
Public (%)95.2%
Private (%)2.9%
Other (%)1.9%
Ownership of other wooded land, 2000
Public (%)98.1%
Private (%)1.1%
Other (%)1.1%
Designated functions of forest – primary function 2005
Production (%)32.1%
Protection (%)45.9%
Conservation (%)22.0%
Social Services (%)-
Multiple Services (%)-
None of Unknown (%)-

Cuba: Disturbances affecting forest land 2000
Forest Area annually affected by
Fire (%)0.37%
Insects (ha)-
Diseases (ha)-
Other (ha)-

Cuba: Protected areas
Protected areas
Biosphere reserves, 2005
Wetlands of international importance (Ramsar sites), 20056
World Heritage sites, 20047
Protected Areas: IUCN categories I-V, percent of total land0.9%
Protected Areas: IUCN categories Ia, Ib, and II, extent, percent of total land0.43%
Protected Areas: IUCN categories III, IV, and V, percent of total land, 20040.44%
Protected Areas: IUCN categories VI and other, percent of total land, 20040.47%

Cuba: Biodiversity - Wildlife
total species61
endemic species57
threatened species47
total species358
endemic species34
threatened species18
total species65
endemic species19
threatened species11
total species153
endemic species105
threatened species7
Wildlife diversity
total species637
endemic species215
threatened species83

Cuba: Biodiversity - Plants
Growing stock composition
3 most common species
% of total growing stock
Growing stock composition
3 most common species
% of total growing stock
Number of Native tree species
Native tree species625
Number of tree species in IUCN red list
Critically Endangered23
Vascular Plant Species, 2004
Number endemic3229
Number of Threatened Plant Species, 2004
Species threatened163

Cuba: Value of forests
Biomass stock in forest, 2005
Above-ground biomass (M t)569
Below-ground biomass (M t)171
Dead wood (M t)49
Total (M t)789
Carbon stock in forest, 2005
Carbon in above-ground biomass (M t)267
Carbon in below-ground biomass (M t)80
Carbon in dead wood (M t)23
Carbon in litter (M t)-
Soil carbon (M t)187
Change in growing stock 1990 - 2005
Annual change rate (1000 cubic m/yr)
Growing stock per hectare 1990 - 2005
Annual change rate ( cubic m/ha per yr)
Wood removal 2005
Industrial roundwood (1000 cubic m)833
Wood fuel (1000 cubic m)1,362
Total wood removal 2005 (1000 cubic m)2,195
Total wood removal 2005 (% of growing stock)1
Plant products 2005
Food (t)-
Fodder (t)-
Raw material for medicine and aromatic products (t)1,474
Raw material for colorants and dyes (t)68
Raw material for utensils, handicrafts & construction (t)-
Ornamental plants (t)-
Exudates (t)-
Other plant products (t)-
Animal products 2005
Living animals (units)-
Hides, skins and trophies (units)-
Wild honey and bee-wax (t)-
Bush meat (t)-
Raw material for medicine and aromatic products (t)-
Raw material for colorants and dyes (t)-
Other edible animal products (t)-
Other non-edible animal products (t)18,400
Value of wood and non-wood forest product removal 2005
Industrial roundwood (US$)$233,240,000
Wood fuel (US$)$13,350,000
Non-wood forest products (US$)$1,244,000
Total value (US$)$247,834,000
Total value ($USD/ha)$91
Employment in forestry 2000
Total people employed37,000

Cuba : Production, trade and consumption of forest products, 2002
Woodfuel ('000 cubic m), 2002
Industrial roundwood ('000 cubic m), 2002
Sawnwood ('000 cubic m), 2002
Wood-based panels ('000 cubic m), 2002
Pulp for paper ('000 metric tons), 2002
Paper and paperboard ('000 metric tons), 2002
Cuba: Environment
Environment - current issuesair and water pollution; biodiversity loss; deforestation
Environment - international agreementsparty to: Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: Marine Life Conservation
Natural hazardsthe east coast is subject to hurricanes from August to November (in general, the country averages about one hurricane every other year); droughts are common

Cuba: Land use / Resources
Land use (%)arable land: 33.05%
permanent crops: 7.6%
other: 59.35% (2001)
Natural resourcescobalt, nickel, iron ore, chromium, copper, salt, timber, silica, petroleum, arable land

Cuba: Economy
Economy - overview:The government continues to balance the need for economic loosening against a desire for firm political control. It has rolled back limited reforms undertaken in the 1990s to increase enterprise efficiency and alleviate serious shortages of food, consumer goods, and services. The average Cuban's standard of living remains at a lower level than before the downturn of the 1990s, which was caused by the loss of Soviet aid and domestic inefficiencies. The government in 2005 strengthened its controls over dollars coming into the economy from tourism, remittances, and trade. External financing has helped growth in the mining, oil, construction, and tourism sectors.
GDP - per capita$3,300 (2005 est.)
GDP - real growth rate (%)5.2% (2005 est.)
Agriculture - productssugar, tobacco, citrus, coffee, rice, potatoes, beans; livestock
GDP - composition by sector (%)agriculture: 5.5%, industry: 26.1%, services: 68.4% (2005 est.)
Industries sugar, petroleum, tobacco, construction, nickel, steel, cement, agricultural machinery, pharmaceuticals
Economic aid - recipient$68.2 million (1997 est.)
Debt - external$13.1 billion (convertible currency); another $15-20 billion owed to Russia (2005 est.)
Population below poverty line (%)NA
Labor force - by occupation (%)agriculture 21.2%, industry 14.4%, services 64.4% (2004)

Cuba: Population / Demographics
Population (July 2005)11,346,670
Population growth rate (%) (2005)0.33%
Population density (people/sq km) (2005)102.4
Percent rural (2003)24.4%
Median age (years)total: 35.36 years
Total fertility rate (children born/woman)1.66 (2005 est.)
Ethnic groups (%)mulatto 51%, white 37%, black 11%, Chinese 1%

Largest Cities in Cuba

Cities and urban areas in Cuba with population over 100,000 All figures are estimates for 2002.

CityCountryCity PopulationUrban Area Population
Santiago de CubaCuba544400544400
Santa ClaraCuba247800247800
Pinar del RioCuba176300176300
Las TunasCuba145800145800
Sancti SpiritusCuba123200123200
Ciego de AvilaCuba119800119800
Palma SorianoCuba111600111600

 Environment, Land use / Resources, Economy, Population / Demographics, Infrastructure, Health -- CIA World Factbook, 2005
 Forest Cover, Forest types, Breakdown of forest types, Change in Forest Cover, Primary forests, Forest designation, Disturbances affecting forest land, Value of forests, Production, trade and consumption of forest products -- The FOOD AND AGRICULTURE ORGANIZATION OF THE UNITED NATIONS's Global Forest Resources Assessment (2005) and the State of the World’s Forests (2005, 2003, 2001)
 Protected Areas, Plant and animal biodiversity -- United Nations Environment Programme - World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC). 2004. World Database on Protected Areas.
 Biosphere reservers -- United Nations Education, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) - Man and Biosphere Program. 2004. UNESCO - MAB Biosphere Reserves Directory.
 RAMSAR sites -- The Bureau of the Convention on Wetlands . 2005. The Ramsar List of Wetlands of International Importance.
 World Resources Institute's EarthTrends web site
 The 2004 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species
 Population Data -- United Nations Population Fund
 With additional analysis by Rhett Butler of

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