TPOF Tidbit #13 - Cape Verde

by A.C. Crispin

Moderator: Liz

User avatar
Liz
ONBC Moderator
Posts: 12971
Joined: Thu Jun 24, 2004 2:13 pm
Location: The Left Coast

Status: Offline

TPOF Tidbit #13 - Cape Verde

Unread postby Liz » Wed Aug 03, 2011 11:55 am

Pg. 287: “I see,” Jack said. “Very well. I guess that’s going to be the way of it, then. I’ll sail to that area, between the Cape Verde Islands and the Canary Islands, and together we’ll find her home.”


Image

Image

Image

The Republic of Cape Verde is an island country, spanning an archipelago of 10 islands located in the central Atlantic Ocean, 570 kilometres off the coast of Western Africa near Mauritania and Senegal, and is part of the Macaronesia ecoregion. The islands, covering a combined area of slightly over 4,000 square kilometres (1,500 sq mi), are of volcanic origin, and while three of them (Sal, Boa Vista and Maio) are fairly flat, sandy and dry, the remaining ones are generally rockier and have more vegetation. Because of the infrequent occurrence of rainfall the overall landscape is not particularly green, despite what the country's name suggests (verde is Portuguese for "green"). The name of the country stems instead from the nearby Cap Vert, on the Senegalese coast.

The islands are spatially divided into two groups:
• The Ilhas de Barlavento (English: windward islands): Santo Antão, São Vicente, Santa Luzia, São Nicolau, Sal, Boa Vista; and
• The Ilhas de Sotavento (English: leeward islands): Maio, Santiago, Fogo, Brava.

Image
Mindelo, capital of São Vicente

The largest island, both in size and population, is Santiago, which hosts the nation's capital, Praia, the principal agglomeration in the archipelago.

Ponta Temerosa, Praia, Santiago:
Image

Magnetic anomalies identified in the vicinity of the archipelago indicate that the structures forming the islands date back 125-150 million years. The islands themselves date from 8 million (in the west) to 20 million years (in the east). The oldest exposed rocks occurred on Maio and the northern peninsula of Santiago and are 128-131 million year old pillow lavas. The first stage of volcanism in the islands began in the early Miocene, and reached its peak at the end of this period, when the islands reached their maximum sizes. Historical volcanism (within human settlement) has been restricted to the island of Fogo.

The origin of the islands' volcanism has been attributed to a hotspot, associated with bathymetric swell that formed the Cape Verde Rise. The Rise is one of the largest protuberances in the world's oceans, rising 2.2 kilometers in a semi-circular region of 1200 km², associated with a rise of the geoid and elevated surface heat flow.

Though Cape Verde's islands are all volcanic in origin, they vary widely in terrain.
Most recently erupting in 1995, Pico do Fogo is the largest active volcano in the region. It has a 8 km (5 mi) diameter caldera, whose rim is 1,600 m (5,249 ft) altitude and an interior cone that rises to 2,829 m (9,281 ft) above sea level. The caldera resulted from subsidence, following the partial evacuation (eruption) of the magma chamber, along a cylindrical column from within magma chamber (at a depth of 8 km (5 mi)).

Pico do Fogo:

Image

Geologically, the islands are principally composed of igneous rocks, with volcanic structures and pyroclastic debris comprising the majority of the archipelago's total volume. The volcanic and plutonic rocks are distinctly basic; the archipelago is a soda-alkaline petrographic province, with a petrologic succession which is similar to that found in other Macaronesian islands.

Extensive salt flats are found on Sal and Maio. On Santiago, Santo Antão, and São Nicolau, arid slopes give way in places to sugarcane fields or banana plantations spread along the base of towering mountains.

Image


The previously uninhabited islands were discovered and colonized by the Portuguese in the 15th Century, and became an important location in the Atlantic slave trade due to their geographically advantageous position. The islands' prosperity often attracted pirates including Sir Francis Drake, who twice sacked the (then) capital Ribeira Grande, in the 1580s. The islands were also visited by Charles Darwin's expedition in 1832. The decline in the slave trade in the 19th century resulted in an economic crisis. With few natural resources and without strong sustainable investment from the Portuguese, the people grew increasingly discontent with the colonial masters, who nevertheless refused to provide the local authorities with more autonomy. This discontent festered and culminated in 1975, when a movement led by Amílcar Cabral achieved independence for the archipelago.

The country has an estimated population (most of it of creole ethnicity) of about 500,000, with its capital city Praia accounting for a quarter of its citizens. Nearly 38% of the population lives in rural areas according to the 2010 Cape Verdean census; about 20% lives below the poverty threshold, and the literacy rate is around 85%. Politically, the country is a very stable democracy, with notable economic growth and improvements of living conditions despite its lack of natural resources, and has garnered international recognition by other countries and international organizations, which often provide development aid. Since 2007, Cape Verde has been classified as a developing nation.

Tough economic times during the last decades of its colonization and the first years of Cape Verde's independence led many to migrate to Europe, the Americas and other African countries. This migration was so significant that the number of Cape Verdeans and their descendants living abroad currently exceeds the population of Cape Verde itself. Historically, the influx of remittances from these immigrant communities to their families has provided a substantial contribution to help strengthen the country's economy. Currently, the Cape Verdean economy is mostly service-oriented with a growing focus on tourism and foreign investment, which benefits from the islands' warm climate throughout the year, diverse landscape, welcoming people and cultural richness, especially in music.


Image
You can't judge a book by its cover.

The only thing that matters is the ending. It's the most important part of the story.

User avatar
shadowydog
Posts: 89520
Joined: Sun Jul 24, 2005 11:47 pm

Status: Offline

Re: TPOF Tidbit #13 - Cape Verde

Unread postby shadowydog » Wed Aug 03, 2011 1:42 pm

Beautiful looking beach. Wonder how long before it is overrun with hotels. :-/
I have nothing to do and all day to do it in.

User avatar
airita
Posts: 75
Joined: Fri Jul 30, 2010 4:39 am
Location: Portugal

Status: Offline

Re: TPOF Tidbit #13 - Cape Verde

Unread postby airita » Wed Aug 03, 2011 4:10 pm

I've been there :cool: It's a paradise, really... and it's not overloaded neither with hotels nor tourists which makes it even better :chill: it wasn't yet discovered by low cost airlines and multinational travelling agencies... let's hope it stays as it is :shhh:
"I'm not sure I'm adult yet." Johnny Depp

User avatar
Liz
ONBC Moderator
Posts: 12971
Joined: Thu Jun 24, 2004 2:13 pm
Location: The Left Coast

Status: Offline

Re: TPOF Tidbit #13 - Cape Verde

Unread postby Liz » Thu Aug 04, 2011 12:34 pm

Welcome, Airita from Portugal. :wave:

It's great to hear from someone who's actually been there. I had never heard of the islands before now. I got the impression from my research that they are rather wild and pristine.
You can't judge a book by its cover.

The only thing that matters is the ending. It's the most important part of the story.

User avatar
Linda Lee
Posts: 2464
Joined: Sun Oct 29, 2006 7:02 pm
Location: Aboard the Black Pearl

Status: Offline

Re: TPOF Tidbit #13 - Cape Verde

Unread postby Linda Lee » Thu Aug 04, 2011 9:05 pm

It is a beautiful beach, the town looks lovely as well. It would be a great place to spend some time.
Serenity is not freedom from the storm but peace within the storm. ~ Unknown


Return to “The Price of Freedom”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest