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Northern America

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Northern America
Area21,780,142 km2 (8,409,360 sq mi)
Population375,278,947 (2021 est.)
Population density16.5/km2 (42.7/sq mi)
GDP (nominal)$27.5 trillion (2022)[1]
LanguagesEnglish, French, Spanish, Danish, Greenlandic, and various recognized regional languages
Time zonesUTC−10:00 (west Aleutians) to UTC+00:00 (Danmarkshavn, Greenland)
Largest cities
UN M49 code021 – Northern America
003North America

Northern America is the northernmost subregion of North America as well as the northernmost region in the Americas. The boundaries may be drawn slightly differently. In one definition, it lies directly north of Middle America.[2] Northern America's land frontier with the rest of North America then coincides with the Mexico–United States border. Geopolitically, according to the United Nations' scheme of geographical regions and subregions, Northern America consists of Bermuda, Canada, Greenland, Saint Pierre and Miquelon and the United States (the contiguous United States and Alaska only, excluding Hawaii, Navassa Island, Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, and other minor U.S. Pacific territories).[3][4]


Maps using the term Northern America date back to 1755, when the region was occupied by France, Great Britain, and Spain.[5] The Solemn Act of the Declaration of Independence of Northern America in 1813 applied to Mexico. Today, Northern America includes the Canada–US dyad, developed countries that exhibit very high Human Development Indexes and intense economic integration while sharing many socioeconomic characteristics.[6]

The World Geographical Scheme for Recording Plant Distributions has "Northern America" as the seventh of its nine "botanical continents". Its definition differs from the usual political one: Mexico is included, Bermuda is excluded (being placed in the Caribbean region), Hawaii is excluded (being placed in the Pacific botanical continent) and all of the Aleutian Islands, Russian as well as American, are included.[7]

Countries and territories[edit]

Country / Territory Population[8][9] Area
per km2)
Bermuda 64,185 53.2 1,206.48 Hamilton
Canada 38,155,012 9,984,670 3.82 Ottawa
Greenland 56,243 2,166,086 0.03 Nuuk
Saint Pierre and Miquelon 5,883 242 24.31 Saint Pierre
United States[11] 336,997,624 9,826,675 34.29 Washington, D.C.

* indicates "Demographics of country or territory" links.


Year Population[12] %
Canada % United States %
1950 172,603,000 13,733,000 8.0% 158,804,000 92.0%
1960 204,649,000 +18.6% 17,847,000 8.7% 186,721,000 91.2%
1970 230,992,000 +12.9% 21,374,000 9.3% 209,513,000 90.7%
1980 254,007,000 +10.0% 24,417,000 9.6% 229,476,000 90.3%
1990 279,785,000 +10.1% 27,541,000 9.8% 252,120,000 90.1%
2000 312,427,000 +11.7% 30,588,000 9.8% 281,711,000 90.2%
2010 343,287,000 +9.9% 34,148,000 9.9% 309,011,000 90.0%
2020 368,870,000 +7.5% 37,742,000 10.2% 331,003,000 89.7%

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "April 2022 GDP Report for Canada and United States". Retrieved 8 August 2022.
  2. ^ Gonzalez, Joseph. 2004. "Northern America: Land of Opportunity" (ch. 6). The Complete Idiot's Guide to Geography. (ISBN 1592571883) New York: Alpha Books; pp. 57–8
  3. ^ Definition of major areas and regions, from World Migrant Stock: The 2005 Revision Population Database, United Nations Population Division. Accessed on line October 3, 2007.
  4. ^ Composition of macro geographical (continental) regions, geographical sub-regions, and selected economic and other groupings, UN Statistics Division. Accessed online October 3, 2007. (French)
  5. ^ Bellin, Jacques-Nicolas (n.d.). "Carte de l'Amerique septentrionale (Map of Northern America, 1755)". Library and Archives Canada. Archived from the original on 2007-09-30. Item NMC 21057.
  6. ^ Torrey, Barbara Boyle & Eberstadt, Nicholas. 2005 (Aug./Sep.). "The Northern America Fertility Divide Archived 2007-11-07 at the Wayback Machine." Hoover Institution Policy Review. No. 132.
  7. ^ Brummitt, R.K. (2001). World Geographical Scheme for Recording Plant Distributions: Edition 2 (PDF). International Working Group on Taxonomic Databases For Plant Sciences (TDWG). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2016-01-25. Retrieved 2016-04-06.
  8. ^ "World Population Prospects 2022". United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division. Retrieved July 17, 2022.
  9. ^ "World Population Prospects 2022: Demographic indicators by region, subregion and country, annually for 1950-2100" (XSLX) ("Total Population, as of 1 July (thousands)"). United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division. Retrieved July 17, 2022.
  10. ^ Unless otherwise noted, land area figures are taken from Demographic Yearbook—Table 3: Population by sex, rate of population increase, surface area and density (PDF) (Report). United Nations Statistics Division. 2008. Retrieved 2010-10-14.
  11. ^ Includes the U.S. state of Hawaii, which is distant from the North American landmass in the Pacific Ocean and therefore more commonly associated with the other territories of Oceania.
  12. ^ "World Population Prospects". population.un.org. Archived from the original on 2019-08-09. Retrieved 2019-02-24.

External links[edit]