As we discussed in our previous section weather and climate are not interchangeable terms. As we discussed in our previous section weather and climate are not interchangeable terms


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As we discussed in our previous section weather and climate are not interchangeable terms.

  • As we discussed in our previous section weather and climate are not interchangeable terms.

  • Climate is the average weather conditions over a long period of time.



Earth is a complex mix of climates.

  • Earth is a complex mix of climates.

  • Geographers identify these climate by observing:



With these observations we can divide Planet Earth into fiver basic climate zones:

  • With these observations we can divide Planet Earth into fiver basic climate zones:

    • Tropical
    • Temperate
    • Polar
    • Dry
    • Highland/Mountain


Tropical Climates

  • Tropical Climates

    • Occur near the equator and the lower latitudes




Polar Climates

  • Polar Climates

    • Occur near the poles
    • Higher latitudes




World Climate Regions:

  • World Climate Regions:



Humid Tropical

  • Humid Tropical



Desert

  • Desert



Mediterranean

  • Mediterranean



Marine West Coast

  • Marine West Coast



Subarctic

  • Subarctic



Ice Cap

  • Ice Cap



These climates are some of the most extreme on earth, because they include the wettest driest, and hottest places on earth.

  • These climates are some of the most extreme on earth, because they include the wettest driest, and hottest places on earth.



These climates extend from the Tropic of Cancer through the Equator and down to the Tropic of Capricorn.

  • These climates extend from the Tropic of Cancer through the Equator and down to the Tropic of Capricorn.



Humid Tropical

  • Humid Tropical

    • This climate tends to be warm, muggy, and rainy year-round.
    • Temperatures average around 80°F
    • Rainfall averages between 70-450 inches per year!!!
      • This is why it is known as the rainforest.
    • Monsoons- Seasonal winds that bring either dry or moist air


With its warm temperatures and heavy rainfall, this climate is able to support an amazing amount of plants and animals.

  • With its warm temperatures and heavy rainfall, this climate is able to support an amazing amount of plants and animals.

    • Ex. Amazon River Basin in South America.


Tropical Savanna

  • Tropical Savanna

    • Moving north and south of the Equator, you reach the savanna, which are areas of tall grasses and scattered trees and shrubs.
    • It tends to have a long, hot, dry season and short periods of heavy rainfall.
    • Temperatures are often as high as 90°F, with “cooler” winters.




Desert Climate

  • Desert Climate

    • Earth’s hottest and driest climate!
    • Rainfall can be very scarce with desert receiving less than 10 inches per year.
      • Atacama Desert has averages less than 1 in.!!
    • Temperatures can be very extreme due to the dry air and clear skies.
    • Temperatures can be as high as 130°F during the day and drop into the 40s and 50s at night.


With these extremes in the desert climates, animals and plants need to be hardy and very adaptive.

  • With these extremes in the desert climates, animals and plants need to be hardy and very adaptive.

    • Cactus
    • Nocturnal Animals


Steppe

  • Steppe

    • This climate tends to have semidry grasslands or prairies.
    • They often border most deserts
    • Tend to have short grasses, but will have shrubs and trees that grow along streams.


“Temperate” means moderate or mild.

  • “Temperate” means moderate or mild.

  • These climates tend to have all four seasons with warm or hot summers and cool to cold winters.

  • These climates are located between the equator and the poles.

  • Air masses from the tropics and the poles often meet here, which creates the variety.



Mediterranean

  • Mediterranean

    • Named after the climate found in countries along the Mediterranean Sea.
    • Summers tend to be hot, dry, and sunny.
    • Winters tend to be mild, but wet.
    • Plant life can be found as shrubs, shorter trees, and scattered larger trees.
    • This climate can be found in California and northern Africa.


Humid Subtropical

  • Humid Subtropical

    • This climate tends to occur along the east coasts near the tropics.
      • Ex. Florida
    • Warm, moist air blows in from the ocean.
    • Summers are hot and humid, while winter and mild with some frost and snow.
    • Hurricanes are a real threat to this climate, which can bring heavy rains, violent winds, and high seas.


This climates tends to have mixed forests.

  • This climates tends to have mixed forests.

    • Deciduous trees
      • Lose their leaves each fall.
    • Coniferous trees
      • Do not shed their leaves and are green year-round.


Marine West Coast

  • Marine West Coast

    • This climate occurs on the west coasts where winds carry moisture from the oceans.
    • These winds assist with keeping temperatures mild all year long.
    • Winters tend to be foggy, cloudy, and rainy, while summers can be warm and sunny.
    • Plant Life: Dense evergreen forests


Humid Continental

  • Humid Continental

    • This climate has four distinct seasons.
    • Summers are short and hot.
    • Springs and falls are mild.
    • Winters are long, cold, and typically snowy.
    • Plant Life: Tall grasslands to both coniferous and deciduous trees
    • Main areas in U.S.: Great Plains, Midwest


Subarctic

  • Subarctic

    • This climate tends to be found the Northern Hemisphere only, south of the Arctic Ocean.
    • Winters are long and bitterly cold.
    • Summers are short and cool.
    • Temperatures are below freezing for more than half the year.
    • Plant Life: Evergreen forests (Taiga)


Tundra

  • Tundra

    • Occur along the coastal areas along the Arctic Ocean.
    • Winters are bitterly cold.
    • Temperature reach barely above freezing during the short summers.
    • Rainfall is light.
    • Plant Life: Mosses, lichens, and small shrubs


Tundra

  • Tundra

    • Permafrost- permanently frozen layers of soil
    • This frozen earth makes it hard for water to be absorbed into the soil.
    • In summer, this can create ponds and marshes for many breeding animals.


Ice Cap

  • Ice Cap

    • This may be the harshest climate on Earth’s surface.
    • Temperatures can reach as low as -120°F or colder.
      • That is bone-chilling cold!!
    • Snow and ice remain year-round with little new precipitation.
    • No vegetation.


Even with this extreme cold, polar bears, penguins, whales, and seals are able to survive quite well in this frigid climate.

  • Even with this extreme cold, polar bears, penguins, whales, and seals are able to survive quite well in this frigid climate.



Highland

  • Highland

    • This climate can be several climates at once.
    • It depends upon elevation.
    • As you go up the mountain, temperatures drop and plant life grows more scarce.



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