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Climate

 

 

By the end of the session you should be able to:

distinguish between weather and climate

explain the foctors that influence climate

describe the characteristics of major climatic regions of Kenya

describe the characteristics of major climatic regions of the world

CLIMATE

Foctors influencing climate

Configuration of the Coastline

Configuration is the alignment of the coastline in relation to the prevailing on shore winds. The alignment, shape and nature of the coast may lead prevailing winds to blow either on shore or parallel to the coast.

e.g. along the Kenya coast, Mombasa lies across the path of the onshoreNorth-East and South-East trade winds.

When these winds meet in this area, they result in annual rainfall of about 1100mm. In contrast, Lamu is located along the North coast. It receives lower annual rainfall of about 930mm.

Somali coast which is further to the North, very little rainfall is received. Lamu and Somali coast lie parallel to the path of the rain-bearing winds while Mombasa lies across the path of the winds.

 

Inter-tropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ)

This is a low pressure belt which shifts its position north and south of the equator according to the position of the overhead sun.

The rain bearing trade winds converge here.Regions near the equator experience ITCZ twice a year hence two seasons of heavy rainfall associated with convergence of winds. They are said to have double maxima rainfall regime.

 

Forests

Forests have a direct influence on climate Areas with forests experience special climatic conditions. This is called micro climate.

  • Forested areas are cool because of the shade of the trees;i.e. solar insolation reaching at the lower grounds is reduced

  • Forests cause high rate of evapo-transpiration leading to high humidity
  • The friction between trees and the rain bearing winds and the high rate of evapo-transpiration leads to heavy rains

Human activities

Human activities influence the climate of surrounding areas. Activities such as deforestation, agriculture, development of settlements, and construction of dams and emission gases from factories can modify the climate of surrounding areas creating micro-climates.

Emitted gases alter the composition of the atmosphere thus leading to global warming.

Human activities

Human activities influence the climate of surrounding areas. Activities such as deforestation, agriculture, development of settlements, and construction of dams and emission gases from factories can modify the climate of surrounding areas creating micro-climates.

Emitted gases alter the composition of the atmosphere thus leading to global warming.

The Climatic Regions of Kenya

Modified Equatorial climate

 

In the Lake Victoria region, this climate is modified by high altitude (1200m - 1800m) which also lowers temperatures.The lake shores receive about 900mm of rain while the higher grounds receive up to 1770mm.

Modified Tropical Climate

 

The Tropical Continental or semi arid climate

Tropical Climate

Tropical North climate


 

Desert Climate

World climatic regions

Hot climates

These climates are further classified into;

  • Equatorial
  • Equatorial monsoon
  • Tropical monsoon
  • Tropical marine (maritime)
  • Tropical continental
  • Tropical desert

Equatorial

Equatorial monsoon

Tropical Monsoon

Tropical marine (maritime)

Tropical continental

Tropical desert

Warm Climates
These climates are experienced between latitudes 300 and 400 north or south of the equator.These climates are classified as:

  • Warm temperate western margin, occurs between latitudes 300- 450 N and 300 - 400 S
  • Warm temperate continental climate (warm, temperate interior climate) 300 and 500.
  • Warm temperate desert climate north and south of equator (mid-latitude desert climate)
  • Warm temperate eastern margin (china type) 230 and 350 North and South of the equator

Warm temperate western margin

Warm temperate continental climate (warm temperature interior) climate

 

Warm temperate desert climate (mid-latitude desert climate)

Warm temperate eastern margin (China type)

Cool Climates

Cool temperate western margin (British type)

Cool temperate continental climate

Cool temperate eastern margin (Laurentian type)

 

Cold Climates

Cold temperate western margin

 

Cold temperate continental climate

Cold temperate Eastern margin

Arctic climates

 

Mountain climates

Characteristics

The climatic conditions vary with altitude

Slopes facing equator are warmer

Rainfall increases with height to 3000m then decreases

Windward slopes are wetter thus leeward slopes

Decrease of atmospheric pressure with increasing altitude

Temperature decrease with altitude

Local winds blow up the slope during the day and down the slope at night

 

Local Climates

These are climates experienced within a small area. The climates in these areas are modified compared to the surrounding region.



 Climate 

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