2 The Köppen Climate Classification System The Köppen climate classification system uses mean monthly and annual values of temperature and precipitation to classify climatesThe Köppen system has five principle groups: humid tropical climates, dry climates, humid mid-latitude climates, polar climates, and highland climatesAll of these, except dry climates, are defined by temperatureDry climates are classified according to the amount of precipitation
5 Concept Check What is the Köppen climate classification system? The Köppen system uses mean monthly and annual values of temperature and precipitation to classify climates.
6 Humid Tropical Climates Humid tropical climates are climates without wintersEvery month in such a climate has a mean temperature above 18ºCThe amount of precipitation can exceed 200 cm per yearWet Tropical Climate – high temperatures and much annual precipitation (Rainforests)Tropical Wet and Dry Climate – temperatures and precipitation similar to the wet tropics, but experience distinct periods of low precipitation (Savannas)
8 Concept Check Describe the characteristics of humid tropical climates. Humid tropical climates have no winters. Every month has a mean temperature above 18ºC and has a lot of precipitation.
9 Humid Mid-Latitude Climates Climates with mild winters have an average temperature in the coldest month that is below 18ºC but above -3ºCClimates with severe winters have an average temperature in the coldest month that is below -3ºCHumid mid-latitude climates include: humid subtropical, marine west coast, dry-summer subtropical, humid continental, and subarctic
10 Humid Subtropical Climate – generally located on the eastern side of a continent and characterized by hot, sultry summers and cool wintersMarine West Coast Climate – found on the windward coasts from 40º and 65º latitude and dominated by maritime air masses; winters are mild, and summers are coolDry-Summer Subtropical Climate – located on the west sides of continents between 30º and 45º latitude; the only humid climate with a strong winter precipitation maxSubarctic Climate – found north of the humid continental climate and south of the polar climate; bitterly cold winters and short cool summers; highest annual temperature range
13 Concept Check What type of climate does LA have? Explain. LA has a dry-summer subtropical climate. It is on the west-side of the continent, located between 30º and 45º latitude, and experiences all of its precipitation in the winter.
14 Dry ClimatesA dry climate is one in which the yearly precipitation is not as great as the potential loss of water by evaporationDryness is not only related to annual rainfall, but is also a function of evaporationEvaporation is closely dependent upon temperatureThere are two types of dry climates: arid (desert) and semi-arid (steppe)The steppe is a marginal more humid variant of the desert, separating the desert from the humid climatesDry climates exist as the result of the global distribution of air pressure and windsOther dry climates are a result of rain shadows off of large mountain chainsSome of Earth’s driest climates occur where a cold ocean current affects the west coast of a continent
16 Concept Check What defines a dry climate? Both the amount of precipitation that falls and the amount that can be lost as the result of evaporation.
17 Polar ClimatesPolar climates are those in which the mean temperature of the warmest month is below 10ºCPolar winters are periods of perpetual night, making temperatures extremely coldIn the summer, temperatures remain cool despite the long daysVery little precipitation falls in polar regionsThere are two types of polar climates: the tundra climate (treeless region) and the ice cap climate (permanent ice and snow)
19 Concept Check What are the characteristics of polar climates? Polar climates are extremely cold, even in the summer months. Very little precipitation falls in polar regions, and evaporation is limited.
20 Highland Climates Highland climates are localized They are much different than their surrounding climatesThe conditions vary abruptly from one place to anotherSouth-facing slopes are warmer than north-facing slopesIn general, highland climates are cooler and wetter than nearby areas at lower elevations
21 Concept CheckHow do highland climates compare with nearby lowland climates?Highland climates are usually cooler and wetter than nearby places at lower elevations.