how does high latitude affect the climate?

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lalithareddy's profile pic

lalithareddy | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Valedictorian

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Latitude does exert a large amount of control over any given area's climate. In fact, latitude is probably the single most important determining factor in climate. While other variables such as weather patterns and elevation have a large impact on any geographical area, latitude affects climate the most. For proof of this one only needs to compare areas of extreme northern or southern latitude, such as the North Pole or South Pole, with places that lie along the equator, such as Colombia or Somalia. Latitude affects climate in an area because it dictates the intensity and duration of sun exposure. As the Earth orbits the sun it also wobbles slightly on its axis. At times the Northern hemisphere is closer to the sun than the Southern hemisphere and at some times it is further from it. When an area is closer to the sun the days are longer and the sun's rays are stronger. This heats the climate. This is the reason that places experience seasonal variation in temperature. Those locations close to the equator, however, exist in a nearly constant state of summer because they always get relatively strong sunlight and have long days.


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igmimi | Elementary School Teacher | (Level 1) eNoter

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Sunlight is a  factor determining weather  and climate of a place.The rays of the sun are distributed in two ways-direct and slanting.The direct rays produce more heat and that is why the regions near the equator are hot.The slanting rays on the other hand, lose a lot of heat before they reach the surface of the earth as they get scattered.

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gopikrishna | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Valedictorian

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Climatologists (people who study climate) use the word insolation for energy that reaches Earth from the Sun. The word combines syllables from the phrase incoming solar radiation. Sunlight is the obvious sign of insolation, but the Sun’s radiation reaches the earth on a cloudy day too. The angle and duration of insolation, which translates into surface temperature, changes depending on latitude.Latitude does exert a large amount of control over any given area's climate. In fact, latitude is probably the single most important determining factor in climate. While other variables such as weather patterns and elevation have a large impact on any geographical area, latitude affects climate the most. For proof of this one only needs to compare areas of extreme northern or southern latitude, such as the North Pole or South Pole, with places that lie along the equator, such as Colombia or Somalia.Because Earth is spherical, when it orbits the Sun, the Sun’s rays hit Earth’s surface directly at the equator and at angles near the poles. Direct insolation is stronger than slanted contact.Earth also tilts on its axis, so when the Southern Hemisphere is closer to the Sun, it has more hours of daylight than the Northern Hemisphere, and vice versa. At the equator, the hours of night and day remain 12 hours each. But most of us have experienced the shorter days of winter and the longer days of summer that come from Earth rotating at a tilt.Latitudes that receive direct insolation for many hours a day tend to have warmer climates, such as at the equator. Latitudes toward the North and South Poles get angled insolation for fewer hours overall, and have colder climates.

 

 

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