Global Commons - Antarctica

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  • Physical Climate
    • Described as a polar desert, with average temperatures of around -50* but it can reach as low as -90* in some parts.
    • Katabatic Winds form from cold air masses descending onto the ice cap and spreading along the ground. Sheet-like rivers of air and snow.
    • Some coastal areas have micro-climatic and topographic conditions which cause melting during the summer - allow land to remain free of glaciers.
    • High Mountain peaks called nunataks are small areas of rock emerging above the ice sheets. High winds and steep slopes prevent snow and ice from accumulating.
    • Average wind speed is 50 mph however it can reach 200 mph.
    • Thick ice sheets are not the result of heavy snowfall, but the accumulation of small inputs of snow and frost.

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