Weather and Climate

basic notes from my book

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  • Created on: 30-05-11 15:29
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Geography Revision
Weather and Climate
The UK has a temperate maritime climate (maritime-affected by sea)
Factors affecting the UK climate
Latitude- temperature highest at low latitudes, lower in high latitudes as near the poles the
suns rays hit the earth as an oblique angle so have a larger area to heat up. Southern UK
warmer than North.
Prevailing Winds-South-westerly in UK, tropical maritime as come across Atlantic from south
America. Making the UK warm and wet, west gets more rain
Distance from sea-the sea takes longer to heat up and cool down than land. Sea therefore
keeps summers cooler and winters warmer. Warm ocean current along west coast called
North Atlantic drift, west coast warmer
Pressure-UK in a zone of low pressure, air is rising and cooling to form clouds so increased
Altitude-amount of precipitation increases when moist winds from Atlantic forced upwards
over mountains and cool. Relief rainfall.
Types of rainfall:
Relief-happens when air is forced over land and condenses.
Convectional-water on ground evaporates due to heating by the sun.
Frontal-when warm air rises above cold air and condenses.
Urban Heat Island-Buildings+dark surfaces store heat and heat from cars etc... Built up areas
warming than surrounding areas.
Frontal drepressions
Depressions are areas of low pressure
Air is rising
Air is drawn in to replace the rising air
Winds blow anticlockwise in the northern hemisphere
Depressions bring unsettled weather
Can bring heavy downfall/flood
Areas of high pressure
Air is descending
Brings light winds and dry settled weather
Can stay over the UK for several weeks or days
and blocks depressions
In summer can lead to heat waves.
Synoptic Chart
Isobars ­ Join together places of equal
atmospheric pressure.

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Pressure Wind Speed Precipitation Weather in Weather in
Summer Winter
Depressions Low pressure Higher Two bands of Unsettled, Also
towards rain, air wind, cloud unsettled,
centre of forced to rise and rain wind, rain and
depression over two cloud
Anticyclones High pressure Lower than No rain Dry & settled, Very cold,
normal heat waves frost/fog
Formation of frost and radiation fog
Ground surface cools as heat lost by night radiation, no cloud present (anticyclone), cold air
sinks to hollows and valleys, so valley…read more

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CASE STUDY ­ The August 2003 heat wave
Area of high pressure over most of Western Europe.
Air moving in clockwise direction bring a hot dry tropical continental air mass to the UK
Few clouds, little rain and extremely high temperatures.
Areas affected
Many countries over Europe had extremely high temperatures
Rivers and reservoirs for public water and hydro-electric schemes either dried up or were
extremely low all across Europe.
Farms affected as crops and livestock died in the heat.…read more

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Rich World: Hurricane Floyd, Poor world: Hurricane Mitch,
North Carolina USA Sept 1999 Honduras and Nicaragua central
Africa Oct 1998
Wind Speed Up to 250kph Up to 260kph
People affected 3 million 4 million
Loss of life 7 18000 dead or missing
Damage Scores of houses destroyed Over 1 million homeless,
Estimated loss US $ 16 billion US $ 7 billion
% of losses insured 75 2
Impact of UK climate change
By 2020:
Increase of temperature by 1.…read more

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One of the main routes to New Orleans 1700 schools were destroyed
was closed as parts of the 1-10 bridge
Economic $300 billion of damage $4 billion of damage
Effects 230,000 jobs were lost from businesses Millions of people lost their livelihoods
damaged or destroyed 200,000 farm animals were killed, crops
30 offshore oil platforms were sunk, lost and over 40% of food stores destroyed
increased price of fuel
Shops in New Orleans looted after
Environmental The hurricane caused the sea to flood…read more


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