A climatic region is a group of areas where the conditions of relief, temperature, rainfall, natural vegetation and consequently the cultural environment are more or less similar.
Climate World Map
- The boundaries of naturals regions are permanent because they are determined by nature.
- They do not, therefore, change as political boundaries do.
- But at the same time, the boundaries of natural regions are not well demarcated as political boundaries.
- As this is an introductory document, we will briefly go through the regions which will be covered extensively in the upcoming documents.
The world may be divided into the following natural regions
➢ Equatorial Region
- The equatorial belt extends roughly between 10 to 15 degree south and north latitude to the equator.
- It has uniformly hot and wet climatic conditions throughout the year.
- The annual range of temperature is low, and seasonal contrasts are at a minimum.
- The combination of high temperature and high humidity makes the climate unfavourable for sustained human effort, but very favourable for the growth of vegetation.
➢ Tropical grassland (Savanna) Region
- This region lies in the interior of the continents extending up to the sea in the west in the tropical belt.
- It comes under the influence of equatorial belt of calms during summer and receives convectional rainfall and it is under the influence of trade winds during winter which are dry winds and the region experiences drought.
- It generally lies between 5°N and 20°S latitudes.
- This region has moderate rainfall and greater annual range of temperature.
- It occurs extensively in Africa, parts of Brazilian Plateau and Orinoco basin in South America.
➢ Tropical Deciduous forest region
- This region includes eastern margins of the continents between 10°N to 30°N and 10°S to 30°S.
- Rainfall is moderate except in coastal regions and mountainous tracts.
- The summers are hot and rainy while winters are warm and dry.
Question for Climatic Regions of The World
Try yourself:Which of the following region is situated between 10 degrees north and 10 degrees south?
➢ Tropical Deserts
- Tropical deserts are located on the western margins of continents in the Trade Wind belt roughly between 20° and 30° N and S latitudes and are known as hot or trade wind deserts. Annual precipitation is generally less than 25 cm.
- In most of the region, clear skies favour fired passage of insolation during day time and outgoing radiation from the earth during the night. Therefore, the diurnal range of temperature is high.
➢ China type Region
- It lies on the eastern margins of the continents in the subtropical belt between 20° and 48° latitude in both hemispheres.
- The main characteristics of this region are summers are warm and moist and winters are cold, and during summer, trade winds blow from adjoining ocean and moderate rainfall occurs which decreases towards the equator and in winter, westerly winds blow from the interior towards the oceans.
- These land winds do not give rainfall and so winters are dry.
➢ Mediterranean type Region
- This region lies poleward of the tropical deserts on the western margin of the continents, roughly between 30° and 40° N and S latitudes.
- The summers are hot and dry while winters are mild and rainy.
- In summer, trade winds blow from land to sea giving practically no rain.
- In winters, this region comes under the influence of moist westerlies blowing on-shore and bringing cyclonic rain.
➢ Mid-latitudes desert
- These deserts are located in the interior plateau and basins in Asia and North America. They are surrounded by high mountain regions.
- Tibet and Gobi are typical examples.
- The main characteristic of this region is that it receives scanty rainfall as the interior location is surrounded by high mountains which prevent the inflow of moist air.
- Interior location results in the greater extreme of temperature between summer and winter.
➢ St. Lawrence type Region
- This region lies poleward of the Warm East Margin Region.
- The region has warm wet summer and cold dry winters.
- North Eastern United States and adjoining parts of Canada, North China, Manchuria, Korea, and Northern Japan are the main areas included in this Region.
➢ Mid Latitude grasslands
- This region lies in the interior of the continents and therefore receives low rainfall.
- The annual range of temperature is high between warm summer and cold winter.
- Rainfall occurs as a result of the convectional ascent of air during summer.
- Owing to low rainfall and cold winter, trees are generally absent.
➢ Cool (Mid Latitude) West European Type
- Regions of this type are found on the western margins of the continents in the permanent zone of westerlies.
- It includes Western Europe from Northern Norway to the British Isles, North-West United States, and Southern Chile in South America and Tasmania Island of New Zealand in Australia.
Question for Climatic Regions of The World
Try yourself:In which side margin is China type climate region found?
➢ The Taiga (coniferous) Region
- This region occurs as a broad belt in Europe, Asia and North America between the mid-latitude of grassland region in South and Polar Tundra in the North.
- The climate is cold and moist.
- The region has a short warm summer and long cold winter.
- Rivers remain frozen and snow covers the ground for many months.
- Annual precipitation is moderate in amount with a maximum during summer.
- Coniferous forests occur and contain softwood trees like oak, birch and maple.
➢ Polar Lowlands (Tundra)
- The vast lowlands, lying along the shores of Arctic Ocean, where the ground is frozen for the greater part of the year are known as Tundras.
- They are low-lying cold deserts between the regions of eternal snow and ice in north and coniferous in the south.
- They are found in the north of Asia as well as in Canada and Europe where they are known as Barren lands.
- The region has long severe cold winter and a short cool summer.
➢ Polar Highlands (Icecap type)
- Antarctica and Greenland are examples of large landmasses in polar regions having permanent ice caps.
- During summer temperature does not exceed 10°C.
- Precipitation is low and occurs as snowfall during winter.