In the last decades droughts have caused hunger and starvation in many part of the Sahel and Ethiopia. North of the equator most rain falls from April to September, south of the equator the rainy season is from October to March. While these factors help to account for the broad climatic patterns of the African continent, there are nevertheless numerous local variations to be found from place to place within the same climatic zone. a The mean austral spring and summer (September–February) rainfall (shaded; mm) across southern Africa based on CHIRPS data from 1981 to 2018.b A zoomed in version of the mean spring and summer rainfall for the southeast region of the domain. The highest temperatures of the continent are measured in the desert regions of the Sahara, where daytime temperatures reach up to 50Â°C.Â Nights can be cool and frosty, even during the summer. The coldest regions of Africa lie in the eastern highlands and southern Africa. The hot, dry continental tropical air mass, which is present in the upper levels of the atmosphere, descends to the ground only at the convergence zone. Through the Africa Rainfall Project, researchers at Delft University of Technology will create high-resolution computer simulations of localized rainstorms in sub-Saharan Africa. The site interpolates data using weather stations that are within close proximity to your inquiry. Near the equator there are two very wet seasons, as the sun passes overhead in spring and fall. This is because the incremental time-steps are small enough, i.e. Because they'll use massive, crowdsourced computing power from World Community Grid, they'll be able run simulations at a much higher resolution—exactly what's needed for localized rainstorms. Rising temperatures, drought and erratic rainfall are making growing coffee harder. In fact, the climate of Africa is more variable by rainfall amount than by temperatures, which are consistently high. When considered in detail, the movement of air masses and their effects provide the basis for a division of the continent into eight climatic regions. Extreme rainfall in West Africa: A regional modeling ... rainfall extremes in order to provide regional maps of high quantiles of the distributions (typically, 20 to 100 year or higher return period values), thus allowing to estimate these quantiles at nonobserved sites. While maize is productive, its key limitation is a lack of tolerance to high temperatures and drought conditions. In response to the increasing climate-related health threats, member states in African region in 2016 adopted the Regional Strategy for Health Security and Emergencies which, along with the International Health Regulations, aims at strengthening countries’ capacities to detect, prevent and response to public health emergencies. Rainfall varies from 500 to 1 100 mm with a short winter dry season. In the savannahs and grasslands longer grass is replaced by shorter grass as you move away from the equator, with trees scattered in-between. New Delhi: Scientists have found that aerosols like black carbon and dust, which makes the Indo-Gangetic Plain one of the most polluted regions of the world, have led to increased incidents of high rainfall events in the foothills of the Himalayan Region, according to an official statement. Region 1, the easternmost region, has more rainfall in the boreal spring, similar to eastern equatorial Africa. The harmattan is a warm, dry, northeasterly or easterly wind that blows out of the southern Sahara and is frequently laden with large quantities of sand and dust. Precipitation up to 4000 mm a year is no exception. hourly or sub-hourly, to represent different intensities. The tropical wet-and-dry region is often called the savanna climatic region; this implies, incorrectly, that all areas with savanna vegetation have this type of climate. The coldest regions of Africa lie in the eastern highlands and southern Africa. Tropical Savanna - Tropical. The green polygon in both panels illustrates the location of the Eastern Cape Province in South Africa. This is an improvement from the previous season, where less rainfall resulted in adverse impacts on agriculture, water resources and hydropower generation in most of the region. The recent decline in Horn of Africa rainfall during the March–May “long rains” season has fomented drought and famine, threatening food security in an already vulnerable region. Second, the near bisection of the continent by the Equator results in a largely symmetrical arrangement of climatic zones on either side. The Guineo-Congolian Region is the wettest in West Africa, with average annual rainfall between 2,200 and 5,000 mm. Central Asia: Mongolian Region: The region lies in the heart of the continent containing a vast territory of mountains, and plateaus from Tibet to Mongolia. There is no rainfall on the northern side of the convergence zone, since the region is completely under the dry continental tropical air mass originating over the Sahara. Most of Africa is divided into wet and dry seasons. The region could also experience as much as one meter of sea-level rise by the end of this century under a 4 C warming scenario. Usually between 30 000 and 50 000 litres. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. Temperature. The Highveld meets this definition and probably owes much to unaided nature for its creation and perpetuation, since fires caused by lightning strikes are relatively frequent. These seasonal winds affect the coastal areas of E.Africa i.e. The rainfall regime is similar to that of the adjacent lowland areas. The temperature here averages 16.9 °C | 62.4 °F. For the multi-region sector average R j, the first step is an arithmetic average of the standardized departures from all I stations within the sector that are available for the season or year in question. They are home to thousands of plants and animal species. In some respects the climate is similar to the warm temperate upland climate, except that temperatures are even lower and snow occurs on the tops of the highest peaks, such as Kilimanjaro. The Sahel region covers a belt of grasslands south of the Sahara stretching from Senegal to Sudan. OND rainfall across East Africa in 2019. Warming of the oceans enhances the stability of the tropical atmosphere and weakens deep ascent in the Hadley circulation. In South Africa, the largest highland area is the Highveld region, more than 1 000 m in altitude, bordered by the Drakensberg, reaching more than 3 000 m. The mountain ranges in the Cape region also belong to this ecological zone. Tropical Savanna - Tropical. Thus, at Port Elizabeth there are six months when temperatures are below 62 °F (17 °C), while at Durban mean monthly temperatures do not fall below 64 °F (18 °C). In western Africa the period of low sun corresponds to the harmattan season. During the period of low sun in the Northern Hemisphere (from December to January, when the sun has moved to its southern limit), the situation described above is reversed. The Mediterranean coast as well as the southern part of Africa get rainfall during the winter months. The warm temperate upland climatic region is found on the Highveld of Southern Africa. Thorn woodland, grassland, and semidesert vegetation. The mountain climatic region includes the high mountain areas of Ethiopia and the lake region of East Africa. Where is the Winter rainfall region found? Our latest episode for parents features the topic of empathy. Immediately south of the convergence zone, rainfall is heavy because of the unstable nature of maritime tropical air over a heated land surface. As in the desert and semiarid climatic zones, mean monthly temperatures show less variation than daily temperatures. The use of high-resolution rainfall data inherently accounts for the temporal distribution of rainfall intensity. The summer rainfall over the JJAS region is negatively correlated with ENSO. According to Köppen and Geiger, this climate is classified as Csb. During this time heavy rain falls every day in the afternoon. Humidity is always high, making life in this region very unpleasant. There is high average temperatures and humidity throughout the year. At the ITCZ itself, however, precipitation is prolonged and intense as air converges between the maritime and continental air masses and is forced aloft. 7. South Africa experiences a high degree of sunshine with rainfall about half of the global average, increasing from west to east, and with semi-desert regions in the north-west. Countries in this region comprise of South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Swaziland, Namibia, Mozambique, Malawi, Lesotho, Botswana, and Angola. Climate is shaped by the interaction of several interrelated factors; the most significant are altitude (topography) and rainfall. It has a hot, humid climate along the coast and around Lake Victoria, but cooler climates in the highlands and mountains. The central portion of the continent is wetter, with tropical rainforests, grasslands, and semi-arid climates. Marked variations in the rhythm of equatorial climate sometimes occur. The temporal characteristics of rainfall variability in Africa are examined using departure series for 84 regions of the continent and five larger-scale zones. North of the equator most rain falls from April to September, south of the equator the rainy season is from October to March. This region is characterized by rainfall throughout the year, but it is heaviest in summer. Parts of eastern Ethiopia and Somalia near the Indian Ocean have a desert climate. Typically experiencing higher average temperatures, urban areas also frequently have less wind and lower relative humidity; there is too little relevant data from Africa, however, to permit a detailed study of urban climates. In region 2, the westernmost region, the second rainy season is the more intense. Droughts are becoming more widespread across the Sahel and eastern Africa. These are the hot desert, semiarid, tropical wet-and-dry, equatorial (tropical wet), Mediterranean, humid subtropical marine, warm temperate upland, and mountain regions. Regions 3 and 4 show a single maximum in the boreal summer and autumn. The humid subtropical marine climate is restricted to the southeast coast of Africa. While the Western Cape has a Mediterranean climate with winter rainfall, most of the country experiences summer rain. Of these, the least important are the continental polar air masses, which may occasionally bring intense cold to northern Egypt in December and January, and the maritime polar air masses, which are associated with rain-bearing depressions over the northern and southern extremities of the continent during the winter. comm., 2012 Jul 6). Africa straddles the Equator from 37⁰ N to 34⁰ S. Africa has two Sub-tropical belts with the ITCZ somewhat equidistant from the two high pressure zones. Types of Climates. Temperatures in South Africa tend to be lower than in other countries at similar latitudes – such as Australia – mainly because of its greater elevation above sea level. At this season the whole of northern Africa (except the Atlas Mountains) is under the dry continental tropical air mass, while Southern Africa receives rainfall except in the Cape region and on the southwest coast, where the maritime air mass remains stable offshore over the cool Benguela Current. Plant life is influenced by the amount of rainfall. In the northern and southern extremities of the continent, there is a dry summer subtropical, or Mediterranean, type of climate. The Indo-Gangetic Plains located South and upwind of the Himalayan foothills. These quantify the strength of seasonality, and the wet-season start- and end-dates, length, total rainfall amount, number of rain days and rainfall intensity. In consequence, the influence of the sea extends farther inland in Southern Africa. Mouth of the Olifants River (north-west) to the Breede River mouth (south). The humid subtropical marine climate is restricted to the southeast coast of Africa. Tropical rainforests extend to the north and south of the equator. Climates of Africa - "Low" and "High" Africa. However, because rainfall in this area is often localized—sometimes almost at the level of one farm—it's difficult to forecast accurately with satellite data, which show larger weather patterns. Differences in temperature between day and night or often larger than between summer and winter. The hot desert region consists of the Sahara and Kalahari deserts, which are always under the influence of dry continental tropical air masses, and the northern Kenya–Somali desert, the aridity of which is principally caused by the stable nature of the maritime air masses that pass over it throughout the year. Their graphical technique indicated no significant rainfall trend except in the northeastern region of Kenya where an increasing annual rainfall tendency was displayed. Higher latitudes in the tropics. Each region and sub-region of Africa is changing differently but an emerging commonality is a shift towards more intense rainfall - even where there is observed and projected future drying. The amount of heat from the sun plays a major role in determining climate. No long-term trends in African rainfall are evident. This region covers a little less than half of the total surface area of the continent, extending toward the Equator from the semiarid areas. In Africa: Highveld grassland. South of the Equator, at yet greater distance from the convergence zone, the maritime air masses are less-heated, thick, and stable, and they bring hardly any rainfall, except over some of the East African highlands. The Sahara is moving southward and more and more areas are threatened by deforestation. There are two peak periods of rainfall corresponding to the double passage of the ITCZ. Rising greenhouse gases have boosted rainfall in the Sahel region of Africa, easing droughts that killed 100,000 people in the 1970s and 1980s, in a rare positive effect of climate … It decreases the farther you move away from the equator. 4 Climatic Regions in Kenya. Projected rainfall change over sub-Saharan Africa in the mid- and late 21st century is uncertain. The box in (a) shows East Africa region of study, and the averaging region for time series in (c) and (d), where dotted lines show the medians (med), lower quartiles (LQ) and upper quartiles (UQ) calculated using data within the range of years listed in the figure legends. This is the area of massive uplift over Africa and very high rainfall figures World climates are generally divided into five large regions: tropical, dry, mid-latitude, high latitude, and highland.The regions are divided into smaller subregions that are described below. The IPCC expects Central Africa to see a decrease in the length of wet spells and a slight increase in heavy rainfall. Rain falls only in winter (December–January in North Africa, June–July in Southern Africa), although in some localities it may fall in autumn (September in North Africa, April in Southern Africa). In regions of high or complex topography such as the Ethiopian Highlands, downscaled projections indicate likely increases in rainfall and extreme rainfall by the end of the 21st century. In most of southern Africa, rainfall peaks in the austral summer/boreal winter. We evaluated the combined aspects of anomalous high rainfall and concurrent soil saturation in a RVF forecast model for South Africa, using accurate temporal and spatial records of the 2008–2011 epidemics to derive risk maps (Directorate of Animal Health, Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, pers. The convergence zone moves southward, dipping into Southern Africa. Summary of rainfall, ERA‐Interim column‐integrated westerly moisture flux and MJO during the 2018 East Africa long rains. In East Africa Rodhe and Virji (1976)used agraphical technique inexamining the nature of trend of annual rainfall of 35 stations concentrated mainly i~~Kenya and northern Tanzania. A Warmer Cape Region By the end of this century, southern Africa will be an average of 3.4°C warmer, according to the 2007 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports. A follow-up report that provides a specific focus on the climate of the semi-arid regions of southern Africa is currently under development. Most of Africa is divided into wet and dry seasons. Other parts of Africa usually have one wet season which gets shorter the farther away you get from the equator. Near the equator there are two very wet seasons, as the sun passes overhead in spring and fall. Summer rainfall in one of the world's most drought-prone regions can now be predicted months or years in advance, climate scientists at the Met Office and the University of Exeter say. The rainfall can be distributed across most of the year, or in two rainy seasons with short drier periods between the rains. Interactive Grammar and Vocabulary Exercises, East Africa hit by severest drought in 60 years. Based on current forecast global climate conditions, the North American Multi-Model Ensemble (NMME) predicts below- average rainfall … Here we analyze the relationship between El Ni˜no Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and South Africa austral winter rainfall using a 682 raingauges daily rainfall database documenting the … The climate is humid with a tropical regime. The region’s terrain ranges from grasslands and deserts to forests. The south-western parts of RSA, Western Cape. The Llanos of Columbia is characterized by mean annual rainfall of 200cm-400cm (near Andes Mountain), mean annual temperature of 22°C, and maximum temperature of 32°C. Rising greenhouse gases have boosted rainfall in the Sahel region of Africa, easing droughts that killed 100,000 people in the 1970s and 1980s, in … South Africa experiences a high degree of sunshine with rainfall about half of the global average, increasing from west to east, and with semi-desert regions in the north-west. As the coastal region is a high rainfall area and the showers are often of higher intensity than in other areas, larger tanks are recommended to contain the additional rainfall. First, extreme events are rare by definition, hence difficult to record. In South Africa, south of KwaZulu-Natal, the winter rainfall is more pronounced, and the temperatures are a little lower than in the north. 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