Climate

Long-term trends in the weather

Earth is known to have undergone drastic climate changes

Surface vegetation has evolved a dependence on the seasonal variation of the weather, and sudden changes lasting only a few years can have a dramatic effect, both on the vegetation and on the animals which depend on its growth for their food.

Satellite image
Prevailing winds across the northern Pacific Ocean encountering Alaska’s Aleutian Islands

Beneficial and harmful effects

Weather can have both beneficial and harmful effects. Extremes in weather, such as tornadoes or hurricanes and cyclones, can expend large amounts of energy along their paths, and produce devastation. Surface vegetation has evolved a dependence on the seasonal variation of the weather, and sudden changes lasting only a few years can have a dramatic effect, both on the vegetation and on the animals which depend on its growth for their food.

Climate influence

Climate is a measure of the long-term trends in the weather. Various factors are known to influence the climate, including ocean currents, surface albedo, greenhouse gases, variations in the solar luminosity, and changes to the Earth’s orbit. Based on historical records, the Earth is known to have undergone drastic climate changes in the past, including ice ages.

Weather is a chaotic system that is readily modified by small changes to the environment, so accurate weather forecasting is limited to only a few days.

Drastic climate changes

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The major oceanic divisions are defined in part by the continents, various archipelagos, and other criteria, these divisions are, in descending order of size:

  1. The Pacific Ocean

  2. The Atlantic Ocean

  3. The Indian Ocean

  4. The Southern Ocean

  5. The Arctic Ocean

Smaller regions of the oceans are called seas, gulfs, bays and other names. There are also salt lakes, which are smaller bodies of landlocked saltwater that are not interconnected with the World Ocean. Two notable examples of salt lakes are the Aral Sea and the Great Salt Lake.

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John Roe

John Roe

John is a 26-year-old scientific researcher who enjoys drone photography, reading and waiting at bus stops. He is generous and loveable, but can also be very lazy. He has a degree in chemistry and is obsessed with bottled water.