27 terms

Unit 9 Climate - Vocabulary

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Anthropogenic
caused or produced by humans
Carbon dioxide
a greenhouse gas emitted naturally by animals and also by the burning of fossil fuels.
CFCs
abbreviation of chlorofluorocarbons - any of various gaseous compounds that cause a breakdown of the ozone layer in the Earth's atmosphere.
Climograph
a graph used to show the precipitation and temperature of a region.
Desert
a climate zone characterized as dry - it gets less than 25cm of rainfall a year.
El Niño
a periodic occurrence in the eastern Pacific ocean in which the surface water temperatures become unusually warm.
Fujita Scale
a classification system for the severity of a tornado based on the damage done.
Gulf Stream
the swift, warm current that flows along the East coast of the United States and carries warm, tropical water northward toward Europe.
Humid Continental
a climate zone with large temperature differences and rainfall more than 75cm per year.
Humid Subtropical
a climate zone with large temperature differences and rainfall up to 165cm per year.
Ice Caps
an icy climate zone with an average temperature below 0ºC and low precipitation.
La Niña
a periodic occurrence in the eastern Pacific ocean in which the surface water temperature becomes unusually cool.
Marine West Coast
a climate zone with a small temperature range frequent rainfall, and mild winters and summers.
Maunder Minimum
also known as the "prolonged sunspot minimum" and is the name used for the period starting in about 1645 and continuing to about 1715 when sunspots became exceedingly rare.
Mediterranean
a mild climate zone with a low temperature range and about 40cm of precipitation per year.
Methane
a greenhouse gas emitted naturally by some animals and also by the fossil fuel industry when producing fossil fuels.
Milankovitch Theory
the theory that cyclical changes in the Earth's orbit and in the tilt of the Earth's axis occur over thousands of years and cause climatic changes.
Monsoon
a seasonal wind that blows toward land in the summer bringing heavy rains and away from land in the winter bringing dry weather.
Polar
a high latitude climate perpetually covered by snow and ice throughout the year.
Rain Forest
a climate zone where there is a small temperature range and the annual rainfall exceeds 200cm per year.
Saffir-Simpson
a scale of 1 to 5 rating based on a hurricane's sustained wind speed. This scale estimates potential property damage.
Savanna
a climate zone comprised mostly of grasses and a few scattered trees with distinct wet and dry seasons and a small temperature range.
Steppe
a climate zone with a large temperature range, a warm, wet summer and a cold, dry winter.
Subarctic
a climate zone with up to 63ºC temperature differences between summer and winter and precipitation up to 50cm per year.
Temperate
the climate between the tropics and the polar region having generally moderate changes in seasons.
Tropical
a climate where the total rainfall is more than 250cm.
Tundra
A climate zone with a vast treeless plain in the Arctic regions where the subsoil is permanently frozen and it rains about 25cm per year.
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