We have heard a sailor or a pilot talk about their desired destination in terms of some degree of latitude. So what actually is this degree of latitude? It is the angular distance of any point of earth from the equator. It may be to north of equator or south of equator. It is measured in degrees, minutes and seconds. The equator is an imaginary line that runs around the centre of the earth dividing the earth into two equal parts. The line is equidistant from both the poles.
Thus the latitude degrees are most reliable system for measuring position of locations. High latitudes and low latitudes tend to have different climates. Depending on its latitude, the climate of a region varies. Areas near the equator tend to be warm and wet. Away from the equator, the climate at the poles is cold and dry. Regions at mid latitude have moderate climates neither too hot as the equator nor too cold like the poles.
At 23.5°N is the tropic of cancer and 23.5 °S is the tropic of Capricorn. While tropic of cancer runs through Mexico, Egypt, Saudi, India and southern China, tropic of Capricorn runs through Chile, Southern Brazil, South Africa and Australia. Regions between these two lines are the tropics. The tropics are normally warm and wet and does not experience seasons.
Compared to other regions some regions at the same latitude may have seasonal extremes. Presence of ocean nearby a region tends to temper the climates of nearby seacoasts. Oceans are known to be great moderators and that’s why interior of all continents have harsher climate than the coastal zones. Elevation, mountain barriers also play a role in affecting the climate.
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