As the weather gets colder and the days get shorter, many people start to feel the winter blues. For some, winter is a time to hibernate and stay indoors. But for others, winter is a time to enjoy the snow and cold weather. So, what’s the difference between winter and summer?
Seasonally, winter officially begins on December 21st and ends on March 20th in the Northern Hemisphere. Summer begins on June 21st and ends on September 23rd. But depending on where you live, the weather can start to feel like winter or summer long before those dates.
Climate-wise, winter is generally characterized by cooler temperatures and less sunlight hours than summer. In the Northern Hemisphere, this is due to the Earth’s tilt away from the sun. The closer you are to the North Pole, the more extreme the weather will be.
Some people love winter because of all the fun activities that come along with it, like snowboarding, skiing, ice skating, and buildiing snowmen. Others prefer summer because of the warmer weather and longer days.
Seasonal changes occur on a yearly basis. Each season has its own set of characteristics, such as the heat of summer, falling leaves in the fall, blooming flowers in the spring, and winter snow. Summer and winter are two distinct seasons in the United States. The weather, food, attire, and activities change with each season. Furthermore, alternating seasons would have an impact on people’s mood and health.
Climate also differs between summer and winter. The average temperature in summer is about 86 degrees Fahrenheit whereas in winter it is about 34 degrees Fahrenheit. In summer, the days are longer than the nights whereas in winter the nights are longer than the days. The amount of sunlight also changes with the seasons, which would affect people’s sleep patterns and energy levels.
Although both seasons have their own unique beauty, many people prefer one season over the other. Some people prefer summer because they enjoy being outdoors, swimming, and sunbathing. Others may enjoy winter because they like skiing, snowboarding, or simply spending time indoors by a fire. No matter what someone’s preference is, both seasons offer different opportunities to enjoy the world around us.
Summer and winter have distinct weather patterns. When people mention summer, the first image that springs to mind is of a hot day with high humidity. Winter, on the other hand, invokes images of cold and snow. In Nevada, for example, the temperature during summer may reach 109 degrees Fahrenheit, whereas in Alaska it was −79.8 degrees Fahrenheit.
So, clearly there is a big contrast in weather between the two seasons. Climate is the average weather conditions of a place over a long period of time. It is different from weather, which is the condition of the atmosphere at a particular time and place. Climate includes patterns of temperature, precipitation, humidity, wind and seasons. It remains relatively constant over months and years, but it can also change slowly over centuries. Many factors such as latitude, elevation, proximity to water bodies and mountains influence climate.
There are three types of climate zones – tropical, temperate and polar. The Earth’s climate is changing and scientists believe that it is largely due to human activity, like burning fossil fuels, cutting down forests and farming livestock. The result is a build-up of what’s called greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, which trap heat from the sun and make the Earth warmer.
So, climate change refers to a broad array of environmental degradation that is predicted to result from increasing levels of atmospheric CO2, including global warming, alterations in precipitation, sea level changes and more extreme weather events.
In the winter, people are concerned about snow storms and blizzards; in contrast, they are afraid of hurricanes and tornados at the end of summer. The sun shines brightly throughout the year, and days are longer than nights. Winter, on the other hand, sees a sky covered by clouds and night becoming longer than day.
In a word, summer is HOT and winter is COLD. What’s the difference between weather and climate? Weather is what conditions of the atmosphere are over a short period of time, and climate is how the atmosphere “behaves” over relatively long periods of time. Climate can be described if we consider the average atmospheric conditions over a long period of time—30 years or more. Meteorologists study both weather and climate.
The Earth’s atmosphere is full of moisture, dust, ash and other particles. These particles absorb and emit radiation at different rates. Greenhouse gases like water vapor, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, ozone and chlorofluorocarbons act like a blanket around Earth, trapping energy from the sun. This is called the greenhouse effect.
The Earth’s average temperature is about 61 degrees Fahrenheit (16 degrees Celsius). Without greenhouse gases, the Earth would be much colder—an estimated 33 degrees Fahrenheit (0.5 degrees Celsius) colder, on average. Greenhouse gases cause the Earth’s atmosphere to trap more heat than it would without them, making the Earth warmer than it would be otherwise.
human activities are increasing the concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, which trap more heat and result in an additional warming of our planet.
Summer days are longer because the tilt of the Earth’s axis is more direct toward the sun. The longest day of the year is the summer solstice, when the sun is directly over the Tropic of Cancer. In the Northern Hemisphere, this occurs around June 21. The shortest day of the year is the winter solstice, when the sun is directly over the Tropic of Capricorn. In the Northern Hemisphere, this occurs around December 21.
The Earth’s orbit around the sun is not perfectly circular. It’s actually elliptical, or oval-shaped. This means that sometimes the Earth is closer to the sun than at other times. When it’s closer, we get more sunlight and it’s warmer. This is called perihelion and it happens around January 3. When the Earth is farthest from the sun, we get less sunlight and it’s colder. This is called aphelion and it happens around July 4.
The Earth’s tilt also affects how much sunlight we get. The Earth’s axis is tilted at an angle of about 23.5 degrees. This tilt stays the same over the course of a year. But it causes big changes in the amount of sunlight we get throughout the year.
In the Northern Hemisphere, when the Earth’s tilt is pointing away from the sun, we have winter. In winter, the days are shorter and the nights are longer because we’re getting less direct sunlight.