Prepare Prelims-2017-Day-40-World Geography

China Type Climate

  • Great land mass of Asiatic interior & Pacific Ocean induces great pressure changes between summers & winters, giving rise to temperate monsoonal type of climate.
  • In summers, intense heating of Asiatic interior sets up a region of low pressure in summer & tropical pacific air stream is drawn in as the rain bearing South-East Monsoon
  • This results in heavy precipitation in China, approx. 100 cm of rainfall per annum, decreasing landwards with summer maximum in June & July
  • In winters, a steep pressure gradient is set up between the cold interiors of Mongolia & Siberia, & a warmer Pacific coastland;
  • This results in outward flow of continental polar air as the North West Monsoon, bitterly cold & very dry, causing only a little rain but considerate snow as the cold winds are warmed & moistened.
  • Other characteristic features of China type of climate is great annual temperature range & occurrence of typhoons (intense tropical cyclones) that originate in Pacific Ocean, & move westward to the coastlands, bordering South China Sea.

Gulf Type Climate

  • Gulf-Atlantic regions of the US experience a type of climate similar to that of central china except the monsoonal characteristics are less well established.
  • There is no complete reversal of winds & the pressure gradient between mainland America & Atlantic Ocean is less marked.
  • Annual rainfall is heavy with annual average 100 – 150 cm
  • No distinct dry period with a tendency towards summer maximum, brought by the on shore trade winds which swings landward from the Atlantic.
  • The amount of rain is increased by frequent thunderstorms in summers & hurricanes by Sep & October, with some places showing a secondary maximum in winters.
  • Annual range of temperature is much smaller comparative to china type of climate
  • Sometimes violent tornedoes occur, due to intense heating of the land.

Natal Type Climate

  • The narrowness of the continents & the dominance of maritime influence eliminate the monsoonal elements, which characterize the corresponding climates of N- Hemisphere.
  • The south east trade winds bring about a more even distribution of rainfall throughout the year with mean annual of approx. 100 – 150 cm.
  • The passage of depressions along the southern edges of warm temperate eastern margins results in slight autumn-winter maximum i.e. from March – July.

Annual temperature range is small without any really cold month; however southern continents have violent local storms viz. Southerly buster (a violent cold wind) in South wales, corresponding cold wind in Argentina & Uruguay is Pampero & Berg (a hot, dry wind) in south east Africa.

Natural Vegetation

  • The eastern margin of the warm temperate latitudes has a much heavier rainfall than either the western margin or the continental interiors & thus has luxuriant vegetation.
  • The lowlands carry both evergreen broad leave forests & deciduous trees, quite similar to those of the tropical monsoon forests.
  • On the highlands, are various species of conifers such as pines & cypresses, which are important soft woods
  • As the perennial plant growth is not checked by either a dry season as in Mediterranean, or a cold season as in cool temperate regions, conditions are well suited to a rich variety of plant life, including grass, ferns, lianas, bamboos, palms & forests, with a well distributed rainfall over the year.
  • Warm temperate eastern margins are home of a number of valuable timber & economic viable species.


  • Australia (Exporter)

Parana Pine, Quebracho (Axebreaker)

  • SE Brazil, E Paraguay, N Argentina

Leaves of Yerba Mate Trees

  • Paraguay Tea

Chestnuts, Ironwoods & Blackwoods

  • Highlands of Natal

Palm trees

  • Coastal areas of Natal

Oak, Camphor, Camelia & Magnolia

  • China & Southern Japan

Economic Development

The warm temperate eastern margins are the most productive parts of middle latitudes, due to adequate rainfall, no prolong drought with the cold season warm enough for most of the crops to survive; though summer is the busiest part of farming year


  • Rice, Tea & Mulberries (for feeding silk worms for sericulture)

Gulf (N America)

  • Corn, Cotton, Tobacco

Natal (S America)

  • Cane sugar, Cotton & Tobacco

South America

  • Coffee, Maize, Pines, Paraguay Tea, Wheat, Cattle & Sheep

South Wales & Victoria

  • Dairying (Milk, Butter, Cheese), Cotton, Cane Sugar, Maize
  • Despite being world’s greatest rice growing area, China do not export & even imports food grains; & grows rice & tea for subsistence purpose only due to its intense population.


  • Apart from its ease of cultivation, wrt soil, climate & labour requirements, corns’ most outstanding feature is its prolific yield
  • It gives almost twice as much food per acre as wheat or other cereals
  • USA accounts for more than 50 % of world’s corn production but exports only 3%
  • Most of the corn in USA is used in fattening animals as they allow them to hog the corn down in the fields itself
  • This is done to get more monetary gain as fattened animals are sold to the meat plants


  • Deep South-Fibre is vital for economic well being
  • The gulf type of climate is the best for cotton growing
  • Cotton likes ample rain and an annual precipitation of around 40 inches is essential
  • Adequate moisture supply coming from frequent light showers with bright sunshine between them gives the highest yield.
  • Commercial Cultivation: Most favorable areas-Mississppi flood plains, the clayey atlantic coastlands of Georgia and south califorinia, black prairies of texas and red prairies of Oklahoma.
  • Best Cotton-Comes from the maritime districts where the sea breezes and the warming effect of the ocean are most strongly felt.
  • The sea island cotton grown in the islands off the coast of Georgia and south Carolina is long stapled and is the best in the world.
  • Further inland, the staples are shorter


  • Associated with gulf type of climate
  • Native crop of America
  • There is no so universally known as the Virginia tobacco
  • The humid atmosphere, the warmth and the well drained soils of the gulf states, enable tobacco to be successfully cultivated in many of the eastern states of USA e.g. Virginia, Maryland, Georgia, North and South Carolina, Kentucky and Tennessee.

Crop Cultivation in the eastern margins of the southern hemisphere

  • Natal Type of Climate
  • The warm moist summers and frost free winters not only support many crops but also animals
  • Cane sugar is the dominant crop followed by cotton and tobacco
  • Maize is extensively cultivated for use both as mealie an important food item for Africans and silage, an animal fodder for cattle rearing.

British Type Climate

  • The mean annual temperatures are usually between 5*C in winters to 15*C in summers thus have a short annual temperature range.
  • Summers are infact never very warm and temperature above 20*C is rare; winters are abnormally mild & no station record a mean temp. of below freezing point.
  • Heat waves are a welcome feature in such cool temperate climate.
  • Above climatic features especially warming effect mentioned are the attributes to the moderating effects of the North Atlantic drifts & prevalence of southern westerlies.
  • Sometimes, unsual cold spells caused by the invasion of cold polar continental air from the interiors, may hit the western margins for the number of weeks.
  • Night frost does occur & snow falls in winters.
  • Hence the climate of this maritime region as a whole may be described as equable with moderately warm summers & fairly mild winters.
  • British type of climate is even more equable in S – Hemisphere, due to lack of continental mass (Tasmania, New Zealand & Southern Chile) & more presence of oceanic water, which means extreme of temperature are not likely at all, hence annual temperature range is further reduced here.
  • Amount of rainfall decreases from western margin of the continents eastward,
  • Relief can also make great differences in annual rainfall, hence it is difficult to say how much annual rainfall is typical for British type of climate
  • Though if confined to lowlands, it receives 50 – 100 cm of mean annual rainfall. British type of climate has adequate rainfall throughout the year with a tendency towards slight winter or autumn maximum from cyclonic sources.

Natural Vegetation of British Type Climate

  • The natural vegetation of this climatic type is deciduous forests that shed their leaves in the cold season, to protect themselves against winter snow & frost.
  • Some of the common species which provide hardwoods from these deciduous forests are Oak, Elms, Birch, Neech, Poplar & Hornbeam; along with certain other species such as chestnut, maple & lime.
  • Unlike the equatorial forests, the deciduous trees occur in pure strands & have greater lumbering value from the commercial point of view; & are excellent for fuel, furniture & industrial purposes.
  • The open nature of the forests with sparse undergrowth is highly useful in logging operations as easy penetration means much cost can be saved in movement of the logs.
  • Higher up the mountains in Scavandian highlands, Rockies and Southern Alps of New Zealand, deciduous trees are generally replaced by conifers which can survive a higher altitude, a lower temperature & poorer soils.

Agricultural Developments of British Type Climate

  • N-W Europe is one of the crowded parts of the world
  • Hence despite growing a large number of cereals, that too with highest yield / acre, it remains the net importer of food crops
  • wheat from all over the wheat-lands across the globe.

Some of the agricultural developments of this type of climatic regions are –

Market Gardening
  • Though practised all over the world, where there is large urban population but is highly specialized in N-W Europe (France, Belgium, Britain, West Germany & Denmark).
  • Farms are usually small and located near large cities or industrial areas.
  • Soils are carefully maintained at a high degree of fertility & very selective fertilizers are applied to the crops.
  • Farming is carried out intensively, aiming at high yield & maximum cash returns.
  • Produces, such as potatoes, cauliflowers, lettuces, cabbages, tomatoes, onion, peas & fruits are conveyed by high speed conveyances such as trucks or vans, hence also called as truck farming in US.
  • Bulbs & flowers (esp. tulips) from Netherlands, and eggs, bacon & other dairy products from Denmark are sent to most of the industrialized areas of Europe.
  • In Australia, high speed boats ply across Bass Strait daily from Tasmania to rush vegetables, tomatoes, apples & beans to most parts of Australian mainland.
Mixed Farming
  • Throughout Britain & N-W Europe, farmers practise both arable farming (cultivation of crops on ploughed lands) & pastoral farming (keeping animals on grass meadows).
  • Crops may be raised for cash sales or as fodder for cattle & sheep.
  • Among the cereals, wheat is most extensively grown, almost entirely for home consumption.
  • The next important cereal raised in mixed farm is Barley raised in drier areas, as a fodder crop, with better quality barley sold to breweries for making beers or distilling whisky.
  • Denmark, Australia & New Zealand excels in dairy products; & are one of the world’s greatest exporters.
  • Amongst food crops, potatoes feature prominently as a staple food crop in supplementing wheat or bread.
  • Today almost, 2/3rdof world’s annual production of potatoes comes from Europe, of which Poland, Germany, France and Britain are major producers.
  • Besides its principle use as a substitute for bread, it also serves as animal fodder & a source of industrial alcohol.

Sheep Rearing:

  • Well Developed in british type climate
  • Home of some best known sheep breeds. E.g- Leicesters, Lincolns, South downs
  • Principal areas-Foot hills, well drained uplands, chalk, limestone, scarplands, and the light sandycoasts
  • In the southern hemisphere sheep rearing is the chief occupation of New Zealand-Greatest Concentration-Canterbury Plain

Other agricultural activities:

  • Amongst the food crops, potatoes feature prominently in the domestic economy of the cool, temperate regions
  • It is the staple food in supplementing wheat or bread for millions of people.
  • Normally cooler and more northerly latitude is preferred because the crop will be less prone to the attack of blight (virus disease that is particularly infectious in warm and humid countries)
  • 2/3 rd of the world’s annual production of potatoes comes from Europe of which Poland, Germany, France, and UK are the major producers.
  • Beet Sugar-Found almost in north western Europe and parts of USA.


Siberian Climate

  • Siberian type climate is typified by bitterly cold winters of long duration & cool brief summer; lies across 60* N of equator.
  • Spring & autumn are merely brief transitional periods
  • Annual range of temperature is quite high due to extremes of temperature observed in this type of climate, as temp. well below freezing point in winters & approx. 15* in summers.
  • With low temperatures in cold season, heavy snowfall can be expected, with frost occurring as early as August
  • By September, most of the lakes & ponds are icebound; with the number of days in which the rivers are frozen, increases from south to north.


  • The interiors of Eurasian continent are so remote from maritime influence that annual precipitation cannot be high.
  • Generally, a total of 40 – 60 cm of rainfall is typified in this sub-arctic type of climate.
  • Rainfall is quite well distributed throughout the year, with a summer maximum from the convectional rain, when the continental interiors are greatly heated approx. 20* C.

The total precipitation of Siberian climate is marked by many factors viz. altitude, latitude, proximity to the poles, amount of exposure to influences by westerlies (on western part of the continent), temperate monsoon (on eastern part of the continent) & penetration of cyclones.


  • Snow falls nearly everywhere in USSR in long, cold winter, but the amount varies from place to place; with heaviest in northern tundra & Siberian taiga.
  • Permanent snowfields like of Alps or the Himalayas are absent, because any accumulation of snow is melted with the return of spring & the warm summer.
  • Frozen rivers are thawed, causing a rise in the water level, sometimes resulting in extensive floods.
  • Being a poor conductor of heat, the presence of thick mantle of snow protects the soil of ground from severe cold above, which may be approx. 5* – 10* C colder.
  • It also provides moisture for the vegetation when the snow melts in spring.

Natural Vegetation

  • No other trees are as well adapted as the conifers, to withstand such a severe inhospitable environment as Siberian type of climate.
  • Coniferous belts of Eurasia & North America are the richest sources of softwood; Used in construction, furniture, matches, paper & pulp, rayon & other chemical products.
  • The world’s greatest softwood producers are USSR, USA, Canada & Fenoscandian countries (Finland, Sweden & Norway).
  • USA is the leading producer in the production of wood pulp & Canada in newsprint, accounting for almost half of the world’s production.

Coniferous Evergreen forests

  • Coniferous forests are more uniform in height, & grow straight & tall upto a height of 100 feet approx.
  • There are four major groups of conifers i.e. Fir, Pine, Spruces & Larch.
  • Coniferous trees grow up instead of out and are of a triangular shape to prevent snow accumulation & also offers little grip to the winds.
  • There is no annual replacement of new leaves as in deciduous trees.
  • The same leaf remains on the tree for as long as 5 years.
  • By keeping their leaves, conifers can quickly begin food production when the warm weather returns in the spring.
  • The needles have a waxy coating that helps reduce moisture loss in cold weather.
  • The narrow needles offer less surface area to the drying winds of winter.
  • Food is stored in trunks, & bark is thick to protect the trees from excessive cold.
  • Conifers are conical in shape. It also offers little grip to the winds.
  • Soils of coniferous forests are poor, podzolized, excessively leached & very acidic.
  • Evergreen leaves provide little leaf fall for humus formation & the rate of decomposition of the leathery needles in a region of such a low temperature is slow.
  • Absence of direct sunlight & short duration of summers are deterrent to the growth of much undergrowth.
  • Coniferous forests are also found in other climatic regions wherever altitude reduces the temperature.
  • The conifers are in fact the dominant trees of the mountainous districts in both the temperature and tropical countries.

Economic Development

  • Conifers are limited in species with pine, spruce & fir predominant in northern forests, while larch predominant in warmer south.
  • They occur in homogeneous groups, not mixed as tropical forests, which saves cost & time, and enhances the commercial value of felled timber.
  • Coniferous forests are felled & transported to the saw mills for the extraction of temperate soft woods & forms the basis of lumbering industry; & is used for varieties of purposes viz.
  • Paper & Pulp industry in which USA & Canada are leading exporters
  • Industrial raw materials used for various industrial products such as matches, which form a major export item in Sweden;
  • For making plywood, hardboards, furniture, toys, planks & packing cases
  • For making many chemical processed articles such as rayon turpentine, paints, dyes, wood alcohol, disinfectants & cosmetics.
  • Trapping of fur bearing animals is practised on large scale for extracting fur, which fetches high price.
  • Only in more sheltered valleys & land bordering the steppes are some cereals (barley, oats, rye) & root crops (potatoes) are raised for local needs.
  • Lumbering is probably the most important occupation of the Siberian type of climate.
  • Saw Milling-Swan Timber, Plywood, planks, hardwood.
  • Timber is pulped by both chemical and mechanical means to make wood pulp (Raw Material for paper making)
  • The conifers are limited in species. Pine, spruce, and fir are the most important in the northern forests.
  • Larch is more predominant in the warmer south. Occupy in homogenous groups and not mixed as in the tropical forests.
  • In northerly latitudes agriculture is almost impossible and Lumbering replaces farming in the continental interiors.
  • Over the greater part of Siberia all the rivers drain polewards into Artic Ocean which is frozen for three quarters of the year.

Laurentian Climate

  • The Laurentian type of climate has cold, dry winters & warm, wet simmers.
  • Winter temp. may be well below freezing point & snow falls to quite a depth.
  • Summers are warm as the tropics approx. 25* C & if were not for the cooling effects of the off shore cold currents from arctic, the summers may even be hotter.
  • Though, rain falls throughout the year (except interiors of china), there is distinct summer maximum from the easterly winds from the oceans
  • The annual precipitation is approx. 75 -150 cm with 2/3rd of it falling in summers.

The North American Region:

  • Remarkable characteristic of uniformity in precipitation with a slight late summer maximum i.e. July and August.
  • This uniformity of precipitation is largely due to the Atlantic influence & that of the Great lakes.
  • The warm Gulf Stream increases the moisture content of the easterly winds from the open Atlantic; & the prevailing westerlies which penetrate across the Rockies carry depressions over the Great lakes to the New England states, thus promotes wet conditions especially in winters, vital for the agricultural activities of this region.
  • Meeting of warm Gulf Stream & cold Labrador Current on the coastal areas off Newfoundland produces dense mist & fog & give rise to much precipitation.

Asiatic Region

  • In contrast, the rainfall distribution of the Asiatic region is far less uniform;
  • Winters are cold & very dry while summers are very warm & exceptionally wet.
  • Rainfall is mostly confined to five summer months with rest of the year dry, similar to the tropical monsoon conditions in India.
  • The mountainous interior of China has such pronounced continental effects that the intense heating in summers creates a region of extreme low pressure, & moisture laiden winds from the Pacific & Sea of Japan blow in as S-E monsoon; also called as cool temperate monsoon climate.
  • The climate of Japan is modified by its insularity, & also by the meeting of warm & cold ocean currents.
  • It receives adequate rainfall from both the SE monsoon in summers & NE monsoon in winters.
  • The latter is dry, cold wind from from mainland Asia, but after crossing the Sea of Japan, gathers sufficient moisture to give heavy relief rain or snow on western coast of Japan.
  • The rainfall is more evenly distributed with two maxima, one in June, the plum rain & other in September, the Typhoon rain.

Natural Vegetation

  • The predominant vegetation of this type climate is cool temperate forest.
  • Generally, the forest tend to be coniferous north of 50 degree North latitude
  • In Asiatic region (eastern Siberia & Korea), the coniferous forests are infact a continuation of great coniferous belt of Taiga.
  • South of 50 degree North latitude, the coniferous forests give way to deciduous forests with oak, beech, maple & birch, the principal trees.

Economic Development

  • Lumbering & its associated timber, paper & pulp industries are the most important economic undertaking.
  • Agriculture is less important in view of severity of winters & its long duration.
  • Potatoes thrive over large areas of the podzolized soils, while hardy cereals like oats and barley can be sown and successfully harvested before the onset of the cold winter.
  • Soya Bean-Produced in Asiatic Region.
  • The fertile Annapolis valley in Nova Scotia is the worlds most renowned region for apples.


  • The maritime influence & heavy rainfall enables some of the hardy crops to be raised for local needs such as potatoes, oats, rye & barley.
  • Fishing is the most outstanding economic activity of Laurentian climatic region especially in Newfoundland & Japan mainly due to their geographical importance.
  • Gently sloping continental shelves around the islands of Newfoundland & Japan are rich in planktons, mainly due to meeting of warm & cold ocean currents.
  • Fish feeds on minute marine organisms – planktons, which are present in abundance only in shallow waters adjacent to land masses, where sunlight can penetrate through
  • Cod-The chief fish and its oil is exported too.
  • Further inland in lakes and rivers such as the St.Lawrence and the great Lakes, fresh water fish e.g.salmon, trout , eels, and sturgeons are caught.

Fishing off Japan:

  • In the north west pacific surrounding the islands of japan is another major fishing area of the world.
  • Scarcity of meat and religious regions have popularized fish as the principal item of diet and the chief protein food.
  • One of the few countries that has taken to seaweed cultivation
  • Pearl Culture-Interesting aspect of Japanese Fishing
  • Pearl Oysters-Shell Fish and Mother of pearl
  • Japan accounts for the 6th of the worlds total annual fish caught.
  • Japan is not well endowed with natural resources for as much as 80 % of her land is classed as non-agriculture.
  • The continental shelves around the islands of japan are rich in plankton, due to the meeting of the warm Kuroshio.
  • In Hokkaido where the Laurentian type of climate is too cold for active agriculture, fishing takes 1sst place.
  • Hakodate and Kushiro are large fishing ports.
  • Lack of lowlands and pastures means few animals can be kept to supply meat.

  • Polar time of climate is found mainly north of the Arctic circle in the northern hemisphere.
  • In the southern hemisphere, the virtually uninhabited continent of Antarctica is the greatest single stretch of ice caps, always snow covered.
  • The ice caps are confined to Greenland & to the highlands of high latitude regions, where the ground is permanently snow covered.
  • The lowlands, with a few months ice free, have tundra vegetation.
  • They include the coastal strip of Greenland, the barren grounds of northern Canada and Alaska, and the Arctic seaboard of Eurasia.



  • Characterized by very low annual mean temp. with long freezing cold winter i.e Temperature well below freezing point and brief cool summers
  • Warmest month temp. seldom rises above 10 degree Celsius
  • Normally not more than four months have temp. above freezing point
  • Within the Arctic & Antarctic circles, there are weeks of continuous darkness
  • At the North Pole there are 6 months without light in winter
  • Despite the long duration of sunshine in summers, when the sun does not set, temp. remains low as sun rays are too much oblique, with much of it gets reflected by the snow & remaining used up in melting the ice
  • The ground remains solidly frozen for all but four months, inaccessible to plants with frost occurring all the time.
  • Blizzards (severe snowstorm with high winds) with a velocity of 100 miles per hour are frequent.
  • In coastal districts, where warmer water meets cold land, thick fog may develop, which lasts for days.


  • Precipitation is mainly in form of snow falling in winter
  • As it takes 10 – 12 inches of snow to make 1 inch of rain, precipitation in polar regions is generally light, not more than 12 inches in a year.
  • Convectional rainfall is generally absent because of the low rate of evaporation & lack of moisture in the cold polar air.

Tundra Vegetation

  • With a growing season of less than three months & temperature of the warmest month not exceeding 10 degree Celsius, there are no trees in Tundra.
  • Such an environment can support only the lowest form of vegetation, mosses, lichens & sedges.
  • Climatic conditions along the coastal lowlands are a little more favourable, & some hardy grass viz.reindeer moss grows, which forms the only pasturage for herbivore animals such as reindeer.
  • In the brief summer, when the snow melt & days are warmer & longer, berry bearing bushes & Arctic flowers bloom, brightening up the tundra landscape into Arctic prairies.
  • Mammals like the wolves, foxes, musk-ox, Artic hare and lemmings also live in tundra regions

Human Activities

  • Human activities of tundra are largely confined to coasts
  • People live a semi nomadic life.
  • In Greenland, Northern Canada & Alaska lives the Eskimos
  • During winter they live in igloos & portable tents of skin when they move out to hunt in summers.
  • In the Eurasian tundra live the othernomadic tribes such as:


  • Northern Finland & Scandinavia


  • Siberia (From the Ural mountains & Yenisey basin)


  • Siberia (Baikal Mountains & Lena River Basin)

Koryuks & Chuckchi

  • North East Asia
  • The Arctic region, once regarded useless, have gradually sprung up because of thediscovery of minerals such as:
  • Gold, Petroleum, Coal in Alaska, Nickel, Shale Gas in USSR, Copper in Canada, Iron Ore in Labrador (Canada), Sweden.


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