File:Temperature versus Latitude.png

From Global Warming Art


Map of annually-average near-surface air temperatures.
Change in temperature as a function of surface elevation.

This plot shows the variation in surface temperature as a function of latitude, after removing the effects of varying surface elevation. Also indicated are the principle geographical climate zones: tropics, temperate, and polar.

As indicated, the tropical region has little variation in temperature. This corresponds to the relatively small variation in annually average sunlight received in these regions where the latitude change is less than the tilt of the Earth's axis. Farther from the equator, temperature falls off by approximately 1 °C for every 145 km traveled North-South (1 °F per 50 miles), as indicated by the red line.

This rate of change suggests the distance that mid-latitude ecological zones are likely to shift as a result of global warming. For examples, a 3 °C temperature change might be expected to produce a 435 km shift in the borders of ecological zones (without considering any accompanying changes in precipitation).

This figure was created from analysis of the map at right. Gray regions indicate the first and second standard deviations.


This image was created by Robert A. Rohde for Global Warming Art.

Global Warming Art License

This image is an original work created for Global Warming Art by Robert A. Rohde.

It is intended to be widely used, but the terms of use vary depending on the application.
Please select the category below that best matches your intended use.

It is also requested, but not required, that authors send Global Warming Art a copy of any significant publications that include the use of this image. Those interested in commercial and/or higher quality reproduction may also wish to refer to the information for professional republishers.

There are no pages that link to this file.

File history

Click on a date/time to view the file as it appeared at that time.

current02:07, 26 November 2007Thumbnail for version as of 02:07, 26 November 2007800×788 (37 KB)Robert A. Rohde (Talk | contribs)