Energy Excursions

Temperate Climate Types of Texas

Temperate climates occur in areas in middle latitudes, characterized by large temperature ranges and distinct seasonal weather patterns. According to the Köppen climate classification system, temperate climates have the coldest month averaging 27-64ºF/ 3-18ºC.1Wikimedia Foundation. (2021, June 16). Köppen climate classification. Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/K%C3%B6ppen_climate_classification. In Texas alone, there are four distinct climate types that fall under the general “Temperate climate classification,” including:

  1. Humid subtropical (Cfa),
  2. Oceanic (Cfb),
  3. Hot-summer mediterranean (Csa), and
  4. Warm-summer mediterranean (Csb).

See below for details regarding these distinct climate types and comparable areas around the globe with similar climates/weather patterns. 

Humid subtropical (Cfa)

Humid subtropical climate types are generally located in warmer areas with temperate climates, particularly within southeastern portions of continents, along the coast. These regions are characterized by humid summers with high temperatures, and mild winters.2Wikimedia Foundation. (2021, June 24). Humid subtropical climate. Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Humid_subtropical_climate. 

Identifying Characteristics for Humid Subtropical Climates3Wikimedia Foundation. (2021, June 24). Humid subtropical climate. Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Humid_subtropical_climate.

Climate Group  C Temperate 
Precipitation Pattern  f Relatively constant precipitation 
Average Summer Temperatures  a Average summer temperatures meet/exceed 72°F/ 22°C in the hottest month

Other areas around the world that encompass humid subtropical climates (Cfa)  include the southeastern United States, parts of Central America, central South America, Sub-Saharan Africa, parts of Asia, and eastern Australia. Much of the humid subtropical areas around the world lie within the southeastern portion of continents.4Wikimedia Foundation. (2021, June 24). Humid subtropical climate. Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Humid_subtropical_climate. 

Oceanic (Cfb)

Oceanic climate types, also referred to as “marine” climates, are characterized by mild summers and cool winters, with narrow temperature ranges, usually in temperate and subtropical areas.5Wikimedia Foundation. (2021, June 24). Oceanic climate. Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oceanic_climate. You will note on the map below that there is very little land area in Texas that falls into Cfb. These areas represent the highest elevations in Texas (Guadalupe Mountains, highest peak 8,751ft/ 2,667m, and Davis Mountains, highest peak 2,555m/ 8,383ft).

Identifying Characteristics for Oceanic Climates6Wikimedia Foundation. (2021, June 24). Oceanic climate. Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oceanic_climate.

Climate Group  C Temperate 
Precipitation Pattern  f Relatively constant precipitation 
Average Summer Temperatures  b Average summer temperatures do not exceed 72°F/ 22°C in the hottest month

Other areas around the world that encompass oceanic climates (Cfb) include portions of southeastern Australia, New Zealand, northwestern North America, South America, Sub-Saharan Africa, and Europe as shown in this map.7Wikimedia Foundation. (2021, June 24). Oceanic climate. Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oceanic_climate. 

 

Mediterranean:  Hot-summer (Csa) and Warm-summer (Csb)

Mediterranean climate types incorporate two distinct “sub types,” related to their differing summer temperatures. Hot-summer Mediterranean climate types (Csa) are characterized by their dry, hot summers with average temperatures in the hottest month above 72°F/ 22°C, as well as their rainy and cool winters. Warm-summer Mediterranean climate types (Csb), also referred to as “cool-summer,” are similar but with average temperatures in the hottest month below 72°F/ 22°C. Both of these Mediterranean climate types occur near each other, generally in western portions of the continent, along the coast. A good example of the juxtaposition of the two distinct Mediterranean climate types, warm-summer and hot-summer, can be found in Portugal.8Wikimedia Foundation. (2021, June 26). Mediterranean climate. Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mediterranean_climate 

Identifying Characteristics for Hot-Summer Mediterranean Climates9Wikimedia Foundation. (2021, June 26). Mediterranean climate. Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mediterranean_climate

Climate Group  C Temperate 
Precipitation Pattern  f Low to relatively no summer precipitation (dry)  
Average Summer Temperatures  a Average summer temperatures meet/exceed 72°F/ 22°C in the hottest month

Identifying Characteristics for Warm-Summer Mediterranean Climates10Wikimedia Foundation. (2021, June 26). Mediterranean climate. Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mediterranean_climate

Climate Group  C Temperate 
Precipitation Pattern  f Low to relatively no summer precipitation (dry)  
Average Summer Temperatures  b Average summer temperatures exceed 72°F/ 22°C in the hottest month

Other areas around the world that encompass Mediterranean climates (Csa and Csb) include portions of the western and southwestern United States, parts of South America, northern and parts of eastern Africa, southwestern and southern Australia, Asia, and the Mediterranean region of Europe as shown in this map. 

In Texas areas with a Humid subtropical (Cfa) climate, what is the typical weather pattern during the summer months?

Very dry and hot summers.

 Incorrect. 

Very humid and hot summers.

Correct. 

Temperate summers with high precipitation.

 Incorrect. 

What is the prominent characteristic for areas in Texas that have an Oceanic (Cfb) climate?

Areas in Texas with an Oceanic climate represent the highest elevations in Texas.

Correct. 

Areas in Texas with an Oceanic climate are located in Eastern Texas.

Incorrect. 

Areas in Texas with an Oceanic climate are located along the coast.

Incorrect. 

What is the difference between the two Mediterranean climate types seen in parts of Texas: Hot-summer (Csa) and Warm-summer (Csb)

Average summer temperatures for areas with Warm-summer climates do not exceed 85 degrees Fahrenheit, whereas average temperatures exceed 85 degrees in areas with Hot-summer climates.

Incorrect. 

Average summer temperatures for areas with Warm-summer climates do not exceed 72 degrees Fahrenheit, whereas average temperatures exceed 72 degrees in areas with Hot-summer climates.

Correct. 

Both Warm-summer and Hot-summer climate types have average summer temperatures that exceed 72 degrees Fahrenheit; however, Warm-summer climates have much higher rates of precipitation.

Incorrect. 

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