There are several factors that bear the reason behind temperature variation in the atmosphere. The four natural factors which cause temperature fluctuation are latitude, altitude, distance from the sea, and ocean currents.
Latitude is an important factor in distinguishing the variation of temperature from place to place. They are imaginary lines drawn to specify the geographic coordinates from the south-north position of a position on the Earth’s surface. The Earth rotates around its axis and revolves in an elliptical order around the sun. When the latitude increases, the distance between the sun also increases cause a gradual decrease in temperature.
The Equator lies nearest to the sun, therefore having the highest temperature at all times. On the other hand, the poles lie on the furthest end and get the slanting rays of the sun therefore resulting in very low temperatures. This is the reason why they have dominant cold weather throughout the year.
The measurement of vertical height from the mean sea level is called the altitude—temperature changes in different altitudes. In lower altitude, there is a thick mass of air which absorbs comparatively more heat than higher altitude with a thinner layer of air. Therefore, an indirectly proportionate relation can be stated between altitude and temperature, as higher altitude makes the temperature drop and lower altitude results in the increase of temperature. The temperature decreases one-degree centigrade when the altitude increases by 160m to 165m.
This relation gets alternated with seasons as during summer the earth lies near the sun, so the perpendicular sun rays fall over the land directly. The water of the sea or ocean gets heated fast. It cools down slower in comparison to land as the distance from the water bodies increases the temperature increases as well; therefore, sharing a direct correlation between distance from the sea and temperature. In the summer season with the direct rays of the sun, the water gets evaporated, causing higher rainfall in the regions closer to the sea or ocean.
In the winter season, the earth lies a little farther from the sun, causing slanting rays to fall on the surface resulting in lowering the temperature. So, when the distance from the sea or ocean increases, the temperature gradually decreases; therefore, sharing a completely different equation from the previous one.
In this case, the distance from the sea or ocean is indirectly proportionate to the distance. Due to slanting rays, temperature drops and lesser evaporation takes place causing a very small amount of rainfall, in turn causing shorter days in winter than in summer as rainfall acts as a crucial criterion in this scenario.
Oceanic current is the continuous movement of the waters generated by a number of forces acting simultaneously upon the water, including wind, Coriolis effect, breaking waves, cabbeling, temperature, and salinity. The primary factor responsible for the movement of oceanic waters is the sea breeze and temperature. The equatorial region is very hot, so the air coming from that region is warm, whereas the air coming from the polar region is cold. So, they are where there is warm current, a warm climate is found there in the same way where there is cold current, we find a cold climate.
About the Author: Soumi Lahiri, a law student who thrives to make this world a better place not only for humans but also for all the co-existing organisms on earth.