Local Motions in the Atmosphere That Affect Weather and Climate

Local motions in the atmosphere also affect the weather and climate of an area. These patterns play a large role in determining what plants and animals can live in the region. The ecosystem of any area has grown up around its climate and, if that climate is altered, every species in the ecosystem must either adapt, migrate, or die. One of the major concerns about global warming is that it will affect ecosystems, upsetting delicate balances between climate, plants, and animals. If major food chains are upset, it can have far-reaching, devastating impacts. In order to understand what effects global warming can have on local environments it is necessary to understand local atmospheric systems. This chapter discusses regional wind systems and the effect of continentality, the jet stream, and midlatitude cyclones. It presents local wind systems, such as sea-land breezes, monsoon winds, orographic uplift, lake effect, and mountain-valley breezes. Finally, it covers extreme weather events, such as tropical cyclones.

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Renewable Energy 101

Renewable Energy 101

Renewable energy is energy that is generated from sunlight, rain, tides, geothermal heat and wind. These sources are naturally and constantly replenished, which is why they are deemed as renewable. The usage of renewable energy sources is very important when considering the sustainability of the existing energy usage of the world. While there is currently an abundance of non-renewable energy sources, such as nuclear fuels, these energy sources are depleting. In addition to being a non-renewable supply, the non-renewable energy sources release emissions into the air, which has an adverse effect on the environment.

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