continental climate

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Related to continental climate: Tropical climate

continental climate

a climate characterized by hot summers, cold winters, and little rainfall, typical of the interior of a continent

Continental Climate


a climate formed when large land masses exert a dominant influence on the atmosphere; the climate in the interior of a continent.

In the temperate latitudes, a continental climate is usually characterized by a large annual range of air temperature (hot summers and cold winters) and considerable daily variations in air temperature. A continental climate differs from a marine climate in having a low mean annual temperature, low humidity, and dustier air. Cloudiness is comparatively slight in a continental climate. There is little precipitation, and the maximum precipitation usually occurs in the summer. The wind velocity is also low. The weather is more variable than in a marine climate. In a continental climate of the tropics, the annual range of air temperature is not as great as in the temperate latitudes, and more rain falls than in a marine climate. In the polar latitudes there is a large annual range of air temperature, and summers are very cold. A continental climate can also extend in a weak form to the parts of the oceans closest to the continents, if continental air masses reach them throughout the year.

A continental climate must be distinguished from a monsoonal climate, which results from the dominant influence of continental air masses in winter and oceanic air masses in summer. Gradual transitions exist between marine and continental climates. For example, the climate of Western Europe is mostly marine; the European USSR, moderately continental; Eastern Siberia, markedly continental; and the Far East, monsoonal.


continental climate

[¦känt·ən¦ent·əl ′klī·mət]
Climate characteristic of the interior of a landmass of continental size, marked by large annual, daily, and day-to-day temperature ranges, low relative humidity, and a moderate or small irregular rainfall; annual extremes of temperature occur soon after the solstices.
References in periodicals archive ?
3], as well as certain meteorological conditions had impact on ED visits of patients with various respiratory diseases in our area with a humid continental climate.
Wines made here benefit from the Mediterranean influence, which provides a transitional continental climate that's mild and warm.
This research considers the Central Black Earth region (CBER), located in the area of moderate continental climate.
The semi-isolated Black Sea is highly sensitive to climate driven environmental changes, and the underlying sediments represent high-resolution archives of past continental climate and concurrent hydrologic changes in the basin.
It's a continental climate, so it stays nice and dry for a long time.
The agricultural regions of mainland China are located inland, in the continental climate of the north and northwest.
We would like to present an analysis of such a relationship in the hospital on the border of the European Union and also on the border of the continental climate.
The soil of granite and clay limestone with its effective drainage, the continental climate, ripeness of grapes and French barrels have produced classy reds - merlot, cabernet sauvignon, syrah - and fine whites; chardonnay, semillon, sauvignon blanc, traminer.
Our weather is influenced by global trends and, being an island situated at the meeting of a maritime and continental climate, is the most difficult to forecast.
But if there is one unifying factor it is that these middle European wine-producing regions all share a continental climate, namely cold winters, hot summers and a relatively dry climate.
Romania has a temperate continental climate with cold winters and hot summers.

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