Thursday, February 20, 2014

Temperature Controls in the city of Nuuk in Greenland

This blog post will examine the climate and weather of the capital city of Greenland, Nuuk.  A great deal of this post will deal with how certain temperature controls, including but not limited to, altitude and geographic position affect the weather and climate in which Greenland is characterized by.  Lastly this blog will dive into the effects climate change has on the future weather and climate conditions of Greenland and what controls will ultimately be affected.

The capital city of Greenland is Nuuk.  It is located on the southwestern coast of Greenland; to be precise its latitude and longitude coordinates are 64.1750° N, 51.7389° W.  Other characteristics of Nuuk are that, its warmest time of the year is during the month of July with an average temperature of 45 degrees Fahrenheit.  Its coldest time of the year is during the month of February with an average temperature of 16 degrees Fahrenheit; the annual range of temperature for Nuuk is 29 degrees Fahrenheit.

A temperature control that affects Nuuk is geographic position, specifically by windward gusts.  This moderates the land temperature so there isn't a big fluctuation throughout the seasons.  It allows for cool summers and moderate winters.  However this is not necessarily the case since Greenland is located at high latitudes this causes the average temperature to be lower than it would if it was located at lower latitudes with the same windward gusts.  A temperature control that doesn’t affect Nuuk is altitude.  The city of Nuuk is located by the coast and roughly a little above 200 ft above sea level so the temperature is often regulated due to the wind or ocean currents rather than to height. 

Based on the physical characteristics of Greenland and the consistent increase in the world’s average temperature, it’s apparent that the future climate of Greenland will have dire consequences. It is very possible that in the future due to an increase in the world’s average temperature, the ice sheets, that are characteristics of Greenland, will melt.  This will cause an increase in the sea level and as a result coastal areas will become submerged, decreasing the average surface area of the island as a whole.  Apart from that, the increase in temperature will cause a disproportionate distribution of the seasons, with an increase in summer months.  As a result of the increase in the summer period, the average temperature of the island will rise, giving way to more decrease in ice sheets.

It is apparent that Greenland’s climate and temperature are affected differently by different temperature controls.  The capital city, Nuuk, as discussed is mainly affected by geographic position but not nearly as much as by altitude.  In the future, if global temperatures continue to warm, cities like Nuuk, that lie on the coast, could cease to exist as ice sheets continue to melt and increase the ocean levels.

1 comment:

  1. This is a very interesting post about the climate of Nuuk, Greenland. It's evident that Nuuk's geographic position in the higher latitudes is one of the major factors on its relative cold climate. Also, sea level rise seems to be of increasing concern to the entire coastal region of your country. In contrast to Greenland, the country I've been assigned is India. The climate there varies from warm and tropical to cool and very dry. The major contributing factor to weather for India is the seasonal monsoon winds.