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The Challenge of the Atmosphere - source based - Describe the weather situation (5)

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Introduction

The Challenge of the Atmosphere 1. Study Resource 1 a. Describe the weather situation (5) The diagram shows that there is a high-pressure system affecting the UK. The point of highest pressure is found in the North Sea southwest of Norway. The pressure in this region is between 1036 to 1040 Mb and as you move from this point the pressure gradient reduces gradually to 1024 with approximately 150miles between each. In the North of Scotland temperatures are between 18 and 15 degrees Celsius experiencing a generally southerly wind. There is also mist on the northern coast and stretches about 270 miles down the eastern coast reaching the Humber. As you move south down the island temperatures begin to increase with temperatures around London at 27 degrees Celsius. Wind direction begins to change in France moving in a more easterly direction. b. Explain the weather situation (10) The direction of the wind in the north of Scotland gives a reason for the temperatures and mist. Cold air from the arctic and polar regions blows over the sea, which brings air that has not only been made colder by the low temperatures of the Atlantic Ocean, but will also contain moisture that has been picked up on the way. Hence, the moisture content in the air will bring mist and the cold air from the ocean will bring the temperatures. The temperatures in the south are warmer e.g. 27 degrees Celsius due to the fact that this air has come from the tropics where the air is much warmer. It contains little moisture because the air is travelling over land, hence there is little water is travels over. ...read more.

Middle

Flooding is a common occurrence during wet monsoons that affect the environment, and people socially and economically. Flooding in Bangladesh for example has claimed the lives of hundreds of thousands and therefore has the potential to do so in West Africa. Flooding can destroy habitats of animals and settlements of people having negative social and environmental affects. The water also enables further the spread of disease as sewerage systems are over run by water and therefore cannot filter that is harmful leading to unsanitary conditions in the region. Crops are also destroyed resulting in a loss of income for farmers, which is an economic impact and also socially affects the region because there is a reduced supply of food resulting in famine. The environment is also affected by wet monsoon. Plants have adapted by growing leaves that channel water from their surface so their pours are not blocked. Some have grown deep roots so that heavy floods do not wash them and also thick trunks to increase this resilience and also to store water during the dryer months. Talking about dryer months, the dry monsoon also negatively affects the people. Although, the wet monsoon can bring many negatives it brings an important source of water to the region for domestic and agricultural use. If the precipitation level is low then less crops are able to be grown and less water is available to be drunk resulting in negative social and economic impacts. The high intensity of sunlight and heat also results in land becoming impermeable and therefore, difficult to irrigate or farm resulting in reduced space for farmers to grow crops resulting in a negative economic impact. ...read more.

Conclusion

However, this is not a permanent solution, as many other regions will not be protected. Changes in climate will also result from global warming. It is predicted that England's climate will become more of a Mediterranean like environment. This will result in new crops being able to be grown, which is economically beneficial to the country. However, a reduction in precipitation is also a likely result and therefore, this might affect the capacity of crops that can be produced, which should be addressed. Warmer sea temperatures off the coasts could also result in the temperatures being more sustainable for fish that prefer warmer environments and therefore, enable the British industry to expand. However, it could also result as a disadvantage because deeper waters mean fish are able to live deeper making fishing harder and therefore, could actually cause a reduction in the available supply of fish, which would be an economic disadvantage. The changes in the British climate will also bring an increase in the severity and degree of weather. Storms, floods, droughts are all likely consequences of global warming. Weather will become unpredictable and possibly dangerous to the population, economy and environment. El Nino is becoming more frequent, which has been known to effect completely obscure places nowhere near Australasia or South America e.g. the Rocky Mountains in North America exprienced sever depletion of snow in 1992, as a result of El Nino. Therefore, it will be difficult to predict what the likely consequences will be for the British isles. In Conclusion, there is a mixture of possible consequences for the UK. Whether they be beneficial or detrimental to the country, the government must consider the consequences in order to be fully prepared for the affects of global warming. GEORGE RYAN ...read more.

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