Difference between weather and climate

Difference between weather and climate

If you think the terms weather and climate mean the same thing, perhaps you need to delve deep into these terms to understand them better in the right context. These two terms are closely related. However, weather and climate are not the same. Climate can be explained as what you might expect and weather is what happens actually.

What is weather?

Weather is the blend of events that happen day after day in the earth’s atmosphere called the troposphere. It is the lowest strata of the atmosphere touching the earth’s surface. Though there is only one atmosphere around the earth, the weather is not the same all around the globe. Weather is actually different in different parts of the world. It can be seen changing within minutes and hours. You can notice the weather changing within days and weeks. A number of factors can work on the weather to change it including the pressure of the air, temperature, wind speed, humidity, direction and many other things. Several factors determine how the weather is like at a given place at a particular time.

What is climate?

While weather can refer to the short term changes happening in the atmosphere, climate refers to the weather over a long time in a given area. The climate can differ over different regions. To tell about the climate of a place, we need to say how the temperature typically changes in the place during different seasons, the nature of wind, the amount of precipitation and the snowfall during different times of the year as per the general observation and popular belief. When the scientists talk about the climate of a particular place, they will usually take an average of the various climatic factors over a long time (in most cases over a 30 year period). The various factors that can be considered in this regard are rainfall, snowfall, humidity, sunshine, wind, temperature and other conditions.

What the climate studies tell us?


When we look at the climate normal, we can ascertain if the summers are hot or humid in the area. You can assume if the winters can be cold or snowy in the given place. You can also know when to expect the warmest and the coldest days of the year. To tell in a nutshell, the climate studies of a particular place tells you what to expect. However, climate studies will never be able to tell you how the weather will be on a given day in the area.

What weather and climate tell us?

While weather tells you what to wear on a given day, climate lets you decide what to store in your closet to make your life convenient in the given area.

Weather and climate studies

Weather is measured by different agencies in different parts of the globe all through the year. While some weather observations are recorded hourly, some are done once a day. Over a period of time, the weather readings are consolidated to get the long-time average conditions. This interpretation will let us understand the climate of a given place.