Semi-arid climate

A semi-arid climate or steppe climate is the climate of a region that receives precipitation below potential evapotranspiration, but not as low as a desert climate. There are different kinds of semi-arid climates, depending on variables such as temperature, and they give rise to different biomes.

Regions with semi-arid climates

Defining attributes of semi-arid climates

A more precise definition is given by the Köppen climate classification, which treats steppe climates (BSk and BSh) as intermediates between desert climates (BW) and humid climates in ecological characteristics and agricultural potential. Semi-arid climates tend to support short or scrubby vegetation and are usually dominated by either grasses or shrubs.

To determine if a location has a semi-arid climate, the precipitation threshold must first be determined. Finding the precipitation threshold (in millimeters) involves first multiplying the average annual temperature in °C by 20, then adding 280 if 70% or more of the total precipitation is in the high-sun half of the year (April through September in the Northern temperate zone, or October through March in the Southern), or 140 if 30%–70% of the total precipitation is received during the applicable period, or 0 if less than 30% of the total precipitation is so received. If the area's annual precipitation is less than the threshold but more than half the threshold, it is classified as a BS (steppe climate).[1]

Furthermore, to delineate "hot semi-arid climates" from "cold semi-arid climates", there are three widely used isotherms: Either a mean annual temperature of 18°C, or a mean temperature of 0°C or −3°C in the coldest month, so that a location with a "BS" type climate with the appropriate temperature above whichever isotherm is being used is classified as "hot semi-arid" (BSh), and a location with the appropriate temperature below the given isotherm is classified as "cold semi-arid" (BSk).

Other Languages
العربية: مناخ شبه قاحل
azərbaycanca: Yarımsəhra
eesti: Poolkõrb
føroyskt: Steppuveðurlag
한국어: 스텝 기후
hrvatski: Stepska klima
italiano: Clima steppico
қазақша: Шөлейт
lietuvių: Pusdykumė
македонски: Степска клима
Bahasa Melayu: Iklim separuh gersang
Nederlands: Steppeklimaat
norsk nynorsk: Steppeklima
português: Clima semiárido
română: Climat semiarid
Soomaaliga: Lamadegaan la mood
српски / srpski: Степска клима
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Polupustinjska klima