Sunnyvale has a Mediterrean climate. This type of climate is defined by mild, wet winters and warm to hot, dry summers. It is the rainfall pattern that makes the Mediterranean climate distinct. Very often, places with warm summers and mild winters receive large amounts of precipitation during the summer months. Summers in Mediterranean climates are distinctively dry.
The Mediterranean climate can be found in every continent except for Antarctica. In North America, the Mediterranean climate is found in central, southern California, and northern Baja California. In South America, Chile’s Central Valley is represented by this climate. In addition to Europe’s Mediterranean regions, southern Portugal, which is located on the Atlantic Ocean, has a Mediterranean climate. Africa has two Mediterranean climate zones. One ranges from Morocco’s Atlantic coast to parts of Africa’s Mediterranean regions. Another Mediterranean climate zone in Africa is in southwestern South Africa, the Western Cape. Asia’s Mediterranean climate zone is represented in Israel, Lebanon, Southern Turkey, and northwest Iran. Australia’s southwest coast has a Mediterranean climate.
Outside of the Mediterranean region, the distribution of the Mediterranean climate is somewhat sparse. This type of climate is also highly concentrated on the western coasts of continents. Very often, regions with Mediterranean climates will be located near semidesert, desert, or oceanic moist climates. The latitudes for the Mediterranean climate vary from 30 degrees to 45 degrees.
The location of Mediterranean climate regions depends on influences such atmospheric pressure systems and ocean currents. Mediterranean climates outside of the Mediterranean region are often found in places with high pressure systems. For instance, with the Western Cape region of South Africa, its Mediterranean climate is shaped by the South Atlantic High. With high atmospheric pressure, the air sinks. This creates cloudless conditions and sunny skies, particularly in the summer months. The movement of the anticyclones (high pressure systems) influences the rainfall patterns found in Mediterranean climates.
Plants Found In Mediterranean Climates
The flora in Mediterranean climates is well adapted to the climate. Plants in such climates must be adapted to long summers without adequate rainfall, as well as wet winters. Evergreen sclerophyll shrubs and sclerophyll trees are among the flora that are well adapted to Mediterranean climates. These types of shrubs and trees have hard leaves. The distance between the leaves along the stems is shorter than other plants. The leaves tend to be smaller and thicker. This trait aids in retaining more water. Sclerophyll leaves are also leathery, which help in tolerating the hot summers.