This page presents Afghanistan's climate context for the current climatology, 1991-2020, derived from observed, historical data. Information should be used to build a strong understanding of current climate conditions in order to appreciate future climate scenarios and projected change. You can visualize data for the current climatology through spatial variation, the seasonal cycle, or as a time series. Analysis is available for both annual and seasonal data. Data presentation defaults to national-scale aggregation, however sub-national data aggregations can be accessed by clicking within a country, on a sub-national unit. Other historical climatologies can be selected from the Time Period dropdown list. Data for specific coordinates can be downloaded for in the Data Download page.
Afghanistan has an arid continental climate with considerable temperature and precipitation variation between seasons. Temperatures also vary greatly by altitude, with mountainous regions experiencing temperatures well below zero on an annual basis, yet southern arid regions regularly experiencing temperatures over 35ºC. Precipitation varies considerably with topography, with the southwestern arid region typically experiencing less than 150 millimeters (mm) of precipitation each year, and the northeastern mountain range experiencing more than 1,000 mm. Conditions in Afghanistan also have a complex intra-annual interaction with large-scale climate phenomena, specifically the El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and the Indian Ocean Dipole. The latter is associated with drought conditions in Afghanistan.