Climate Change Overview

Country Summary

This page presents high-level information for Albania's climate zones and its seasonal cycle for mean temperature and precipitation for the latest climatology, 1991-2020. Climate zone classifications are derived from the Köppen-Geiger climate classification system, which divides climates into five main climate groups divided based on seasonal precipitation and temperature patterns. The five main groups are A (tropical), B (dry), C (temperate), D (continental), and E (polar). All climates except for those in the E group are assigned a seasonal precipitation sub-group (second letter).  Climate classifications are identified by hovering your mouse over the legend. A narrative overview of Albania's country context and climate is provided following the visualizations.

Albania is a small mountainous country on the western side of the Balkan Peninsula in Southeastern Europe, with a land area of 28,748 km. Albania shares borders with Montenegro to the northwest, Kosovo to the northeast, Republic of North Macedonia to the east and Greece to the south. The country has a long coastline along the Adriatic Sea which forms the majority of its western border. 70% of Albania’s territory is mountainous with an average altitude of 700m above sea level. Albania enjoys a Mediterranean climate, with mild and humid winters followed by hot and dry summers. The country experiences rainfall primarily during the second half of the year, though climate conditions differ considerably between agro-ecological zones. The coastal plains experience a strong maritime influence, causing a gradient of lower temperatures and reduced precipitation eastwards from the coast. 

Albania is classified as a middle-income country and became an official candidate for accession to the European Union in 2014. Albania has a population of 2.9 million people (2019) with an annual population growth rate at -0.4% (2018). Albania is projected to reach 2.7 million people by 2030 and 2.3 million people by 2050. An estimated 69.5% of the country’s population currently resides in urban areas, which is expected to increase to 78.2% by 2050.  The country has a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of $15.2 billion (2019), growing at a rate of 2.2% annually, as of 2019. The country has realized strong economic growth performance over the last 30 years, growing from the poorest nation in Europe in the early 1990s to middle income status in 2008; poverty declined by half during that period. The country continues to focus on increasing its economic competitiveness through enhanced regional connectivity and access to regional and global markets for further market diversification. As such, the Government of Albania has embarked on a broad-based reform program focused on macroeconomic and fiscal sustainability, financial sector stabilization, energy concerns, pensions, and territorial administration. 

Albania submitted its Nationally-Determined Contribution (NDC) to the UNFCCC in 2016. Through its NDC commitments, Albania is working to support its wider development goals, which are geared to increase resilience to climate change impacts. The focus is on key sectors such as energy, industrial development, agriculture, public health, and biodiversity. Albania is addressing the vulnerability of key sectors and prioritizing adaptation efforts though integrated policy, research and investment in key areas such as the protection of coastal zones and urban planning, increasing awareness of the agricultural and health communities to climate change risks.  Strategic review and policy integration is currently led through the country’s National Adaptation Planning, which started in 2015 and is expected to be adopted circa 2020. Albania’s climate change action is also defined through its Third National Communication (NC3), which it published in 2016. Albania remains committed to developing a long-term, low carbon development strategy as well as reducing its current greenhouse gas emissions.