Explore historical and projected climate data, climate data by sector, impacts, key vulnerabilities and what adaptation measures are being taken. Explore the overview for a general context of how climate change is affecting Botswana.

Country Summary

This page presents high-level information for Botswana's climate zones and its seasonal cycle for mean temperature and precipitation for the latest climatology, 1991-2020. Climate zone classifications in the map below use observed, historical data (sourced from the Climate Research Unit [CRU]) and are derived by applying the Köppen-Geiger climate classification methodology. This classification divides climate into five primary climate groups, which are divided based on seasonal precipitation and temperature patterns. The five primary 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). It is important to understand the different climate contexts that exist within a country as well as the surrounding region when analyzing current climates and projected change. Climate classifications are identified by hovering your mouse over the legend. A narrative overview of Botswana's country context and climate is provided following the visualizations.

Köppen-Geiger Climate Classification, 1991-2020
  • Af
  • Am
  • As/Aw
  • BWh
  • BWk
  • BSh
  • BSk
  • Csa
  • Csb
  • Csc
  • Cwa
  • Cwb
  • Cwc
  • Cfa
  • Cfb
  • Cfc
  • Dsa
  • Dsb
  • Dsc
  • Dsd
  • Dwa
  • Dwb
  • Dwc
  • Dwd
  • Dfa
  • Dfb
  • Dfc
  • Dfd
  • ET
  • EF

The Republic of Botswana is a landlocked country in Southern Africa, located between 20.0°–29.4° E and 17.8°–26.8° S. The country has a total land area of 600,370 square kilometers and shares borders with Zambia and Zimbabwe to the northeast, Namibia to the north and west and South Africa to the south and southwest. Botswana has a distinct geography, which is dominated by the Kalahari Desert (a sand-filled basin averaging 1,100 meters (m) above sea level), the Okavango swamps covering over 18,000 square kilometers, and the Zambezi River. Botswana’s climate is arid to semi-arid with warm winters and hot summers and highly erratic rainfall, most of which occurs from October to April. Botswana has a population of 2.35 million people (2020). 

Botswana submitted its Nationally-Determined Contribution to the UNFCCC in 2016, in support of the country’s efforts to realize its development goals and increase its resilience to climate change, described in the National Adaptation Plan Framework (2020). The country published its Third National Communication to the UNFCCC in 2019. Botswana remains committed to developing a long term, low carbon development strategy and supporting necessary mitigation and adaptation activities in order to reduce its vulnerability to climate change, and protecting  the livelihoods of its population. Key focus is on the sustainability of the environment, water resources, sustainable land management, agriculture, and health sectors.