Climate Change Overview

Country Summary

This page presents high-level information for Dominican Republic'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 Dominican Republic's country context and climate is provided following the visualizations.

The Dominican Republic (DR) is classified as a small island developing state (SIDS) and is located in the Caribbean. It has a land area of approximately 48,600 km2, occupying the eastern two thirds of the island of Hispaniola; Haiti occupies the remaining western one third. Apart from the western border with Haiti, the rest of the country’s 1,126 km of coastline lies on the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea. The DR is generally mountainous, with deserts in the extreme western regions. The principal mountain range, the Central Cordillera, runs from east to west, is covered primarily by pine forests, and bisects the country. Between the Central Cordillera and the Northern Cordillera mountain ranges lies the Cibao (La Vega Real) Valley, approximately 225 km long and known for its excellent soil quality. Fertile valleys also abound in the central and eastern areas. The country hosts both the highest mountain in the West Indies, Mt. Duarte and the lowest-lying lake, Lake Enriquillo, a saltwater lake that sits at 46 meters below sea level; the third lowest point in the Caribbean. The Yaque del Norte, the Yaque del Sur, and the Yuna are country’s the principal rivers.

The DR has a population over 10.8 million (2020). The Dominican Republic submitted its Nationally-Determined Contribution (NDC) to the UNFCCC in 2016, in support of the country’s efforts to realize its future growth as laid out in the National Development Strategy (2010-2030). The DR is working to strengthen its society and decarbonize its economy to more effectively manage risk through protecting its environment and natural resources, and by promoting adequate climate change adaptation. The country has established priorities that address climate-resilience, low-carbon coastal urban development, improved ecosystem and landscape rehabilitation and forestry initiatives. Identified key adaptation priority sectors include agriculture, energy, waste, and health.