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 Japan.

Country Summary

This page presents high-level information for Japan'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 Japan'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

Located on the east side of Eurasia, Japan is a long, thin archipelago that lies approximately between latitudes 24 and 46 north, and consists of four major islands (from north to south) Hokkaido, Honshu, Shikoku, and Kyushu, as well as more than 6,800 other islands. Japan’s total land area is 364,485 km2, of which 66.1% is covered by forests and 10.4% is agricultural land. Japan has a strong and consolidated economy dominated by the tertiary sector, which contributes to 72.4% of GDP. Since it is scarce in critical natural resources, Japan is highly dependent on imported energy and raw materials. Japan’s GDP (PPP) reached $5.4 trillion and GDP per capita (PPP) of $42,900 in 2017. According to the last population census, conducted in 2012, Japan’s population was 128 million (an increase of 0.2% from 2005). Japan’s share of the elderly among the population reached 23% in 2010 – the highest level in the world. Japan’s climate varies by latitude. Climatic zones include subartic, extratropical and subtropical. In 2015, Japan submitted its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) with aims to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 26 percent from 2013 levels by 2030. In 2017, Japan submitted its Seventh National Communication.