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 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 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. Japan’s population is over 120 million. Japan’s share of the elderly among the population is over 29%. Japan’s climate varies by latitude. Climatic zones include subarctic, extratropical and subtropical.