Mongolia has a strongly continental climate, with four distinctive seasons, high fluctuations of temperature, low precipitation and clear climate differences according to latitude and altitude. Average temperatures range between around -4 and -8°C in and between mountain ranges climbing to around 2°C in the steppe desert region and around 6°C in the southern desert bordering China. Temperature varies dramatically throughout the year. Historically maximum temperatures have peaked at around 24°C in July, while January minimum temperatures drop to around -28°C. Annual precipitation rarely exceeds 400 mm, and is often much lower in the south and central desert and steppe regions. An estimated 85% of precipitation falls between April and September. Small inter-annual variations in precipitation can lead to severe drought events, with some regions not experiencing rainfall at all.
- Very high rates of historical warming are reported in Mongolia’s Third National Communication to the UNFCCC.
- Between 1940 and 2015 average temperatures rose by an average 2.24°C. As would be expected this rise has been associated with a decline in frost days and an increase in summer days.
- Maximum temperatures have risen 2.6°C while minimum temperatures have risen only 0.3°C over the same period.
- A decline in average annual precipitation of 7% over the period 1940-2015 is reported in Mongolia’s Third National Communication to the UNFCCC.
- The country’s central regions have felt this decline in rainfall most strongly. This sits alongside a proportionately large increase in winter snowfall.
- The number of consecutive wet days and the number of days with heavy precipitation are also believed to have declined over the period 1971-2015.
This section provides the options to visualize climate variables and indices derived from scientifically vetted CMIP5 projections for different timeframes, statistics, emission scenarios, and climate models.