Climate Change Overview

Country Summary

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

Nauru is located in the south-eastern Micronesia region. It is one of the world’s smallest countries with a total land area covering just 21 kilometers square (km2), and is extremely remote, surrounded by deep sea and coral reefs. Nauru’s climate is tropical, but variable rainfall can lead to extended periods of drought. Nauru has limited ground water and no rivers or streams; its land consists of mineral deposits largely rock phosphate. Phosphate mining over the past century has had a very significant impact on the landscape and economy of Nauru.

Nauru is considered a fragile Pacific island with acute development challenges linked to its unusual economic circumstances. In 2019, Nauru had a population of 12,500 residents.  

Nauru has very limited access to freshwater, and is almost entirely dependent on rainwater collection tanks. While it is not as low-lying as some of its Pacific neighbors, nor exposed to tropical cyclones, Nauru’s precarious socioeconomic system and isolated position make it highly vulnerable to climate change impacts.