The Philippines has a humid equatorial climate characterized by high temperatures and heavy rainfall. Average annual rainfall is approximately 2,348 mm, but this varies geographically, from 960 mm in southeast Mindanao to over 4,050 mm in central Luzon. Temperatures are generally high, particularly in the valleys and plains, averaging 27°C over the year. Humidity levels are high, averaging around 82% due to the warm moist trade winds that flow through the archipelago, as well as sea surface temperatures, a rich and vibrant vegetative cover and abundant rainfall. Rainfall is governed by the southwest monsoons in the summer months, and by the northeast monsoon and tropical cyclones in the winter. Convective rainfall is common due to the country’s mountainous terrain, interspersed with narrow coastal plains. The Philippines also experiences strong periodic droughts that are linked to the El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO). According to Philippines’ Second National Communication to the UNFCCC, key historical climate trends include:
- A rise of 0.62⁰C in annual average mean temperature between 1958-2014 and a significant increase in the number of hot days and warm nights throughout the country between 1960-2003 has been observed.
- An average annual increase for maximum temperature of 0.008⁰C and 0.019⁰C for minimum temperature.
- Between 1951-2010 an increase in annual mean temperatures, daily minimum mean temperatures and daily maximum mean temperatures has been observed.
- An increase in the amount and intensity of rainfall as a result of climate change in recent years, with more rainy days observed since the 1990s.
- Wetter conditions during the dry season, with the five-year running average showing there are more tropical cyclones of typhoon intensity happening during El Niño events.
This section provides the options to visualize historical climate data for different timeframes via map and annual cycle chart.