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Geography and climate #2

The climate of Japan is predominantly temperate, but varies greatly from north to south. Japan's geographical features divide it into six principal climatic zones:

Hokkaidō: The northernmost zone has a temperate climate with long, cold winters and cool summers. Precipitation is not heavy, but the islands usually develop deep snow banks in the winter.
Sea of Japan: On Honshū's west coast, the northwest wind in the wintertime brings heavy snowfall. In the summer, the region is cooler than the Pacific area, though it sometimes experiences extremely hot temperatures, due to the F・n wind phenomenon.
Central Highland: A typical inland climate, with large temperature differences between summer and winter, and between day and night. Precipitation is light.
Seto Inland Sea: The mountains of the Chūgoku and Shikoku regions shelter the region from the seasonal winds, bringing mild weather throughout the year.
Pacific Ocean: The east coast experiences cold winters with little snowfall and hot, humid summers due to the southeast seasonal wind.
South-west Islands: The Ryukyu Islands have a subtropical climate, with warm winters and hot summers. Precipitation is very heavy, especially during the rainy season. Typhoons are common.
The main rainy season begins in early May in Okinawa, and the stationary rain front responsible for this gradually works its way north until it dissipates in northern Japan before reaching Hokkaidō in late July. In most of Honshū, the rainy season begins before the middle of June and lasts about six weeks. In late summer and early autumn, typhoons often bring heavy rain.

Japan is home to nine forest ecoregions which reflect the climate and geography of the islands. They range from subtropical moist broadleaf forests in the Ryūkyū and Bonin islands, to temperate broadleaf and mixed forests in the mild climate regions of the main islands, to temperate coniferous forests in the cold, winter portions of the northern islands.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japan
About Japan

Japan (help・nfo) (日本 Nihon or Nippon?, officially 日本国 Nihon-koku or Nippon-koku) is an island nation in East Asia. Located in the Pacific Ocean, it lies to the east of China, Korea, and Russia, stretching from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north to the East China Sea in the south. The characters that make up Japan's name mean "sun-origin", which is why Japan is sometimes identified as the "Land of the Rising Sun". Japan's capital and largest city is Tokyo.

Japan comprises over three thousand islands, the largest of which are Honshū, Hokkaidō, Kyūshū and Shikoku. Most of the islands are mountainous, many volcanic; for example, Japan痴 highest peak, Mount Fuji, is a volcano. Japan has the world's tenth largest population, with about 128 million people. The Greater Tokyo Area, which includes Tokyo and several surrounding prefectures, is the largest metropolitan area in the world, with over 30 million residents.

Since adopting its constitution in 1947, Japan has maintained a unitary constitutional monarchy with an emperor and an elected parliament, the Diet.

A great power, Japan is the world's second largest economy by nominal GDP and is a member of the United Nations, G8 and APEC.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japan

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