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Polar Climate

Near the North and South Poles it is so cold that when the snow falls is does not melt, but gradually accumulates over hundreds and thousands of years to make thick ice sheets. The ice sheets in the Southern Hemisphere are much larger than in the Northern Hemisphere, covering the entire continent of Antarctic. In the North by contrast, ice sheets are restricted mainly to Greenland. Most of the Arctic Circle surrounding the North Pole is ocean, and the seawater freezes to form sea ice, rarely more than a few tens of metres thick.

The cold polar climates can experience very low temperature indeed. This is because for half the year, the Sun does not rise above the horizon. A temperature of -88C was once reported in Antarctica. Since the air in polar regions is so cold, it contains very little moisture. Such dry air means that there is very little snowfall. Polar climates can be as dry as the hot deserts.

Polar climate
 

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