Chapter 7 Climate and Terrestrial Biodiversity Summary 1. Key factors that determine the earth’s weather are short-term atmospheric conditions such as temperature, pressure, moisture content, sunshine, cloud cover, precipitation, wind direction, and wind speed. 2. Climate is a region’s long-term atmospheric conditions over decades. The two main factors in determining climate are average temperature and average precipitation. 3. The average climate—annual precipitation and temperature—determines terrestrial regions with characteristic types of natural ecological communities. According to these two factors, biomes form. 4. The major types of desert biomes are hot, medium, and cold. Human activities have created large desert cities, destroyed soil through urban development and off-road vehicles, salinized the soil through irrigation, depleted underground water supplies, disturbed land and polluted, stored toxic and radioactive wastes, and located arrays of solar cells and solar collectors. 5.
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