Seasons on Earth explained
One of Earth’s most important characteristic is its seasons (winter, spring, summer and autumn). These cause changes in vegetation, especially in the middle latitudes of our planet.
The seasons have two causes:
- the inclination of the rotational axis of the planet
- the varying distance from the Earth to the Sun due to orbital eccentricity.
Since Earth’s orbit is almost circular, the latter has almost no effect. The main factor is therefore the axis inclination, which is behind almost all of the seasonal cycle.
When the North Pole is inclined towards the Sun, it is spring and summer for the northern hemisphere. Six months later, when the North Pole is inclined away from the Sun, we have autumn and winter in the north.
Very small seasonal changes on planet Venus
Venus has only a small axial inclination (about 3 degrees), compared to the Earth’s inclination of 23.5 degrees. So, seasonal changes on Venus are also very small. Spring and summer are not very different from autumn and winter.