Do winds on Earth always gets stronger when the temperature is higher or are winds only increasing when the temperature gets higher.

So the difference is that when temperatures áre higher (with a constant level) that there is less difference in temperatures but in case of gétting a higher temperature the differences of temperatures are higher and that causes stronger winds?

So is a high temperature the most important factor or the increase of the temperature?

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ are we talking winds over over land or over ocean ? I mean the possibilities are endless $\endgroup$
    – gansub
    Apr 12, 2017 at 10:41

2 Answers 2


Neither. Winds speed increases at a given location due to four different things:

  1. The influence of friction decreases
  2. Areas of higher wind speed are transported in (yes, the wind blows the wind- that is why it is such a difficult problem)
  3. The difference in pressure over a distance increases.
  4. Air is trapped to moving along a curve, and the curvature increases (like a spinning ballerina)

Your question filters out two possibilities.

  1. Since temperature decreases with height, and the influence of friction decreases with height, then winds will generally be faster where it is colder, but only in a very general sense. This does not mean that the temperature makes wind faster. Correlation does not imply causation.

  2. Differences in pressure over a distance, particularly horizontal distances, may increase the wind. Since pressure is generally and approximately proportional to temperature, then differences in temperature will increase wind speeds.

What is the most important factor? That really depends on where you are. When discussing atmospheric dynamics (which covers wind and forces), without making assumptions, you will rarely get a definitive answer.


Your question is a bit confusing, but there is a strong connection between temperature and wind,in their spatial gradiant I would say, however, instead of temporal differences.

Imagine winds are only driven by changes in pressure (higher temperatures -> lower pressure and vice versa). Imagine there are two surface areas with different temperatures (say some frozen lake and a nice grass field in the sun nearby). Therefore the horizontal pressure gradient (due to horizontal temperature gradient) would force the existence of wind, blowing from the High to the Low pressure zones.

Now imagine another situation where there is no horizontal gradient (differences) of temperature nor pressure. The surface is homogeneous. Now imagine all the homogenous surface gets warmer at the same rate, but still remains homogeneous). There would be no reason, thus, for stronger winds (apart from molecular-scale phenomena due to warming, but I believe is not the focus here).

To summarize: winds driven by temperature differences do get stronger if temperature differences spatially increase. A high temperature, alone, does not say much and is way to vague to relate to what you ask.

You could also think of Antartica: very cold and high speed winds. Just to give a hint of how more complicated the relation between temperature and wind may be.


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