Kyrgyzsan > Climate Summary
Explore the overview for a general context of how vulnerable and resilient Kyrgyzstan is to climate change. Explore climate impact and vulnerability by sector. View the results of the Climate Risk and Vulnerability Assessment for Kyrgyzstan. Explore the various options for climate adaptation in key sectors.
The climate in the Kyrgyz Republic is as varied with dry continental to polar in the Tien Shan Mountains, subtropical in the southwestern Fergana Valley, and temperate in the northern foothill zone. The valley-sub-mountain zone (from 900-1,200 m) experiences hot summers, snowless and temperate winters, and almost zero precipitation. The mountain zone (from 900–1,200 to 2,000–2,200 m) is characterized by a temperate climate, which has warm summers and cold, snowy winters. The high-mountain zone (from 2,000–2,200 to 3,000–3,500 m) is cooler in the summer and has relatively cold, snowless winters, with temperatures ranging from well below zero to 16°C. The nival belt zone (from 3,500 m and higher) has a polar climate and is covered by numerous snowfields and glaciers. According to its own Second National Communication, only 20% of the country is considered habitable year round.
Climate models make the following projections for Kyrgyzstan's future climate:
- The air temperature on the territory of Kyrgyz Republic has increased by 0.8°C over the last century.
- The Central Asia region is expected to experience an increase in mean annual temperature on average of 2°C by 2020 and between 4°C and 5°C by 2100. It is projected that Kyrgyzstan will see a decrease in annual runoff by 12% by 2020, with a potential three-fold increase by 2050. These changes will result in increased incidence of drought, heat waves, and eventual crop losses.
- Summertime diurnal temperature ranges are projected to increase, suggesting a pronounced increase in maximum temperatures relative to minimum temperatures.
- Nearly 1/3 of the glacial area in the Central Asia region has disappeared since 1930. Because glaciers provide a large proportion of the water flow to the major rivers of Central Asia, the loss of these glaciers has severe consequences for the future of the Kyrgyz Republic.
- According to the IPCC's 4th Assessment Report, an increase in winter precipitation and a decrease in summer precipitation are projected for Central Asia. The general perception within the Kyrgyz Republic, that water resources for agricultural areas are at high risk to suffer from droughts, requires authentication.
- A significant reduction in the country’s glaciers and snowfields is projected, with major implications for the country’s water resources.