What are Easterlies and Westerlies?

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: November 9th, 2023

Easterlies and Westerlies can be classified as the Easterlies are wind patterns that move from the East to the West, whereas Westerlies move from the West to the East. Winds are classified into three types namely primary, secondary, and tertiary winds. The Easterlies and Westerlies are classified as primary winds. These are the winds of the planet.

Easterlies and Westerlies Characteristics

Westerlies and Easterlies are examples of Planetary winds or Primary winds. These are the winds that typically blow in the same direction all year.

  • Westerlies have greater speed and force than the other primary winds during the winter season.
  • Because of their vast maritime span, the Westerlies also play an important role in providing warm, equatorial waters and winds to the western borders of continents.
  • The Polar Easterlies or Easterlies also play an important role in climate change.
  • They are one of the five principal wind zones that actually form our circulatory system, known as wind belts.
  • The five wind zones are as follows – westerlies, polar easterlies, trade winds, horse latitudes, and the doldrums.
  • Here, keep in mind that Polar easterlies are usually dry, and cold prevailing air and it flows from the East direction.
  • The high pressure around the poles of the earth plays an important role in this.

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