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View Poll Results: Number of hrs of sunshine
2500 hrs or more (southern Mediterranean...etc) 26 28.26%
2000 - 2500 hrs (deep southern Europe) 19 20.65%
1800 - 2000 hrs (Central - southern Europe) 9 9.78%
less than 1800 hrs (High latitude Europe) 38 41.30%
Voters: 92. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 03-18-2012, 08:32 AM
Location: USA East Coast
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The thread between Boston and Dublin got me thinking about annual sun hrs in Europe.

I’m sure there are a lot of differences between what people in different parts of the world are used to in terms of sunshine – so sun hrs are somewhat relative; People who live in a climate like Athens, Miami, Los Angeles…etc where they get 2800 – 3000 hrs of sun annually, might consider their climate only “modestly sunny” and a place that gets 3500 – 3800 hrs like Phoenix or Cairo is “really sunny”. Yet, if you live in Paris or London (1600 - 1800 hrs of sun)….maybe you consider Rome or Washington DC (2400 hrs) sunny.

What is interesting about greater Europe – is that there are vast populated areas get a lot of sun hrs and many that get far less. IF you had your choice and you were moving to Europe (or you live in Europe and had to move to another part of Europe) – what would be the absolute lowest annual number of hrs you think you could handle in terms of annual sun hrs? I’m very likely far more solar powered than most of you so for me I picked 2300 as the lowest I think I could ever handle (though southern Italy, Greece, and Spain would be the optimum). The exact numbers are not as important as the geography of where you think you would go.

Last edited by wavehunter007; 03-18-2012 at 08:41 AM..
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Old 03-18-2012, 08:44 AM
Location: Toronto
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Nice map.

I've not been to Europe but I guess, as much as I like climate and weather, it would register perhaps not as much as opposed to lifestyle and other factors were I really to move there. But this is a weather topic so in generally, if you're asking about preferences -- I like and prefer at least 2000 hours (the level I'm familiar with or used to).

It's interesting to see a few deviations from the north-south trend based on the map.

I wonder what's up with the tongue of blue surrounded by green (that goes from northern France to just a bit into Ukraine, but doesn't seem to match any topographic feature), as well as the little bits of extra sun hugging the coast that surround the Baltic in a ring, a lot sunnier than other places at its latitude?
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Old 03-18-2012, 08:53 AM
Location: London, UK
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It depends on the climate. I love sunshine but I can totally stand Singapore's 2000 hours (because there is plenty of warmth) whereas I'd need at least 3000 hours to appreciate a cool oceanic or continental climate.

Overall I'd say 2000 as a strict minimum.
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Old 03-18-2012, 08:56 AM
Location: Laurentia
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Perhaps this thread is more intended for those who like sunshine, inquiring about the minimum they could handle. Nevertheless, I will offer my comments.

2300-2400 hours of sunshine is about the maximum amount of sun I could handle, or be willing to handle. Long cloudy stretches don't have nearly as severe of an effect on me. I prefer a cloud-biased mix of sun and cloud, so 1200-2400 hours is good. I guess the middle of that range, 1800 hours, would be optimal, but from weather forecasts the 1600-hour climates seem to offer the best "pace" for me. Although I'd prefer it sunnier, even Torshavn gets enough sun to satisfy me, so I'd be just fine on the low end of the scale.

For the poll I pick high-latitude Europe (less than 1800 hours) as these places offer the best pacing in terms of sunshine for me in all of Europe. Comments I made in another sunshine thread are below as a supplement.

Originally Posted by Patricius Maximus View Post
Although I don't mind sunshine myself (as long as the temperature is below around 60-70 Fahrenheit), excessive sunshine drives me crazy (when it goes on for more than 3-4 days, i.e. long stretches). Around 2400 sunshine hours is about as much as I can take before it becomes too sunny and too annoying to me. I do not have much practical experience (this mainly comes from perusing weather forecasts over the years). 2000-2400 hours to me is quite sunny. Although such a climate is prone to cloudy stretches (which I generally like), it seems sunshine is always around the corner. My dream climate is in this range, as anything from 1200-2400 hours has the mix of sun and clouds that I like.

I would also consider climates that average more than 2400 hours to be very sunny, and more than 3400 to be extremely sunny (as in these places sunshine seems to be nearly perpetual). I might consider climates that average from maybe around 1500 to definitely 2000 hours to be moderate, ranging from a mix leaning towards sunshine to a mix leaning to clouds (at least it seems that way). 1100-1500 hours to me would be sunny enough. I would describe that as mostly cloudy. In the instance of Reykjavik, Iceland, they get plenty of sunshine for my taste, mostly in the summer, and I was surprised how many sunny days they get, considering its reputation for being so dismal. I'm sure that for the sun-lover, it would be dismal, but as far as I'm concerned many of these places' reputations have been exaggerated (Seattle being the foremost victim - although it does rain often there).

So, for me, this is my perspective on sunshine totals:

<1100: Predominately cloudy
1100-1500: Mostly cloudy (sunny enough)
1500-2000: Moderate
2000-2400: Quite sunny (upper limit)
2400-3400: Very sunny
>3400: Extremely sunny
Being in sunny North America myself, my experience includes the low to mid 2000's for annual sun. You could say that's what I'm "used to". I'm pretty sure of my maximum tolerance since I've walked that margin many times, so to speak. As for my "absolute minimum", I'd say 0 sun hours per year. For the lowest I'd be willing to be in, I'd say about 300 hours per year, so that I have some sun annually to change up the cloudscapes. This is an estimate based on Torshavn's 884 hours.
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Old 03-18-2012, 08:59 AM
Location: Leeds, UK
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I'd easily be able to live in those places with below 1200 hours of sunshine. I already live in a place with sunshine hours most people would consider horrific (less then 1450) so I'm used to it.
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Old 03-18-2012, 09:19 AM
Location: Perth, Western Australia
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For cooler, higher-latitude climates around 1800 hours would be a minimum requirement for me, 2200-2700 hours would be close to ideal; over 3000 annual hours is a bit too much though.
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Old 03-18-2012, 09:55 AM
Location: In transition
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I'd say at least 2500 hours to be truly happy, so anywhere in the red.
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Old 03-18-2012, 10:21 AM
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Even though Northern Russia and the Southern UK have similar sunshine hours, id prefer the Russian regime of foggy winters and clear summers than the UKs regime of unreliable sunshine all the time. 1600 hours in Moscow is preferable to 1600 hours in London, for example.
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Old 03-18-2012, 10:35 AM
Location: New York
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2,500+ hours.

Where I live averages 2,600 hours and I wouldn't like to downgrade, I despise cloudy/overcast days.
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Old 03-18-2012, 11:19 AM
Location: Top of the South, NZ
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Minimum would be 2200 hours, which is about what I had living in Chch- and I wouldn't want any less than that.

I wouldn't mind living in the 2500+ zone, but in Europe it seems hard to find that combined with decent rainfall totals as well.
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