We are closer to the sun today than we will be all year...and it's cold as hell.

At 12:52 AM on Tuesday, January 4, the Earth was ‘only’ 91,403,702 miles away from the Sun. Earth is closest to the sun every year in early January. On July 4th, we’ll be 94,510,558 miles away from the Sun --- which is the furthest we will be all year. So, the Earth moves closer and farther from the sun by over three million miles, every year.

Also, today (Tuesday) the Sun will appear 3.6% bigger and is 7% brighter compared with when we’re further away from our sun in July.

But…if we’re closest to the sun today, why is it so cold? It's all about the tilt.

This time of the year the Northern Hemisphere is tilted away from the sun. In summer, it's tilted towards the sun.

According to NASA, sunlight hitting Earth in January is about 7% more intense than it is in July. But the northern hemisphere has more land, while the southern hemisphere has more water. Sunlight raises the temperature of land more than it does oceans. Oceans cover 81% of the Southern Hemisphere, compared to only 61% in the Northern Hemisphere

During the summer, the sun’s light does not spread out as much, so the sun's energy is more concentrated. Also, the longer daytime hours give us plenty of time to reach warmer temperatures.

During the winter, the sun’s rays are more spread out, meaning less energy is hitting us. Plus, the long nights and short days give us less time to warm up.

 

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