Kolwezi Climate & Monthly Temperature Overview – Congo (Kinshasa)


Kolwezi enjoys a tropical savanna climate, characterized by distinct wet and dry seasons. The wet season typically runs from October to April, bringing abundant rainfall that can lead to flooding. The months of December to February are particularly wet, with average rainfall exceeding 200 mm. In contrast, the dry season extends from May to September. During this period, rainfall is scarce, with average monthly totals below 50 mm. Kolwezi’s temperatures remain relatively constant throughout the year, with average highs ranging from 25°C to 30°C. However, nighttime temperatures can drop significantly during the dry season, especially in June and July, when lows can dip below 10°C.

Average Weather Year Round

Kolwezi’s weather varies significantly between the wet and dry seasons. During the wet season, expect high humidity, frequent thunderstorms, and occasionally heavy downpours. The months of December and January are typically the warmest, with average temperatures around 28°C. However, the humidity can make the heat feel oppressive. In the dry season, rainfall is less frequent, and the temperatures become more moderate. The months of June and July are the coolest, with average temperatures around 22°C at night and 27°C during the day. The skies are generally clear during this season, offering ample sunshine.

Temperature Patterns in Kolwezi, Congo (Kinshasa)

Kolwezi, located in the southern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo, experiences a tropical savanna climate with distinct wet and dry seasons. The average temperature throughout the year remains relatively high, ranging between 22 to 30 degrees Celsius (72 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit). The warmest months are typically from September to April, with average temperatures reaching 28-30 degrees Celsius (82-86 degrees Fahrenheit). During this period, the heat is most intense from noon to late afternoon, with little relief at night.

Seasonal Variations in Kolwezi

The wet season in Kolwezi begins around November and extends until April, bringing heavy rainfall to the region. The combination of high humidity and warm temperatures creates a sultry and uncomfortable atmosphere. However, the dry season from May to October provides some respite from the oppressive heat. During these months, temperatures drop slightly, averaging between 22 and 25 degrees Celsius (72 and 77 degrees Fahrenheit). The nights can be chilly, especially in June and July, with temperatures dipping below 15 degrees Celsius (59 degrees Fahrenheit).

Cloud Types Over Kolwezi

Kolwezi, a bustling city in the Democratic Republic of Congo, experiences a wide range of cloud formations throughout the year. These clouds vary significantly in appearance and precipitation potential. During the wet season, which typically lasts from October to April, towering cumulus clouds dominate the sky, often bringing heavy rainfall and thunderstorms. These clouds are characterized by their cauliflower-like shape and anvil-shaped tops. In contrast, during the dry season (May to September), cirrus clouds become more prevalent. These thin, wispy clouds are composed of ice crystals and appear high in the atmosphere, casting long shadows across the landscape.

Cloud Impact on Weather

The presence and type of clouds over Kolwezi have a significant impact on the local weather. Cumulus clouds, associated with the wet season, bring much-needed rainfall to the region, sustaining its lush vegetation and supporting agricultural activities. However, excessive rainfall can also lead to flooding and other hazards. Cirrus clouds, on the other hand, indicate stable atmospheric conditions and generally do not produce precipitation. They can, however, scatter sunlight, creating a hazy or overcast sky that can reduce visibility and affect solar energy production. Understanding the different cloud types and their implications for weather is crucial for forecasting and planning in Kolwezi and its surroundings.

Annual Precipitation Patterns

Kolwezi experiences a tropical savanna climate, characterized by a distinct wet and dry season. The wet season typically lasts from November to April, during which heavy rainfall is common. The city receives an average annual precipitation of around 1,297 millimeters (51 inches). The driest months are June to September, when rainfall is scarce.

Seasonal Variability

During the wet season, Kolwezi can experience intense thunderstorms and heavy downpours, often leading to flash flooding. The heaviest precipitation typically occurs in December and January, with average monthly totals exceeding 200 millimeters (8 inches). In contrast, during the dry season, rainfall is minimal, with average monthly totals below 10 millimeters (0.4 inches). The absence of rainfall during this period can lead to drought conditions and water scarcity.

Average Rainfall and Seasonality

Kolwezi, Congo (Kinshasa) experiences tropical savanna climate, characterized by distinct wet and dry seasons. The wet season spans from October to April, bringing heavy rainfall with an average monthly total of over 100 mm. Conversely, the dry season from May to September receives significantly less precipitation, with monthly averages below 50 mm. December and January stand as the wettest months, with average rainfall exceeding 200 mm each. During these months, intense thunderstorms and downpours are common.

Annual Rainfall Distribution and Variability

On average, Kolwezi receives around 1200 mm of rainfall annually. However, this distribution is subject to year-to-year variability. While some years may witness abundant rainfall, reaching up to 1500 mm or more, others may experience droughts with significantly lower amounts. The city’s proximity to the Angolan highlands influences its rainfall patterns, with moist air from the Atlantic Ocean ascending and condensing over the highlands, resulting in plentiful rainfall for Kolwezi.

Historical Context

Snowfall is an extremely rare occurrence in the Democratic Republic of Congo, including the city of Kolwezi. Located near the equator, Kolwezi experiences a tropical climate with consistently high temperatures and abundant rainfall. Historically, snowfall has been virtually non-existent in the region. However, a remarkable event occurred on January 28, 1961, when a thin layer of snow fell over Kolwezi and the surrounding areas. This unusual weather phenomenon was attributed to an exceptionally cold air mass that moved across the continent, resulting in an overnight drop in temperature.

Scientific Explanations

The 1961 snowfall event in Kolwezi is an intriguing meteorological occurrence that has been studied by scientists. Atmospheric models and weather patterns have been analyzed to understand the factors that contributed to this rare event. One explanation suggests that a cold front from the south interacted with warm, moist air from the Congo Basin, creating a localized area of extreme temperature inversion. The cold front pushed the warm air upward, causing it to cool and condense into snow. Another theory points to the influence of a high-altitude jet stream, which brought cold, dry air from the South Atlantic Ocean over the region. As this airmass descended, it encountered moisture in the atmosphere, leading to snowfall.

Sunrise and Sunset Times

The sun rises and sets at different times throughout the year in Kolwezi, Congo (Kinshasa) due to the Earth’s tilt and its orbit around the Sun. During the summer months (December to February), the sun rises earlier and sets later, resulting in longer daylight hours. Conversely, during the winter months (June to August), the sun rises later and sets earlier, leading to shorter daylight hours. On average, the sunrise time in Kolwezi varies between 5:15 AM and 6:15 AM, while the sunset time ranges from 5:30 PM to 6:30 PM.

Sun Intensity and UV Index

Kolwezi, located near the equator, experiences high levels of solar radiation throughout the year. The city’s geographical location and altitude result in intense sunlight and a consistently high UV index. The UV index, which measures the intensity of ultraviolet radiation from the sun, typically ranges from 7 to 10 in Kolwezi, indicating a high risk of sunburn and other skin damage. Residents and visitors are advised to take appropriate precautions, such as wearing protective clothing, applying sunscreen, and seeking shade during peak solar hours, usually between 10:00 AM and 4:00 PM.

Moonrise and Moonset Times

The moonrise and moonset times for Kolwezi, Congo (Kinshasa) vary throughout the month and the year. The following table provides an example of the moonrise and moonset times for a specific day in February:

| Date | Moonrise | Moonset |
| February 15, 2023 | 6:07 PM | 6:11 AM |

To obtain the most up-to-date and accurate moonrise and moonset times for Kolwezi, Congo (Kinshasa), please consult a reputable astronomical website or mobile application.

Moon Phases

The moon goes through a cycle of phases over the course of approximately 29.5 days. The main phases of the moon include:

  • New Moon: The new moon occurs when the moon is positioned between the Earth and the sun, and the side facing the Earth is not illuminated.
  • Waxing Crescent: The waxing crescent phase begins when a thin sliver of the moon becomes visible after the new moon.
  • First Quarter: The first quarter phase occurs when half of the moon is illuminated, and the moon is positioned at a 90-degree angle relative to the Earth and the sun.
  • Waxing Gibbous: The waxing gibbous phase occurs as the illuminated portion of the moon continues to grow, becoming larger than a half-moon but less than a full moon.
  • Full Moon: The full moon occurs when the entire face of the moon facing the Earth is illuminated.
  • Waning Gibbous: The waning gibbous phase begins when the illuminated portion of the moon starts to decrease, becoming smaller than a full moon but larger than a half-moon.
  • Third Quarter: The third quarter phase occurs when half of the moon is illuminated, but the lit portion is on the opposite side of the moon from the first quarter phase.
  • Waning Crescent: The waning crescent phase occurs as the illuminated portion of the moon continues to shrink, becoming a thin sliver before transitioning to the new moon phase.

Humidity Levels

Kolwezi, Congo (Kinshasa), experiences tropical savanna climate, characterized by distinct wet and dry seasons. The humidity levels in Kolwezi vary significantly throughout the year. During the wet season, which typically lasts from November to April, humidity levels are generally high, ranging from 70% to 90% or even higher. The high humidity during this period is attributed to abundant rainfall and limited evaporation due to increased cloud cover.

Impact on Climate and Health

The high humidity levels in Kolwezi during the wet season can have a significant impact on the local climate and human health. The high humidity can make the air feel muggy and uncomfortable, and can also contribute to feelings of fatigue and lethargy. Additionally, high humidity can create favorable conditions for the growth of mold and mildew, which can trigger respiratory issues for some individuals. However, during the dry season, from May to October, humidity levels drop significantly, typically ranging between 30% and 50%. The lower humidity levels during this period make the air feel drier and more comfortable, and reduce the chances of respiratory problems associated with high humidity.

Wind Patterns in Kolwezi

Kolwezi is a city located in the Democratic Republic of Congo, where the wind patterns are influenced by its tropical climate and proximity to the Atlantic Ocean. The prevailing winds in Kolwezi are generally southeasterly, bringing warm and humid air from the Congo Basin. During the rainy season, from October to April, the southwesterly winds become more dominant, carrying heavy rainfall. During the dry season, from May to September, the northeasterly winds prevail, bringing dry and dusty conditions. The average wind speed in Kolwezi is moderate, ranging from 10 to 15 kilometers per hour throughout the year.

Impact on Local Climate

The wind patterns in Kolwezi significantly impact the local climate. The southeasterly winds from the Congo Basin bring warm and moist air, contributing to the city’s high humidity levels. This humidity, combined with the relatively high temperatures, can make the climate feel oppressive during the rainy season. In contrast, the northeasterly winds during the dry season bring dry air from the African interior, resulting in lower humidity and more comfortable temperatures. The moderate wind speeds in Kolwezi help to dissipate heat and maintain a consistent temperature throughout the year, with average daily temperatures ranging from 20 to 30 degrees Celsius.

Best Time to Visit Kolwezi

The best time to visit Kolwezi is during the dry season, which runs from May to October. During this time, the weather is mild and sunny, with little to no rainfall. This makes it ideal for exploring the city’s many attractions, such as the Kolwezi Dam, the Kolwezi Museum, and the Kolwezi Zoo. Additionally, the dry season is a great time for hiking and biking in the surrounding mountains.

Shoulder Seasons

The shoulder seasons, which fall between the dry and rainy seasons, can also be a good time to visit Kolwezi. The weather is still relatively mild during these times, but there is a chance of occasional rainfall. However, the shoulder seasons are often less crowded than the dry season, making it a good time to avoid the crowds.

Rainy Season

The rainy season in Kolwezi runs from November to April. During this time, the weather is hot and humid, with frequent heavy rainfall. This can make it difficult to get around and explore the city. Additionally, many of the roads in Kolwezi are unpaved, and they can become impassable during the rainy season. As such, it is best to avoid visiting Kolwezi during the rainy season if possible.

Potential and Opportunities

Kolwezi, a city in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), boasts abundant solar energy potential due to its equatorial location and high levels of sunshine. The city receives an average of 5.5 peak sun hours per day, making it a prime location for solar power generation. Recognizing this potential, the government and private sector have initiated several solar projects to meet the growing energy demand. One notable initiative is the Kolwezi Solar Power Plant, a 100 MW solar photovoltaic plant that aims to provide clean and affordable electricity to the city and surrounding areas.

Challenges and Mitigation

Despite the promising potential of solar energy in Kolwezi, there are several challenges that need to be addressed. One major challenge is the high upfront cost of solar panels and installation. To mitigate this, the government and development partners are exploring innovative financing mechanisms, such as public-private partnerships and concessional loans, to make solar energy more accessible for communities and businesses. Another challenge is the lack of skilled labor in the solar sector. To address this, training programs are being implemented to develop local expertise and create employment opportunities in the growing renewable energy industry.

General Topography

Kolwezi, a city nestled in the southern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo (Kinshasa), boasts a diverse topography characterized by rolling hills, undulating plateaus, and verdant valleys. The city is situated at an elevation ranging from 1,300 to 1,450 meters above sea level, providing a scenic panorama of the surrounding landscape. The Lualaba River, one of the most significant tributaries of the Congo River, meanders through Kolwezi, adding to its natural beauty and contributing to the fertility of the surrounding region.

Geological Features

The topography of Kolwezi is largely influenced by its geological history. The area is underlain by a complex assemblage of metamorphic rocks, including schists, gneisses, and quartzites. These rocks were formed during intense geological processes millions of years ago and have been uplifted and eroded over time, shaping the present-day landscape. The presence of Karst formations, characterized by sinkholes and underground caves, is another notable geological feature of Kolwezi. These formations result from the dissolution of limestone bedrock by water, creating unique subterranean landscapes.

Kolwezi Airport

Kolwezi Airport (IATA: KZW, ICAO: FZOZ) is the primary airport serving the city of Kolwezi and the surrounding Lualaba Province in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. It is located approximately 5 kilometers (3 miles) northwest of the city center and is the fourth busiest airport in the country. Kolwezi Airport has a single asphalt runway with a length of 2,400 meters (7,900 feet) and a width of 45 meters (150 feet). It is capable of handling medium-sized aircraft such as the Boeing 737 and Airbus A320.

The airport is connected to several domestic destinations within the Democratic Republic of the Congo, including Kinshasa, Lubumbashi, Mbuji-Mayi, and Kisangani. There are also limited international flights to Johannesburg, South Africa, and Luanda, Angola. Kolwezi Airport is managed by the Régie des Voies Aériennes (RVA), the national airport authority of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Economy of Kolwezi

Kolwezi’s economy is primarily based on mining, with copper and cobalt being the main commodities. The city is home to several large-scale mining operations, including the Kamoto Copper Company (KCC) and the Tenke Fungurume Mining (TFM). These operations have played a significant role in the development of Kolwezi and have contributed to its economic growth. In addition to mining, Kolwezi also has a growing manufacturing sector, with food processing and textile manufacturing being the प्रमुख industries. The city is also a major transportation hub, with a busy airport and railway network.

## Infrastructure of Kolwezi

Kolwezi has a relatively well-developed infrastructure compared to other cities in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The city has a reliable electricity supply and a clean water distribution system. Kolwezi also has a good network of roads, railways, and an airport with regular flights to major cities in the region. The city has several hospitals, schools, and universities, providing access to healthcare, education, and higher learning for its residents. Kolwezi is also home to a number of cultural and recreational facilities, including museums, libraries, and sports complexes. Despite these positive aspects, Kolwezi still faces challenges in terms of infrastructure development, particularly in the areas of housing, sanitation, and waste management.