It's Officially Spring!!!
It’s official, today is the first day of Spring and it’s also the International Day of Happiness. For the Northern Hemisphere, the spring equinox is the moment when winter ends and spring begins.
In the Northern Hemisphere the spring equinox occurs every year between March 19 and March 21. This year it’s the 20th. However the clocks don’t spring forward until 31st March.
What causes the seasons?
While day and night are caused by the Earth spinning every 24 hours, the seasons are due to our year-long orbit around the Sun.
The Earth's axis of rotation (a line through the centre from pole to pole) is tilted by 23.5 degrees from the plane of orbit.
It means for half the year the northern hemisphere gets more daylight than the south, and it is the other way round for the rest of year.
In our summer months, the north of the planet is tilted towards the Sun, which appears high in the sky, and the days are long.
In winter we are angled away from the Sun. Days are short and the Sun appears low in the sky.
In spring and autumn, the tilt is sideways to the direction of sunlight.
The amount of sunlight reaching our part of the globe affects the weather we get at different times of year.