High, low pressure: One can mean rain; the other, sunshine

Updated: Apr. 30, 2018 at 4:34 PM CDT
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(KSLA) - Do you know what causes a long stretch of dry, sunny weather?

How about what brings rain and storms to the Shreveport area?

It all comes down to low and high pressure systems.

Both are large-scale circulations of wind.

We can tell where these are located by analyzing a map of sea level pressure.

Pressure is the force exerted on the Earth from the air above.

Sea level pressure is used to ignore the different altitudes in areas across the United States. This makes it easier to compare the pressure differences from one place to another.

Meteorologists draw isobars, or equal lines of pressure, to show where the highest and lowest pressures are located.

High pressures are associated with warming temperatures and clear skies.

Low pressure systems bring clouds, rain and sometimes thunderstorms.

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