Gulf of Mexico Effects

The Gulf of Mexico causes definite land-sea interactions and generally has a moderating effect on the Pensacola area.  Tertiary land and sea breezes dominate the local area as far inland as 40 nm, depending on their intensity. The Gulf affects local area temperatures during the summer.  Once the convective temperature (generally 10 degrees Fahrenheit (F) above the sea surface temperature) has been reached, the sea breeze dominates, creating a nearly instantaneous 4-7 degree F drop in the air temperature.  During the winter months, the Gulf moderates the Polar outbreaks and infrequent Arctic outbreaks along the coastal region. In the near coastal regions, relatively warm water temperatures moderate the minimum temperatures. Below freezing minimum temperatures occur more frequently further inland (more than 10 nm). Though the Gulf moderates much of the local weather, it also doe not impede the northeastward movement of unstable waves developing over southern Texas. Generally speaking, thunderstorms that form over the Gulf and move inland produce heavy precipitation and occasionally severe weather. 
Concept Mapping Toolkit
Insitute for Human and Machine Cognition
The University of West Florida