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San Diego sunsets 75 seconds earlier every day

Coastal sage at nadir of green

Looking toward Del Mar racetrack. Shades of gray and yellow have replaced the bright greens.
  • Looking toward Del Mar racetrack. Shades of gray and yellow have replaced the bright greens.

The Time of Sunset changes most rapidly this time of the year. This is mainly because the sun is swinging rapidly south along the ecliptic (its apparent path through the background stars). From the latitude of San Diego, the sun is now setting about 75 seconds earlier every day (equivalent to about nine minutes earlier per week), and its setting position along the horizon shifts southward about one-half degree per day.

The sun is swinging rapidly south along the ecliptic.

The sun is swinging rapidly south along the ecliptic.

San Diego's Coastal Sage-Scrub Vegetation is now at the very nadir of its growth cycle. Shades of gray and yellow have replaced the bright greens that carpeted many of the still-wild coastal hillsides up until April or May of this year. Sometime within the next two or three months, the first substantial autumn rain will shatter the usual summer drought, and our “summer-deciduous” vegetation could bounce back in a matter of days.

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