According to a new study by Danish climate experts in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the United States is three times more affected by destructive hurricanes than it was a century ago.
For this study, the researchers examined 247 hurricanes that have occurred since 1900 and of these, 10% of the most important phenomenons (hurricanes covering a total destruction area of more than 1200 square kilometers) are 3.3 times more frequent. “It is the most damaging hurricanes that are experiencing the greatest growth,” explains, Aslak Grinsted, a climatologist at the University of Copenhagen. Moreover, of the 20 storms with the largest areas of total destruction since 1900, 8 have occurred in the last 16 years. Two storms stand out in particular: Hurricane Harvey (2017) with a total destruction area of 11,835 square kilometers and Hurricane Katrina (2005) with an area of 7,621 square kilometers. With an average of 411 square kilometers, Harvey was 30 times larger.
Why the large increase?
Several researchers have shown that climate change can have a great influence on the magnitude and frequency of extreme weather events. In fact, the increase in land and water temperatures caused by human activity has a direct impact on these phenomenons.