Forecasters say hurricane to form off Mexico's Pacific coast

Forecasters say hurricane to form off Mexico's Pacific coast

Forecasters say hurricane to form off Mexico's Pacific coast

Taken together, these two studies suggest that climate change is already increasing the dangers posed by hurricanes and typhoons in far more ways than previously thought, and it will continue to compound numerous hazards, especially the threat of severe flooding.

This isn't about how powerful a storm's winds are, just how fast it chugs along. "Hurricane Harvey a year ago was a great example of what a slow storm can do".

NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) scientist Dr. Jim Kossin, author of the study, found a 20 percent slowdown in a storm's forward velocity over land for Atlantic storms, a 30 percent slowdown over land for western North Pacific storms and a 19 percent slowdown over land for storms affecting the Australian region. In some regions, the pace of those storms slowed even more as they hit land.

The study was published Wednesday in the peer-reviewed British journal Nature.

The globe's hurricanes have seen a striking slowdown in their speed of movement across landscapes and seascapes over the past 65 years, a finding that suggests rising rainfall and storm-surge risks, according to research reported Wednesday.

Climate change is tinkering with and slowing down atmospheric circulation patterns - the wind currents that move weather along, Kossin said.

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And at the same time, a hotter atmosphere can hold more moisture.

The trend has all the signs of human-caused climate change, Kossin said.

With the exception of the Indian Ocean region, which tends to behave differently, "all the other regions show this consistent slowing", Kossin says.

"I went in with that hypothesis and looked at the data, and out popped the signal that was much bigger than anything I was expecting", Kossin said.

"Every one of the hazards that we know tropical cyclones carry with them, all of them are just going to stick around longer", Kossin said.

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