Severe winds to increase in the North Sea and the Gulf of Biscay, especially during autumn
By Bob Berwyn
SUMMIT COUNTY — European climate scientists say global warming will drive a northeastward expansion of the tropical Atlantic hurricane breeding ground, with four times as many storms of tropical origins affecting parts of Western Europe in coming decades.
In the Bay of Biscay, the number of storms with tropical-storm-force winds could increase from 2 to 13 by the end of the century, said researcher Reindert Haarsma.
The initial results suggest that the impacts may not be as great in the low-lying Netherlands as in some other areas because the strong winds associated with the events will generally be from the southwest, Haarsma said.
With hurricanes forming farther north and warmer sea surface temperatures in the region, tropical storms are more likely to reach the mid-latitudes, where they will merge with the prevailing westerlies. Even if they lose hurricane status, they are likely to remain stronger, and sometimes re-intensify before landfall, potentially with serious impacts in parts of Europe.
“Our model simulations clearly show that future tropical cyclones are more prone to hit Western Europe and do so earlier in the season,” said the researchers with the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute. (more…)
Filed under: climate and weather, global warming, tropical storms and hurricanes | Tagged: Atlantic hurricanes, climate change, European hurricanes, global warming, Hurricane Sandy, National Center for Atmospheric Research, Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute, Tropical cyclone | 2 Comments »