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GLOBAL WARMING AND HURRICANES

By: hurricanechaser , 7:10 AM GMT on June 21, 2006

Hey everyone,

I want to begin by stating that the contents that will follow in this particular blog entry constitute my own personal opinions on the correlations between global warming and hurricanes. Consequently, this blog entry is not at all meant to suggest I don't respect those opinions that differ from my own on this subject or any other for that matter unless it concerns the character of me personally and/or my family or friends.

Honestly, this has become one of my least favorite subjects to discuss since so many get pretty argumentative about Global warming so I have personally stayed clear of this topic for a long time on here. However, I feel the need to respond to all the theories between human induced global warming and hurricanes. First, the real answer cannot truthfully and fairly be discovered in our lifetimes if it were determined scientifically rather than determined politically based on a rush judgement since it has become too much of a political debate in my humble opinion.

Why do I say that?

In the idea of fairness, we need to compare apples with apples rather than apples and oranges. Specifically, we need to compare one full active or warm phase of the AMO cycle with another one where things are fairly equal relative to being able to properly identify the number and intensity of each storm reviewed. In other words, it is unfair and unreasonable in my opinion to say that global warming is responsible for a supposed upswing in tropical cyclone activity and very intense hurricanes when it is all occurring during the warm phase of the current AMO (1995-2005).

The only logical way to make a fair judgement is to compare this active phase of the AMO with the previous active or warm phase of the AMO cycle which can't be done fairly because it ran from 1926 through 1969.

WHY CAN'T IT BE DONE FAIRLY?

The big problems in such a comparison is that there was not even the most primitive satellite technology to even discover many storms over the Atlantic Basin until 1960. Even then, forecasters at that time didn't have the means to estimate a storms real intensity more than simply using their best educated GUESS based on satellite appearances alone. Naturally, they also had a much more limited understanding of these storms that long ago.

Before then, the only way a storm was even detectable was if it made a landfall somewhere or if a ship unintentionally encountered the storm and relayed such information onto the forecasters. Even then, there was no way to know if the ship encountered the very heart of the storm to accurately gauge its true intensity. Moreover, it is fair to assume many storms were encountered, but not recorded as tropical cyclones because such ship captains would have understandably just assumed it was a strong ocean storm like they had encountered numerous times since most ocean storms are not tropical in nature (i.e. extra-tropical storms). More troubling in such a comparison is the fact that Recon flights into storms were not performed to accurately gauge their intensity until one was randomly done in 1944. Likewise, very primitive radar technology to detect these storms wasn't available prior to the 1955 season and only was land based obviously. This meant that approaching storms could only be identified once it was less than 100 miles from the radar sites.

In short, these are HUGE discrepancies and realistically can't be fairly and objectively theorized after the fact. As a result, none of us can know exactly how many storms definitely did develop during this time period much less how truly intense these storms truly were. That being said, the 44 year period coinciding with the previous active or warm phase of the AMO cycle is one plagued by the fact that there were zero satellites avaliable to detect storms over the ocean until 1960 which meant beforehand, the only means was the hopes a ship may unintentionally encounter the storm (most, certainly didn't measure the absolute lowest pressure) as well as zero recon flights to accurately guage a storms strength if one was even actually detected by such a fairly random precedure until 1944.

It is also important to consider that our current technology and understanding has helped us learn about eyewall replacement cycles and how important factors such as dry air entrainment and friction from land on a storms circulation can cause one to weaken fairly substantially. With that in mind, many storms could only be detected and their intensity estimated by a landfall when many such storms naturally could've weakened before reaching land so that their peak intensities were never accurately guaged even then.

Taking all of the aforementioned into consideration, what I find even more astounding than the supposed theorized major increases in Atlantic Basin hurricane activity and number of intense storms at a time we do have the actual capability to detect all storms and realistically guage their true intensities is the remarkable number of tropical storms and intense hurricanes during a time none of this was possible for all the aforementioned reasons.


HERE ARE A FEW INTERESTING HIGHLIGHTS:

1) Number of named storms:

1887= 19 (Who knows just how many went undetected way back then).

1933= 21 (no doubts more existed here as well reducing the discrepancy of the 7 storm difference between this hyperactive season and 2005).

2) Number of intense hurricanes in one season:

1950= 8 (this is still the record holder and even exceeds the 7 recorded in 2005 at a time there were no satellites).

1916= 6 (only 2 short of the record and only 1 shy of 2005's remarkable total at a time there had to be others).

1926= 6 (the same reasoning applies here as well to 1916)

3) Number of hurricanes in one season:

1870, 1878, 1886, 1893, and 1933= 10 (Wonder how many more went undetected during each of these 5 amazing seasons?).

1887, 1916, and 1950= 11 (Once again, no doubts 1887 for example had far more unrecorded and 1916 as well which greatly decreases the difference of just 4 hurricanes with the record setting 2005 season).

1969= 12 (still number two on list behind the unbelievable total from 2005 which may have possibly been equaled by the other seasons listed above besides 1950 when recon did exist but could have had one go unnoticed to tie this season at 12).

4) Number of category fives in a two consecutive period:

1960 and 1961= 4 (this remarkable total is overshadowed by the fact 2005 five had 4 in one season, if there are no category fives this season, this two season total equals the number from 2005 and it is also important to note that these two seasons held the record for most in one season before 2005).

5) Most intense hurricane ever recorded:

1935= 892 mb (Although just recently surpassed by Gilbert in 1988 with 888 mb, and the new record holder in Wilma at 882 mb in 2005, there is realistic debate that this is still the most intense in Atlantic Basin history and had a pressure measured below 26.00 inches of mercury when the local weather forecaster in the keys showed witnesses the reading and being afraid to watch it drop any further tossed it into the violent winds of this truly remarkable storm).

One additional note: "Hurricane Hunter aircraft estimated winds of over 185 mph on September 6. It is unknown if Dog was at the same caliber of strength as Hurricane Gilbert or Hurricane Wilma, due to the lack of a pressure reading for it at its peak." (Please credit Wikipedia for this quote).

In Conclusion:

All of the aforementioned provides a vivid example as to why it is both unfair and unreasonable to declare that global warming has been responsible for both increased tropical cyclone activity as well as more intense storms because this active phase of the NATURAL active and warm phase of the AMO cycle can't be fairly and logically compared with the previous active phase of the AMO that ran from 1926-1969 with all the incredible limitations involved in detecting and accurately measuring tropical cyclones during this period that was also remarkable in both these two categories despite such inhibiting factors.

Naturally, this new active phase of the AMO cycle will greatly surpass the inactive and cool phase of the AMO cycle that preceded it from 1970-1994 and most certainly is not relevant to this debate to prove global warming is responsible rather than the active phase of the AMO cycle. Consequently, we are simply left with our own personal opinions that amount to little more than conjecture in determing accuractely just how little difference it has made if any in these supposed upswings. In short, we will have to wait until this active phase of the AMO concludes which may even last another 20-30 years, then go through the suceeding inactive phase of the AMO cycle which could take another 25 years, and then compare this current active phase of the AMO cycle with the one that follows the end of the next cool phase. Simply put, this fair and objective comparison can only be accomplished after the next warm phase of the AMO cycle has ended. In other words, it could literally be another 100 years on this realistic historical time-line before we could fairly and reasonably compare this active AMO with the next.

This is the only fair and truly accurate way to determine IF global warming is the cause or the NATURAL active phase of the AMO. Otherwise, we are left theorizing and coming to an unavoidable subjective analysis which most likely will be flawed that amounts to comparing apples to oranges instead of apples with apples. This is why I stated we would never know truthfully the answer in our lifetimes and possibly not in the lifetimes of our children's either. Regardless, there is no way that a political determination will not be made before then whether it is completely accurate or not.

To clarify, I am not saying global warming is not a factor, but it most certainly is not the factor many want to believe in my humble opinion and it appears logically to be comparatively inconsequential in light of the far more influential active and warm phase of the AMO cycles based even on the historical data we do have taking all things into consideration.

To reiterate, I believe all of our collective opinions are honestly fairly subjective in nature at this point for all the reasons I stated and it would be unfair for either side to say one is absolutely wrong in their particular view point under such circumstances. That being said, I do believe I have made a strong case in support of my own reasoning for my position on this issue and simply wanted to share it as one other opinion among many others. Furthermore, this is not even a debate about what is the DIRECT cause of the global warming which also has many discrepancies that make it too difficult to accurately compare with a century ago in my humble opinion.


The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.

Reader Comments

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109. Weather456
11:36 PM AST on July 09, 2006
hey hurricane....you also have a great blog and thanks for the comments.
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108. WSI
8:10 PM GMT on June 26, 2006
Sorry, didn't mean to sound so mean in the message, LOL! No need to apologize.

I just didn't want that guy/gal/whoever getting credit for something that requires intelligence. ;)

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107. HENSCOLASC
4:08 PM EDT on June 26, 2006
WSI - Sorry about that, I was using what I was reading on the blogs. I for one am sure glad that didn't happen (that's one thing we don't need). I appreciate the correction.

David
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106. WSI
7:57 PM GMT on June 26, 2006
"I also heard that this guy hacked in and erased some WU e-mails off of another persons account."

This is a fallacy. No one hacked anything. Occasionally, the system loses some e-mails. If you e-mail Aaron, he can get them restored. I know from experience.
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105. slickmick
7:56 PM GMT on June 26, 2006
ah thanks hen
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104. HENSCOLASC
12:01 PM EDT on June 26, 2006
Slick - I'm not sure about the specifics of this guy Jeff. From what I pick up, he's one of the premier "trolls" who loves to stir up conflict at others expence. I'm not sure though that this latest "incident" was from Jeff. Something in his posts leads otherwise. In this latest attack the "troll" hurt a lot of people trying to use Chaser's name & photos. I'm pretty sure that they've (the WU admins) got this latest fiasco taken care of. In the future, if you read something that seems "out of character" from someone you know, check the name CAREFULLY this might avoid a lot of hurt. I also heard that this guy hacked in and erased some WU e-mails off of another persons account. I know I wasn't of much help. But that's about all I know for now. Now back to your regularly scheduled blog.
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103. slickmick
3:34 PM GMT on June 26, 2006
who is jeff??
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102. hurricanechaser
9:55 AM GMT on June 26, 2006
Hey everyone,

I am so sorry I was gone while a blogger caused such chaos at not simply my expense but at the expense of others as well. Honestly, I chose to be away for awhile since I have been extremely busy with personal matters as well as honoring my committment to my family that I wrote about in a personal message blog preceeding the blog forecasting Albertos landfall. Furthermore, I personally didn't see a need to post on the tropics since I saw no real threats of development during this time as well.

That being said, I want to thank those of you who took up for the fact this was not me nor could I ever be capable of acting like that and saying such horrible things about others. Likewise, I also want to say that I can easily forgive those of you who initially thought it was me and express my genuine understanding how some could have sincerely thought it was me based solely on this persons clever screen name (huricanechaser) and the way they apparently stole my personal pictures from what I have read so far.

I must admit that I am a little confused why I can't find their blog that they obviously created containing my photos, for the screen name no longer exists in the directory. This leads me to the assumption that Administration must've deleted it?

Most importantly, I want to thank each and every single one of you who posted such thoughtful and encouraging comments in this blog while I was away.:) Unfortunately, I am not able to update my blog right now nor will I be able to in the immediate future. That being said, I did share my response based on my "first impression" and thoughts regarding this unfortunate event in Atmosweathers "gone" blog, where I read how this blogger attacked him as well. Please keep in mind, I didn't spend much time catching up on all this tonight nor will I be able to do so within the next few days.

Regardless, I simply wanted to thank you and wish everyone a truly blessed night.:)

Your friend,
Tony

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101. blackcloud
9:26 PM GMT on June 25, 2006
I am sorry Tony. I didn't look at the name closely. I should have known you would never talk to people like that.
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100. code1
11:24 AM CDT on June 24, 2006
He took care of it Taz. I don't post mails from others, sorry.
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99. Tazmanian
9:22 AM PDT on June 24, 2006
have you talk to him yet and he e mail you if so can i see the e mail
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98. code1
11:20 AM CDT on June 24, 2006
Again guys, no worries. The great WunderYakuza has already stopped it, at least under the current aliases.
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97. Tazmanian
9:16 AM PDT on June 24, 2006
how nuts dos he think he his


massing around the the date note it say 1972 on it
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96. Tazmanian
9:15 AM PDT on June 24, 2006
ok Jaz, well do
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95. nightbloomingjasmine
4:12 PM GMT on June 24, 2006
Just call me Jaz, saves on typing. If you click on a picture you can find out the properties of that picture. No matter who posted it first.
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94. Tazmanian
9:09 AM PDT on June 24, 2006
nightbloomingjasmine i see and how did he get the photo in the 1st time you have to lode up not this cope it off some one blog
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93. nightbloomingjasmine
4:06 PM GMT on June 24, 2006
Taz I imagine he just copied the properties of the picture
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92. Tazmanian
8:55 AM PDT on June 24, 2006
how did he get her with his dad noing about it 1st
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91. code1
10:50 AM CDT on June 24, 2006
Not a problem jas, we watch for his antics. He is an angry young man. Not on his own computer last night. His dad is being notified. Troublemaker he is and lives for it unfortunately.
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90. nightbloomingjasmine
3:45 PM GMT on June 24, 2006
One thing that I've noticed is that if you click on someone's blog their name will be hilighted in purple.that way you can weed out the imposters. Just don't click on their name.
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89. Tazmanian
8:44 AM PDT on June 24, 2006
hurricanechaser, i e mail you
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88. peterrocks
3:27 PM GMT on June 24, 2006
Hey Tony, I am thankful that you and your family are doing well. I hope that you never have to go through what you have been through again. It was totally unnecessary and uncalled for. Your insights into ongoing weather situations are right on. The 1st Ammendment is what it is all about. I'm a secular humanist and you are a Christian. You and I don't argue about our differences. P.S. I've capitalized "Christian" because it is the P.C. thing to do. I love human beings,but not always their behaviors.
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87. Tazmanian
7:53 AM PDT on June 24, 2006
ok well do
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86. PBG00
2:52 PM GMT on June 24, 2006
I was mainlly a lurker last season..when a storm threatened I must have missed all this stuff with Jeff
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85. Raysfan70
10:51 AM EDT on June 24, 2006
We went through this last year many of times last year with him. Any questions about someone just ask hills,myself,code. We will help.
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84. Tazmanian
7:51 AM PDT on June 24, 2006
yes it is
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83. Tazmanian
7:50 AM PDT on June 24, 2006
you are right
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82. PBG00
2:49 PM GMT on June 24, 2006
Thanks for the warning..what a shame that we even have to deal with that crap...
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81. Raysfan70
10:47 AM EDT on June 24, 2006
Jeff is pretty computer savy. He is the first one to find out how to get through the back door once you are banned.

He has about 15 different names on here.
Just watch for the names and the trouble and you will know do not bite on it.
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80. Tazmanian
7:47 AM PDT on June 24, 2006
one can not you have to come up with a new e mail for a new id
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79. PBG00
2:42 PM GMT on June 24, 2006
That is just not right..many different names? how can he do thet with just one e-mail address? Kids like that should not be allowed on here no matter how good at the weather they are..
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78. Tazmanian
7:42 AM PDT on June 24, 2006
and this is one of them he insult me
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77. Raysfan70
10:41 AM EDT on June 24, 2006
David Just ban him and any other names that come your way.
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76. Raysfan70
10:39 AM EDT on June 24, 2006
Jeff is a long story PBG000. He is 15 and likes to cause trouble around here.

We do have alot of teens here, and they are good at what they know.

jeff knows the history and I guess that he wants to start things again. But we will not let him.

He has many different names.
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75. Tazmanian
7:37 AM PDT on June 24, 2006
and he came to my blog and insult me in my blog
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74. Tazmanian
7:33 AM PDT on June 24, 2006
73. PBG00
2:31 PM GMT on June 24, 2006
And here I thought we were all adults..This isn't my space .com
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72. Tazmanian
7:29 AM PDT on June 24, 2006
think jeff is like 10 or 11 years old may be 15 at the most you as so i am tell you ok
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71. PBG00
2:26 PM GMT on June 24, 2006
What kind of child would pose as someone else on a blog?How old are these people?
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70. oakland
10:23 AM EDT on June 24, 2006
Suwanee, Look at the spelling of the name. It is NOT Tony.
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69. Raysfan70
10:20 AM EDT on June 24, 2006
Tony jeff is out to get things going again. Please get rid of everything that he wrote.
We know that this is not you.

Not going to let him do this.
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68. SWFLsurvivor
7:43 AM EDT on June 24, 2006
blackcloud - FYI --- notice the "handle"; it's not Tony.
There is only one "r". I wasn't on here last night but apparently it's a trouble-making troll. (sigh)
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67. blackcloud
11:26 AM GMT on June 24, 2006
Tony, what's going on? You don't sound like yourself with the way your posts are worded. Is everything ok?
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66. Suwanee
10:59 AM GMT on June 24, 2006
Hurricanechaser,

Uh...I'm assuming...your last comment wasn't directed at the "questions" I raised about the "theoretical" impact of GW and conditions attributed to tropical system formation in the Atlantic...or the follow up directly preceding your last comment.

If, on the off chance, I'm incorrect in my assumption...no worries, I won't raise/post any additional questions on your blog -- you have my apology, if this happens to be the case. Just drop in a response if this is the case.

(Caveat: I don't follow many of the blogs in WU...so I just might be missing some "spill over" back-n-forth discussion/debate/arguments).

OK, I’m running about 1/2 hour late here…time to see how muddy the southern portion of the Appalachian Trail is after the rain, yesterday evening, in the general vicinity of the GA, NC and TN junction. Have a good day all :)

- Suwanee
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65. code1
11:25 PM CDT on June 23, 2006
Jeff! Go away. Daddy will hear of this tomorrow.
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64. huricanechaser
4:24 AM GMT on June 24, 2006
All of you will burn...and NO I do not answer stupid questions!

God Bless,
Tony
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63. Suwanee
3:19 AM GMT on June 24, 2006
I hope everyone is doing superbly on this fine Friday evening ;)

Anyhow, for anyone interested in my questions below (re: GW vs. Hurricane formation/intensity), Snowfire tossed out a thought that led me to two interesting articles about the potential impact of rising global temps and the resultant impact (or lack thereof, depends on how you read the articles) on El Nino's frequency and the Walker Circulation. Links to both articles and a brief (emphasis on brief) synopsis can be found here Link

Any additional thoughts/insights would be most appreciated. Remember - a "stream of thought" response is often the most germane and intelligible; nobody is defending a thesis if they deem it fitting to add to the discussion -- so let those thoughts loose ;)

Another Suwanee Made-Up Quote: No question or comment made in Life is dumb – as long as it is intended to better your understanding...or for the betterment of your recipient's.

In other words, a “dumb comment” is only a comment/observation/response that is made to buttress your own self-worth (i.e., bringing down another to elevate yourself).

- Suwanee
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62. HENSCOLASC
9:34 AM EDT on June 23, 2006
HEY TONY!!! What's your take on this thing trying to develop near the bahamas? The NAM has it developing into a tropical system and bringing it into central SC on Monday. Link We would appreciate your professional opinion.
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61. slickmick
11:14 AM GMT on June 23, 2006
happy friday chase
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60. Suwanee
3:22 AM GMT on June 23, 2006
Nor can I figure out how to mitigate the spread of the bold font...sorry all ;)
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59. Suwanee
2:58 AM GMT on June 23, 2006
I moved my questions to a new blog; I'm assuming Hurricanechaser will re-post a new blog soon and I don't want my inquries buried (it is a fact of life and the blogs must move on <<>>).

Here, see below, is the link if anyone has a GERMAINE thought or an addition to ANY of my questions or corrections to my comments OR any thought or comment on any of the four questions I raised are welcome( i.e., "stay on topic").

Caveat: I will delete any ungermaine post or "spam".

Hurricanechaser, I'm not trying to take or steal your "readership"...I'm just want to start up a blog that asks people to respond to questions/problems that are tropical in nature in order to get some unbiased thoughts flowing (i.e., everyone's "best thinking").

My thought is not to allow or accept posts with uncommented upon links as "proof"...a post with a link only stays on if the person comments on the content in a way that is germaine to the topic (or, at least, posts with comment and link for a new topic).

I'm actually asking/begging that you read some of them and respond, that is only if you deem them ,my questions, fitting/intelligent (BUT -only after you and your family are well situated...until then, I just may delete your posts to be certain you have taken care of what is most important in Life).

Hurricanechaser, I'm serious, unless I hear about you getting back into your house, being settled and having the time to enjoy your family's company on a sunset/sunrise, following a well deserved dinner/breakfast...then be warned...I just might delete your post ;)


Link

-Suwanee

p.s. sorry, my connection is horrible, tonight, so editing this is becoming a nightmare...bear with the typos all.
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