More Strong Hurricanes Due to Global Warming | EYES IN
But wind speeds don't tell the whole story, said John Abraham, a thermal scientist at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minn. The size of a storm, the amount of rain it dumps, and the size of the wave surges it produces also determine how damaging a hurricane will be, even though the category scale doesn't take those details into account.
All of those factors are likely to get worse with climate warming, Abraham said.
In addition to the severe droughts and floods that have struck around the country in the last year or two, Abraham said, powerful hurricanes are adding to the economic toll that weather is increasingly taking on our society.
"The hurricanes that really matter, that cause damage, are increasing," Abraham said. "What scientists have been saying would happen for decades is now happening. There's an economic cost to not doing anything about this problem."