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Old 09-02-2017, 10:52 AM   #3962
The Scientist
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The surrounding wind field of a hurricane largely (albeit not entirely) determines a storm's path, whereas ocean temperature most directly impacts rate of growth and intensity of a storm. As with any storm, a hurricane's path considered mathematically chaotic, that is that systematic long term predictions are very difficult because they are sensitive with respect to initial conditions, and depend continuously on interactions with their changing environment. It is largely difficult to pinpoint the reason that a singular storm behaved in the way that it did during its lifetime, and to attribute a single storm to "effects from global warming" is perhaps jumping the shark in terms of scientific certainty.

A very good point was brought up by Mozz about us having a relatively quiet decade for hurricanes. Because singular storms are relatively difficult to study the causes of (there's simply too much data to work with), we instead study trends of storms and study new storms in relation to what we already generally know of others. If we subscribe to the logic that "global warming is a significant cause of hurricane activity", we would expect a more consistent trend of there being more, stronger storms than what we would otherwise expect with respect to other factors. This is patently not the case. Having said that, it's also not as simple as saying "we haven't had activity lately, so it can't be global warming." The trend simply does not suggest such as certainty, and a ten-year trend on this kind of scale is largely insubstantial.

My point here is as follows: It is largely beyond our knowledge of both mathematics and atmospheric science to necessarily attribute or dissociate any short term frequency/intensity of hurricanes to the effects of global warming.

Geet's post is also good and discusses something largely different than the content of this post.


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Last edited by Altocharizard55; 09-02-2017 at 11:06 AM.
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