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In the News

Climate change to increase distribution of tropical storms

Joanne Parkinson

30th December 2021

Physicists from Yale University have completed a study which shows that tropical storms will form in mid-latitude areas as a result of warming ocean temperatures. Evidence to support this judgement includes Storm Alpha which hit Portugal in September 2020. This confirmed to scientists of the increasing global distribution of storms and raises concerns about the potential future impact on cities such as New York and Tokyo.

Global warming will reduce the temperature difference between the equator and poles which will weaken the jet streams. This weakening will enable the movement of storms to mid-latitude areas, which is where the majority of the world's population lives.

Impacts on key cities will damage infrastructure and put people at risk. The increase in storms, coupled with an increase in sea level, will produce significant flooding events along coastlines. Other scientists have suggested that whilst these mid-latitude storms may have lower wind speeds, there is likely to be heavier rain associated with these storms which will causes increased flooding risk too.

For more on this study, read the article on the BBC website.

Joanne Parkinson

An experienced, outstanding Geography teacher, GCSE examiner and Head of Humanities in a 11-18 school. I'm passionate about all geographical events and am a keen blogger.

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