Hurricanes and major tropical storms

Recent devastating tropical cyclones highlight the urgent need for improved early warning systems, mitigation measures, and preparedness to save lives.

Headlines raise questions among many Americans about whether climate change is increasing cyclone frequency and intensity.

People want to know if scientific observations support these trends and if scientists attribute them to climate change.

Understanding the impact of climate change on tropical cyclones is crucial, given their socio-economic consequences on landfall.

Climate models suggest a decrease in global cyclone numbers, but anticipate an increase in the intensity of the strongest storms (Categories 4 and 5) by up to 25%, accompanied by heavier rainfall.

Rising sea levels due to climate change will heighten the risks of storm surges, posing a greater threat to coastal regions.

Coastal development increases the population at risk, exacerbating vulnerability to tropical cyclone storm-surge flooding.

Confidence levels are lower for certain cyclone projections, such as changes in tracks and translation speed, especially at the individual basin scale.

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