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Study: Future Hurricanes Will Be Wetter

A new study says hurricanes of the future will be more like Hurricane Harvey.
Study: Future Hurricanes Will Be Wetter
May 30, 2018

A new study by scientists at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) finds that hurricanes of the future will be more like Hurricane Harvey, slow moving and very rainy. Harvey dumped more than 20 inches of rain across about 29,000 square miles. Shane Hubbard, a researcher at the University of Wisconsin, says, “In looking at many of these events in the United States, I’ve never seen anything of this magnitude or size. This is something that hasn’t happened in our modern era of observations.” In total, about 33 trillion gallons of rain fell during Hurricane Harvey.

Researchers found several past hurricanes that would be different if they happened in a warmer future. The study finds that as the air gets warmer, it can hold more water vapor, which is converted to rain in storms. Ethan Gutmann, an NCAR scientist who led the study, adds, “Our research suggests that future hurricanes could drop significantly more rain. Hurricane Harvey demonstrated last year just how dangerous that can be.”

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