Md Moshiur Rahman 24hours news (space)/nasa
Climate scientists have developed a new model predicting the effect of global warming on storms, and for once, there's a little good news along with the bad.
Good news first: Under their new model, it appears that a slightly hotter, carbon dioxide-richer atmosphere would produce fewer big storms of the kind that trigger tornadoes and set off wildfires.
The bad: Those fewer storms will likely be more violent, intensifying the potential damage done instead. So, if you want to keep driving that SUV around, maybe you'd better get yourself a good lightning rod, and start clearing that brush away from your house. And don't even think about going near a trailer home.
Researchers from NASA's Goddard Institute For Space Studies were building on previous work that had shown that heavy rainstorms would likely be more common on a warming Earth, but which had rarely addressed the issues of updrafts, wind shear, and other elements that contribute to the violence of a storm.
They say the computer model they've developed is the first that successfully simulates measured differences between the strengths of storms over land and sea, as well as features of storm production over tropical areas in Africa and the Amazon Basin.
With those successes in mind, researchers modeled instead for an Earth with an average surface temperature five degrees warmer than today, and double the current carbon dioxide content. The result: Fewer overall storms over land masses, but more that rival the strongest thunderstorms and tornadoes that we experience today.
"These findings may seem to imply that fewer storms in the future will be good news for disastrous western U.S. wildfires," said Tony Del Genio, lead author of the study and a scientist at NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies, New York. "But drier conditions near the ground combined with higher lightning flash rates per storm may end up intensifying wildfire damage instead."