Trailer: Rise of the Superstorms

June 27, 2018

PBS Nova series will air a program tonight, June 27, on the increasing intensity of hurricanes.

Featured in the trailer, friend of this blog Dr. Jeff Masters, who was interviewed extensively for the piece.

In just one devastating month, Houston, Florida, and the Caribbean were changed forever. In summer 2017, three monster hurricanes swept in from the Atlantic one after another, shattering storm records and killing hundreds of people. First, Harvey brought catastrophic rain and flooding to Houston, causing $125 billion in damage. Less than two weeks later, Irma lashed the Caribbean with 185 mile per hour winds—and left the island of Barbuda uninhabitable. Hot on Irma’s heels, Maria intensified from a Category 1 to a Category 5 hurricane in just 15 hours, then ravaged Puerto Rico and left millions of people without power. As the planet warms, are these superstorms the new normal? How well can we predict them? And as the U.S. faces the next hurricane season, does it need to prepare for the reality of climate refugees? NOVA takes you inside the 2017 superstorms and the cutting-edge research that will determine how well equipped we are to deal with hurricanes in the future.

The reason this is concerning:

“’s the high end events that are most destructive, historically, more than half the damage that’s been done in the United States,  dating back to the middle of the 19th century, has been done essentially by just 8 events.” – Kerry Emanuel PhD, MIT

My 2016 piece on hurricanes, which features experts Kerry Emanuel of MIT and others,  touches on the intensification of storms in a warming world. Worth a review.

Below, an all star science team looked at the destructive flooding from Hurricane Harvey last summer, and tracked moisture from record warm ocean waters to the atmosphere over Houston.

3 Responses to “Trailer: Rise of the Superstorms”

  1. dumboldguy Says:

    Just watched the program—–impressive and pulled no punches. It will be interesting to see what this year and next bring in the way of hurricanes.

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