Who would have believed it? Cleaning up pollution may lead to more hurricanes!
We’re not sure how this might effect tornadoes, but recent research suggests that cleaning up air pollution from factories in North America and Europe could have helped to cause more disastrous hurricanes in the US in recent years. Since 1995, according to NOAA, severe hurricanes have become much more frequent in the US.
It was always assumed that natural causes were behind the temperature fluctuations that lead to hurricanes, but a new study suggests that tiny airborne particles from industrial pollution (as well as from volcanic eruptions), are the more likely culprit.
In the April 5th edition of the Financial Times, Pilita Clark quotes climatologist Ben Booth as saying, "Until now, no one has been able to demonstrate a physical link to what is causing these observed Atlantic ocean fluctuations, so it was assumed they must be caused by natural variability. Our research implies that far from being natural, these changes could have been largely driven by dirty pollution and volcanoes. If so, this means a number of natural disasters linked to these ocean fluctuations, such as persistent African drought during the 1970s and ’80s, may not be so natural after all."