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A twenty-six decade record of Atlantic hurricanes

28 Sep 2022 | Science Notes

From the CO2Science Archive: Although some climate alarmists contend that CO2-induced global warming will increase the number of hurricanes in the future, the search for such effect on Atlantic Ocean tropical cyclone frequency has so far remained elusive. And with the recent publication of Rojo-Garibaldi et al. (2016), it looks like climate alarmists will have to keep on looking, or accept the likelihood that something other than CO2 is at the helm in moderating Atlantic hurricane frequency.

Paper reviewed: Rojo-Garibaldi, B., Salas-de-León, D.A., Sánchez, N.L. and Monreal-Gómez, M.A. 2016. Hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea and their relationship with sunspots. Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics 148: 48-52.

In their intriguing analysis published in the Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics, the four-member research team of Rojo-Garibaldi et al. developed a new database of historical hurricane occurrences in the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea, spanning twenty-six decades over the period 1749 to 2012. Statistical analysis of the record revealed “the hurricane number is actually decreasing in time,” which finding is quite stunning considering that it is quite possible fewer hurricanes were recorded at the beginning of their record when data acquisition was considerably worse than towards the end of the record. Nevertheless, as the Mexican research team indicates, “when analyzing the entire time series built for this study, i.e., from 1749 to 2012, the linear trend in the number of hurricanes is decreasing” (see figure below).

As for the potential cause behind the downward trend, Rojo-Garibaldi et al. examined the possibility of a solar influence, performing a series of additional statistical analyses (spectral, wavelet and coherence wavelet transform) on the hurricane database, as well as a sunspot database obtained from the Solar Influences Data Analysis Center of the Solar Physics Department of the Royal Observatory of Belgium. Therein, their exploratory analyses revealed that “this decline is related to an increase in sunspot activity.”

3 comments on “A twenty-six decade record of Atlantic hurricanes”

  1. Hello
    I see that this data is related to the Caribbean/Gulf of Mexico.
    Would the data transpose to the Atlantic Ocean where Ian is making landfall in Canada?
    I ask this because of the rhetoric in the talk shows is alarmist doom, never happened before, going to cost a lot etc.
    I would like something succinct I can use to counter their alarmism if that is possible.
    Keep up the great work!

  2. You might take a look at the sources used that this summary article: "From the CO2Science Archive". The paper references a plethora of studies that support the article's thesis. The paper:
    "A New History of Major Atlantic Hurricane Activity Over the Past 270 Years" could serve you,
    The paper demonstrates the number and Category ranking of major Atlantic-born Huricanes for the past three centuries does not support the argument that a correlation, causal or otherwise, with Climate Change data does not exist.

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