Fourth National Climate Assessment

NCA4 Web Site

Changes in Severe Storms

Human-induced change is affecting atmospheric dynamics and contributing to the poleward expansion of the tropics and the northward shift in Northern Hemisphere winter storm tracks since 1950. Increases in greenhouse gases and decreases in air pollution have contributed to increases in Atlantic hurricane activity since 1970. In the future, Atlantic and eastern North Pacific hurricane rainfall and intensity are projected to increase, as are the frequency and severity of landfalling “atmospheric rivers” on the West Coast.