As I previously reported in my post titled: Hurricane frequency and global warming NOT the cause of increased destruction, it appears that the “link” cited by Gore and others trying to equate global warming to hurricane frequency is rapidly evaporating. A new study published in BAMS has just gotten some press coverage.
We have this story from the Houston Chronicle:
One of the most influential scientists behind the theory that global warming has intensified recent hurricane activity says he will reconsider his stand. The hurricane expert, Kerry Emanuel of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, this week unveiled a novel technique for predicting hurricane activity.
The new work suggests that, even in a dramatically warming world, hurricane frequency and intensity may not substantially rise during the next two centuries.
The research, appearing in the March issue of Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, is all the more remarkable coming from Emanuel, a highly visible leader in his field and long an ardent proponent of a link between global warming and much stronger hurricanes. His changing views could influence other scientists.
“The results surprised me,” Emanuel said of his work, adding that global warming may still play a role in raising the intensity of hurricanes but what that role is remains far from certain.
[...] Among the first to publish was Emanuel, who, just three weeks before Hurricane Katrina’s landfall, published a paper in Nature that concluded a key measurement of the power dissipated by a storm during its lifetime had risen dramatically since the mid-1970s. In the future, he argued, incredibly active hurricane years such as 2005 would become the norm rather than flukes. This view, amplified by environmentalists and others concerned about global warming, helped establish in the public’s mind that “super” hurricanes were one of climate change’s most critical threats. A satellite image of a hurricane emanating from a smokestack featured prominently in promotions for Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth