Experts: Megastorms could become norm
“As we move to these abnormal extremes in many places, to me, it points to the role of increasing temperatures on our planet,” said Lonnie G. Thompson, senior research scientist at Ohio State University’s Byrd Polar Research Center. “It’s becoming the new norm.”
Juliette Rooney-Varga, director of University of Massachusetts Lowell’s Climate Change Initiative, said steadily rising sea surface and air temperatures are contributing to everything from destructive storms like Harvey to droughts.
“As the ocean warms, they can transfer energy through the storm. The warmer the atmosphere is, the more moisture it can absorb from the ocean,” she said. “We are hearing the terms ‘record-setting rainfall’ or ‘intense precipitation’ more and more across the country — not just in this storm.”