Op-Ed: Hurricane Ian and the coming climate crash
Hurricane Ian is a once-in-a-century storm that will affect the entire hemisphere, affecting the Gulf and Caribbean with more than 130,000 storm surges and heavy rain in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida. The storm moved along its expected path on Wednesday, September 23, 2017, and will continue to move slowly toward the U.S. southern coast from the Bahamas, with the final landfall location at southern Louisiana.
As an intense Category 3 hurricane, which has winds of 130-150 mph as it passes over land, Ian could be a significant and possibly record-breaking storm. The storm will form off the coast of the Bahamas and as it moved towards Florida it will begin to encounter cooler ocean waters, which will allow the storm surge to rise to unprecedented levels, with the final landfall location still unclear as the storm continues to move across the Gulf of Mexico.
Hurricane Ian is considered to be among the strongest and most potentially catastrophic storms on record in the United States. This record-breaking storm will create a surge of up to 6 feet or more along the Gulf of Mexico (GOM), over 60 miles of the United States coast and as far inland as central Louisiana. The storm surge alone will be enough to destroy or severely damage the coastal region of the entire United States, including portions of New Orleans and Tampa, Florida, with a storm surge of 20-to-30 feet.
Hurricane season officially began on June 1, but as the Atlantic hurricane season typically begins in late August and the Eastern Pacific one in November, the hurricane season runs through the end of December.
Hurricane season is a unique feature of the climate for America, where hurricanes are more frequent and of an intense intensity, with many of them reaching category 3 or higher. Because the climate has experienced several cycles of warming and cooling over the last century, the climate changes over the course of a year and the hurricanes are more frequent in the spring and summer.
The climate models (Computer Models) that predict the upcoming 2017 hurricane season are significantly different from the models that predict the past 16 years of hurricane activity. The climate models, which are models of the climate system itself, are an abstraction. They do not contain the finer details of weather system