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PCIC Science Brief: The Poleward Migration of Tropical Cyclone Maximum Intensity

PCIC is pleased to announce the release of our next Science Brief. PCIC Science Briefs are a regular series of brief reports on recent climate science literature, relevant to stakeholders in the Pacific and Yukon Region of Canada. PCIC has developed these briefs because we recognize the need for a bridge between the cutting edge of climate science research and the various stakeholders who need access to this knowledge, in plain-language reports, filtered for regional relevance, and suitable for consideration in planning and adaptation. The PCIC Science Briefs contextualize and explain the results and implications of important scientific findings.

This Science Brief covers an article by Kossin et al. (2014) in the journal Nature. The authors examine the latitudes at which tropical storms reached their maximum intensity over the 1982-2012 period. The authors find that, globally, the latitudes of maximum intensity have shifted poleward and that this trend of poleward migration is evident in all ocean basins, except the North Indian Ocean basin. Kossin and colleagues note that this migration is apparently linked to: (1) the absolute difference between wind speeds in the upper and lower troposphere and (2) potential intensity. These have both experienced changes that can be linked to the expansion of the tropics, which is thought to be due, in part, to anthropogenic causes.

Read this Science Brief

Kossin J.P.,  K.A. Emmanuel, and G.A. Vecchi, 2014: The poleward migration of the location of tropical cyclone maximum intensity. Nature, 509, 349-352, doi:10.1038/nature13278.