Tropical Storm Aletta nears hurricane force in Pacific

Hurricanes Are Lingering Longer. That Makes Them More Dangerous.

Hurricanes Are Slowing Down and Leaving More Damage When They Hit Land

Forecasters say Hurricane Aletta is not a threat to land.

These slower speeds don't mean the winds circling the eye of the storm are slowing down.

He said Hurricane Harvey in Texas past year was a dramatic example of the consequences of a slow-moving or "stalled" tropical cyclone.

In the western north Pacific, the slowdown's been 30 percent; in the "Australian" region it's 19 percent.

Study author James Kossin of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says Harvey is a great example of what he found.

"If the atmosphere can hold more water vapor, then things are going to tend to rain more", Kossin said.

Atlantic storms that make landfall moved 2.9 miles per hour slower than 60 some years ago, it said.

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New research shows it could also cause them to move from point A to point B more slowly, which might make them even more unsafe.

In addition to slower atmospheric circulations possibly causing the storms to move slower, the amount of rainfall that the storms are able to dump is increasing as global temperatures climb.

"Kossin is right that a 10 percent change in tropical cyclone motion would be an important change due to its effect on accumulated precipitation", Texas state climatologist John Nielsen-Gammon said in an email.

"I went in with that hypothesis and looked at the data, and out popped the signal that was much bigger than anything I was expecting", Kossin said. NOAA researchers say the flooding was the main cause of 68 deaths and $125 billion in damage. However, scientists have struggled to isolate the impacts of climate change on the characteristics of extreme weather events.

In a warming world where atmospheric circulations are expected to change, the atmospheric circulation that drives tropical cyclone movement is expected to weaken.

While the new research suggests hurricanes and typhoons are slowing down over time, more work needs to be done to improve prediction models for how hurricanes may behave in the future.

Kossin concluded that the trend has all the signs of human-induced climate change.

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