LOS ANGELES, January 29 (Xinhua). A new study by NASA shows that warming in tropical oceans due to climate change may lead to a significant increase in the frequency of extreme rain storms by the end of the century.
A research team led by Hartmut Aumann from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, conducted a 15-year analysis of data obtained using NASA's atmospheric infrared echo sounder tool for tropical oceans to determine the relationship between average sea surface temperature and the onset of violent storms.
They found that extreme storms, which produced at least three millimeters of rain per hour over an area of 25 km, formed when the sea surface temperature was higher than about 28 degrees Celsius, according to a JPL publication on Tuesday.
The team also found that for every degree Celsius, there are 21% more storms than ocean temperature.
Aumann said strong storms would intensify in a warmer environment. Thunderstorms usually occur in the warmest time of the year.
“Our data provide the first quantitative estimate of how much they can increase, at least for tropical oceans,” said Aumann.
According to currently accepted climate models, it is predicted that with a steady increase in carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, which is 1 percent per year, the temperature of the surface of the tropical ocean may rise by as much as 2.7 degrees Celsius by the end of the century.
According to the forecast, if this happens, the frequency of extreme storms by this time will increase by 60%.
“Our results provide a quantitative estimate and a more visual representation of the effects of projected warming of the oceans,” said Aumann. “More storms means more floods, more structural damage, more crops, etc., unless mitigating measures are taken.”