Anatomy of a hurricane
IN OCTOBER 2016, HURRICANE MATTHEW KILLED MORE THAN 550 people and caused $15 billion in property damages. The most powerful storm to hit the Caribbean and Southeastern United States in a decade, it whipped winds up to 160 miles per hour and pushed a 10-foot surge of seawater onto the coast. Unfortunately, Matthew might be more of a harbinger than an outlier. Based on computer models and historical records, many climatologists think that warming oceans might make storms like Matthew more common. Research suggests that a hotter planet might create the perfect weather conditions for forming these exceptionally strong, dangerous tropical cyclones. Here’s why.