A new paper published in GRL gives a 1000-year perspective on Hurricane activity in Boston, USA. The paper is entitled: ‘A 1,000-year, annually-resolved record of hurricane activity from Boston, Massachusetts,’ by Besonen et al.
The Abstract states:
The annually-laminated (i.e., varved) sediment record from the Lower Mystic Lake (near Boston, MA), contains a series of anomalous graded beds deposited by strong flooding events that have affected the basin over the last millennium. From the historic portion of the record, 10 out of 11 of the most prominent graded beds correspond with years in which category 2–3 hurricanes are known to have struck the Boston area. Thus, we conclude that the graded beds represent deposition related to intense hurricane precipitation combined with wind-driven vegetation disturbance that exposes fresh, loose sediment. The hurricane signal shows strong, centennial-scale variations in frequency with a period of increased activity between the 12th–16th centuries, and decreased activity during the 11th and 17th–19th centuries. These frequency changes are consistent with other paleoclimate indicators from the tropical North Atlantic, in particular, sea surface temperature variations.
The paper concludes:
The LML sedimentary record provides a well-controlled and annually-resolved record of category 2–3 hurricane activity in the Boston area over the last millennium. The hurricane signal shows centennial-scale variations in frequency with a period of increased activity between the 12th–16th centuries, and decreased activity during the 11th and 17th–19th centuries. We recognize that the LML record is a single point source record representative for the greater Boston area, and hurricanes that passed a few hundred km to the east or west may not have produced the very heavy rainfall amounts and vegetation disturbance in the lake watershed necessary to produce a strong signal within the LML sediments. Nevertheless, we also note that clear evidence of a secular change in hurricane frequency identified in the LML record is consistent with other lines of evidence that conditions for the development of hurricanes have changed on centennial timescales. Hence, it appears that hurricane activity was more frequent in the first half of the last millennium when tropical Atlantic SSTs were warmer and eastern equatorial Pacific SSTs were cooler than in subsequent centuries.
Also, a NOAA climate realist speaks out:
Excerpt: “I did not say if there is global warming, it would be man-made,” Mr. Goldenberg emphasized. “Not all scientists agree that the warming we’ve seen is necessarily anthropogenic. It is a blatant lie put forth in the media that makes it seem there is only a fringe of scientists who don’t buy into anthropogenic global warming.” According to Stanley Goldenberg, meteorologist with the Hurricane Research Division of NOAA, based in Miami, “Numerous hurricane meteorologists agree that the historical data has not produced any evidence of changes [due to climate change] in the number or intensity of hurricanes, particularly in the Atlantic Basin, and even globally. “There are some who have done studies that do claim a link, [but] virtually all those studies have been heavily rebutted by others in the hurricane community,” he noted. “In my opinion, the flaw in those studies is an improper utilization of historical databases. I have been a specialist in hurricane climate data for close to three decades, and others who know the databases well agree with what I am saying.” Mr. Goldenberg pointed to a number of confounding problems in such studies, including the time frame chosen, the techniques available now and in the past to measure hurricane activity, the ways in which such activity was recorded, and the availability of satellite data—or lack thereof. “The biggest fallacy is that people think that a hurricane feeds off a warm ocean, and if the ocean gets warmer, we will have more intense hurricanes,” he explained. “But there are other factors involved, such as vertical wind shear, which is the difference between the upper and lower layers of the atmosphere. You could also have drier air. These are far more critical factors than the ocean being warmer. “Everything else being equal, if you warm the ocean under a storm, you might get a stronger storm—but everything else is not equal,” said Mr. Goldenberg. “Warming may increase vertical shear and therefore inhibit storms. The ocean itself warming is such a little effect.” […] Mr. Goldenberg of NOAA added, “There are those who want to attribute any perceived increase in natural disasters to anthropomorphic global warming. I predict that if we have an active hurricane season, someone will attribute it to AGW. They’re not really looking at the science; they’re looking at the disaster.