DISCUSSION: There is no debate that with a gradually warming planet and with consequently greater amounts of heat energy being stored within Earth's oceans, there is an increasing amount of energy being made available for tropical cyclone development in many parts of the world. Having said that, it is very important to understand how much of an impact natural disasters can have as North America gears up for both the Tropical Atlantic and the Tropical Eastern Pacific hurricane seasons, respectively. During the course of a given tropical cyclone season it is always critical to remember that it only takes one powerful storm to forever change a coastline and the lives of millions of people.
Having said all of the above, it is worth noting that during the course of 2017 alone, there 16 separate billion-dollar weather events across the span of the United States of America. Granted, not all of these events were tropical cyclone-based events, but there was still sizable percentage of events which were in fact tropical cyclones. From Hurricane Harvey, to Hurricane Irma, and then to Hurricane Maria, these were just a few of the incredibly high-impact weather events which slammed the United States during the course of 2017.
However, note from the graphic attached above, that those three major hurricanes from 2017 were three of the five most costly U.S. hurricanes in recorded history. Granted, over the last few decades, there has been an increased drive of people moving closer to as well as generating more infrastructure along and near coastal regions. Thus, there is as great of a threat as ever for tropical cyclones to impact densely populated towns and cities both now and moving forward.
Hence, in order to reduce the magnitude of tropical cyclone threats well ahead of any immediate landfall threat, be sure to always be hurricane-ready and make any preparations you may need ahead of time.
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© 2018 Meteorologist Jordan Rabinowitz