Mediterranean Tropical-Like Cyclones in Present and Future Climate


The Mediterranean has been identified as one of the most responsive regions to climate change. It has been conjectured that one of the effects of a warmer climate could be to make the Mediterranean Sea prone to the formation of hurricanes. Already in the present climate regime, however, a few of the numerous low pressure systems that form in the area develop a dynamical evolution similar to the one of tropical cyclones. Even if their spatial extent is generally smaller and the life cycle shorter compared to tropical cyclones, such storms produce severe damage on the highly populated coastal areas surrounding the Mediterranean Sea. This study, based on the analysis of individual realistically simulated storms in homogeneous long-term and high-resolution data from multiple climate change scenarios, shows that the projected effect of climate change on Mediterranean tropical-like cyclones is decreased frequency and a tendency toward a moderate increase of intensity.
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