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Atlantic hurricane activity during the last millennium.

Burn MJ, Palmer SE - Sci Rep (2015)

Bottom Line: Hurricanes are a persistent socio-economic hazard for countries situated in and around the Main Development Region (MDR) of Atlantic tropical cyclones.However, the attribution of hurricane activity to specific forcing factors is hampered by the short observational record of Atlantic storms.Here, we present the Extended Hurricane Activity (EHA) index, the first empirical reconstruction of Atlantic tropical cyclone activity for the last millennium, derived from a high-resolution lake sediment geochemical record from Jamaica.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Geography and Geology, The University of the West Indies, Mona Campus, Kingston 7, Jamaica, W.I.

ABSTRACT
Hurricanes are a persistent socio-economic hazard for countries situated in and around the Main Development Region (MDR) of Atlantic tropical cyclones. Climate-model simulations have attributed their interdecadal variability to changes in solar and volcanic activity, Saharan dust flux, anthropogenic greenhouse gas and aerosol emissions and heat transport within the global ocean conveyor belt. However, the attribution of hurricane activity to specific forcing factors is hampered by the short observational record of Atlantic storms. Here, we present the Extended Hurricane Activity (EHA) index, the first empirical reconstruction of Atlantic tropical cyclone activity for the last millennium, derived from a high-resolution lake sediment geochemical record from Jamaica. The EHA correlates significantly with decadal changes in tropical Atlantic sea surface temperatures (SSTs; r = 0.68; 1854-2008), the Accumulated Cyclone Energy index (ACE; r = 0.90; 1851-2010), and two annually-resolved coral-based SST reconstructions (1773-2008) from within the MDR. Our results corroborate evidence for the increasing trend of hurricane activity during the Industrial Era; however, we show that contemporary activity has not exceeded the range of natural climate variability exhibited during the last millennium.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Comparison of environmental parameters and proxy-based reconstructions of MDR climatic phenomena during the modern historical period.(a) MDR precipitation for the interval 1871–2012 (modified from Dunstone29). Reprinted by permission from Macmillan Publishers Ltd: Nature Geoscience 6, 534-539, copyright 2013. (b) Revised Accumulated Cyclone Energy (ACE) index for the MDR from the National Hurricane Center’s Hurricane Database (HURDATv2). (c) MDR SSTs (July-November) from the NOAA NCDC extended reconstructed global sea surface temperature data (ERSSTv.3b)49. (d) PC3 sequence of lake-level change at Grape Tree Pond, Jamaica27. (e–g) Coral-based SST reconstructions from the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico30, Los Roques, Venezuela31 and SW Puerto Rico32. All time-series were filtered using an 11-point running mean except (b) which was filtered using a 21-point running mean.
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f3: Comparison of environmental parameters and proxy-based reconstructions of MDR climatic phenomena during the modern historical period.(a) MDR precipitation for the interval 1871–2012 (modified from Dunstone29). Reprinted by permission from Macmillan Publishers Ltd: Nature Geoscience 6, 534-539, copyright 2013. (b) Revised Accumulated Cyclone Energy (ACE) index for the MDR from the National Hurricane Center’s Hurricane Database (HURDATv2). (c) MDR SSTs (July-November) from the NOAA NCDC extended reconstructed global sea surface temperature data (ERSSTv.3b)49. (d) PC3 sequence of lake-level change at Grape Tree Pond, Jamaica27. (e–g) Coral-based SST reconstructions from the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico30, Los Roques, Venezuela31 and SW Puerto Rico32. All time-series were filtered using an 11-point running mean except (b) which was filtered using a 21-point running mean.

Mentions: Our reconstruction of hurricane activity is derived from the third Principal Component (PC3) of mm-scale ITRAX μ-XRF core scans of a ~1200-year long sediment record of lake-level change from Grape Tree Pond in southern Jamaica27 (Figs 1,2a,3d and 4c). The pond is a freshwater-fed and anoxic mangrove lagoon, which is sensitive to precipitation variability on multiple timescales. High rates of sediment accumulation (~2.5 mm−yr) combined with low levels of bioturbation result in sedimentation rates sufficient to capture geochemical changes at an annual resolution. We improve the original 14C-based age model for the site by anchoring the PC3 record to the annually resolved coral-based SST reconstruction from the eastern Yucatan Peninsula30 for the period 1775–2009 (Fig. 1; see methods). Of the first three principal components of the geochemical data, PC1 explains 47.6% of the variance within the dataset and represents a gradient of sediment deposition from organic sediments to a combination of inorganic authigenic and detrital elements, the latter interpreted to reflect the aerial deposition of Saharan dust27. PC2 explains 11.9% of the variance and represents a salinity gradient. PC3 explains 8.9% of the variance and represents a gradient of redox conditions at the sediment-water interface of the lagoon and exhibits a positive relationship with lake level change27.


Atlantic hurricane activity during the last millennium.

Burn MJ, Palmer SE - Sci Rep (2015)

Comparison of environmental parameters and proxy-based reconstructions of MDR climatic phenomena during the modern historical period.(a) MDR precipitation for the interval 1871–2012 (modified from Dunstone29). Reprinted by permission from Macmillan Publishers Ltd: Nature Geoscience 6, 534-539, copyright 2013. (b) Revised Accumulated Cyclone Energy (ACE) index for the MDR from the National Hurricane Center’s Hurricane Database (HURDATv2). (c) MDR SSTs (July-November) from the NOAA NCDC extended reconstructed global sea surface temperature data (ERSSTv.3b)49. (d) PC3 sequence of lake-level change at Grape Tree Pond, Jamaica27. (e–g) Coral-based SST reconstructions from the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico30, Los Roques, Venezuela31 and SW Puerto Rico32. All time-series were filtered using an 11-point running mean except (b) which was filtered using a 21-point running mean.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4525293&req=5

f3: Comparison of environmental parameters and proxy-based reconstructions of MDR climatic phenomena during the modern historical period.(a) MDR precipitation for the interval 1871–2012 (modified from Dunstone29). Reprinted by permission from Macmillan Publishers Ltd: Nature Geoscience 6, 534-539, copyright 2013. (b) Revised Accumulated Cyclone Energy (ACE) index for the MDR from the National Hurricane Center’s Hurricane Database (HURDATv2). (c) MDR SSTs (July-November) from the NOAA NCDC extended reconstructed global sea surface temperature data (ERSSTv.3b)49. (d) PC3 sequence of lake-level change at Grape Tree Pond, Jamaica27. (e–g) Coral-based SST reconstructions from the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico30, Los Roques, Venezuela31 and SW Puerto Rico32. All time-series were filtered using an 11-point running mean except (b) which was filtered using a 21-point running mean.
Mentions: Our reconstruction of hurricane activity is derived from the third Principal Component (PC3) of mm-scale ITRAX μ-XRF core scans of a ~1200-year long sediment record of lake-level change from Grape Tree Pond in southern Jamaica27 (Figs 1,2a,3d and 4c). The pond is a freshwater-fed and anoxic mangrove lagoon, which is sensitive to precipitation variability on multiple timescales. High rates of sediment accumulation (~2.5 mm−yr) combined with low levels of bioturbation result in sedimentation rates sufficient to capture geochemical changes at an annual resolution. We improve the original 14C-based age model for the site by anchoring the PC3 record to the annually resolved coral-based SST reconstruction from the eastern Yucatan Peninsula30 for the period 1775–2009 (Fig. 1; see methods). Of the first three principal components of the geochemical data, PC1 explains 47.6% of the variance within the dataset and represents a gradient of sediment deposition from organic sediments to a combination of inorganic authigenic and detrital elements, the latter interpreted to reflect the aerial deposition of Saharan dust27. PC2 explains 11.9% of the variance and represents a salinity gradient. PC3 explains 8.9% of the variance and represents a gradient of redox conditions at the sediment-water interface of the lagoon and exhibits a positive relationship with lake level change27.

Bottom Line: Hurricanes are a persistent socio-economic hazard for countries situated in and around the Main Development Region (MDR) of Atlantic tropical cyclones.However, the attribution of hurricane activity to specific forcing factors is hampered by the short observational record of Atlantic storms.Here, we present the Extended Hurricane Activity (EHA) index, the first empirical reconstruction of Atlantic tropical cyclone activity for the last millennium, derived from a high-resolution lake sediment geochemical record from Jamaica.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Geography and Geology, The University of the West Indies, Mona Campus, Kingston 7, Jamaica, W.I.

ABSTRACT
Hurricanes are a persistent socio-economic hazard for countries situated in and around the Main Development Region (MDR) of Atlantic tropical cyclones. Climate-model simulations have attributed their interdecadal variability to changes in solar and volcanic activity, Saharan dust flux, anthropogenic greenhouse gas and aerosol emissions and heat transport within the global ocean conveyor belt. However, the attribution of hurricane activity to specific forcing factors is hampered by the short observational record of Atlantic storms. Here, we present the Extended Hurricane Activity (EHA) index, the first empirical reconstruction of Atlantic tropical cyclone activity for the last millennium, derived from a high-resolution lake sediment geochemical record from Jamaica. The EHA correlates significantly with decadal changes in tropical Atlantic sea surface temperatures (SSTs; r = 0.68; 1854-2008), the Accumulated Cyclone Energy index (ACE; r = 0.90; 1851-2010), and two annually-resolved coral-based SST reconstructions (1773-2008) from within the MDR. Our results corroborate evidence for the increasing trend of hurricane activity during the Industrial Era; however, we show that contemporary activity has not exceeded the range of natural climate variability exhibited during the last millennium.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus