The Myth of More Severe Storms

Radical environmentalists continue to claim that CO2 emissions cause climate change and that global warming, aka, climate change, will bring more severe storms.

Every year, the facts prove them wrong.

2015 is the second year in a row that no category 3 or stronger storm has hit the United States mainland.

In addition, not a single hurricane of any category hit the mainland United States in 2015 … Zero.

The following table show the decades of greatest Atlantic hurricane activity affecting the United States.

The decades before 1960 consistently had more large storms hitting the United States than in the past 55 years. Fewer storms over the past 55 years, with greater atmospheric CO2.


All Category 1-5

Major Category 3,4,5































21st Century

2000- 2009



2010 – 2015



Hurricanes that hit mainland U.S.

Source for 20th century storms:

Source for 21st century storms

And the years 2010 through 2015 were supposed to be the warmest in history, where atmospheric CO2 levels are higher than at any time in at least the past 4,000 years.

Dr. Chris Landsea, National Hurricane Center, has also noted that many hurricanes went undetected before the advent of satellites. He has also shown the effect of hurricanes of short duration, less than two days, or those lasting less than 4 days, on the trend of hurricanes over the past century. These shorter hurricanes only became known with the advance in satellite technology. His paper is available at

This is important, since we can now see embryonic hurricanes as they emerge from North Africa — and then track them as they cross the Atlantic, with many swerving to the North and missing the United States by a wide margin. We might never have known about these storms prior to the use of satellites, unless some hapless ship got in their way.

Hurricane Lisa in 2010, that rambled around the Cape Verde Islands off the coast of Africa, is an example of a storm that might not have been seen without satellites.

While no hurricane hit the mainland United States during 2015, two hurricanes did affect the United States in 2015.

  • Hurricane Joaquin remained several hundred miles offshore in the Atlantic, but the counter-clockwise winds of Joaquin swept around the storm and brought heavy rain to South Carolina.
  • Hurricane Patricia, that formed in the Pacific Ocean west of Mexico, turned to the East, going ashore near Puerto Vallarta, and became a tropical depression that eventually brought heavy rains to Texas and Louisiana.

Neither of these storms were unusual, but prompted many headlines because of the damage from flooding, especially in South Carolina.

The area west of Mexico, the Gulf of Tehuantepec, has been known as the birthplace of Pacific hurricanes for at least the past two centuries.

Mostly, these hurricanes travel west, and sometimes threaten the Hawaiian Islands.

Occasionally they turn eastward, and hit Mexico, with winds and rain sometimes extending into New Mexico and Texas. The path of Eastern Pacific hurricanes can be seen here:

It was one of these Tehuantepec hurricanes that we went through on our way to Japan while I was a cadet/midshipman.

S.S. Reuben Tipton in Edge of Typhoon. Photo by D. Dears
S.S. Reuben Tipton in Edge of Typhoon. Photo by D. Dears

The insurance industry is clamoring for action to stop global warming because they have suffered large losses in recent years.

However, it was the increase in coastal populations that caused the higher insurance losses. In his testimony to Congress, Professor Lomborg pointed out that, “The two coastal South Florida counties, Dade and Broward, are home to more people than the number of people who lived in 1930 in all 109 counties stretching from Texas through Virginia, along the Gulf and Atlantic coasts.”

And the story about tornadoes is similar.

Fewer tornadoes than in prior years, while atmospheric CO2 levels are at the highest levels in at least the past 4,000 years.

US Annual Tornadoes from NOAA
US Annual Tornadoes from NOAA

For more information about tornadoes, and for years prior to 2000, go to

As with hurricanes, satellites have resulted in more small tornadoes being seen than would have been seen otherwise.

The idea that global warming is causing larger and more frequent storms is a phony myth.

It’s another myth being perpetuated by alarmists in their efforts to scare people over CO2 emissions.

And the facts debunk it.

Storms are not getting more severe or more frequent.

Watch for my new book, which will be available in January.

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