Winds, fire, floods and quakes: A nutty run of nature

With four big hurricanes, a powerful earthquake and wildfires, it seems that nature recently has just gone nuts…

Nature’s gone crazy,” mused Jeff Masters, meteorology director at the private service Weather Underground. “Welcome to the future. Extreme weather like this is going to be occurring simultaneously more often because of global warming.”..

Hurricane Harvey hadn’t even fizzled and Houston hadn’t even dried out from record flooding before Hurricane Irma formed and also grew into a powerful Category 4 storm. Right behind Irma, Jose has powered up to a Category 4 storm. It is highly unusual, but not unprecedented to have back-to-back storms of that strength, Masters said. And then there is Hurricane Katia, just a shade under major hurricane status, due to hit Mexico’s Gulf coast.

The last couple of years were quiet for Atlantic hurricanes, which makes this year seem even worse, said Colorado State University meteorology professor Phil Klotzbach, a hurricane expert. He said calculations that measure strength and duration show the three current Atlantic storms set a one-day record for energy on Friday. In just three days, Irma, Jose and Katia have produced as much as energy as about half a normal six-month hurricane season…

“It just feels like, you know, it’s the apocalyptic end times,” he said. “But a lot of this stuff is getting attention because of social media.”

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