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Assessing the present and future probability of Hurricane Harvey’s rainfall

OPEN Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America | 15 Nov 2017

K Emanuel
Abstract
We estimate, for current and future climates, the annual probability of areally averaged hurricane rain of Hurricane Harvey’s magnitude by downscaling large numbers of tropical cyclones from three climate reanalyses and six climate models. For the state of Texas, we estimate that the annual probability of 500 mm of area-integrated rainfall was about 1% in the period 1981-2000 and will increase to 18% over the period 2081-2100 under Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) AR5 representative concentration pathway 8.5. If the frequency of such event is increasingly linearly between these two periods, then in 2017 the annual probability would be 6%, a sixfold increase since the late 20th century.
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Concepts
Climate change, Climate, Extratropical cyclone, Cyclone, Rain, Tropical cyclone, Precipitation, Weather
MeSH headings
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