Atmospheric Sciences Editors' Highlights

Devastation of Hurricane Maria to Puerto Rican Landscape

The destructive winds and rain of Hurricane Maria in 2017 caused a dramatic transformation to Puerto Rico’s landscape and altered the characteristics of land-air interaction.

Source: Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres


The devastating impact of Hurricane Maria on human life and infrastructure in Puerto Rico has been well reported; less known is her damage to the island’s physical landscape. Hosannah et al. [2021] reveal this damage using satellite observations and numerical model simulations. Nearly 40 per cent of the island’s forest was wiped out by Maria. In consequence, the energy budget at the land surface was considerably altered. This extensive damage to Puerto Rican forest will take years to recover, affecting not only the economy but also how the land interacts with the atmosphere on both weather and climate scales.

Citation: Hosannah, N., Ramamurthy, P., Marti, J., Munoz, J., & González, J. E. [2021]. Impacts of Hurricane Maria on land and convection modification over Puerto Rico. Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, 126, e2020JD032493.

—Chidong Zhang, Editor, JGR: Atmospheres

Text © 2021. The authors. CC BY-NC-ND 3.0
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