Atmospheric Sciences Editors' Highlights

Post-Tropical Cyclones Influence on European Windstorm Risk

Comparing the importance of midlatitude cyclones and post-tropical cyclones on European windstorms during the Atlantic hurricane season using ERA-5 reanalysis.

Source: Geophysical Research Letters


Atlantic hurricanes that transition into midlatitude storms at high latitudes can affect Europe, in some cases leading to high-impact windstorms. Sainsbury et al. [2020] compared the climatology and intensity distributions of post-tropical cyclones and midlatitude storms impacting Europe (separated into northern and southern Europe) during the Atlantic hurricane seasons from 1979 to 2017 using the ERA-5 reanalysis. They found that, although post-tropical storms are a relatively small component of the total cyclones affecting Europe, they disproportionally impact Europe with high intensity. Furthermore, in a warmer climate, post-tropical cyclones are expected to increase and frequency, which could potentially increase their risk to Europe.

Citation: Sainsbury, E. M., Schiemann, R. K. H., Hodges, K. I., Shaffrey, L. C., Baker, A. J., & Bhatia, K. T. [2020]. How important are post‐Tropical cyclones for European windstorm risk?. Geophysical Research Letters, 47, e2020GL089853.

—Suzana Camargo, Editor, Geophysical Research Letters

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