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Study: More air pollution equals fewer hurricanes

Rick Docksai | Science Recorder | June 25, 2013

Study: More air pollution equals fewer hurricanes

Pollution may cut down on hurricanes.

Air pollution is certainly bad for our health and the environment’s health, but it has one unexpected benefit: reducing the frequency of hurricanes. A new study published in Nature Geoscience suggests that heavy particle matter, such as smog from coal-burning plants and oil refineries, may have had a mitigating effect on hurricane activity around the northern Atlantic throughout most of the twentieth century.

The study, authored by researchers in the Met Office, the United Kingdom’s public climate and weather research agency, analyzed simulations of Atlantic weather patterns covering the time period of 1860 to 2050. It concluded that when air pollution increased, there were fewer hurricanes.

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