Can’t Predict a Hurricane but Global Warming is a Certainty?

Weather and climate are not the same. According to NASA, weather represents atmospheric conditions over a short period of time compared to climate which is measured over relatively long periods of time. Both however use computer models attempting to predict the future.

As NOAA’s website explains, “Models help us to work through complicated problems and understand complex systems.” Indeed. Weather and climate are incredibly complex, influenced by sea, air, land, and the sun.

It is therefore no surprise that predicting the track of a hurricane, considered weather as it is short-term, is quite challenging. Below is a composite picture of multiple computer model predictions for tropical storm Joaquim, shortly before converting to a hurricane. This is from the Tropical Tidbits website, a well organized repository of storm information.


Each line represents a different prediction based on a particular computer model.