By JOHN SCHWARTZNOV. 2, 2015
Bleached coral in American Samoa earlier this year. Credit XL Catlin Seaview Survey
Hurricane Patricia was a surprise. The eastern Pacific hurricane strengthened explosively before hitting the coast of Mexico, far exceeding projections of scientists who study such storms.
And while the storm’s strength dissipated quickly when it struck land, a question remained. What made it such a monster?
But the answer is more complicated. The interplay of all the different kinds of warming going on in the Pacific at the moment can be difficult to sort out and, as with the recent hurricane, attributing a weather event to a single cause is unrealistic. Read more.