Hurricanes are experiencing slower decay in their intensity following landfall today than they did in previous decades, according to the results of a study published yesterday in the journal Nature. Scientists analyzed intensity data for North Atlantic landfalling hurricanes over the past 50 years and found that whereas in the late 1960s a typical hurricane lost about 75 per cent of its intensity in the first day past landfall, now the corresponding decay is only about 50 per cent. They also found this slowdown is in direct proportion to a contemporaneous rise in sea surface temperature, which increases the moisture level in a hurricane. “If you have higher sea surface temperatures, you have more moisture in the hurricane, and the more the moisture, the slower the decay because moisture is fueling a slower decay,” said Pinaki Chakraborty, one of the scientists involved in the study. Other researchers agreed, including Philip Klotzbach, an atmospheric scientist at Colorado State University (which WaterISAC looks to for credible information on hurricane activity) who was not involved in the study. “I also found the modeling component of their study convincing to help drive home their physical argument,” he said. Read more at HuffPost.