Last week at the Annual Meeting of the American Meteorological Society in Austin Texas, there was a terrific town hall session on the forecasts, decisions and impacts of Hurricane Sandy. A great recap here. Here is a incredible high resolution GOES weather satellite sequence of Sandy moving from the Bahamas, merging with a strong upper level jet stream and turning left and smashing into the New Jersey coastline.
One of the questions in the question and answer session after the many great presentations was about Sandy and climate change or global warming. None of the scientists felt a single historic event such as a Sandy could be attributed to climate change, but Dr. Louis Uccellini the director of NOAA's National Center for Environmental Prediction did say that the 1 foot sea level rise in the New York area over the last century, did make the storm surge and impact of a Sandy worse than if there had been no sea level rise. The rising sea levels in many areas are a major impact of climate change and are making coastal areas more vulnerable to future storms such as Sandy