The impact of global warming on typhoons making landfall on the Korean Peninsula has been researched by Professor Seung-Ki Min and Dr. Minkyu Lee from the Division of Environmental Science and Engineering at Pohang University of Science and Technology (POSTECH). Their study, recently published in npj Climate and Atmospheric Science, utilized a high-resolution climate model to quantitatively analyze the effects of global warming on typhoons in the region.
The research revealed that global warming is leading to stronger and more intense typhoons, resulting in increased damage and extreme precipitation. The study focused on four powerful typhoons that made landfall on the Korean Peninsula between 2011 and 2020. Climate model simulations were conducted under current climate conditions and counterfactual conditions without human-induced warming.
The findings indicated that global warming significantly amplified the intensity and precipitation of the typhoons. The impact of warming was particularly pronounced at maximum typhoon intensity, suggesting a higher frequency of powerful super typhoons in East Asia in the future.
Furthermore, the study showed that the area affected by extreme rainfall from typhoons expanded by 16% to 37% due to warmer climate conditions. This expansion was attributed to the strengthening of upward motion near the typhoon center and increased atmospheric water vapor resulting from ocean surface warming.
Professor Min emphasized that the results provide conclusive evidence that global warming has intensified recent typhoons making landfall on the Korean Peninsula. He also warned that continued escalation of global warming could lead to even stronger typhoons and more frequent occurrences of extreme rainfall, necessitating enhanced preparedness measures in affected sectors.
These findings highlight the urgent need for reliable predictions of climate extremes and effective strategies to mitigate the damages caused by global warming-induced typhoons. By understanding the impacts of warming on typhoon intensity and precipitation, policymakers, scientists, and local communities can develop targeted measures to minimize the risks and ensure the safety of populations in East Asia.
The study by Prof. Min and Dr. Lee contributes to the growing body of research on the effects of global warming on extreme weather events. It reinforces the importance of addressing climate change and implementing measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to mitigate the impacts of global warming. With further research and collaboration, it is hoped that effective strategies and policies can be developed to adapt to the changing climate and protect vulnerable regions from the devastating effects of typhoons and other extreme weather events.