Ecology, Climate Change and Related News

Conservation Science for a Healthy Planet

Ship exhaust makes oceanic thunderstorms more intense

Leave a Comment

September 7, 2017 American Geophysical Union read full ScienceDaily article here

Thunderstorms directly above two of the world’s busiest shipping lanes are significantly more powerful than storms in areas of the ocean where ships don’t travel, according to new research.

A new study mapping lightning around the globe finds lightning strokes occur nearly twice as often directly above heavily-trafficked shipping lanes in the Indian Ocean and the South China Sea than they do in areas of the ocean adjacent to shipping lanes that have similar climates.

The difference in lightning activity can’t be explained by changes in the weather, according to the study’s authors, who conclude that aerosol particles emitted in ship exhaust are changing how storm clouds form over the ocean….

Joel A. Thornton, Katrina S. Virts, Robert H. Holzworth, Todd P. Mitchell. Lightning Enhancement Over Major Oceanic Shipping Lanes. Geophysical Research Letters, 2017; DOI: 10.1002/2017GL074982

View all articles

Comments are closed