Asian Air Pollution Strengthens Pacific Storms
Air pollution in China and other Asian countries is having far-reaching impacts on weather patterns across the Northern Hemisphere, a study suggests.
Researchers have found that pollutants are strengthening storms above the Pacific Ocean, which feeds into weather systems in other parts of the world.
The effect was most pronounced during the winter.
The study is published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).
Lead author Yuan Wang, from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory at the California Institute of Technology, said: “The effects are quite dramatic. The pollution results in thicker and taller clouds and heavier precipitation.”
The impacts of Asian pollution on the storm track tend to affect the weather patterns of other parts of the world”
Yuan WangJet Propulsion Laboratory, Caltech
Parts of Asia have some of the highest levels of air pollution in the world.
In China’s capital, Beijing, pollutants frequently reach hazardous levels, while emissions in the Indian capital, Delhi, also regularly soar above those recommended by the World Health Organization.