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Dangerous, Unpredictable Weather A Part Of Connecticut's Future, Warns Climate Scientist

Christian Carter
Ray Murphy's home in Brookfield, Conn., was destroyed by a macroburst that hit the town on May 15.

Connecticut has seen eight tornadoes so far in 2018 – far more than average – and the most in a single year since 1973. Several days ago, a tornado touched down in New Canaan and Norwalk. Earlier this year, tornadoes caused extensive damage in northern Fairfield County and New Haven County.

Mitch Wagener, a climate scientist at Western Connecticut State University, says it’s a given that we can expect stronger storms from climate change, but the Northeast isn’t prepared for tornadoes like it is for hurricanes.

“For hurricanes, we can see them as they’re coming. Tornadoes are trickier. They’re hard to model because they’re so small and quick phenomena that we just honestly, we don’t have enough data…They’re just so scary. A tornado is, boom, come and gone in an hour.”

Wagener says while we can expect climate change to lead to storms like tornadoes, nor’easters and microbursts, there’s also winter storms, like polar vortexes, which brought extreme freezing temperatures to the region last winter.

Davis Dunavin loves telling stories, whether on the radio or around the campfire. He started in Missouri and ended up in Connecticut, which, he'd like to point out, is the same geographic trajectory taken by Mark Twain.
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