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Storms and global warming

The landfall of supertyphoon Haiyan has led to a predictable upsurge in attempts by unscrupulous environmentalists to turn the drama into a political opportunity. For example, Jamie Henn of calls the storm a wake-up call for the upcoming UN climate summit. Simon Redfern in the Mirror says we should expect more such storms in future. There are plenty of others I could link to as well - there is, after all, no shortage of unscrupulous environmentalists - but I'm sure you get the drift.

Meanwhile, we learn of this 2004 paleoclimate reconstruction of hurricane landfalls in South-eastern China. The conclusions seem to contradict the wild claims of the drama greens more than somewhat:

Remarkably, the two periods of most frequent typhoon strikes in Guangdong (AD 1660–1680, 1850–1880) coincide with two of the coldest and driest periods in northern and central China during the Little Ice Age.


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Reader Comments (97)

Slightly off topic but spawned from the claims that the typhoon was somehow our fault:-

This country spends billions in aid. Partly for the right reason, because people need it, but also because there is a sick kind of rich man’s guilt thing going on. Thus it’s not enough to help the victims of disaster and poverty you have to take the blame too. The theory goes that it might make you stump up a bit more money. It’s as likely to do the opposite.

While I accept that atrocities and inequalities have happened in the past, I no more accept the blame for slavery or colonialism than I would demand recompense from the Romans, the Vikings or the Saxons. Equally I wouldn’t expect to send money to their descendants for the benefits we have received, any more than I’d demand payment from those people who have benefited from medicines and technology.

If we say that British people have an unfair advantage because of our industrial past and that we somehow owe a large chunk of our prosperity to developing countries in payment for CO2 emitted, then do black or Asian British people owe as much? Should recent immigrants get a rebate because their DNA benefited least? Do I get a rebate because the majority of my ancestors were dirt poor Scots and Irish that fled starvation and brutality?

It’s very easy for the wealthy elite to agree that Britain owes a debt. Especially if they’ll only be paying a tiny part of it and it’s the rest of us that will have to stump up guilt money for their ‘philanthropy’.

This mindset has another adverse affect. Instead of impressing the recipient with the generosity, inspiring them to incorporate charity into their culture and generate good thoughts towards us, we encourage them to see charity as something westerners owe them. It makes it look like the money isn’t a gift but a debt paid. It feeds a mentality of entitlement. If we tell these poor people that natural disasters are our fault, they’ll believe us.

Now charitable giving shouldn’t be done to make you look good but it certainly shouldn’t be designed to make people think less of you!

Nov 10, 2013 at 11:07 AM | Unregistered CommenterTinyCO2

Thankyou, Richard Betts.
And what happened to the simple straightforward explanation of the physics (as this bear of little brain understands it) that as the temperature gradient declines — which we are assured will happen as the higher latitudes warm most — storms will become less violent or less frequent?
See also Kevin Lohse's comment: the typhoon is the result of global warming, then so is the quiet Atlantic hurricane season and one of the lowest seasonal tornado counts in the USA likewise the result of global warming...
I agree with you that it is a complex story; I just suspect that it is indeed the story that is complex; the science is probably relatively simple!

Nov 10, 2013 at 11:13 AM | Registered CommenterMike Jackson

Summarising Richard Betts rather long statement
- IPCC supporters rigorously insist that IPCC science is the only one allowed
so they cannot claim "See these storms are proof of global warming" and at the same time keep to the IPCC line.
- As their beloved IPCC Science says in the short term "any expected changes in tropical cyclones can't yet be distinguished from natural ups and downs."
And in the long term (several decades into the future) "seems to be that there are grounds to expect the most damaging tropical cyclones to happen more often in a warmer world"

see if in 50 years time there are many extra storms they can claim that as proof of IPCC predictions, but they can't claim present storms as prof of IPCC science. And anyway focusing on one off events is cherry picking; one event doesn't prove Global Warming it's trends that count.

Nov 10, 2013 at 11:29 AM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

... and the current trend appears to be downwards, no?
Mein Gott! You mean global warming might have some benefits!!!!!?
Don't let on, for heaven's sake.

Nov 10, 2013 at 12:05 PM | Registered CommenterMike Jackson

- Let me channel Matt McGrath Environment correspondent, BBC News

"I just accidently mixed up Km/h with mph , so wrote 235mph then I accidently converted that to 379Kmh put it in a BBC news report and let the MEME escape out into the universe. Oh and then I never bothered to print a correction ... It's not like I do everything to exagerrate the alarmist cause, it's just news moves on, no time to correct"
Seems like MattMcGrathBBC is a paid piece rate* for the amount of Cli-porn he can get into an article 235Kmh→235mph→379Kmh
(*Greenpeace rate of course) .. is such accidentlys that feed conspiracy theories

Nov 10, 2013 at 2:02 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

@Euan Mearns Nov 10, 2013 at 10:09 AM

Off-topic, but "Doublethink" is indeed referred to in 1984... My copy has it on page 9, just after where Winston Smith starts to write his diary, and many times thereafter. :-)

Nov 10, 2013 at 2:03 PM | Unregistered CommenterPogo

What I is MattMcGrath must have worked with climate & weather stuff a lot so realised straight away that a ground level wind of 235mph is just about impossible and would have double checked straight away it doesn't seem credible it's a mistake.

Nov 10, 2013 at 2:30 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

I'm not expecting much, but I made a complaint to the BBC that this was a deliberate mistake to support the global warming meme supported by the BBC and its reporters. Every little helps, and it shows someone is watching them, though it would be nice if the BBC employed "Environmental" journalists who understand the difference between the imperial and metric systems.

Nov 10, 2013 at 4:55 PM | Unregistered CommenterSandyS

@ pogo - thanks, I've gotten confused:-) Newspeak and Doublethinking in 1984, I've not read the book for about 70 years now and must do so again some time soon. Off topic sorry! I know very little about tropical cyclones, but do know that Earth's climate has a number of atmospheric circulation modes where in recent history The Ice Ages set one extreme, with extreme storminess as witnessed by the salt and dust content of the Greenland ice cores, and the interglacials are more passive but with second order, smaller scale cycles superimposed upon them. Currently, the meandering jet stream can bring cold winter weather to Europe, perhaps extreme cold and I'd guess this same phenomenon may influence storm formation in the Pacific. As other posters have pointed out, N-S temperature gradients can be all important.

Nov 10, 2013 at 6:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterEuan Mearns

Bryony Worthington links typhoon Halyan directly to CO2 emissions: LINK

Nov 10, 2013 at 9:26 PM | Registered CommenterRobin Guenier

"Awful to hear of Philippines death toll. The poorest + most vulnerable suffer most from extreme weather. Need to stop global CO2 experiment."

WTF is Bryony? The "Global CO2 experiment" took us from draft horses, windmills (;-) and sailing ships to The Hubble Telescope, anti biotics, vaccines, triple by pass surgery, everyone living till 80 (which IS a huge problem) warm homes, food (far too much food), telecoms, holidays in Spain, the internet and blogs.

Bryony should go try an atmosphere with no CO2 - no photosynthesis!

Nov 10, 2013 at 10:27 PM | Unregistered CommenterEuan Mearns

A repulsive response to a massive disaster. How are you ghouls so certain that climate change did NOT contribute to the strength of this storm?

Some evidence would be nice.

Nov 10, 2013 at 11:09 PM | Unregistered CommenterEntropi man

Euan Mearns@10:27 +1 with bells on it.

I'm sure BW's gormless witterings will be supreme succor to the folk afflicted by this tropical storm /sarc likewise the rest of the moronic halfwits who ascribe the devastation to "CO2".

I expect the next tweet to be about the cheeldren...

Nov 10, 2013 at 11:25 PM | Registered Commentertomo

Well I'm afraid the only thing that is certain here is that without the CO2 experiment there would have been many many millions less living on the Philippines today to be killed. That I think is quite certain. The onus is on the IPCC to provide evidence that CO2 contributed to the strength of the storm. Or at least on those reporting that it did. Climate change is of course involved, and it is called Natural Climate Cyclicity or in the vernacular of the IPCC Internal Climate Variability.

Marching the Green Line is causing chronic stress to populations throughout Europe.

Nov 10, 2013 at 11:33 PM | Unregistered CommenterEuan Mearns

Euan Mearns@11:32

I'm mildly perplexed by the term "experiment" being wheeled out - what experiment?

All you need to know about Bwyony is that her and Caroline Lucas MP are always agreeing with each other and seem to have a mutual admiration society going on....

Mili Minor and Benn Jnr. put her in charge of UK energy policy for the next 30 years ? just wunnerful /face meet palm.

Nov 10, 2013 at 11:49 PM | Registered Commentertomo

I'm mildly perplexed by the term "experiment" being wheeled out - what experiment?

Nov 10, 2013 at 11:49 PM | tomoNov 10, 2013 at 11:49 PM | tomo

You may have noticed that humanity has released gigatons of CO2 into the atmosphere since the Industrial Revolution began.

The last time the CO2 concentration was this high was before the current Ice Age began, some 2 million years ago.

The experiment, albeit unintentional, is to discover whether conditions revert to the higher temperatures and sea levels of that time

Nov 11, 2013 at 12:05 AM | Unregistered CommenterEntropi man

Entropic Man

you need a dictionary - never let it be said that I don't help the afflicted

a. A test under controlled conditions that is made to demonstrate a known truth, examine the validity of a hypothesis, or determine the efficacy of something previously untried.


Nov 11, 2013 at 12:20 AM | Registered Commentertomo

I'd add that in the race to be the most ghoulish MSM creeps the Guardian web site presently has a prominent picture box on the main landing page with:

If you have been affected by the category-five storm, we would like to hear from you

Our present media really is flooring the pedal in the race to the bottom eh? Is it an idea that they nicked from the BBC or vice versa? The Guardian Witness pages being sponsored by EE - I hope all click revenue will be donated for relief in the Phillipines ? - yeah, thought not = hypocrites as per usual.

Nov 11, 2013 at 12:40 AM | Registered Commentertomo

I'd add (2) ...

If you’d like to contribute directly to the Philippine Red Cross you can do so here. and get one up on the Guardian in the process :-)

h/tip WUWT

Nov 11, 2013 at 2:23 AM | Registered Commentertomo

"If you have been affected by the category-five storm, we would like to hear from you"

Tragedy greens.

Misery greens.

Calamity greens.

Nov 11, 2013 at 2:54 AM | Unregistered CommentersHx

Could it be that Tropical storm Haiyan is in fact a symptom of a cooling world ?

Global Warming advocates only ever propose solutions for the control of Global Warming, (overheating), by reducing CO2 emissions. However at present the climate appears to changing to a colder phase, probably because of reducing solar activity and changes of ocean circulation patterns.

Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming advocates fail to explain how reduction of man-made atmospheric CO2 can ever can help to control Climate Change towards a cooling world.

Having made so many dire predictions of the impending adverse climate catastrophes from overheating, Global Warming / Climate Change advocates fail to accept that a climate change towards a cooler climate is more likely to lead to more intense adverse weather.

However there is good reason to expect this, simply because the energy differential between the poles and the tropics is bound to be greater in a cooling world and that in itself leads to less stable atmospheric conditions.

It has been shown in the past that the warmer climate in the Roman and Medieval warm periods, now once again recognised by the IPCC, was more conducive to the wellbeing of the biosphere and of man-kind.

If it were to get somewhat warmer, the world could well adapt to having larger areas for a more productive agriculture, better fertilised by CO2. But it does not seem to be doing that in 2013.

Nov 11, 2013 at 6:40 AM | Unregistered Commenteredmh

@Entropi man, Nov 11, 2013 at 12:05 AM

The last time the CO2 concentration was this high was before the current Ice Age began, some 2 million years ago.

Simple question for you... If CO2 levels were so high, how come an ice age occurred? Surely. it would have been impossible if one applies the current level of "understanding".?

Nov 11, 2013 at 9:15 AM | Unregistered CommenterPogo

Entropic Man -

You may have noticed that humanity has released gigatons of CO2 into the atmosphere since the Industrial Revolution began.

And average global temperatures have increased by a total of about 1C since then (and a good thing too considering the hardships endured during the Little Ice Age). Do you have any empirical evidence which links this temperature rise with anthropogenic CO2 emissions? Now that the hockey team and the IPCC accept that the Medieval Warm Period was at least just as warm as today, and the MWP cannot be attributed to anthropogenic CO2, how can you with any confidence attribute the late 20th 'warm period' to increased levels of atmospheric CO2?

The last time the CO2 concentration was this high was before the current Ice Age began, some 2 million years ago.

The short term data shows a poor correlation between CO2 and temperature -

Longer term ice core data shows that CO2 lags temperature by 600-1000 years -

It is no wonder EM and the drama greens are now resorting to blaming extreme weather events and storms on anthropogenic CO2 emissions, because they evidently don't have anything else left to scare us with. But thank feck that we live in the modern era, as no doubt they would have been burning us weather cookers at the stake a few hundred years ago.

Nov 11, 2013 at 9:38 AM | Registered Commenterlapogus

Entropic Man, you do better here when you don't get cross (the same could be said of some others). How you read the responses here as ghoulish, I don't understand. If anything, those who attribute this tragedy to global warming are the ghouls - they seem delighted to have their prophecies of doom apparently confirmed. But better that we should all agree that it's an appalling tragedy: send something to disaster relief, and refrain from making political capital out of it. "The science is settled" and in this instance it's settled that it's not settled (see Richard Betts above).

Nov 11, 2013 at 9:57 AM | Unregistered Commenterosseo

All down to 'climate change'....

Yeah, right - does that also explain the very low incidence of hurricanes in the Atlantic this year..? Or are we not supposed to notice this..?

Marginally off-topic - but relevant to the much greater 'the science is settled' meme - I notice that on the BBC News website/Environmental section today, a group of researchers has decided that the current 'warming standstill' is due to the ban on CFC's initiated by the Montreal Protocol.
The article also points out that these chemicals have 10000 TIMES the 'warming' effect of carbon dioxide - and stay in the atmosphere for up to 100 years...!
So - is the science 'settled' or not..? If not - why the f*** are we complying with all these irrelevant CO2-reducing/banning regulations..?

Nov 11, 2013 at 1:27 PM | Unregistered CommenterSherlock1

I see Paul Simons (The Times Weather Eye) is still claiming 235Mph gust for Typhoon Haiyan and then banging the AGW drum.

Yet the Phillipines own Met Agency ( are saying thatthat at landfall the sustained wind was 235 kmh or 147 mph, with gusts upto 275 kmh or 171 mph.

Can't the numpties at the Met Office even distinguish between MPH and KPH?

Richard Betts where are you?

What a bunch of losers- who will call them on this?

Nov 11, 2013 at 2:34 PM | Unregistered CommenterDon Keiller

"Typhoon prompts 'fast' by Philippines climate delegate."

Gordon bleedin' Bennett.

Nov 11, 2013 at 3:04 PM | Unregistered CommenterJimmy Haigh

Simple question for you... If CO2 levels were so high, how come an ice age occurred? Surely. it would have been impossible if one applies the current level of "understanding".?

Nov 11, 2013 at 9:15 AM | Pogo

Under Ice Age natural conditions the Milankovich cycles drive insolation, which drives temperature which drives CO2. The change in CO2 then acts as a positive feedback to amplify the temperature change.

The cooling and reduced CO2 from Pliocene conditions began when plate tectonics moved land into position to partially isolate the Arctic Ocean from the rest of the oceanic circulation. The cyclic reduction in Northern Hemisphere insolation was then enough to trigger Arctic ocean freezing, widespread glaciation and an overall cooling. This caused a reduction in CO2 which in turn allowed further cooling.

This continues, with glacial periods and interglacials alternating.

Nov 11, 2013 at 6:15 PM | Unregistered CommenterEntropi man


You are right, I should not get cross. My apologies.

The sort of thing that triggered it was

1) BH's eagerness to make propoganda capital from a Category 5 typhoon, which is killer enough regardless of any climate change effects.

2) Comments like your own about" the science being settled". This is a sceptic straw man projected onto the climate mainstream. Only a non-scientist would even consider making such a claim.

Nov 11, 2013 at 6:20 PM | Unregistered CommenterEntropi man


You are thinking too much like a lab scientist. Climate science is much more observation based, like astronomy or ecology. If you have suggestions as to how your definition could be applied on the necessary planetary scale, you could make a great contribution to the field.

As it is, we are increasing CO2 with only a limited appreciation of the effect. Sounds experimental to me.

Nov 11, 2013 at 6:28 PM | Unregistered CommenterEntropi man

"Typhoon prompts 'fast' by Philippines climate delegate."

The best thing Mr. Sano can do right now is go home and help however he can on the ground.

He is understandably overcome by emotion and won't be any use in determining rational long term policy objectives on climate.

Who are the Aid agencies who already know the area and are equipped and positioned to respond effectively at this time ?

Nov 11, 2013 at 6:39 PM | Unregistered CommenterFreeman Henry

Spare us the croc tears EM. If there is any group you should be angry with it's your fellow catastrophilics who use every tragedy to further their own religious goals! It seems BH's crime is to point this out!


Nov 11, 2013 at 6:47 PM | Unregistered CommenterMailman

Spare us the croc tears EM. If there is any group you should be angry with it's your fellow catastrophilics who use every tragedy to further their own religious goals! It seems BH's crime is to point this out!


Nov 11, 2013 at 6:47 PM | Unregistered CommenterMailman

Nov 11, 2013 at 6:15 PM | Unregistered CommenterEntropi man

I see you are still spouting the same rubbish. Both Curt and Intelligent Scientist destroyed your argument so convincingly a week or so ago that you needed to go to bed. Just when are you going to accept your home spun science will not work here.

Nov 11, 2013 at 7:33 PM | Unregistered CommenterDavid Porter

Homespun science? No, that's way overgenerous - it's horrendous pagan tosh and the verminous Greenshirts want somebody to put in their wicker man.

Nov 11, 2013 at 8:03 PM | Registered Commenterflaxdoctor

Nov 11, 2013 at 2:34 PM | Don Keiller

... that at landfall the sustained wind was 235 kmh or 147 mph, with gusts up to 275 kmh or 171 mph.

Can't the numpties at the Met Office even distinguish between MPH and KPH?

The warmish are trying to explain away the lower figures at landfall by pointing out that the Philippine weather people (PAGASA) use a 10-minute mean for the sustained winds not the 1-minute mean used by NASA. They apply some sort fudge factor to say that the 1-minute mean for a 147 mph 10-minute mean is around 185-190 mph, thereby raising the category of the storm.

The problem with this approach is that they fail to consider the gust measurement. You can't really have gusts peaking at less than the sustained wind speed - they would be negative gusts. Gusts are gusts and there is no time period associated with them so what the warmish are saying is nonsense. I would accept that the 1-minute might be a greater speed than the 10-minute mean but neither can approach the speed of the gusts which is set by the geostrophic wind speed.

Bottom line: the sustained winds at landfall of Haiyan, over whatever period, would not have approached the 171 mph gust speed.

Certain NASA contractors have had difficulty in the past with unit conversions:

Nov 11, 2013 at 8:35 PM | Unregistered CommenterBilly Liar

from @BBCNewsnight "Also coming up tonight @susanwatts01 considers if Typhoon #Haiyan is linked to climate change - 2230 on BBC Two #Newsnight"
get your skeptic friends to tweet her otherwise it will be the normal one sided travesty

Nov 11, 2013 at 9:19 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

Mike Jackson

Unfortunately it's not that simple - as often in meteorology, there are different processes having opposite influences, so the key is figuring out which one is more important overall.

As Bishop Hill has mentioned in his post today, a news item in Nature gives quite a good summary of the current understanding:

Are such storms getting worse in a warming world?

This is the one-million-dollar question, and there is no scientific consensus on how to answer it yet. Storms receive their energy from the ocean, so it would seem logical that they would get stronger, and perhaps also more frequent, as the upper layers of the tropical oceans warm. Indeed, the potential intensity of tropical storms does increase with warmer sea-surface temperatures. However, the effect of warming seas could be counteracted by the apparent increase in the strength of shear winds — winds blowing in different directions and varying strength at different altitudes. Shear winds tend to hinder the formation of storms, or tear them apart before they can reach extreme strength.

On balance, many climate researchers think it is plausible to assume that tropical storm activity will rise. Some evidence exists that storm intensity has indeed increased, but it is limited to the North Atlantic, where observations are most abundant. In other places, the available evidence is not yet conclusive.

Nov 12, 2013 at 10:36 AM | Registered CommenterRichard Betts

Don Keiller

The 235 mph/kph confusion did not come from the Met Office, nor has it been repeated by the Met Office as far as I'm aware.

However, your mentioning of the Met Office in association with this (without any basis) is rather intriguing (I nearly said surprising, but on reflection it's not surprising, as you make no secret of your dislike of the Met Office). I see that you also did the same thing on another unrelated thread as well as here. I also see that Billy Liar(!) has repeated it.

It's not for me to guess your motivations, but if stewgreen and SandyS are wondering whether the mph/kph from CNN/BBC/whoever was a "deliberate mistake to support the global warming meme", they might also wonder whether your mistake was accidental, or whether it was deliberate to support some meme that reflects badly on an organisation that you dislike. Who can tell?

Nov 12, 2013 at 10:58 AM | Registered CommenterRichard Betts

Fair comment. Nothing in nature is ever that simple.
The point I was making was that according to my understanding of the physics (as explained to me on several occasions) the driver of tropical storms (in terms of their severity) is the temperature gradient and since the experts tell us that global warming will affect the higher latitudes more than the lower then hurricane activity should decrease — and the evidence is that that is what has been happening.
Higher latitude storms (again if my understanding is correct) are more likely to be influenced by the jet stream with the result that it's less an increase in the severity than where it hits.
And the same thing applies on some respects to hurricanes. Katrina was nothing special. Neither, till she started mixing it with a winter storm coming in from the south-west, was Sandy. This didn't stop the usual suspects from capitalising on the disaster to push their scaremongering, doom-mongering agenda as they are doing now with Haiyan.
And they are no more justified now than they were then regardless of exactly where this event slots into Great Storms of History.
Like a lot of people around here I am becoming heartily sick of the blatant dishonesty (there really is no other word) that attributes bad weather to climate change and good weather (as in a record low in both hurricane and tornado activity) as "just weather".

Nov 12, 2013 at 1:46 PM | Registered CommenterMike Jackson

@Richard Betts ..yeh I hesitated for a moment about questioning Don Keiller pin the 235mph error on the Met Office as I had only seen it on Matt McGraths article, but I left it to some one better informed ..
..So glad you did now.
.. Conspiracy theories need strong evidence, but that was the second day in a row Matt McGrath had made a big numerical error in hyping alarmism.

Nov 12, 2013 at 2:10 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

1.30pm Ed Davey The Energy Secretary on Radio 4 News after speaking on energy corps was asked about Typhoon link to CC as Ph gov believes
"well we have to be careful, but the IPCC did report earlier this year that not only the frequency of extreme weather events but also their intensity will increase .. as pres Obama mentioned about Hurricane Sandy"
..em as I understand it IPCC only ever talked about possibility far into the future and has never come close to pinning contemporary bad weather events on CC

Nov 12, 2013 at 2:12 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

To quote that fount of all knowledge, Wikipedia,

Hurricane Sandy (unofficially known as "Superstorm Sandy") was the deadliest and most destructive hurricane of the 2012 Atlantic hurricane season, as well as the second-costliest hurricane in United States history
Yet when she made landfall on the US she was a Cat 1 storm so how is this possible?
Answer: Because she hit New York and (as I said above) was playing footsie with an early winter storm coming from the other direction. The two storms combined were what did the damage. Left to her own devices and tracking one or two degrees east nobody would even have noticed Sandy was there probably.
Now if Obama and the other natural-variation-deniers are trying to tell us that global warming will make it more likely that the lower number of hurricanes we are seeing are more likely to hit New York or New Orleans or the Philippines head on — which is the only interpretation I can put on their meaningless maunderings — then it really is time to send for the men in the white coats.

Nov 12, 2013 at 7:12 PM | Registered CommenterMike Jackson

6:28 PM Entropi man

Nope - calling it an experiment is simply wrong - you are dealing with reconciling observations and theory - you aren't in any position to control anything Try telling an astrophysicist that the Universe is an "experiment" and I'd hope that they'd laugh in your face. At least the astrophysicists are in general an honest bunch.... and are presently content to simply say W-T-F is Dark Matter eh?

Nov 12, 2013 at 7:23 PM | Registered Commentertomo

Just to the west of the Philippines we have this study carried out in the Spratly Islands.

Storm cycles in the last millennium recorded in Yongshu Reef, southern South China Sea
………U-series dating of the storm-relocated blocks as well as of in situ reef flat corals suggests that, during the last 1000 years, at least six strong storms occurred in 1064±30, 1210±5–1201±4, 1336±9, 1443±9, 1685±8–1680±6, 1872±15 AD, respectively, with an average 160-year cycle (110–240 years). The last storm, which occurred in 1872±15 AD, also led to mortality of the reef flat corals dated at ∼130 years ago……

Nov 13, 2013 at 12:55 AM | Unregistered CommenterJimbo

Over on WUWT Paul Homewood has just done a debunk of the hype and extrapolation

But Today I also made some notes on Haiyan windspeed
..It seems there is no official record, no one had instrument measurements. Guesses were made and that it was towards the high end..I still can't find confirmation of where the 235miles per hour number came from. We got it from Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC) said Guardian but it seems that data is not visible now on JTWC page.
The PAGASA pages archived on WUWT say 235kph
I find 2 scientific sources
From NASA : Assessing Haiyan’s Winds
Their Scatterometer radar said 206Kmh but doesn't catch the top speed so they estimate 240Kmh

According to the Oceansat-2 data, which was processed by scientists at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) using an experimental technique, the storm’s winds peaked at 206 kilometers (128 miles) per hour at the time of measurement—strong enough to devastate the landscape.

“The bottom line is that meteorologists are going to be debating what Haiyan’s top wind speeds were for some time,” said Jeffrey Halverson, a meteorologist at the University of Maryland at Baltimore County. “The best we can do is point to the strengths and shortcomings of each piece of technology or technique that we use to estimate winds—be it Dvorak, a scatterometer, or a barometer. Since we lack reliable in situ measurement for Haiyan, we have to use wide error bars.”

- (There maybe also question of what defines landfall ..the first rock, little island or the actual mainland)

UK Met Office blog

At the time of landfall the estimated central pressure of the typhoon was 895 mb and sustained winds averaged over one minute estimated at 195 mph with higher gusts. These estimates are based on well attested satellite techniques, but without observations exactly in the path of the eye of the typhoon it is impossible to confirm their accuracy. However, this is likely to make Haiyan one of the most intense tropical cyclones to make landfall in history. then went on to discuss others with lower pressure & higher speeds
PAGASA-DOST ‏@dost_pagasa 7 Nov
Hourly Update: #YolandaPH
(5AM November 8, 2013)
Typhoon “YOLANDA” has made landfall over Guiuan, Eastern Samar (4:40AM)

from PAGASAs Facebook 2nd landfall 235kph 275kph gusts
Good map of the track
Daily Forecast 52Km before FIRST landfall 235kph 275kph gusts

Nov 13, 2013 at 10:06 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

Hi, small point but climate scientists (both in the various U.N. reports and elsewhere) never said there would be more frequent storms as a result of more heat being trapped in the atmosphere. They said only that the storms that do form would get more powerful/nastier (on average), as a result of higher ocean temperatures. So (they think) that's why we keep breaking records (which admittedly haven't been well kept for long enough) on storm strength. No idea whether this is true or not, but clearly the frequency of storms China during a cool, dry period is not a good counter-argument, bests, TC

Nov 14, 2013 at 1:57 PM | Unregistered CommenterTim C

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