A recurrence of Superstorm Sandy — which barreled head-on into the Atlantic coast, swamping New York City and large parts of New Jersey -- is less likely under climate change, new research suggests.
Scientists expect stronger hurricanes under climate change, and possibly even more frequent storms — especially those at category 3 and higher. But New York City and much of the seaboard will be at lower risk of taking a direct hit, the study published on Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences said.
Instead, climate change will make it even less likely future storms will follow Sandy's devastating track. The killer storm made a sharp left turn to slam straight into the Atlantic coast. The odds of a storm like Sandy were already extremely remote -- a once in 700 year event -- when it hit in October 2012. But it was that trajectory that made Sandy so devastating.
"What made Sandy so different was that it was steered into the coast rather than away from it," said Elizabeth Barnes, a climate scientist at Colorado State University and an author of the study.