(Norman, Oklahoma) The devastating impact of global warming
continues to reverberate throughout the climate research community.
Now, due to the expected increase in tornado intensity that will
inevitably result from global warming, the top end of the famous
Fujita scale of tornado intensity has been extended from F6 to F8.
Tornado researchers at the National Severe Storms Laboratory
have been debating the change ever since some
of them witnessed the incredible tornadoes in the movie "The Day
After Tomorrow". Even though several of the researchers maintain
there is no historical evidence that the incidence of the most
damaging tornadoes has increased in the United States, they were
out-voted by those who argued that it is better to be "ready for anything".
The change was partly motivated by polling data in recent years
that revealed that the American public expects global warming will
cause greater extremes in weather, including tornado severity.
"Our job is to be responsive to the expectations of the public",
explained meteorologist Dorothy Gale.
The new scale will help classify the mega-tornadoes that are expected
to occur as global temperatures continue to uncontrollably spiral upward.
Whereas the greatest intensity of F6 had previously been classified as
'inconceivable', the new F6 descriptor is 'mind-boggling'. "With today's
computer special effects, there really isn't anything that is 'inconceivable'
anymore", explained Dr. Gale, "so it was necessary to provide a more
realistic description of these intensity categories that matches the
expectations of the public."
||Wind Speed Range
The new scale will be implemented immediately, Gale said. "We want
to be ready for anything Mother Nature can throw at us. This new tornado
scale also puts us more in line with TV meteorologists' embellishments
of their weather warnings in recent years."
When asked whether tornado instrumentation, like that in the 'TOTO' tornado probe,
would also be beefed up to measure the stronger tornadoes, Dr. Gale answered, "TOTO, too."
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