Hurricane Risk pp 161-178 | Cite as

Climate Theory and Tropical Cyclone Risk Assessment

  • Kevin WalshEmail author
Part of the Hurricane Risk book series (HR, volume 1)


The links between the ability of general circulation models to simulate tropical cyclones and the development of a climate theory of tropical cyclone formation are explored, with an emphasis on the potential of general circulation models (GCMs) and theory for tropical cyclone hazard and risk assessment. While GCMs can now generate a reasonable simulation of the observed tropical cyclone formation rates and intensity distributions, they are very expensive to run. Simpler methods involving statistical relationships between climate variables and tropical cyclone formation have been developed and have been used for hazard assessment, but like other methods used for projections, such as downscaling or GCMs, they do not constitute a theory of tropical cyclone formation. An outline is given of some of the possible characteristics of such a theory and its potential utility for climate science and risk.


Tropical cyclone Tropical climate Tropical cyclone formation 



The author would like to acknowledge funding from Australian Research Council Discovery Projects DP150102272. Funding also has been supplied by the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences’ Risk Prediction Initiative (RPI).


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Earth SciencesThe University of MelbourneParkvilleAustralia

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