Energy Policy Act of 2005 (Ultra-deepwater and Unconventional Resources Program)
Effect of Climate Variability and Change in Hurricane Activity in the North Atlantic
University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (Boulder, Colorado)
The goal of this project is to reduce the risk of additional environmental impacts from hurricanes through an improved understanding of the severity of expected storms and subsequent alterations of the design basis for advanced offshore systems. It has the potential to mitigate environmental impacts and some future costs by providing credible projections of changes in hurricane activity in the Gulf of Mexico through the coupling of novel methods and advanced modeling capabilities.
This project will quantify future changes in the frequency, duration, and intensity of Gulf storms and hurricane impacts using a powerful combination of the latest theoretical, statistical and enhanced dynamical modeling capability. Next generation atmosphere-ocean coupled multi-scale modeling systems will be configured together with the statistics of extremes specifically to provide projections of hurricane characteristics critical to engineering design, productions efficiency, safety and environmental protection for the offshore energy industry. Confidence levels in the results will be established using multiple independent techniques, advanced statistics and targeted sensitivity analysis.
Providing information on future Gulf hurricanes addresses a critical need of facilities designers to allow for appropriately strengthened or otherwise altered facilities and equipment that is capable of withstanding future hurricane activity. The information will aid decisions to ensure a level of current investment consistent with future needs and with ensuring safety and reduced risks associated with loss of life and environmental damage. An added benefit of the program is that it will also provide quantified information on future hurricane activity for communities along the Gulf of Mexico coastline.
Principal Investigator: Dr. Greg Holland
DOE Share - $1,440,000
Recipient Share - $360,000
Project Duration: 3 years