Vampirism Does Not Make One Super

Today marks the second anniversary of Hurricane Sandy, a major storm that wreaked havoc over a wide area of the East Coast of the United States.  While the worst effect of Sandy that I suffered was a four-day power outage, many people were hit much worse.

The accounts of the suffering and damage the storm caused are well documented and do not need discussion here.  What I will discuss is terminology.  Most pundits took to referring to Sandy as “Superstorm Sandy”, as if the storm’s attributes were natural parts of the hurricane.  But that wasn’t really the case.

Sandy acquired much of its power by sucking the energy out of two weather systems.  In essence, Sandy was a vampire.  While this fact does not minimize the impact of the storm, it should prompt people to realize that, without the extra energy, Sandy would have been much different.

About the only good thing that came out of all this was how rare a storm like Sandy really is.  After all, it required the presence of two other weather systems.  And, based on one report I had read, the conditions that allowed Sandy to become the storm it was will be even less likely to recur as the climate changes.

So, do you think Sandy should still be referred to as a “superstorm” or should it be regarded as a freak hurricane that derived its power from other weather systems?

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