According to news reports, Typhoon Haiyan, which struck the Philippines a few days ago, is now overshadowing the UN climate summit in Warsaw. Some delegates and climate campaigners have been quick to suggest that global warming was to blame for this disaster.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
When it comes to cyclones and tropical storms, something quite remarkable has happened this year. The 2013 Atlantic hurricane season, which forecasters had predicted would be more active than normal, turned out to be a complete washout. For the first time in 45 years, no major hurricane made landfall. This year has also been marked by the fewest number of hurricanes since 1982, and the first since 1994 when no major hurricane formed.