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Storms In America Might Be Fueled By Air Pollution in Asia

Update Date: Apr 16, 2014 10:15 AM EDT

Air pollution in Asia may be responsible for severe storms in North America, according to a recent study from Jet Propulsion Laboratory(JPL). 

The research added that storms in the Northwest Pacific have become ten percent stronger than they were 30 years ago. 

"Atmospheric aerosols affect weather and global general circulation by modifying cloud and precipitation processes, but the magnitude of cloud adjustment by aerosols remains poorly quantified and represents the largest uncertainty in estimated forcing of climate change," researchers wrote in the journal

"Coal burning by power plants and factories in China are responsible for the increase in the severity of storms," said Yuan Wang, an atmospheric scientist at Jet Propulsion Laboratory, led the study of the effect of Asian air pollution on North American weather patterns, according to TechTimes

China is the world's largest consumer of coal and the air pollution is rising everyday in the country. Aerosol emissions causing air pollution in Beijing are 400 times the level normally considered safe. 

"The increasing pollution in Asian countries is not just a local problem, it can affect other parts of the world," Wang added according to Live Science.

"Because storms generally move west to east, North America will be hardest hit by the extreme weather events."

Apart from China, India also has its fair share of air pollution where hazardous levels of air particulates are frequently recorded. 

Wang added that the polar vortex bringing frigid temperatures to much of the eastern United States may have been the result of Pacific storms caused by air particles released over China and other nations. 

"The effects are quite dramatic. The pollution results in thicker and taller clouds and heavier precipitation," Wang told the BBC.

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