Fewer tropical cyclones may form off Western Australia but they may become more intense.

CSIRO climate scientist Deborah Abbs says there could be a 50 percent reduction in the number of storms in the second half of this century – from 2051-2090 – compared to the period from 1971-2000.

However, the climate model developed by Dr Abbs’ team indicates a distinct shift towards more destructive storms.

“Despite a decrease in the number of tropical cyclones, there is a greater risk that a tropical cyclone that forms will be more severe in future,” Dr Abbs said.

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Credit: Jacques Descloitres, MODIS Rapid Response Team, NASA/GSFC