Annual trends in storm wave intensity over the past 41 years were evaluated during the present study. Storm wave intensity is evaluated in terms of total storm wave energy (TSWE) and storm power index (SPI) of Dolan and Davis (1992). Using an accurate long-term wave hindcast developed using a calibrated SWAN model, all storm wave events occurring over the past 41 years were characterized in terms of significant wave height (Hs
) and total storm duration. Thus, both SPI and TSWE was computed for each storm wave event. The Theil–Sen slope estimator was used to estimate the annual slopes of the SPI and TSWE and the Mann–Kendall test was used to test the trend significance with different confidence levels. The present study is spatially performed for the western Mediterranean Sea basin considering 2308 grid points in a regular grid of 0.198° resolution in both directions. Results allow as to define five hotspots covering a large area, experienced a significant increasing slope in both SPI and TSWE (annual maxima and average). The confidence level in this area exceed 95%, with a steep slope between 100 kWh·m−1
and 240 kWh·m−1
for annual max TSWE and between 28 m²·h·year−1
and 49 m²·h·year−1
for annual max SPI. Consideration of the present findings is strongly recommended for risk assessment and for sustainable development in coastal and offshore area and to identify areas sensitive to global climate change in the western Mediterranean Sea.
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