Today meteorologists and research scientists at Colorado State University (CSU) updated one of the season’s earliest and most well-respected hurricane outlooks. This follows an update that was issued in June. The update issued in June can be found here.
The latest predictions continue to anticipate this year’s hurricane season to be busier than average, increasing the number of named storms and hurricane. The update issued in June only increased the number of expected named storms.
Dr. Phil Klotzbach and the Tropical Meteorology Project at CSU now anticipate 20 named storms, 9 of which becoming hurricanes and 4 of those becoming major hurricanes. This includes storms that have already formed.
Dr. Phil Klotzbach, CSU Research Scientist, explained the reasoning behind the above-average forecast, which includes above average temperatures in the subtropical Atlantic Ocean, an active West African Monsoon, and the low probability for El Niño to develop.
In fact, a La Niña watch
was issued by the Climate Prediction Center on Thursday, the same day CSU updated their forecast.
La Niña or ENSO neutral conditions typically favor active hurricane seasons since El Niño typically increases wind shear in the Atlantic, which helps to disrupt tropical development.
The active monsoon in West Africa has already led to several strong easterly waves emerging in the Atlantic, one of which produced Hurricane Elsa.
The monsoon typically leads to more tropical disturbances later in the season, especially in August and September.
In addition to the forecast for an above average number of storms, CSU also predicts an above average season in ACE (Accumulated Cyclone Energy), Hurricane Days, and Major Hurricane Days. The forecast also predicts a 68% chance for a landfalling system for the entire east coast (this does not include the landfalls which have already occurred this season). You can read the report in its entirety here