Slightly warmer tropics and a Lack of El Nino will result in more tropical storm activity this year, according to The Weather Company, an IBM Business. The company’s first tropical forecast for the 2016 season predicts 14 named storms, eight hurricanes and three major hurricanes.
The numbers include Hurricane Alex, which occurred in January 2016. Hurricane Alex made headlines earlier this year as the first Atlantic hurricane in January since 1955. The forecast numbers for this tropical season are slightly higher than both the 1950-2015 “normals” of 12 named storms, seven hurricanes and three major hurricanes, and are very close to the recent “active period” (1995-2015) “normals” of 15 named storms, eight hurricanes and three major hurricanes.
“The long-term trends in Atlantic Ocean temperatures suggest that the years of hyperactive tropical seasons may be coming to an end for a while,” said Dr. Todd Crawford, chief meteorologist, The Weather Company. “Given this trend, along with the background El Nino conditions, the last three seasons have been relatively quiet. However, the expected cessation of El Nino forcing along with reasonably warm tropical Atlantic SSTs should provide for a more normal season this year. And, if the high-latitude Atlantic blocking persists into the summer, the tropical Atlantic SSTs may warm even more, so there is still some upside risk to the current forecast.”
The Weather Company will issue its next tropical outlook on May 25, 2016.
Source: The Weather Company
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