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CSU: Slightly Below Average Hurricane Season Expected

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Posted at 12:22 PM, Apr 06, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-06 12:28:03-04

Philip Klotzbach, meteorologist and Atlantic Basin seasonal hurricane forecast specialist with Colorado State University says the combination of a developing weak to moderate El Nino, combined with cooler than normal Atlantic sea surface temperatures and a negative phase of the Atlantic Multi-Decadal Oscillation will likely lead to a slightly below average hurricane season this year. 

Klotzbach forecasts 11 named storms, with 4 hurricanes and 2 major hurricanes. The chance for a hurricane landfall on the Florida Peninsula and the East Coast of the U.S. is 24%, with 31% being the average. The chance of at least one major hurricane entering the Caribbean stands at 34% (42% is average).

El Nino increases upper level wind shear over the Caribbean and Atlantic, which creates an unfavorable environment for storms to develop and maintain their intensity. Cooler than average Atlantic waters also put a damper on the available heat energy needed for tropical cyclones to organize and strengthen. The 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season begins June 1st and ends November 30th. 

Chief Meteorologist Derek Beasley