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Stormy Waters Ahead: Absence of El Niño This Year Could Fuel Active Hurricane Season

Source: Live Science/Tia Ghose - August 11, 2017 in Adventure

Stormy Waters Ahead: Absence of El Niño This Year Could Fuel Active Hurricane Season
Photo: NASA/Wikimedia Commons (CC0)

The hurricane season is likely to be extra active this year, thanks to a likely no-show from El Niño.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Climate Prediction Center released an updated hurricane season outlook today (Aug. 9). The new prediction ups the odds for a blustery, extremely active hurricane season – and possibly even the most active since 2010.

“We’re now entering the peak of the season, when the bulk of the storms usually form,” Gerry Bell, the lead seasonal hurricane forecaster at NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center, said in a statement. “The wind and air patterns in the area of the tropical Atlantic and Caribbean where many storms develop are very conducive to an above-normal season. This is, in part, because the chance of El Niño forming, which tends to prevent storms from strengthening, has dropped significantly from May.” (El Niño is a climate phenomenon most distinguished by the shift of warm water from the western to the central and eastern tropical Pacific Ocean.)

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