Watch NOAA’s first hurricane season briefing of the year

You can watch the live stream below as NOAA will hold its first news conference of the hurricane season on Monday, starting at 12 p.m. ET. The Climate Prediction Center has predicted an above-normal…

Watch NOAA’s first hurricane season briefing of the year

You can watch the live stream below as NOAA will hold its first news conference of the hurricane season on Monday, starting at 12 p.m. ET.

The Climate Prediction Center has predicted an above-normal hurricane season for the Atlantic basin for the start of the season on June 1. For the Atlantic Ocean, the region most likely to experience hurricanes, forecasters expect six to 10 named storms, three to six of which are expected to strengthen into hurricanes.

Officials warn that a below-normal Atlantic hurricane season means higher odds for fatalities and property destruction. A below-normal season means fewer deaths and a smaller impact on large cities like New York City.

NOAA meteorologists predict five or six storms in the Atlantic Ocean, of which three will strengthen into hurricanes. In a statement, the Center said: “These forecasts are not annual predictions. Each year we conduct a general sense of the outlook, then put in plans on how to deal with the information we receive.”

WHAT TO EXPECT

The Atlantic hurricane season is the second-longest on record, running from June 1 to November 30.

NOAA forecasters noted that their current climate outlook, while “conservative,” also indicates the possibility of above-normal conditions in the eastern North Pacific. However, according to a new study, warmer-than-normal ocean temperatures in that area could actually reduce the number of hurricanes in the Atlantic.

According to a note on NOAA’s website, most storms originate from warm Atlantic waters.

ACCURACY

After almost a decade of storms, predictions can be controversial, especially when it comes to how much to predict a season. Below, The New York Times describes the science used to predict hurricane seasons.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) routinely sets up long-range forecasting models that use information from global weather systems and natural signals, such as the El Niño-Southern Oscillation, to produce a lifetime outlook for the Atlantic hurricane season. The models have been used for almost 30 years. Their main assumption is that hurricanes — especially intense hurricanes — form over warm water and this year’s Atlantic should stay slightly cooler than usual. The models are also designed to incorporate the effect of human-caused climate change on such storms. This year’s models are the longest in NOAA’s history, covering more than 2,300 miles of ocean floor. The model currently predicts five to seven named storms, all of which could become hurricanes by the time the season ends.

This article was originally published on February 20, 2021.

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