Batten Down The Hatches

The Department of Atmospheric Science at Colorado State University has released its annual forecast for the 2024 hurricane season and it is nothing less than frightening, with a prediction that the 2024 Atlantic hurricane season will have activity well above average Their summary is as follows:

“We estimate that 2024 will have 23 named storms (average is 14.4), 115 named storm days (average is 69.4), 11 hurricanes (average is 7.2), 45 hurricane days (average is 27.0), 5 major (Category 3-4-5) hurricanes (average is 3.2), and 13 major hurricane days (average is 7.4). The probability of U.S. and Caribbean major hurricane landfall is estimated to be well above its long- period average. We predict Atlantic basin Accumulated Cyclone Energy (ACE) and Net Tropical Cyclone (NTC) activity in 2024 to be approximately 170 percent of their long- term averages.”

The reasons behind the forecast are two-fold: The first is that the El Nino weather pattern of the past few years has changed into a La Nina pattern, which means that the upper-atmospheric wind shear conditions of El Nino that prevent hurricanes from forming will dissipate, thereby creating conditions favorable to hurricane formation.

The second major factor is that ocean water temperatures are soaring beyond anything ever seen before. Warm water temperatures are the fuel for hurricanes, but the unprecedented high ocean temperatures we are experiencing all around the world — every day literally is setting a new record — will provide the rocket fuel that will feed tropical storms that will propel them to strengthen into major hurricane status.

While the change from an El Nino weather pattern to a La Nina pattern is a normal occurrence, the dramatic increase in ocean temperatures is attributable to climate change thanks to the ever-increasing amount of fossil-fuels that the world continues to spew into the atmosphere.

We haven’t had a major hurricane in our little corner of the world in a while, so we are overdue — and thanks to the effects of climate change exacerbating every meteorological event, we could be in for a long, hot — and dangerous — summer and autumn.

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