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Colorado State University Meteorologists Increase Chances For An Above-Average Hurricane Season

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NOAA

There is a higher probability that 2020 will see an above-average Atlantic hurricane season.

According to Thursday’s latest forecast by Colorado State University, researchers say they expect nine hurricanes to form in 2020, up one from their last forecast in April.

Forecasters continue to expect 19 named storms to form this year, along with four major hurricanes of Category 3 or higher.

Forecasters also increased the likelihood that hurricane will make landfall in the United States and Caribbean.

This follows projections from NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center last month that call for a 60% chance for an above-average season, and a 30% chance of an average season.

Among the factors meteorologists cited in the heightened forecast are warmer temperatures in the subtropical Atlantic Ocean and the extremely low chances of an El Nino pattern forming, making it more likely for thunderstorms to develop into tropical storms or hurricanes.

Three named storms have already formed – and two before the official June 1 start of the Atlantic hurricane season.

Tropical Storm Arthur formed three weeks ago and grazed North Carolina before moving out to sea. Tropical Storm Bertha formed last week off the coast of South Carolina and quickly moved inland.

And on Wednesday, Tropical Storm Cristobal made landfall in Mexico and is forecast to track north through the Gulf of Mexico this weekend before making landfall near the Louisiana/Mississippi coastline on Sunday.

With the formation of Arthur, 2020 is the sixth straight year that a named storm has developed before June 1.

Tropical Storm Cristobal is the third named storm of the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season, which officially started on Monday.