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Hurricane experts now predict even more storms for 2021

The new forecast calls for 20 named storms, with 9 of them becoming hurricanes.
Credit: NASA

Hurricane Elsa is behind us now, but top hurricane forecasters at Colorado State University (CSU) say to expect even more tropical storms and hurricanes than originally forecast.

CSU is now predicting 20 named storms, with nine of them becoming hurricanes. Four of those storms are expected to become major hurricanes, which is category three or above. 

The original 2021 hurricane forecast by CSU in June called for 17 named storms, eight hurricanes and four major hurricanes.

The amount of expected named storms does include the five named storms that have already developed this season, which are tropical storms Ana, Bill, Claudette, Danny and Elsa. Elsa was the season’s first hurricane moving south-to-north just off shore by Tampa Bay this week.

Dr. Phil Klotzbach, CSU Research Scientist, explained the reasoning behind the above-average forecast, which includes above-average temperatures in the subtropical Atlantic Ocean, an active West African Monsoon, and the low probability for El Niño to develop.

Klotzbach also says the development and intensification of Elsa in the tropical Atlantic also typically portends an active season.

The next updated forecast from CSU, as well as NOAA, will come in early August just prior to the peak of hurricane season.

Colorado State University has produced the longest-running seasonal Atlantic hurricane forecast, which is in its 35th year.

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