The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has said that there’s a 65% chance of an above normal Atlantic hurricane season in 2022, making it the seventh consecutive above normal season.
The forecast from the NOAA is the latest to point to an above average season in the months ahead, and is in line with forecasts from other leading meteorologists.
For 2022, the NOAA sees a 65% chance of an above normal season, a 25% chance of an about normal season, and just a 10% likelihood of a below normal season.
According to the NOAA’s data and analysis, for the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season, which runs from June 1st to November 30th, there’s a 70% chance of 14-21 named storms, 6-10 hurricanes, and 3-6 major hurricanes.
Secretary of Commerce, Gina M. Raimondo, commented: “Early preparation and understanding your risk is key to being hurricane resilient and climate-ready. Throughout the hurricane season, NOAA experts will work around-the-clock to provide early and accurate forecasts and warnings that communities in the path of storms can depend on to stay informed.”
The NOAA says that heightened activity is expected in the coming season as a result of various climate factors. This includes the current La Nina event that is forecast to persist through the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season, warmer-than-average sea surface temperatures across the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea, weaker tropical Atlantic trade winds, and an enhanced west African monsoon.
“As we reflect on another potentially busy hurricane season, past storms — such as Superstorm Sandy, which devastated the New York metro area ten years ago — remind us that the impact of one storm can be felt for years,” said NOAA Administrator Rick Spinrad, Ph.D. “Since Sandy, NOAA’s forecasting accuracy has continued to improve, allowing us to better predict the impacts of major hurricanes to lives and livelihoods.”
The NOAA adds that this outlook is for overall season activity and is not a landfall forecast. Of course, landfalls are what make all the difference, in terms of losses, for insurers and reinsurers. But while all the forecasts for the 2022 season have so far been above the norm, by no means does this mean more landfalls and therefore increased losses for carriers. Only time will tell exactly which way the wind blows.
Ahead of the upcoming Atlantic hurricane season, the NOAA has made some enhancements to some of its products and services, including efforts to better understand and predict how hurricanes intensify by operating five Saildrone uncrewed surface vehicles during the peak of the 2022 hurricane season.
Additionally, both the Hurricane Weather Research and Forecast Modeling System and Hurricanes in a Multi-scale Ocean-coupled Non-hydrostatic model have been transitioned to the latest version of the Weather and Climate Operational Supercomputing System.
At the same time, the company’s Excessive Rainfall Outlook (ERO) has been experimentally extended from three to five days of lead time. And, finally, in June, the NOAA is set to enhance an experimental graphic that depicts the Peak Storm Surge Forecast when storm surge watches or warnings are in effect.
FEMA Administrator, Deanne Criswell, said: “Hurricane Ida spanned nine states, demonstrating that anyone can be in the direct path of a hurricane and in danger from the remnants of a storm system.
“It’s important for everyone to understand their risk and take proactive steps to get ready now by visiting Ready.gov and Listo.gov for preparedness tips, and by downloading the FEMA App to make sure you are receiving emergency alerts in real-time.”