Hurricane season officially starts on June 1st. The National Hurricane Center updated their hurricane season forecast. It continues to highlight above average activity. Here is this year's forecast with comparisons to average and last year:
Why the increase? First, no El Nino this year. El Nino's lead to stronger steering current with act to shear apart storms as they develop. 1997 was a great example!
This year, the upper level winds will be more favorable for storms.
Second, since the mid 1990s, the Atlantic Ocean has been in a "warm mode". This warm mode is part of a cycle called the AMO or Atlantic Multi-decadal Oscillation. This oscillation switches every (20-40 years).
When its positive or warm, the storms make landfall along the US coast more frequently.
The other more short-term variable is the current water temperatures in
the Gulf of Mexico and atlantic ocean. Notice how warm these waters are
running this early in the season. This favors early season storm
development along the Gulf Coast and Florida.
In fact, the GFS is showing some development in the Gulf of Mexico by the middle of next week. Something to watch for sure!