Hurricane update: List of 2024 Atlantic storm predictions released


The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) released their 2024 Atlantic hurricane season forecast on Thursday, just a week before hurricane season was set to begin on June 1.

NOAA’s forecast anticipates that there will be 17 to 25 named storms this year for an above-average hurricane season. Of those storms, eight to 13 will be hurricanes and four to seven will be major hurricanes. The forecast for named storms, hurricanes and major hurricanes is the highest NOAA has ever issued for a May outlook.

“This season is looking to be an extraordinary in a number of ways,” NOAA administrator Rick Spinrad said during the press conference.

n this NOAA image taken by the GOES satellite, Hurricane Lee crosses the Atlantic Ocean as it moves west on September 8, 2023. NOAA released its 2024 hurricane forecast on Thursday.

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Several factors are contributing to the storm-heavy predictions this year, including abnormally warm sea surface temperatures and the expectation that El Niño will transition into La Niña by this summer or fall.

If the upper limits of NOAA’s forecast come to fruition, the upcoming hurricane season will surpass the 2023 hurricane season, which produced the fourth-most named storms in a year since 1950, NOAA said. NOAA cited record-warm Atlantic sea surface temperatures and a strong El Niño as the reasons driving the 2023 hurricane season’s strength. There were 20 named storms last year, with seven hurricanes and three major hurricanes.

“An average season has 14 named storms, seven hurricanes and three major hurricanes,” a report from NOAA said.

Tropical storms this year will progress through the following list of names: Alberto, Beryl, Chris, Debby, Ernesto, Francine, Gordon, Helene, Isaac, Joyce, Kirk, Leslie, Milton, Nadine, Oscar, Patty, Rafael, Sara, Tony, Valerie and William.

The 2024 NOAA forecast is similar to forecasts from other organizations, including the 2024 hurricane prediction issued by Colorado State University (CSU) meteorologists in April. The forecast predicted that there would be 23 named storms in 2024, with 11 hurricanes and five major hurricanes. It’s the highest number of hurricanes that CSU meteorologists have predicted in their 41-year history of publishing the outlooks in April.

CSU graduate research assistant Nick Mesa previously told Newsweek that meteorologists expect an increased chance of landfall along the entire U.S. coastline during the 2024 Atlantic hurricane season.

“The combination of record warm temperatures and the transition to La Niña during peak hurricane season provides a very conducive environment for storms to develop and intensify that we haven’t really seen before,” Mesa said.

AccuWeather meteorologists also have warned of an “explosive” hurricane season. The weather organization raised the alarm with a report in February warning that certain areas of the United States at a higher risk based on new predictions.

“We expect that the Gulf Coast, especially the Texas coast, will be at a higher risk for direct impacts from a tropical system this year,” AccuWeather long-range expert Paul Pastelok said in the report.

CSU will publish additional hurricane forecasts in June, July and August. The margin of error in those forecasts is expected to decrease as the season gets underway.