Thoughts on Science: Hurricanes

As summer rolls in so does hurricane season and its expected to be a busy one. A total of 14 named storms with seven being hurricanes and three developing into major hurricanes -of category three or higher- are predicted by Colorado State University. This slight increase in activity is above average for the Atlantic storm season, but it is still expected to quieter than last year. Impactful storms including Hurricane Maria and Irma devastated places like Puerto Rico and Dominica in which recovery efforts are still ongoing, so hopefully storms of that magnitude are not repeated.

Weather conditions conducive to hurricanes include warm water that is ideally 82 degrees or higher and low pressure conditions. However, there is a possibility of an El Niño forming that brings cooler ocean temperatures and usually a calmer season. The following year will correlate with La Niña conditions which brings an intensified version of normal weather including stronger hurricanes. Unfortunately, continued climate change promoting an increase in global temperatures is anticipated to only exacerbate future cyclones. Either way, everyone should always prepare by having extra water, non perishables, batteries, and perhaps a generator in their homes.