The hurricane season of 2020, which brought devastating storms from Central America to the United States Gulf Coast and beyond, has proved to be one for the record book.
The storm officially arrived before the start of the hurricane season, with Tropical Storm Albert formed in mid-MayThe official start of the Atlantic season two weeks ago on 1 June.
In August, in the midst of a six-month season, scientists advanced their approach to say that 2020 would be “one of the most active seasons” and that they expected Up to 25 storms The time was up. By November, it had also surpassed the upgraded expectation: Now 30 named hurricanes have arrived – 13 of them hurricanes – breaking a record set in 2005, when 28 hurricanes became significantly stronger. Fifteen storms formed that year.
Latest storm, Hurricane Etawah, Moving towards Central America, One area still recovering after a hit from Hurricane Eta two weeks ago. Etawah, now a Category 4 hurricane, was prone to landslides on the border of Nicaragua and Honduras on Monday night and was expected to experience gusty winds and rain as the region received up to 30 inches of rain last week.
There have been a record-breaking number of named storms.
just, A Category 4 Hurricane Near Central America, Became the latest storm this season. It was before Etawah Theta, the 29th storm of the seasonBreaking the annual record in 2005, Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast.
In september Formed the tropical storm Wilfred In the eastern Atlantic Ocean, it eliminated the list of prepared storm names and pushed meteorologists to name the next storm in the 24-letter Greek alphabet, only for the second time. Meteorologists resort to Greek letters. “We’ve only done this once, said earlier in the season,” and that was 2005, said Dennis Feltgen, a spokesman for the National Hurricane Center in Miami and meteorologist. “
Six of those storms have been major hurricanes.
The fastest storm was Iota, which, according to the National Hurricane Center in Miami, rose to a Category 5 hurricane with maximum sustained winds of 160 mph.
Category 5 hurricanes in the Atlantic Basin are rare late in this season. “It’s the latest ever,” Mr. Feltgen said, listing other late-season Category 5 hurricanes, including Mitch in 1998 and an unnamed storm in 1932, which passed east of the Cayman Islands on November 9 and then hit Cuba that day . A category 4.
Which areas have been hit the most and hardest?
While Central America braked for its second major hurricane of the season, Iota, it was still recovering from the devastation left by Eta, a hurricane that made landfall in early November Category 4 and claimed at least 60 lives.
The Gulf Coast of the United States was also brightened by seven named storms this season. Eta beat florida twice, Leaving thousands of beach communities without electricity and flooding.
Louisiana saw at least five hurricanes this year, With zeta, Which inflated parts of New Orleans in late October. In August, Hurricane Laura made landfall off the state’s coast As category 4 storm Destroying office buildings, a sky bridge, trees and power lines, with winds of 150 mph. The storm was also responsible for at least six deaths in the state.
How has climate change affected hurricanes?
The busy hurricane season has repeatedly raised questions about how climate change is affecting hurricanes in the Atlantic. Although researchers are not able to say with certainty that climate change will mean longer or more active storm seasons in the coming years, they believe Global warming is changing storm.
Scientists say warmer Atlantic surface temperatures have helped increase hurricane activity this season. Climate scientist James P. with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Cosin said the warm ocean temperatures “are solely responsible for the overactive weather”. “It is very likely that human-caused climate change contributed to that anomalous warm ocean.”
And research on the subject continues.
Scientists have discovered how and why climate change affects hurricanes; Increased sea temperatures associated with global warming can cause storms to gradually weaken as they move over land and remain destructive for long periods of time. In a recent study, Scientists found that a typical storm 50 years ago would have lost more than three-quarters of its intensity in the first 24 hours, when it could travel several hundred miles inland, but would now lose about half that.
Henry Fountain contributed reporting.