For the seventh straight year, forecasters at National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Climate Prediction Center are expecting a busy 2022 Atlantic hurricane season. The annual hurricane forecast, which was announced May 24, 2022, suggests there could be as many as 14 to 21 named hurricanes, with three to six of those reaching Category 3 or higher.
The 2022 Atlantic hurricane season officially starts June 1, 2022, and lasts through November.
Scientists attribute the increase in hurricane activity for the 2022 season to several factors, including:
- the La Niña that is likely to continue throughout the hurricane season
- warmer-than-average surface temperatures in the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea
- weaker tropical Atlantic trade winds
- an enhanced west African monsoon
West African monsoons create African easterly waves, which feed many of the strongest Atlantic hurricanes.
"As we reflect on another potentially busy hurricane season, past storms — such as Superstorm Sandy, which devastated the New York metro area 10 years ago — remind us that the impact of one storm can be felt for years," NOAA Administrator Rick Spinrad, Ph.D. said in a press statement. "Since Sandy, NOAA's forecasting accuracy has continued to improve, allowing us to better predict the impacts of major hurricanes to lives and livelihoods."