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Warming Ocean Fueled More Storms in 2020 Atlantic Hurricane Season

“Of 2020's Atlantic storms, 13 were hurricanes, six of them Category 3 or higher. Warmer ocean waters are fueling an increasing number of storms.”

“For Darilyn Turner and her neighbors, living in the bottomlands along the banks of the Mississippi River south of New Orleans is particularly perilous from June through November.

Those months encompass the Atlantic hurricane season. Even in a normal year, people are on edge, she said, worried about storms that blow over the Gulf of Mexico, bringing walls of water, high winds and, often, widespread destruction when they find land.

But 2020 was no normal year.

A record Atlantic basin hurricane season was fueled by warmer than normal ocean and Gulf waters that scientists say were, at least in part, caused by climate change. In all, there were 30 named storms, the most on record and almost three times the typical number. The basin includes the Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico.”

James Bruggers and Bob Berwyn report for Inside Climate News December 24, 2020.