Dr. Klotzbach at Colorado State University 2018 Tropical Outlook

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Having a major impact on operational tropical prediction of seasonal activity was Dr. William Gray at Colorado State University. His forecasts of seasonal activity began in 1984. Dr. Klotzbach replaced Dr. Gray upon his retirement. Klotzbach projects a slightly busier than normal season ahead with 14 storms, 7 hurricanes and 3 intense hurricanes.

The Colorado State University tropical cyclone outlook for the North Atlantic basin in 2018 calls for 14 tropical storms, 7 hurricanes and 3 intense hurricanes. The accumulated cyclone energy forecast is 130. The activity forecast is judged slightly above normal for the 2018 season but not as active as last year. By contrast Climate Impact Company is slightly less active than CSU forecasting 12 tropical storms, 7 hurricanes and 3 intense hurricanes in a report issued yesterday. Both forecasts will be updated around June 1st .

Fig. 1: Climate Impact Company tropical cyclone season 2018 forecast also indicating projected hurricane paths based on analog.

The CSU outlook identifies a warmer than normal western North Atlantic basin while the tropics are cooler than normal as mid-spring approaches. CSU implies the North Atlantic warmth which was robust last year is near average this year. In the Pacific a weak La Nina transitions to neutral ENSO this summer. CSU does not expect a major El Nino later this year.

The CSU forecast indicates slightly above normal risk of major hurricanes striking the U.S. this season. CIC identifies only Florida with that risk.

As stated yesterday in the CIC report, the lack of anomalous warmth in the deep tropics now (or forecast by models) for hurricane season could suppress activity slightly which is why CIC is slightly less active than CSU particularly with ACE index forecast.

The Tropical Prediction Project at Colorado State University began forecasting seasonal activity in 1984 famously by renowned forecaster Dr. William Gray. Dr. Phil Klotzbach was selected by Dr. Gray as his replacement upon retirement.