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A Guide to Information on Greenhouse Gases and Ozone Depletion
Published July 1988 through June 1999


1998 Hurricane Season

Item #d98dec42

The Washington Post reported on p. A38, Nov. 26, that Colorado State University hurricane forecaster William Gray predicted above-average hurricane activity in 1999, “a reflection of the new hurricane era we entered in 1995.” He said of the Atlantic Basin, “We expect this trend to continue for the next few decades.” He attributed this year’s increased hurricane activity to the Atlantic conveyor belt, which circulates water from the tropics to the northeast Atlantic and back to the south; above-average sea-surface temperatures in the tropical and north Atlantic; and a ridge of low barometric pressure near the Azores earlier this year. He pointed out that more hurricanes were reported from 1995 to 1998 than in any other four years of this century and that 53 named storms, 32 hurricanes, and 15 major hurricanes have occurred since 1995. The 14 named storms, 9 hurricanes, and 3 intense hurricanes this year surpassed even Gray’s predictions last year of 10 named storms, 6 hurricanes, and 2 intense hurricanes.

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