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More big storms likely for this year's hurricane season

So far this hurricane season has produced six named storms: Alberto, Beryl, Chris, Debbie, Ernesto and Florence.

Clone of Hurricane irene 4Enlarge
A man walks across 42nd Street in Times Square in New York on August 28, 2011 as Hurricane Irene hits the city and Tri-State area. (Timothy A. Clary/AFP/Getty Images)

Today the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) predicted 12 to 17 named storms will appear from June 1 to Nov. 30, according to the NOAA website.

These are revised predictions. NOAA initially said 9 to 15 named storms would appear for this years Hurricane season. 

So far this hurricane season has produced Alberto, Beryl, Chris, Debbie, Ernesto and Florence. Chris and Ernesto became hurricanes, according to CNN

The NOAA website states, the "outlook still indicates a 50 percent chance of a near-normal season, but increases the chance of an above-normal season to 35 percent and decreases the chance of a below-normal season to only 15 percent from the initial outlook issued in May."

They break down the numbers this way:

• 12 to 17 named storms (top winds of 39 mph or higher), including:

• 5 to 8 hurricanes (top winds of 74 mph or higher), of which:

• 2 to 3 could be major hurricanes (Category 3, 4 or 5; winds of at least 111 mph)

According to the NOAA's Gerry Bell, Ph.D., lead seasonal hurricane forecaster at the Climate Prediction Center, said “We are increasing the likelihood of an above-normal season because storm-conducive wind patterns and warmer-than-normal sea surface temperatures are now in place in the Atlantic."

He added, “These conditions are linked to the ongoing high activity era for Atlantic hurricanes that began in 1995. Also, strong early-season activity is generally indicative of a more active season.” 

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/united-states/120809/more-big-storms-likely-years-hurricane-season