I’ve made several posts in recent months here about sea surface temperatures in the Atlantic and Gulf, since their importance has been cited by many forecasters with respect to the high-frequency predictions made for this year’s hurricane season.
However, the latest weekly sea-temperature update shows that warm anomalies, at least for now, are unimpressive. Most of the tropical and sub-tropical Atlantic, as well as much of the Gulf, show sea surface temperatures running close to normal, with some areas slightly above and others slightly below. Over the majority of the waters, anomalies are generally small. A larger warm anomaly (+2 degrees) is noted in the northern Gulf along the U.S. coast.
The “extreme-season” predictions made by NOAA and other notable forecasting sources, despite being down-graded a bit a week or so ago, still call for a very active season ahead. Those forecasts again cite unusually warm sea surface temperatures as a contributing factor.
We’ll see how things shake out in the coming weeks, but it is appearing less likely that extreme warmth of the ocean surface waters, now apparently diminishing, will be as important as originally thought.