Accumulated Cyclone Energy (A.C.E.) is a great way to measure the activity of a hurricane season. It takes into account the total amount of energy produced by storms, rather than just counting the number of storms or hurricanes. A.C.E. tends to be a great way to cut through seasons that might have a lot of named storms that aren’t very strong, or a season with several short lived storms, and provide a better overall view of how active the season was. Just a few short weeks ago, A.C.E. in the North Atlantic basin was running fairly close to average, despite the massive amount of named storms. But recent storms like Laura, Sally, Paulette, and Teddy have produced a tremendous amount of energy, catapulting our A.C.E. so far in the North Atlantic this year over 20 units above normal.
We’re actually running below average in the whole Northern Hemisphere though. That’s because things have been very quiet in the usually very active Northwest Pacific and the Northeast Pacific.
We expect activity to continue running above normal through next month, so this busy season looks to stay busy for the foreseeable future. We’ll continue to run down the Greek Alphabet for names.
In 2005, we got all the way down to Zeta, and the National Hurricane Center actually missed an unnamed subtropical storm that year, meaning that we would have made it to Eta had that storm been named properly. We’ll see if we get that far this year. We certainly have the potential for that, especially if this season remains active as late as 2005. Storms were still forming into the end of the year in 2005.