The water temperature in the Atlantic Ocean is nice and warm, well above the long-term average. But in spite of the warm water, the tropics have been very slow to start producing any tropical storms this year after an early start to the season. In part this is due to the presence of Saharan dust and dry air coming off of Africa, which prevents the development of any storm seedlings. Also, the swing from El Niño to La Niña has been a little slower than expected, which reduces the chances of tropical development too. You can read more about this at Weather Underground’s latest blog post here.
But never fear! A new wave has just come off the coast of Africa, and it looks like it has a moderate chance of developing into a tropical storm. Still a long ways off, so we have plenty of time to watch it. But as we enter the peak season for Atlantic tropical systems, expect to see more and more action.