Earlier this week NOAA lowered their seasonal forecast for the Atlantic basin based on the persistence of dust coming off of Africa, which is contributing to lower ocean temperatures in the main development area, and due to the growth of the impending El Niño, which tends to increase the strength of the subtropical jet. Both the lower ocean temperatures and the stronger winds help limit the growth of tropical waves coming off of Africa, decreasing their likelihood of turning into tropical storms or hurricanes. You can read more at https://www.noaa.gov/media-release/noaa-forecasters-lower-atlantic-hurricane-season-prediction.

It is important to keep in mind that lower numbers does not mean we won’t see any hurricanes. We are entering the peak season, and some storms will be strong enough to overcome the adverse conditions and develop anyway. And the Gulf of Mexico is very warm, so storms could also develop there which could track over the Southeast, although they could also go west to Texas.