In Case You Missed It… USA Today Record year for hurricanes part of a natural cycle November 30, 2005 By Tom Vanden Brook Natural climate conditions, not global warming, created the record-breaking 2005 tropical storm season, the nation’s top hurricane experts said Tuesday. Three ingredients combined to generate more and stronger hurricanes in 2005, said Gerry Bell, lead meteorologist for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Climate Prediction Center. Warm ocean water helps fuel storms, and Atlantic water temperatures were 2 to 3 degrees above average this year, he said. There was an absence of winds high in the atmosphere that can tear hurricanes apart. And winds blowing east from Africa steered developing storms toward warmer waters where they incubated into tropical storms and hurricanes. That combination of factors has occurred periodically through history, Bell said. Meteorologists refer to such an active hurricane cycle as the “multi-decadal signal.” It can last for 30 years. The current period began in 1995. A record 26 tropical storms formed this season, which began June 1 and ends today. “It’s not related” to global warming, Bell said. The same conditions occurred in the 1950s and 1960s, the last period of above-normal hurricane activity. … . Click here for the full text of the article. Record year for hurricanes part of a natural cycle