Last updated September 9, 2016
Jan 1, 2015
-
Dec 31, 2015

Cyclone Season 2015

Due to record-warm ocean temperatures and one of the strongest El Niños on record, there were nine Category 5 storms in 2015, which is the second-highest total on record.

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Near-record number of Category 5 storms driven by record-warm ocean heat and El Niño

There were nine Category 5 storms in 2015, which is the second-highest total on record. Record-warm ocean temperatures fed the unusually high number of strong storms, with especially warm readings across tropical and subtropical areas.[1] El Niño played a large role by spreading warm water across vast swaths of the Pacific. However, Earth has also experienced a decade of intensified heat storage in the deep ocean (which scientists say is largely responsible for the temporary slowdown in the rate of surface warming from 2000 to 2012).[2]