For Immediate Release


Ashley Siefert Nunes at UCS, +1 952-239-0199,

By the Numbers: A Scientific Look at the Record-breaking 2020 Hurricane Season

WASHINGTON - The official 2020 hurricane season has concluded, breaking records along the way. This year featured a number of firsts, including 30 named storms so far—the largest number on record. This forced the National Hurricane Center to use Greek alphabet letters after exhausting the initial list of selected names, something that had only occurred once before. Notably, we also saw storms form before the official hurricane season start date, rapid intensification of storms, and numerous places hit by successive hurricanes.

Dr. Astrid Caldas, a senior climate scientist at the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), provides a more detailed look at what set the 2020 hurricane season apart from years past in her latest blog post titled “Rapid Intensification and Number of Storms Make 2020 a Record Hurricane Season.” This blogpost is also available in Spanish

Dr. Caldas, who is based in Washington, D.C., can do interviews in English, Portuguese or Spanish. Click here for her full biography. If you have any questions or would like to arrange an interview with Dr. Caldas, please contact UCS Communications Officer Ashley Siefert Nunes.


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A new study by UCS and Columbia University scientists, published this month in the peer-reviewed journal GeoHealth, determined that directing hurricane evacuees to counties with low COVID-19 transmission rates could minimize increases in coronavirus cases. Although the study modeled an evacuation from Florida as a test case, its findings can be similarly applied to other disaster-related evacuations.  

Dr. Caldas also co-authored an article in Nature Climate Change, “Compound climate risks in the COVID-19 pandemic,” which was published in May.


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