El Nino Could Hamper Hurricanes, Help Chesapeake

BALTIMORE (AP) — Forecasters says this hurricane season could be less active than last and that has environmentalists and researchers hopeful the Chesapeake will avoid a repeat of heavy rains that dumped pollution into the bay last year.

Last year’s storms included Irene and Lee, which caused widespread flooding along the Susquehanna River, a major source of freshwater in the bay. Runoff from the pair is being blamed for algae blooms this spring that have led to fish kills.

Forecasters say the El Nino warming of the Pacific could develop this year and affect Atlantic winds, suppressing hurricane development.

Bay researchers say fewer storms mean less pollution, but they warn one big storm can seriously affect the bay. That’s why controlling storm runoff from roofs, roads and other paved surfaces is important.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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