Forecasters anticipate mild Atlantic hurricane season

 Stewart Farrell, who directs the Coastal Research Center at Stockton College, said the Jersey shoreline has recovered substantially since Sandy. Much of the sand the storm washed inland was transferred by heavy equipment back to the beaches.(Phil Gregory/ for NewsWorks)

Stewart Farrell, who directs the Coastal Research Center at Stockton College, said the Jersey shoreline has recovered substantially since Sandy. Much of the sand the storm washed inland was transferred by heavy equipment back to the beaches.(Phil Gregory/ for NewsWorks)

Beginning Sunday and continuing through the end of November, the Atlantic hurricane season is expected to pack fewer storms than usual.

Winds from a developing El Nino event in the Pacific might tamp down the number of developing hurricanes, said New Jersey state climatologist Dave Robinson.

But there could be problems later on.

“What might save the coast from the tropical season might come back to haunt us next winter. El Nino winters tend to have a propensity for coastal storms, nor’easters, something we didn’t see all that much this past snowy winter,” Robinson said. “Thus, the beaches came through it pretty well.”

Stewart Farrell, who directs the Coastal Research Center at Stockton College, said much of the sand that Sandy washed inland has been moved back to the shoreline. And the Army Corp of Engineers has done some beach projection work along parts of the coast.

The protective dune system still needs to be built in northern Ocean County, the southern part of Long Beach Island, and in Margate and Longport, Farrell said.

“The plan is to continue that effort after the major part of the tourist season is over and extend it to all of their designed projects by the end of 2015’s dredging season which is like March and early April,” Farrell said. 

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