Tropical Storm Omar just broke an Atlantic hurricane-season record

We're starting to run thin on storm names for 2020.

Amanda Kooser
Freelance writer Amanda C. Kooser covers gadgets and tech news with a twist for CNET. When not wallowing in weird gear and iPad apps for cats, she can be found tinkering with her 1956 DeSoto.
Amanda Kooser
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This view of Tropical Storm Omar forming comes from the NASA-NOAA Suomi NPP satellite.

NASA Worldview, Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS)

A storm off the coast of North Carolina picked up wind speed and officially became Tropical Storm Omar on Tuesday. It's already a record-breaker.

"Omar is the 15th named storm of the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season, and is the earliest 15th storm on record, besting the previous mark by about a week from Ophelia of 2005," said NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in a release on Wednesday.

NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Suomi NPP satellite tracked the storm over the last few days. Strong upper-level winds have been causing the storm to weaken.  

NOAA forecast a busy Atlantic hurricane season for 2020, and we're now witnessing that prediction coming true. Omar isn't currently a threat to land, but its formation comes soon after Hurricane Laura whipped into Louisiana and caused tremendous damage.

NASA sees dramatic Earth weather from space (pictures)

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Omar's trajectory has carried it away from the US coastline, but its existence this early in the season isn't a good sign. Busy and intense hurricane seasons may become the new norm for our warming globe. 

Scientists are looking into connections between climate change and everything from wildfires to flooding. A study released earlier this year also points to climate change as a culprit in hurricanes getting stronger

There are 21 approved names for Atlantic storms for 2020. After Omar, we have Paulette, Rene, Sally, Teddy, Vicky and Wilfred left on the list. The season runs through Nov. 30.