Colorado State University’s Tropical Meteorology Project team today upped its forecast for the 2010 Atlantic hurricane season, from its December predictions. The CSU team said the predicted weakening of El Niño conditions combined with a very strong anomalous warming of the tropical Atlantic are the primary reasons why it is increasing its forecast. In a season it expects will see above-average activity, the CSU team now expects 15 named storms – including eight hurricanes, four of which are expected to be major (Category 3-4-5) hurricanes. The probability of U.S. major hurricane landfall is estimated to be about 130 percent of the long-period average. There is a 45 percent chance that a major hurricane will make landfall on the U.S. East coast, including the Florida Peninsula, and a 44 percent chance of a Gulf Coast landfall from the Florida Panhandle west to Brownsville. The team also predicted an above-average (58 percent) probability for at least one major hurricane tracking into the Caribbean. The forecast for above-average activity ties in with recent predictions from AccuWeather.com chief hurricane forecaster Joe Bastardi who warned this year has the chance to be an extreme season with 16 to 18 tropical storms, including five hurricanes, two or three of which will be major landfalls for the U.S. Check out I.I.I. facts and stats on hurricanes.