Friday, August 10, 2007

Met Office Prediction - Heatwaves

The latest UK meteorological office weather predictions provide an interesting set of long term 'forecasts', although I think I prefer the term predictions. This from The Guardian provides a concise summary.

"Powerful computer simulations used to create the world's first global warming forecast suggests temperature rises will stall in the next two years, before rising sharply at the end of the decade."

So the prediction for the next few years is that temperature increases will plateau at current levels until 2009/2010; something to do with natural shifts in climate canceling out the global warming caused by greenhouse gases. After that though, we are in for steadily climbing temperatures, increasingly warmer summers and increasingly heavy rainfall periods.

"From 2010, they warn, every year has at least a 50% chance of exceeding the record year of 1998 when average global temperatures reached 14.54C."

Weather forecasting is an inexact science, and they often cannot even get it right a few days ahead, so many may question the accuracy of their powerful computer simulations. But if they are correct, then perhaps now is the time to stock up on sunscreen, brollies and sandbags?

There's a fuller article with perhaps better explanation on the National Geographic News site.

Hmmmm, even the Daily Mail has picked up on this story.

Meanwhile, in a rather worrying move, Ol' Golden Brown seems to have downgraded the status of the cabinet committee on climate change - see this article from EDIE. And we all thought that he considered climate change a 'major challenge to mankind'!