Environment Agency chief says ‘weather is unpredictable’.
In an article published in the Sunday Telegraph (and also covered by the Daily Mail – link image right), Lord Smith, chairman of the Environment Agency, perpetuates the ‘extreme weather’ meme.
Referring to the recent flooding and last year’s drought:
“Last year taught us that weather patterns are getting more extreme,” says Lord Smith. “If you’d said to me a decade ago that we’d have a year in which the first three months would be facing a serious prospect of very severe drought, but we’d then have nine months of the wettest period since records began, I’d have just said, ‘No, that sort of extreme weather does not happen here in Britain.’ Increasingly, it does.
The weather is highly unpredictable and presents new challenges, he says, adding: “We are experiencing a new kind of rain.”
It may sound like an excuse from a railway company, but Lord Smith insists that it is true. “Instead of rain sweeping in a curtain across the country, we are getting convective rain, which sits in one place and just dumps itself in a deluge over a long period of time. From the point of view of filling up the rivers and the drains, that is quite severe.”
That doesn’t exactly sound like an endorsement of the Met Office.
Tonyb, whose penchant is historical records and texts recording weather, often bemoans the lack of attention paid by the Met Office in Exeter to their own archive records housed there. If we could go back to a previous period following one of those where Arctic ice was known to be low by historical accounts (as explored by Tonyb; also see detailed poster here: http://acsys.npolar.no/meetings/final/abstracts/posters/Session_1/poster_s1_027.pdf), would we find similar weather patterns to those today in the UK?