UK Summers Back To Normal
By Paul Homewood
Yes, that was it, the English summer has ended. If you blinked, you may have missed it!
Mean temperature averaged 13.9C in the UK as a whole, well down on the long term 1981-2010 average of 14.4C. Since 2006, the average summer temperature has been below average, running at 14.3C.
In terms of ranking, 2012 comes in at the 54th warmest since 1910. The Central England Temperature series shows this summer as 15.2C (higher than the whole UK, as it excludes the colder Scotland and Wales). Figure 2 illustrates just how unremarkable English summers have been lately, and not just in the last couple of years. In the 354 years since the series started, there have been 177 summers that were warmer than this year, and the average summer temperature since 1659 has actually been warmer, at 15.3C.
The list of the warmest summers, below, reinforces the point.
Despite all of the alarmist predictions of record rainfall earlier in the summer, the seasonal total of 370.7mm was below the record set in 1912 of 384.4mm. Although the Met Office data for the UK only goes back to 1910, the Hadley Centre do produce a regional precipitation series for England & Wales, which runs from 1766, as shown in Figure 5. In this series there have been three wetter summers, namely 1912, 1879 and 1829. Figure 6, though, gives a better idea of trends, being based on a ten year running average.
There has been a declining trend pretty much throughout the 20thC, which bottomed out in the late 1990’s. Since then, however, the trend has been rising back to the sort of levels seen in the 19thC. (The average from 1766-1900 was 236mm, whilst the 20thC average was 216mm. The average for the last decade amounts to 251mm.)
UK Government Forecasts
Earlier this year, the UK government published its “Climate Change Risk Assessment”, which forecasts by 2080 :-
1) An increase in summer temperatures of between 1C and 8C.
2) A projected change in average summer rainfall volumes ranging from a decrease of about 60% to an increase of about 10%.
Perhaps somebody ought to tell them to go back to the drawing board.