The Tale Of Two Reports
By Paul Homewood
On 3rd January, the Met Office issued a report about the wet and stormy weather during December.
Amongst their conclusions were:
1) It had been the stormiest month since 1993.
2) The jet stream had been sitting in the right place to bring those storms to the UK.
3) The jet stream has been particularly strong over the previous few weeks. This was partly due to particularly warm and cold air being squeezed together in the mid-latitudes, where the UK sits. This could be due to nothing more than the natural variability which governs Atlantic weather.
4) However, looking at the broader picture, there is one factor which could increase the risk of a stormy start to winter and this is called the quasi-biennial oscillation (QBO for short).
This is a cycle, discovered by the Met Office in 1959, which involves a narrow band of fast moving winds (much like our jet stream) which sits about 15 miles up over the equator. The cycle sees these winds flip from easterly to westerly roughly every 14 months.
In 1975 Met Office researchers discovered that when the QBO is in its westerly phase, it tends to increase the westerlies in our own jet stream – meaning there’s a higher risk of a stronger, more persistent jet stream with more vigorous Atlantic storms. It has been in its westerly phase since early 2013 and we expect it to decline over the next few months.
5) While there’s currently no evidence to suggest that the UK is increasing in storminess, this is an active area of research under the national climate capability.
Note there was no mention of “climate change”, and no evidence at all that the storms were anything other than the result of natural forces.
Now fast forward a month. Clearly the failure to put the blame on climate change did not go down too well, so up pops the latest report.
This report, authored by Julia Slingo, finds that the jet stream changes are linked to the polar vortex over the USA (which is a natural phenomena that has occurred regularly in the past.)
In turn, this is linked back to heavy rainfall over Indonesia (which has also occurred regularly in the past).
And, Bob’s your uncle, Julia comes out and says:
“All the evidence suggests there is a link to climate change” (Even though the report says no such thing).
It appears that Slingo, who has recently been made a Dame, for services rendered, and received a whopping £25k bonus last year, can be relied on to produce the “right report”.
Of course, it was this same incompetent who said just last April that “climate change was loading the dice towards freezing, drier weather.”
I wonder what she will blame on global warming next year? If she keeps this up, they’ll end up making her a saint!