The Tambora Eruption
By Paul Homewood
Aerial view of the caldera of Mount Tambora, formed during the colossal 1815 eruption.
The BBC Today programme on Friday last week featured an interview with Professor Hazel Rymer, a vulcanologist, on the topic of the Mount Tambora eruption of 1815.
At about 2 hours 56 minutes into the programme, the following exchange took place with John Humphreys, regarding the drop in global temperatures:
RYMER: As far as we can tell, the temperature did drop over the following summer by about 0.7C.
HUMPHREYS: Well not a huge amount.
RYMER: Well it does not sound very much does it?
What makes this conversation stand out is that only last year the BBC ran a TV programme, Climate Change by Numbers, which used three different “numbers” to persuade us all how dangerous climate change was supposed to be.
One of these numbers was 0.85C, the amount by which the world, supposedly, had warmed since 1880.
I posted a full critique of this ridiculous and slanted programme here.
In other words, we are supposed to be scared out of our skin by 0.85C of warming since 1880, yet a drop of 0.7C in just one year is “not very much”.
Indeed, the UK regularly experiences year on year variations as big, without batting an eyelid.
Of course, there was a climatic shock in 1815, but, as Prof Rymer rightly states, the main damage was due to reduced sunlight, rather than temperature specifically. Add into the equation the heavy rain which followed in Europe, and it is hardly surprising that famine followed.
The interview is still on iPlayer here, though, I believe, those living outside the UK cannot access it. (Lucky souls!)