The Wet Autumn Of 2000
By Paul Homewood
The wet autumn of 2000 in the UK was remarkable by any measure. Along with the heatwave in 2003, it is often wheeled out as an example of extreme weather brought about by global warming.
Inevitably the climate science industry jumped on board claiming that global warming had made the event more likely.
The BBC’s Paul Hudson described it as a 1 in 500 year occurrence, and claimed that it was the wettest 3-month period on record.
The only problem was – it was not. The period of October to December 1929 was in fact much wetter in the UK. [See Notes]
If we compare month by month, we can see that rainfall was unusually low in September 1929, but increased rapidly in the following months.
Of course, the dry September in 1929 meant that autumn rainfall in total that year was not unusually high. In fact it was only the 18th wettest autumn since 1910. But this is highly misleading, as the numbers below show:
|Oct – Dec||553.0||520.1|
|Oct 1929 to
|Sep 2000 to
The wettest 3-month period in 2000 was not actually Sep-Dec, as Paul Hudson wrongly stated. It was actually October to December, and we can see that the same period in 1929 recorded 553.0mm of rain, compared to 520.1mm in 2000.
Even more significantly, the extreme level of rainfall persisted for 4 months in 1929/30, with January 1930 also being very wet.
Taking the peak 4-month totals for the two years, we get 706.0mm from October 1929-January 1930, compared with 650.5mm between September and December 2000.
Clearly the 1929/30 event was much more extreme than that of 2000, whichever way you look at it. If autumn 2000 really was a 1 in 500 year event, heaven knows what that makes 1929/30.
Of course, it does not literally mean it was an event that only happens once every 500 years. Simply that the probability is that.
But whoever came up with that calculation, I would suggest there is something very wrong with their models if we have had two such events in the 20thC alone.
To be fair, with regard to Paul Hudson’s claim that it was the wettest 3-month period since records began, he may be referring to the England & Wales Precipitation series, which shows that the rainfall in autumn 2000 was actually 2mm greater than Oct – Dec 1929.
However, his article is specifically about the UK, and not to have even mentioned 1929 suggests either:
a) He was not aware that it was wetter then – which would imply gross incompetence.
b) He was deliberately and deceitfully attempting to cover up the fact that an event of similar magnitude had occurred 71 years before.