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Matt McGrath Hypes Christian Aid’s Fake Extreme Weather Report

December 28, 2020

By Paul Homewood


h/t Robin Guenier

 The absurd Matt McGrath advertises the latest highly politicised Christian Aid report on 2020’s “extreme” weather:


The world continued to pay a very high price for extreme weather in 2020, according to a report from the charity Christian Aid.

Against a backdrop of climate change, its study lists 10 events that saw thousands of lives lost and major insurance costs.

Six of the events took place in Asia, with floods in China and India causing damages of more than $40bn.

In the US, record hurricanes and wildfires caused some $60bn in losses.

While the world has been struggling to get to grips with the coronavirus pandemic, millions of people have also had to cope with the impacts of extreme weather events.

Christian Aid’s list of ten storms, floods and fires all cost at least $1.5bn – with nine of the 10 costing at least $5bn.

An unusually rainy monsoon season was associated with some of the most damaging storms in Asia, where some of the biggest losses were. Over a period of months, heavy flooding in India saw more than 2,000 deaths with millions of people displaced from their homes.

The value of the insured losses is estimated at $10bn.

China suffered even greater financial damage from flooding, running to around $32bn between June and October this year. The loss of life from these events was much smaller than in India.

While these were slow-moving disasters, some events did enormous damage in a short period of time.

Cyclone Amphan struck the Bay of Bengal in May and caused losses estimated at $13bn in just a few days.

"We saw record temperatures in the Arabian Sea and Bay of Bengal, straddling between 30C-33C," said Dr Roxy Mathew Koll, a climate scientist at the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology in Pune.

"These high temperatures had the characteristics of marine heat waves that might have led to the rapid intensification of the pre-monsoon cyclones Amphan and Nisarga," he said in a comment on the Christian Aid study.

"Amphan was one of the strongest cyclones ever recorded in the Bay of Bengal during the pre-monsoon season."

Africa was also on the receiving end of extreme events, with massive locust swarms ruining crops and vegetation to the tune of $8.5bn.

Europe also saw significant impacts when Storm Ciara swept through Ireland, the UK and several other countries in February.

It resulted in 14 lives being lost and damages of $2.7bn.

Christian Aid stress that these figures for financial costs are likely an underestimate as they are based only on insured losses.

Richer countries have more valuable properties, and on the whole suffer greater financial penalties from extreme events.

"Just like 2019 before it, 2020 has been full of disastrous extremes," said Dr Sarah Perkins-Kirkpatrick, from the Climate Change Research Centre at the University of New South Wales in Australia.

"We have seen all this with a 1C of global average temperature rise, highlighting the sensitive relationship between average conditions and extremes."

"Ultimately, the impacts of climate change will be felt via the extremes, and not averaged changes."

"Unfortunately, we can expect more years to look like 2020 – and worse – as global temperatures creep higher."

While 2021 is likely to bring a similar story of losses from extreme events, there is some sense of optimism that political leaders may be on the brink of taking steps that might help the world avoid the worst excesses of rising temperatures.

"It is vital that 2021 ushers in a new era of activity to turn this climate change tide," said report author, Dr Kat Kramer, from Christian Aid.

"With President-elect Biden in the White House, social movements across the world calling for urgent action, post-Covid green recovery investment and a crucial UN climate summit hosted by the UK, there is a major opportunity for countries to put us on a path to a safe future."


Christian Aid focus mainly on economic damage, without providing any context.



Yet if you look at the number of deaths from their top ten, you only get 3471. This is a tiny number, even by recent experience. In years past, hundreds of thousands of deaths were commonplace every year:


Let’s look at some of McGrath’s highlights in more detail:

1) India’s Monsoon

In fact, this year’s monsoon rainfall was officially regarded as “normal” in India itself:



As a result of above average rainfall, India has just had a bumper harvest:


Covid-19 might have hit all the economic sectors badly, but luck is favouring Indian agriculture sector this year as there has been 95 per cent equal distribution of rainfall all over the country. Along with historic sowing, and timely rains agricultural experts are predicting bumper crop this year.

“I, in my lifetime, have never seen so many factoring favouring agriculture,” said former director general of Indian Council for Agriculture Mangla Rai. “I do not remember ever before monsoon was so proportionately distributed, well precipitated and timely. Rains poured when it needed the most except some areas of Himachal Pradesh and Jammu & Kashmir region. But these areas are negligible. Lastly, this year sowing areas broke all records~ 1,062.93 lakh hectares,” former DG ICAR said.

“There is no doubt we are getting wonderful reports of sowing from all parts of the country and if all goes well, this year will have bumper crops,” said Shiraj Hussain, former Union agriculture secretary. 

2) Floods in China

Christian Aid say that these resulted in 278 deaths. In contrast, an estimated 4 million may have died in the floods of 1931 there.

See the source image

Yangtse Floods of 1931

If McGrath bothered to take his head out of where the sun does not shine, he would know that Chinese history is littered with devastating floods.

3) Bangladesh Cyclone

Again, the death toll was remarkably low at 128, when compared with historical cyclones.

But, as the BBC’s own India Correspondent reported at the time, the Bay of Bengal is notorious for deadly cyclones:

The Bay of Bengal, notes historian Sunil Amrith, is an "expanse of tropical water: still and blue in the calm of January winter, or raging and turbid at the peak of the summer rains".

The largest bay in the world – 500 million people live on the coastal rim that surrounds it – is also the site of the majority of the deadliest tropical cyclones in world history.

According to a list maintained by Weather Underground, 26 of the 35 deadliest tropical cyclones in recorded have occurred here.


Indeed Bengal has had a charmed life as far as powerful cyclones are concerned in recent years, as Amphan was the first super cyclone since thousands died in Odisha in 1999.



4) Locusts in Africa

The plague of locusts followed some welcome heavy rainfall. Usually, of course, the real problem in East Africa is drought. Sadly the weather all too frequently switches from feast to famine there.

What we can say though is that cereal production in East Africa has been rising rapidly since the turn of the century “despite climate change”, although data for this year is obviously not available yet.

One might have though Christian Aid would welcome this fact!



5) Storm Ciara

McGrath really must be scraping the bottom of the barrel, if he has to resort to this common-or-garden winter storm.

Despite widespread media hype about “Storm of the Century”, Ciara typically brought gusts of only between 50 and 60mph to inland sites.

Even the Met Office had to admit that, in terms of gusts, Ciara was only the most significant storm since February 2017:


  1. GeoffB permalink
    December 28, 2020 2:22 pm

    Have you noticed how many charities are using the climate change theme to drum up more funds?

    • December 28, 2020 3:19 pm

      Several charities that use the climate change theme to drum up more funds have lost my support. So too have several businesses.

    • December 28, 2020 5:49 pm

      Geoff and Phil I would say the problem is much deeper and more insidious than mere opportunist bravado. Think of the output from any of the once peerless charities originating in the UK and all we now get are lectures by the a cabal of ever so supercilious holier than thou Leftie women CEOs ( or even more ridiculously titled climate spokespeople), with socialism offered as the solution. Christian Aid, Children in Need, Oxfam, The RSPB, National Trust, English Heritage and on and on have all acquired generously remunerated CEOs or whatever the pompous fools at the top are titled, people with NO background whatsoever in the business of the charities they head up but for whom spouting socialism and climate doom is as natural as the 40,000ppm CO2 they all exhale with every breath. A coincidence? Maybe, if you also believe in Santa Claus……

      • Penda100 permalink
        December 28, 2020 7:17 pm

        O’Sullivan’s Law states that any organization or enterprise that is not expressly right wing will become left wing over time. The law is named after British journalist John O’Sullivan.

      • Tim C permalink
        December 29, 2020 3:51 am

        I think Marxism is more appropriate label than Socialism.

    • Gerry, England permalink
      December 30, 2020 2:06 pm

      And have you noticed how many tv adverts there are now from charities all pleading lack of funds. Are they getting free tv adverts? And how many of them are now offering you a cuddly toy if you sign up. Is that an indication of the intellect of those they are aiming at? The one that baffles me is that at WWF if you sign up to support the mountain gorilla you don’t get a cuddly toy.

  2. Broadlands permalink
    December 28, 2020 2:27 pm

    “While 2021 is likely to bring a similar story of losses from extreme events, there is some sense of optimism that political leaders may be on the brink of taking steps that might help the world avoid the worst excesses of rising temperatures. It is vital that 2021 ushers in a new era of activity to turn this climate change tide,” said report author, Dr Kat Kramer, from Christian Aid.”

    Other than preparing and adapting, what steps or activity could humans possibly take that would make a difference to the “extremes” in the Earth’s climate? Perhaps it is time to stop urgent CO2 mitigation scaremongering and begin a plan of infrastructure innovation research to adapt to climate and extreme weather?

    • Up2snuff permalink
      December 28, 2020 4:20 pm

      Many years ago (late 1980s/early 1990s), I met some people who had been involved – on a voluntary basis during their periods of holiday from UK jobs – in medical work in Bangladhesh. They told a very different story to that which was just starting to appear in the UK media.

      Deforestation – timber needed for fuel for warmth and cooking in the high Himalaya – had led to soil erosion, despite careful terracing of farmland, the soil being washed down river to eventually arrive in the Bay of Bengal. This then attracted very poor people, farmers and fisherfolk, to that area because of the rich soil for crop-growing and the plentiful fish as an additional food source. They built their own houses, in a piecemeal way, which were inadequate protection against the frequent storms and flooding in the low lying estuary.

      The solution was expensive river dredging which the Bangla Government could ill afford and was too much for Christian charities except for the occasional & very infrequent loan of dredgers from the western European countries such as Holland and Sweden. The next alternative was to create substantial storm shelters where communities could shelter until returning to what was left of their homes, if anything. Some progress was made on that front.

      But you are right, we are simply impoverishing ourselves in the West without helping those in need in the developing world to adapt to dealing with the ordinary extremes of weather that have been known on this planet for thousands of years. A dumb dumbing down. In addition, in our foolishness we have adopted the same attitude to river management in the UK. We could afford to dredge in the UK, we could afford to build away from flood plains, we could afford to build homes on stilts above flood levels. instead we stupidly and blindly do not.

      • Duker permalink
        December 28, 2020 10:40 pm

        Yes. People dont realise the effects of human settlement on deltas and river mouths over centuries . Buildings are on flood plains , river channels are narrowed. Even the Thames water level at the centre of London is about 3m higher than in roman times, not because of sea level rise but mostly because the river channel is now so narrow.

      • Up2snuff permalink
        December 29, 2020 2:08 pm

        Duker*, if I recall correctly the last time a section of the Thames through London was dredged was back in the 1980s with a dredger hired from Sweden. Seem to recall it only tackled the Pool of London and downriver to the Greenwich flood barrier. Others reading & posting here may be able to correct that or add more information.

        With the mass unemployment caused by the Covid Pandemic and the PM’s present gung-ho attitude to the UK’s future, I think our UK Government has a golden opportunity to get young people into work experience on a massive clean up scheme for our rivers, lakes and countryside in the UK. An opportunity not to be missed.

        * rely to Duker’s post below mine.

    • December 28, 2020 4:27 pm

      Our green friends do not want us to adapt. That would be far too logical, especially since expenditure on adaptation by us actually benefits us (whereas emission cuts have local costs and the thin benefit is spread globally).

      Adaptation means we can carry on our SUV-driving lives, with holidays to the Med as standard, warm homes, you name it. Such a course would horrify the true green, alas; they would never sign up to that.

      • Broadlands permalink
        December 28, 2020 4:49 pm

        So, on we go scaring little children (and politicians) with no plausible or realistic way to change the way the climate is supposed to behave according to models designed and adjusted for that purpose. Stupidity and ignorance on display.

  3. December 28, 2020 6:03 pm

    Notice how Global Warming and it’s weasel son Climate Change is deliberately never broken down into natural and claimed man made warming with all global warming and by inference climate change now automatically touted ( without any evidence) of being caused by man.

    This has not occurred by mistake, it is done rather with a deliberate and wilful intention to deceive by not very nice people who also see frightening and mentally abusing children with non science as acceptable in the furtherance of their claims to a place in the power hierarchy of the climate religion.

    • Up2snuff permalink
      December 29, 2020 2:23 pm

      pmfb, some of that breakdown is actively denied by the ‘scientists ‘ promoting AGW and also by their supporters. Back closer to when Noah was in the shipbuilding business, I was taught about heat and radiation in Physics classes. The very fact that the human population of earth has doubled in my lifetime must mean that a natural warming has occurred from those human bodies irrespective of their CO2 causing activities.

      Much more recently, I had the illuminating experience of sitting next but one to someone who is morbidly obese and had walked a few hundred metres to the venue in summer. The waves of heat reaching me across the empty chair between us was substantial (I was too embarrassed to move away) it was like sitting next to a radiator in winter.

      The very fact that our planet has not collapsed under this population increase – plus the fact that we are feeding more and more of the world – rather suggests to me that our planet can handle this number and many more in future years very comfortably indeed.

  4. Gray permalink
    December 28, 2020 6:50 pm

    OT but how much were Torville and Dean paid to fly to Alaska to dance on ‘disappearing’ ice and who paid for it?

    • tomo permalink
      December 28, 2020 8:03 pm

      I thought you made that up….

      I checked

      – only 3 days left and 2020 continues to pile on the torment

      – never polar bears around when you need ’em…..

  5. MrGrimNasty permalink
    December 28, 2020 7:18 pm

    THE BBC climate propaganda machine has been in overdrive.

    100 Women: Life on Thin Ice

    “For thousands of years the Inuit people lived off the land. Nomadic hunters, chasing targets season dependant. Now those weather patterns have utterly and irreversibly shifted.”


    Then a report on new animal discoveries was steered clumsily into ‘already threatened by climate change’, ‘dissolving in acidified oceans’ type LIES.

    Why is an article called “Atlantic discovery: 12 new species ‘hiding in the deep'” even in the section heading climate change?

    On the news the ‘scientist’ even described the oceans as acid, not marginally less alkaline – but entirely normal in the context of earth’s history.

    • Duker permalink
      December 28, 2020 10:32 pm

      The Inuit havent been living in Northern Canada-Greenland for 1000s of years either. When the Norse ( or Vikings) arrived in Greenland there was a different ethnic group who were later displaced permanently by the Inuit or Thule people from Bering Str area

      • MrGrimNasty permalink
        December 29, 2020 9:23 am

        Yes, no regime lasts for long in terms of the history of the earth, be it climate or ‘native’ populations.

        The deception/misconception at the heart of climate change is that the climate doesn’t/mustn’t change.

  6. Nancy & John Hultquist permalink
    December 28, 2020 8:07 pm

    Elsewhere, Dr. Kat is quoted:
    “The good news is that, like the vaccine for Covid-19, we do know how to fix the climate crisis.”

    The vaccines were possible because of many years of research about HIV/Aids.
    The Climate Cult have been active for about as many years, and still know nothing about this dynamic Earth.
    There is no climate crisis.
    And if there was, the Climate Cult is long-gone down a useless path.

  7. MrGrimNasty permalink
    December 28, 2020 8:16 pm

    I see that not only have the BBC RI Christmas lectures been dumbed down to the basement over the years, this year it’s heavy on climate change too. Yawn……..

    (I’ve an earlier BBC comment on this thread in moderation it seems.)

    • December 28, 2020 8:36 pm

      Are Radio 1 now doing Christmas lectures? I thought they only played pop music.

    • mjr permalink
      December 29, 2020 8:11 am

      just watching the first episode. Planet Earth – A user guide episode 1 engine earth
      “Professor Chris Jackson reveals how, for billions of years, volcanic activity drove climate change on planet Earth. Now, it is humans” this guy is a geologist who “focuses on geodynamic, structural, and stratigraphic evolution of sedimentary basins” so why is he talking about climate change? Mind you, he is a scientist which is more than can be said for other BBC climate people. . Also in an interview with the Guardian newspaper, Jackson stated that he knew of “no other black, full-time, Earth science academic in the UK – or in fact, Europe or the US”
      So a BBC box ticking woke exercise (the other 2 lectures are given by women)
      Oh . and he has just brought on Tamsin Edwards who is a climate modeller and a BBC consultant.
      Deeper and deeper down the rabbit hole.
      And the whole programme is covid ready. Eager diverse audience of kids on monitors .
      The whole series will need a Homewood review as it looks like being a BBC climate propaganda machine

      • Gerry, England permalink
        December 29, 2020 10:27 am

        I survived about 10 minutes until Edwards came on and announced that by using models she could predict our future climate. I am not sure about watching part 2 but the presenter is Helen Czerski who presented an excellent series From Fire To Ice on BBC4 that never once mentioned climate change. Yes, I too was astounded by this. The third presenter is an activist.

        Such a shame that the RI has dumbed down this year and has been a bit wobbly in recent times compared to their usual standard of excellence.

      • dennisambler permalink
        December 29, 2020 5:12 pm

        Helen Czerski has been got at, she couldn’t be allowed to get away with “Ice to Fire”. She has self-admittedly no experience of the Poles but she was invited on this Arctic expedition:
        This audio was released on: 09 Oct 2018, Ice to Fire was first shown on 15th February 2018. It obviously upset a lot of people.

        “The Arctic is warming twice as fast as the rest of the planet. That’s certain to impact on the weather we experience in Britain. Physicist Helen Czerski and an icebreaker full of scientists have just spent six weeks at the North Pole conducting experiments to find out much more about the impacts of this extraordinary change to our planet.”

        Ice to Fire is still available:

        For a feast of BBC at its Climate Change best, check out

        How about this for starters?

        Man vs Woman vs Planet
        Costing the Earth

        “Which sex is the worst planet offender and why does gender matter if we want to stop global warming? Lucy Siegle and Tom Heap find feminism could be key to environmental solutions.”

      • Gerry, England permalink
        December 30, 2020 2:01 pm

        I suppose ‘repent and there is lots more licence-fee payers’ money coming your way or continue to blaspheme and be cast out’ can be quite persuasive. I was surprised to see her in such low company.

  8. December 28, 2020 8:32 pm

    Charities are big businesses these days and like all big businesses they like to parrot the global warming theme to show how nice to the environment they are. Even the oil companies are doing it. Can anyone name a single charity (apart from the GWPF) or large company that does not do it?

  9. Frank permalink
    December 28, 2020 9:13 pm

    The Royal Institution Christmas Lecture just finished on BBC4 this evening, used the Hockey Stick Graph and lots of children to tell us all about CO2 and Climate Change. Maybe this propaganda programme needs to be analysed on iPlayer for the next Report ,

  10. Steve permalink
    December 28, 2020 9:31 pm

    OT. The Royal Institution lecture given to children on the carbon cycle gave CO2 as the main warming gas and dismissed water vapour. The graph that was shown at the end was the last few hundred years and the kick upwards of the last hundred years. All of the hundred years rise was put down to the rise in anthropogenic CO2. It was the best example of chart manipulation and Extinction scaremongering aimed at children that I have seen.

    • Jackington permalink
      December 28, 2020 10:29 pm

      Not quite, the best one was in Al Gore’ Inconvenient Truth – the one that showed T vs CO2, which showed an astonishing correlation but later debunked because under scrutiny T was leading all the way showing CO2 was caused by rising T.
      And he got the Nobel prize for that! The film was shown to school kids too until a judge stepped in.

    • mjr permalink
      December 29, 2020 8:15 am

      currently watching on iplayer..
      where was the spoiler alert!!!!..
      I was expecting a balanced scientific analysis of facts as we usually get from BBC – and i now know the ending – that it is the usual sh*te. you have taken away the excitement of antici…………………………………………pation

  11. martinbrumby permalink
    December 28, 2020 10:52 pm

    Well done to these far-left GangGreen liars, for turning another positive, even admirable phrase, “Christian Aid”, into a mendacious oxymoron.

  12. europeanonion permalink
    December 29, 2020 10:57 am

    Repeat a lie often enough and it becomes truth. Every propagandist since time immemorial has known this. Why are liberal elites pushing this issue? They must know the relationship between income and expenditure and start to wonder how they are going to finance all those good works they are want to force onto us without any industry?

    A more altruistic reasoning stems from the politicisation of fossil fuels and the possibility of scarcity. But that has been put-over in an elitist way that suggests that price is no object and that only stupid people would disagree with the notion.

    The focus on ‘if you are not for us then you must be against us’ infiltrates BLM, feminism, climate, pollution, Conservatism, any topic in which a movement is declared and leadership contested for. Such natural positivity has appeal for young people especially who have not the experience, the responsibility and demand ‘action’ to fill in for lack of argument. In fact you can endorse that approach by banning argument and stripping out the sources that might suggest anything else.

    In such environments extremism is purity and attracts a crowd. The idea that climate is a natural process and part of your God’s plan becomes so partisan that it can cast your God in a bad light (as to have allowed such and such to happen and allowed a situation whereby only focused and self-ordained people can sort things out). To all intents and purposes Gods are passé, only appealing to people who let down their fellow men in not committing to activism. In this light we can charge off in ill-considered directions and worship charlatanism. It takes some neck to spread superstition without blushing.

  13. Ian Wilson permalink
    December 29, 2020 11:15 am

    Few in the media question climate hysteria or supposedly ‘green energy’, but the Quest TV channel aired a piece on 22 December in their series ‘Massive Engineering Mistakes’ which highlighted erosion of wind turbine blades due to particle erosion and especially hail. It showed sobering pictures of hail-damaged blades. It was a pretty balanced picture describing a serious drawback of wind power. However it ended showing a claimed easy solution of wrapping tape round the blades. Time will tell if that works.

    • tomo permalink
      December 29, 2020 1:37 pm

      @Ian Wilson

      blade erosion is definitely an issue – I’ve seen repair crews in Holland patching up blades onshore and when I got the binoculars out to have a closer look – it was obvious that it’s a chronic and ongoing issue…. – nothing that can’t be fixed with a few well chosen words in press releases.

  14. December 29, 2020 2:10 pm

    Financial damage figures are irrelevant, or at least badly misleading, especially when multiple countries of vastly differing wealth are being lumped together in the data.

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