Skip to content

Climate change: Rise in Brecon Beacons landslips ‘a clear warning’

June 1, 2021

By Paul Homewood


h/t Paul R


Today’s propaganda from the BBC (How many environmental reporters do they have?)



Reservoirs in the Brecon Beacons are increasingly being polluted by landslides that have been described as a "dramatic" warning of climate change.

Extreme rainfall in recent years has led to an increase in the slips, the National Trust and Welsh Water said.

They result in pink, silty water that needs extra treatment, using additional chemicals and energy.

Now, thousands of trees are being planted in an effort to stabilise land around the reservoirs.

It is a tangible – and worrying – example of the impact global warming is already having on Wales, according to Keith Jones, the National Trust’s adviser on climate change.

Landslips were never unusual on these steep-sided slopes, Mr Jones explains, but are now happening with increasing regularity.

A quick glance further up the valley towards the summit of Pen y Fan – the highest peak in south Wales – and two more are clearly visible, with a further "seven or eight" out of sight, he says.

"What we have here is an indicator of quite dramatic change – more rainfall in winter, less in summer and the combination of that is causing problems at a landscape scale.

"[Remember] that old saying about canaries in the mines sensing danger? To me these are the canaries on climate change and they’re singing very loudly now."

But where actually is your evidence, Mr Jones?

The monthly rainfall data for SW England & S Wales shows your claims to be fanciful. The much talked about Storm Dennis and the rest of February 2020 only brought 196mm of rainfall, a  common occurrence.

Even December 2012 and January 2014, 225 and 235mm respectively, were well short of the wettest month, November 1929, which saw 273mm, or December 1934 and November 1903, 251 and 241mm:





Neither has daily rainfall been excessive in recent years. Storm Dennis brought 33mm of rain, only the 14th wettest day since 1931.





And, of course, a couple of cherry picked weather events are not evidence of “climate change”, and certainly not man made.

  1. ThinkingScientist permalink
    June 1, 2021 2:48 pm

    Does it rain much in Wales then? Who’d have thought it!


    • Russ Wood permalink
      June 3, 2021 3:44 pm

      The “wet Welsh Sunday” as an exemplar for boredom should give you a clue!

  2. ianprsy permalink
    June 1, 2021 2:50 pm

    Well, something happened this winter/spring, at least round the reservoirs on the South/West Yorks boundary. On recent circuits of two of them, I noted that the water levels were about a metre below maximum. There was a clear, strong, pale brown/yellow tide mark at both locations that I’ve never seen before. I assumed it was the evidence result of excessive runoff from the heavy rains.

  3. Ray Sanders permalink
    June 1, 2021 3:12 pm

    Gosh, “World War 2 bomber found on the Moon” ,Freddie Starr ate my hamster”….and now this. When will it ever end?

    • Lez permalink
      June 1, 2021 4:49 pm

      My research reveals that God weighs 3.74 tonnes.
      Do you think I might now qualify for a grant?

  4. Phoenix44 permalink
    June 1, 2021 3:32 pm

    When he says “now”, what does he mean? Something that you need to measure over a reasonably long period – at least ten years – isn’t “now”, it’s over the last decade. And even ten years might not be enough. There are statistical ways of working out how big your sample needs to be – has this joker done that? I’m betting no.

  5. June 1, 2021 4:03 pm

    I would look to see what is the underlying geology of the area. I would take a peek at the area soils also. But that is just me….. I might also take a look at soil profiles from the downstream areas to see the frequency of such events over the past.

    My home is near the Monongahela River in Morgantown, WV which flows north to Pittsburgh, PA. Monongahela comes from an Indian name meaning “slipping/sliding banks”. And that they do. Likely our unstable soils are the result of the damning of the north flowing rivers (such as the Monongahela) when the Great Lakes were covered with ice sheets. Pro-glacial Lake Monongahela formed several times over parts of WV, PA and OH until a gap was formed at Pittsburgh allowing the Allegheny and Monongahela to flow south as the Ohio River to the Gulf of Mexico. Our soils here reflect that past.

  6. John189 permalink
    June 1, 2021 4:19 pm

    Over the course of more than 40 years I have done quite a bit of walking in the Brecon Beacons and cannot actually recall seeing much evidence of landslides. But I do remember large numbers of conifers being removed from around several of the reservoirs, so it seems these must now be replanted. As for silt, there is always run-off from any upland location at times of heavy rain or snowmelt and given the geology of the Beacons a lot of the detritus coming down in the torrents will be red-brown. I am also struck by the mentality of alarmism which shouts “climate change!” as if there was a previous time when the climate did not change and was in fact perfect. Pluvial period, dry period, warmer, colder…every nuance will involve consequences, but they are eternal, they are normal and they are unstoppable.

    • Bill Berry permalink
      June 2, 2021 11:18 am

      Take a close look on Google Earth and you will find many rocky scars orientated downslope which could well be landslips. You will also find many small white fuzzy blobs aka sheep. There aren’t many trees. Land-use combined with flood-rich and drought-rich weather cycles and winter freeze/thaw is what causes landslips. It suits the purpose of those who find their budgets don’t cover entropy to blame it on us.

  7. Harry Passfield permalink
    June 1, 2021 5:05 pm

    “Keith Jones, the National Trust’s adviser on climate change.”
    A man whose job and income relies on him believing this guff. At the same time I guess tgat he is under no pressure whatsoever to come up with any other more plausible reason.

  8. June 1, 2021 5:16 pm

    From the NT website:

    “Keith’s time with us began in 2000, as he’d dreamt, as a ranger on Snowdon and progressing to countryside manager for Snowdonia. His ever-enquiring mind then took him on a new path to get involved in renewable energy and sustainability. Keith’s work with us now wins awards as he applies expertise that spans hydro energy, biomass, photovoltaics, heat pumps, community energy and land management.
    Over the years he’s enjoyed a wide variety of experiences: ‘I’ve run a 1,600 hectare farm, built a lobster processing factory, bought a bull and worked in a castle. I used to rally cars but now seek out quieter habitats….”

    I wonder what he does for an encore?

    • Alan Drabble permalink
      June 1, 2021 5:41 pm

      So, no scientific background then. He could go and work for the BBC! Or write a novel.

    • Slingshot permalink
      June 2, 2021 9:21 am

      I wouldn’t trust the opinion of anyone who used hectares.

  9. Christian permalink
    June 1, 2021 6:15 pm

    Any windmills located in the headwaters? They have been the cause of much erosion due to their placing in wet areas, especially bogs, in Ireland

    • Matt Dalby permalink
      June 1, 2021 10:15 pm

      It’s not just wind farms, any change in land use could theoretically lead to an increase in landslips. Blaming it on climate change may win brownie points, but unless the correct cause of a problem is identified then there is no hope of solving the problem.

  10. mjr permalink
    June 1, 2021 7:23 pm

    Linked in ……
    includes Environmental reviewer. BBC Radio Cymru
    Company NameBritish Broadcasting Corporation
    Dates Employed1999 – Present
    Employment Duration22 yrs
    Have been reviewing the papers and journals for the Saturday BBC Galwad Cynnar show for 14 years

    so he also works for the BBC … degree in environmental planning then a career with various alternative energy companies and currently has 5 jobs, all in the energy/climate change world .

  11. Wellers permalink
    June 1, 2021 7:57 pm

    This is the reason that I joined Restore Trust, a group which aims to put an end to such rubbish. I urge all members to support their motions at the AGM this autumn, and support the removal of director-general Hilary O’Grady (salary £195,700) who promotes such climate claptrap.

    If anyone doubts that global warming is ‘man made’ they should watch Tony Heller’s latest video. It appears that NOAA’s artificial upward temperature adjustments have increased significantly since Biden entered the White House.

    Climate change has now entered the realm of science fiction.

  12. Martin Brumby permalink
    June 1, 2021 10:34 pm

    Obviously the Project Fear Agit-prop BBC hasn’t clue about the use of canaries in coal mines.

    It wasn’t a ‘saying’.

    Before modern instrumentation was available, they were routinely used to warn of Carbon Monoxide. They certainly didn’t “sing more loudly”.

    They died.

    I look forward to all mendacious GangGreen idiots following suit.

    • Gamecock permalink
      June 2, 2021 5:55 pm

      Correct. Keith Jones sure mashed up that metaphor!

      “Do you expect me to talk?”

      “NO, Mr. Bond, I expect you to die!”

  13. John H permalink
    June 2, 2021 9:26 am

    My dog chased a cat out of my garden today, that’s the second time this week. It’s a clear indication of climate change.

  14. Jack Broughton permalink
    June 3, 2021 10:42 am

    Almost every day I get some communication from a wide range of organisations asking me to join their efforts to fight the “climate emergency”. The brainwashers have got the use of this phrase so normalised that it is generally accepted as true, and that trivial actions are important.

    If there were a real climate emergency, real actions would be taken, not nagging people to eat less meat etc. The use of coal, gas and oil would be restricted, by force if necessary, worldwide not just in the UK. We’ve had over 30 years of threats / promises of imminent doom: when will the mighty media wake-up to the climate-change fallacy?

  15. JCalvertN(UK) permalink
    June 3, 2021 12:41 pm

    Wherever there is a reservoir in the Brecon Beacons, the surrounding hillsides have been planted with pine. Inevitably these pine plantations will be clear-felled.
    What happens to the remaining stumps the world wonders?
    And what does it do to the stability of the newly denuded slope?

  16. It doesn't add up... permalink
    June 3, 2021 1:05 pm

    John Redwood nails it in his blog today.

    Yesterday I was relieved to learn from this programme’s expert witness on landslips in the Brecon Beacons indicating climate change that landslips are the “canary in the mine” and the canary is “singing loudly” at the moment. That is a relief, so no undue landslips then. The canary in the mine did not sing but passed out if dangerous carbon monoxide gas was present. How do the BBC find such well informed experts?

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: