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Cold Snaps Kill More Than Hot Snaps- BBC Admits

November 19, 2022

By Paul Homewood

An interesting account of how the body responds to the cold:




Mention deadly cold and I think of polar explorers with icicles dangling from their beards and mountaineers tackling the heights of Everest; of fingers turning black with frostbite and the chilling clutch of hypothermia.

So I was sceptical when I was asked to take part in a cold experiment that took place at just 10 degrees Celsius. Yes, 10C.

To me that’s mild, nowhere near freezing and certainly no Arctic blast. Surely we’d have to go much colder before putting a strain on the body? I was wrong.

"It sounds mild, but it is a real physiological challenge," Prof Damian Bailey, from the University of South Wales, tells me.

He’s invited me to his laboratory to explore the impact of cold homes on our bodies and why such seemingly mild temperatures can become deadly.

"Ten degrees is the average temperature that people will be living in, if they can’t afford to heat their homes," said Prof Bailey.

And as I was about to find out, 10C has a profound impact on the heart, lungs and brain.


Full story here.

But this comment should be mandatory reading for all BBC journalists:


Fortunately such cold snaps are much less common than they used to be:


  1. MrGrimNasty permalink
    November 19, 2022 12:23 pm

    I see the BBC is still constantly portraying the 1.5C measure as some hard scientific tipping point fact after which the climate will become suddenly horrendously worse. Rather than an arbitrary political limit of no significance whatsoever.

    • Mike Jackson permalink
      November 19, 2022 1:13 pm

      And somewhere I read that Schellnhuber’s totally artificial 2°C (invented to give the pollys a nice simple figure they could understand) was ‘amended’ to 1.5° because it was becoming increasingly clear that whatever we decided to do or not do, figures were showing it was unlikely that we would reach that mystic 2° figure anytime soon anyway.

      Meanwhile I notice that COP27 has over-run (like most of its predecessors) while the participants try to cobble together some highly improbable face-saving compromise that no-one believes in and which no-one will act on anyway.

      See you next year in Whereversville!

      • John Hultquist permalink
        November 19, 2022 4:19 pm

        COP28 will be held in the United Arab Emirates, more specifically, Dubai.

      • Mike Jackson permalink
        November 19, 2022 5:45 pm

        It’s still “Whereversville”, John! Does anybody apart from the “Partygoers”(©️Willis Eschenbach) care any more?!

      • Harry Passfield permalink
        November 19, 2022 8:14 pm

        That fact alone – that it used to be 2.0, and which was changed to 1.5 for political purposes (when both numbers were non-scientific) should be drummed into all schools – most especially, the teachers.

      • Adam Gallon permalink
        November 20, 2022 2:11 pm

        Yes, during the “Pause”, post-1998 Super El-Nino, it was pretty obvious that 2C wouldn’t be hit this century.

      • dennisambler permalink
        November 21, 2022 11:52 pm

        Schellnhuber “stole” 2 degrees. It was first mentioned by economist William Nordhaus in 1975:

        CAN WE CONTROL CARBON DIOXIDE? William D. Nordhaus June 1975

        “If there were global temperatures more than 2 or 3°C. above the current average temperature, this would take the climate outside of the range of observations which have been made over the last several hundred thousand years.”

        In 1990, the UN AGGG (United Nations Advisory Group on Greenhouse Gases), was asking for no more than a 1 degree rise in global temperature. That in turn traces back to the Villach Conference of 1986, and the subsequent Bellagio Conference in 1987.

        In 1995, Schellnhuber, then Director of the Potsdam Institute (and now Climate Advisor to the Pope), promoted 2 degrees via the German Advisory Council on Global Climate Change, (WBGU) of which he has been alternatively Chairman and Vice-Chairman for many years. He has claimed 2°C as “his” ever since. It was essentially based on the simplistic logic of Nordhaus and in 1996, it was adopted by the EU.

        1.5 degrees was being pushed at Copenhagen in 2009, by former Greenpeace Political Director, Bill Hare:
        …as I understand it,… limiting global warming to two degrees, as mentioned upfront, but right at the very end of the document, there’s a promise that by 2016 the world will consider strengthening the long term goal to 1.5 degrees. Now would that placate the AOSIS Group of Small Islands you advise? 

        “Well we’re working not just with the Alliance but also with the least-developed country group as well, and that’s up to more than 100 countries who are calling for a global goal of below 1.5 degrees by the end of the century, which they contend is necessary to protect their survival and development, and certainly the science would support them there.”

      • Mike Jackson permalink
        November 22, 2022 8:20 am

        Thankyou, dennisambler, for that comprehensive explanation. Much appreciated.
        But it bears out what a lot of us have argued for years. The actual science behind all this is flaky to say the least and belongs in ‘Alice in the 21st century”:
        “When I use science,’ Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone, ‘it means just what I choose it to mean — neither more nor less.”
        “The question is,’ said Alice, ‘whether you can make science mean so many different things.’
        ’The question is,’ said Humpty Dumpty, ‘which is to be master — that’s all.”
        Carroll knew what he was talking about 150 years ago!

    • Stuart Hamish permalink
      November 20, 2022 12:13 am

      ” Fortunately such cold snaps are much less common than they used to
      be “…….The surprising finding of the Gasparrini et al Lancet study is ‘moderate cold ” is more fatal to human beings than extreme cold or hot weather . Mike Waite published the data below Human populations bottlenecked to perhaps 5000 – 10 000 breeding pairs after the Toba caldera 70 , 000 years ago ..The three most demographically devastating pandemics in human history all emerged during cold waves and temperature declines …….. Gosh it took the BBC this long to admit the truth ……Has the Woke UK Ministry of Defense woken up yet or is the MoD still obsessed with gendered pronouns , LGBT coffee mornings and advertising for ‘green recruits “.? ..Its not as if the BBC and the MoD have a special relationship in the dirty tricks propaganda department

    • Phoenix44 permalink
      November 20, 2022 9:48 am

      And as they admit, the tipping points only occur in some runs of some models. Meanwhile we know with near certainty that is has been warmer than 1.5 degrees numerous times in the past with no tipping points. So some models over actual data.

  2. It doesn't add up... permalink
    November 19, 2022 1:18 pm

    That 10C is an average. In reality it could drop much further in a cold spell. During a 24 hour power outage with heavy snow on the ground I hate to think how cold things might have been without a woodburner.

    • November 19, 2022 4:42 pm

      I don’t bother to use my woodburner until the outside temp drops to about 4C and is expected to fall further during the night (or day).

  3. mikewaite permalink
    November 19, 2022 1:34 pm

    The following world wide study of the mortality attributable to moderate cold or heat finds moderate cold is responsible for far greater mortality :
    “Mortality risk attributable to high and low ambient temperature: a multicountry observational study”
    The image , if the link works is particularly dramatic:

    The team followed up the study a few years later with an estimate of the effect of low to high RCP on mortality . In most cases except the (very unlikely) RCP8.5 the reduction in cold mortality is greater than the increase in heat mortality .
    If global warming is of the order 1.5-2C in this century it will be the greatest boon to the health, wealth and well being of humankind since the Industrial Revolution and the discovery and exploitation of petroleum.

  4. Mr Robert Christopher permalink
    November 19, 2022 1:36 pm

    “Body burned more Carbs”

    Or more Fat: it depends on the person’s diet.

    NHS gaslighting in evidence.

  5. HotScot permalink
    November 19, 2022 1:59 pm

    The mistake is calling anything ‘extreme’ without defining it precisely and the BBC does it a lot.

    • Stuart Hamish permalink
      November 19, 2022 11:48 pm

      So do Putin aficionados ..I saw your nauseating fawning Russia apologia on the WUWT blog recently

      • HotScot permalink
        November 20, 2022 12:24 am

        I fawn over no one. I take no sides. I exist on the facts, that is my background.

        Judging by your comments, you take sides. The west is good, Russia is bad.

        The west has existed on the military industrial complex since WW2 and has surrounded Russia with NATO bases.

        Russia has not one single military base near the USA bar, perhaps close to Alaska.

        America threatened nuclear armageddon in the 60’s Cuban missile crisis. Has Russia ever threatened USA/NATO with nuclear armageddon for surrounding it with nuclear weapons?

        Wake up. Russia is a problem, but not THE problem.

      • Stuart Hamish permalink
        November 20, 2022 2:00 am

        You are not a neutral dispassionate commentator Hot Scot

        ” The West has existed on the military industrial complex since WW2 and has surrounded Russia with NATO bases ” ? What might have influenced the NATO encirclement strategy ?…The fact that Stalin was a psychopath and the Soviet Union had not only attacked and annexed Russias neighbors from 1920 – 1945 but actually started WWII when the USSR was allied with Nazi Germany and the two powers jointly invaded Poland ? The United States did not catalyze WWI or WWII The United States militarily intervened to end the two world wars Nor did the United States threaten nuclear armageddon in the 1960’s Cuban missile crisis. A petrified .Kruschev extracted Soviet nuclear missiles from Cuba because Fidel Castro and Che Geuvara were thteatening a pre emptive nuclear first strike at the United States mainland …. Krushchev admitted this in his memoirs . Here is the relevant anecdote of his conversation ” You wanted to start a war with the United States . If the war had begun we would somehow have survived , but Cuba no doubt would have ceased to exist . It would have been crushed into powder . Yet you suggested a [ pre-emptive ] nuclear strike ” ? You asked the wrong question that is better re- formulated as : has a rogue ally of the United States ever threatened Russia [ or formerly the USSR ] with nuclear attack as Cuba and North Korea [ longstanding Russian allies ] and more recently Iran have toward the United States and US allies such as Japan and Israel ?

        The cackling maniac Guevara confided his nuclear apocalypse fantasy to Daily Worker journalist Sam Russell believing socialism would emerge triumphant from the ashes The quotes are embedded in the article ‘ Fidel Castros Dreams of Nuclear Armageddon “

      • Ben Vorlich permalink
        November 20, 2022 7:19 am

        How long did it take the nations behind the Iron Curtain to become independent after WW2, and WW1 in some cases?
        I don’t really mind if Hungary decides to align with Russia if they chose to, but it’s a choice now not a decision made in Moscow

      • Phoenix44 permalink
        November 20, 2022 9:45 am

        Laughable. There was only a Cuban Missile Crisis because of the actions of the USSR. Placing nuclear weapons within minutes of US cities. So you are wrong on every point.

      • Stuart Hamish permalink
        November 20, 2022 10:09 pm

        Wheres the ‘Weasel ” ?

      • Stuart Hamish permalink
        November 20, 2022 10:18 pm

        ” I exist on the facts and that is my background ” ” If Hot Scot is trying to persuade me that his background as a British police officer is commensurate with intellectual honesty or integrity I am not convinced ..Nor are the survivors of the Hillsborough tragedy and thousands of victims of “protected ” Islamic rape gangs in towns and cities across the United Kingdom ..Im not surprised hes a fanboy of the Russian gangster state though

    • Adam Gallon permalink
      November 20, 2022 2:32 pm

      Actually Phoenix, the Russians dispatching IRBMs to Cuba, was arguably a response to the USA basing Thor IRBM in the UK & Jupiter IRBM in Italy & Turkey.
      Part of the Kennedy-Khrushchev deal, was the removal of the latter, Thor missiles were due to be removed from the UK by the end of 1962 anyway.

      • Stuart Hamish permalink
        November 20, 2022 10:54 pm

        Adam Gallon the presidents of Italy and Turkey did not go ‘rogue to threaten a pre emptive nuclear holocaust against the USSR. as Fidel Castro and Guevara did in their hatred of the United States .The Soviet nuclear missiles were removed from Cuba on the orders of Kruschev as he and the Soviet politburo were terrified Castro and Guevara were going to launch them and ignite a nuclear conflagration .. The Kennedy – Kruschev ‘deal ‘ was a masquerade and Kruschev and Russian intelligence later admitted they could not believe their luck in duping the Kennedy administration ..The factional hostilities were such that Cuban army unit actually over-ran one of the Soviet nuclear missile batteries ..There are some extraordinarily stupid radical Greens and Labor party figures [ or they furtively admire his methods ] in my home country that still revere Castro as some sort of – anti – imperialist hero . The ABC and The Sunday Age ran romantic eulogies of the vicious tyrant ..He had homosexuals journalists artists and anyone who opposed his regime imprisoned and hired ex Waffen SS officers to train his army …..Then of course there was the $930 million fortune the Castro family amassed for themselves .. If only ‘real socialism was practised in Cuba the Cuban nightmare could have turned out differently

  6. Gamecock permalink
    November 19, 2022 2:08 pm

    Gamecock has always been more sensitive to indoor temps than outdoors, having spent considerable time in warehouses back in his manufacturing days.

    50°F outside is way more comfortable than 60°F inside.

  7. Bloke down the pub permalink
    November 19, 2022 2:14 pm

    The BBC only condescend to address the issue of cold temps when they think they can attack the government by doing so.

    • Joe Public permalink
      November 19, 2022 2:59 pm


    • Phoenix44 permalink
      November 20, 2022 9:41 am

      When they can attack a Tory (notionally) government.

      If it was a Labour government it would be “how to stay warm now Labour is saving the planet!”

  8. John Hultquist permalink
    November 19, 2022 4:35 pm

    I have found that indoors and staying busy, 23°C is comfortable. Down a degree and a long sleeve shirt helps. At 21°, a sweater is good; then it is needed. At 19°C, it is time to switch to a heavy wool sweater (some of the best made in the UK). Next a skull cap, and then add ear flaps. At about 18° – see “3 dog night”

    • kzbkzb permalink
      November 19, 2022 6:05 pm

      I think you are a bit “mard” !? Are you confusing Celsius and Fahrenheit?

      • John Hultquist permalink
        November 21, 2022 12:43 am

        Actually, I think of the homes I’ve been in (Central Wahington USA) I’m in the middle of the pack. In summer, I think I allow the house to heat more than many others.
        I think there will be place differences. Different construction methods, age of housing, and cost will be influential. For example, my house is wood-frame with insulation and it is all-electric, except for a newish wood stove. Wood is harvested on site. Local power comes from massive dams on the Columbia River. Rock Island Dam is 25 miles NE, and Wanapum Dam is 28 miles SE.

  9. avro607 permalink
    November 19, 2022 6:55 pm


  10. MrGrimNasty permalink
    November 19, 2022 10:02 pm

    “David I’m a scientist!”
    How awkward, Attenborough’s lunch disturbed by one of the people he’s helped brain wash into an eco-loon.

    • Stuart Hamish permalink
      November 20, 2022 12:44 am

      .Im sure Attenborough is not tucking into a plate of mealworms and crickets ……

    • Adam Gallon permalink
      November 20, 2022 2:38 pm

      The same Eco-loon who had spent 3 years driving an old, dirty, diesel, Toyota Landcruiser 81,000 miles through 50 countries.

  11. Jack Minnock permalink
    November 19, 2022 10:25 pm

    Apologies, hmm, this is liable to get a cool reception..?

  12. Phoenix44 permalink
    November 20, 2022 9:39 am

    The blood flow to his brain did not fall by 20%.

  13. M E permalink
    November 20, 2022 10:26 am

    As a non UK reader of this blog I often wonder if you are all affected badly by your inability to access sites with Russian news. The U K and U S newsmedia seem to be forbidden from saying anything about Russia which is not goverment propaganda . You all seem to have a false perspective but I suppose you will be investigated by security services and taken off line if you don,t conform ? It is interesting to me because I am old enough to remember Sen Joe McCarthy. Look him up .. Maybe he has been resurrected by mad scientist. Meanwhile I disregard your views as merely
    politically correct opinion needed to preserve your on line presence. That Britain should have come to this! McCarthyism rebooted.! Anyway let me inform you that Russia is not the U S S R. Putin is not Communist as he says he is a member of the Orthodox Church. recently giving a speech about the beginning of Christianity in Russia citing church beginnings in Novgorod and Kiev by tribal leaders and princes. You may be allowed to find it on the internet. ifyou are allowed to ,that is .

    • Adam Gallon permalink
      November 20, 2022 2:43 pm

      Couldn’t give a shit if he’s the Supreme Patriarch, he still ordered the invasion of Ukraine & the destruction of its infrastructure.
      The church was another arm of the KGB.

    • Stuart Hamish permalink
      November 21, 2022 8:43 am

      Hitler was a member of the Bavarian Soviet in 1919 before he led the fledgling German Workers Party , Benito Mussolini was a fanatical socialist and editor of a Marxist newsletter before his political transformation as the fascist caudillo of Italy ……Vladimir Putin was a doctrinaire colonel in the KGB who pines for the days of Soviet greatness and has now metamorphosized into the protector of the Russian Orthodox faith and a Tsarist restorationist who sees himself as the heritor of Peter the Great . What Hitler , Mussolini and Putin all have in common is nationalistic atavism …Whats your point ‘M E ‘? .. I think I have made mine Please tell me more about my ‘ false consciousness ” …

      • Chaswarnertoo permalink
        November 21, 2022 12:15 pm

        Stuart Hamish.
        Socialist/Marxist/Fascist is all the same thing. Collectivist murdering dictators. There is no transformation involved.
        The right wing position is libertarian.

  14. November 20, 2022 7:08 pm

    I will be happy if the warm spell continues for another week as that will send my rolling 12 months gas use to below 400 for the first time since 2018!

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