Climate change critics feel the heat?

  • MO graph above highlights, a +2degC anomaly for April:

    January to April mean, from 1659 to present shows how we are on course for the warmest Jan - April since 2007, with only one other year beating it in 1990.

    Signs of an upturn in mean winter temps after the cold winters since 2009? Red curve is Oct to March mean, blue is winter. Series here starts in 1960.

    Marathon runner cools off: Mike Egerton/PA Archive/Press Association Images

  • Climate change critics feel the heat?
    12.04.2014 14:30

    The winter was made mild by the constant storms coming in off the Atlantic, bringing south-westerly winds and moist air masses into the UK. Other parts of Europe also saw higher than average temperatures, discussed in the report. ‘Where’s winter’ in 20/02/2014.

    Often after a mild winter, with westerly winds, the standard trend for the UK is to have some colder snaps in the spring warmth, with northerly and north-easterly winds. This was seen last year and talked about in ‘What a difference a year makes’ on WeatherCast on the 22/03/2014.

    However, this year the warmth has stayed, with a particularly warm March, discussed in the ‘March monthly review’ and so far… a warm April. This had led to the warmest start to the year for some time, with temperatures reaching 21.0C on 2nd April in Kent. The monthly average so far across the country is 10.7C which is 2.8C higher than average for the whole month. Although temperatures fell a little last week, they still didn’t drop below the average, and few places have seen temperatures drop below 0 Celsius.

    This April has seen a return to a strong temperature difference between the north-west, and south-east. The more settled conditions in the south have resulted in lengthy spells of sunshine, enabling air to be heated. Further north the constant passage of lows has bought more stormy conditions and high rainfall amounts, but the air coming in off the Atlantic has kept it mild.

    The mean total rainfall for Scotland so far- 12th of April, is 49.3mm but only 23.4mm in England and Wales where the highest amounts have fallen in northern areas.

    The upcoming week looks set to see temperatures increase again, as a high pressure system located to the west of the UK tracks east; becoming situated over the UK on Tuesday. This will bring settled conditions to many parts allowing lengthy sunny spells especially in the south. However Scotland turn cloudier on Wednesday as rain pushes in from the north-west as a low pressure system passes to the north of the UK.

    London Marathon runners and spectators may be pleased with tomorrow's forecast of fine weather as lengthy sunny spells are expected and just a little patchy cloud.  However, the dry and warm conditions may be of concern to some of the seasoned runners as they know the perils such as dehydration caused by running under a warm sun.

    There is currently some uncertainty about the weather for the Easter holiday period. It looks like the high pressure system may move further away to the south-east bringing rain bearing fronts in from the west and warm south-westerly winds, but once again the south east may hold onto reasonable weather through the holiday weekend.

    By: John Griffiths