Newsbytes: “Dry Winter” Could the Met Office Have Been More Wrong?

Met Office Warning (2012): Climate Change Linked To Colder, Drier UK Winters

The Met Office’s ‘pitiful’ forecasts were under fire last night after it was revealed it told councils in November to expect ‘drier than usual’ conditions this winter. In the worst weather prediction since Michael Fish reassured the nation in October 1987 that there was no hurricane on the way, forecasters said the Somerset Levels – still under water after more than two months of flooding – and the rest of the West Country would be especially dry. Last night, it was confirmed the UK had instead suffered the wettest winter since records began. –Tamara Cohen, Daily Mail, 21 February 2014

DART - Digital Advanced Reckoning Technology

The Met Office DART – Digital Advanced Reckoning Technology

UPDATE: Verity Jones from “Digging in the Clay” has this hilarious game addition…

Slingo

See: http://diggingintheclay.wordpress.com/2014/02/17/place-your-bets/

 

MPs and environmental planners yesterday said the long-term forecast had been a ‘mistake which could have cost Britain dearly’ and questioned whether the forecasting methods were fit for purpose. The three-month forecasts are now sent only to contingency planners, such as councils, government departments, and insurance companies. Using the Met Office’s super-computer, which can perform 100trillion calculations a second, experts in November predicted there would be high-pressure weather systems across Britain ‘with a slight signal for below average precipitation’. –Tamara Cohen, Daily Mail, 21 February 2014
The reduction in Arctic sea ice caused by climate change is playing a role in the UK’s recent colder and drier winter weather, according to the Met Office. Speaking to MPs on the influential environmental audit committee about the state of the warming Arctic, Julia Slingo, the chief scientist at the Met Office, said that decreasing amounts of ice in the far north was contributing to colder winters in the UK and northern Europe as well as to drought. She added that more cold winters mean less water, and could exacerbate future droughts. –Adam Vaughan, The Guardian, 14 March 2012

Half of all UK households face the threat of drought restrictions in the new year if rainfall does not return to normal this winter. With temperatures in parts of England still exceptionally mild, there is now growing concern about what will happen if – as some forecasters expect – there is a second dry winter in a row. The latest drought scenarios follow some of the driest weather since the Met Office records began in 1910, with rainfall in much of central England below 60% of the average for the last year. Water companies and environment regulators are expecting the UK to have more frequent dry winters as a result of climate change. –Juliette Jowit, The Guardian, 17 November 2011

Half of all households in Britain could face water restrictions unless exceptionally heavy and prolonged rain falls by April, water companies and the environment agency have warned. The environment secretary, Caroline Spelman, will hold a crisis meeting next week after the Centre for Hydrology and Ecology (CEH) stated that the average rainfall so far this winter has been the lowest since 1972, and the English Midlands and Anglian regions have had their second driest years in nearly a century. Last year was the driest in south-east England in 90 years. One more dry winter could force then drier areas of the country will have to start looking at more drastic measures like desalination plants or transporting water from wetter areas in the north or west. –John Vidal, The Guardian, 14 February 2012

Graph showing rainfall against the average from April 2009 to March 2012

Surprised by how tough this winter has been? You’re in good company: Last fall the Climate Prediction Center of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predicted that temperatures would be above normal from November through January across much of the Lower 48 states. –Peter Coy, Bloomberg, 18 February 2014

Meanwhile, the Met Office has continued to issue questionable long-term forecasts. In mid-November, two weeks before the first of the storms, it predicted persistent high pressure for the winter, which was ‘likely to lead to drier-than-normal conditions across the country’. Infamously, in April 2009, the Met Office promised a ‘barbecue summer’ – which then turned out to be a washout. It forecast the winter of 2010 to 2011 would be mild: it was the coldest for 120 years.  At the beginning of 13 of the past 14 years, the Met Office has predicted the following 12 months would be significantly warmer than they have been. This, says the sceptic think-tank the Global Warming Policy Foundation, indicates ‘systemic’ bias. –David Rose, Mail on Sunday, 16 February 2014

Lord Smith, the embattled Chairman of the Environment Agency (EA), ignored multiple warnings that his policies would lead to serious flooding in Berkshire. The warnings came in 2009 from then Lead Member for the Environment at Windsor Council, Cllr Colin Rayner, who spoke exclusively to Breitbart London about numerous meetings with Smith, who has presided over some of the worst flooding to hit Britain in many years. Rayner claims to have told Smith that unless the Environment Agency took urgent action, the villages around Wraysbury, in the Thames valley, would flood. But Smith appears to have ignored Rayner’s warning, preferring instead to blame climate change for any future floods. –Breitbart News, 18 February 2014

It will hardly come as a surprise to anyone mopping up after the floods, but this has been the UK’s wettest winter since records began in 1910, the Met Office said on Thursday. –Pilita Clark, Financial Times, 21 February 2014

Based on the Met Office’s provisional numbers, it is true that, for the UK as a whole, this has been the wettest Dec – Feb period on record since 1910. However, the Met Office’s claims only tell half the story. Unless there is a Noah like deluge in the next week, the 3-month periods of Oct – Dec, and Nov – Jan, during the winter of 1929/30 will remain as by far the wettest on record. -–Paul Homewood, Not A Lot Of People Know That, 21 February 2014

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This Newsbytes Summary from Dr. Benny Peiser and The GWPF

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70 Responses to Newsbytes: “Dry Winter” Could the Met Office Have Been More Wrong?

  1. Jenn Oates says:

    They must have been talking about California’s winter, not the UK’s.

  2. Col Mosby says:

    Why isn’t there a movement to defund the Met and prevent it’s invalid forecasts from
    doing harm. Better no forecast than a wrong one. Besides, at this point, who would believe anything the Met says?

  3. kenw says:

    “..which can perform 100trillion calculations a second,…”

    highly resolved and very fast crap is still crap.

  4. Sweet Old Bob says:

    And nothing will be done about it. As usual. No responsibility required,only an open checking account. Just toe the company line…

  5. Verity Jones says:

    What a difference a year makes. It is as if people have no memory.

  6. ‘Besides, at this point, who would believe anything the Met says?” The UK political establishment who have invested so much political capital in Lysenkist science that they can’t pull out now. Pretty much the same as the US I gather. Oh – and those who take The Guardian and Huff Po seriously.

  7. kwinterkorn says:

    Government at work.

  8. The weather forecasts are a joke here, the Met Office haven’t got a clue! That is why I bought a £30 weather station that tells me whether I need a coat or not. It was 1/2,000,000 the cost of the Met Office’s supercomputer but a lot more accurate!

  9. Reg. Blank says:

    Obviously the Met Office need more public money to embiggen their supercomputers to make their Bitcoin Min^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H tea leaf reading quicker, so they can iterate through all the dry/warm models as usual and have time to run the cold/wet models that they currently have to drop & exclude from the forecast mix because they run out of time before the date being forecast.

  10. pokerguy says:

    “..which can perform 100trillion calculations a second,…”

    Can’t help but laugh. While the MET Office was bust applying egg to their faces, 3 of the most notorious climate skeptics around nailed this winter beautifully courtesy of WeatherBell. Joe Bastardi who was stolen from Accuweather when WeatherBell formed, I believe works mostly out of his basement with essentially nothing fancier than a laptop and old weather maps. TRuly hilarious.

  11. Neil says:

    Sure, they got the weather forecast wrong, but weather isn’t climate and they know they have the climate forecast right…

  12. Alternatively, the game could be called “No Cluedo”!

  13. What are they going to predict for next year? Dry or wet? Whatever they preditct, they will blam on CAGW, then what actualy happens will also be blamed on CAGW.

  14. Derek Wood says:

    I’m pretty sure I read somewhere that this Met Office supercomputer has a Global Warming gizmo built into it. If that’s the case, well…it would, wouldn’t it?

  15. Jimbo says:

    I have said this before and I will say it again, prepare for the exact OPPOSITE of what the Met Office forecasts beyond around 2 weeks.

  16. Mac the Knife says:

    The Met Office’s 100 teraflop computer, running the latest weather/climate modeling software, has repeatedly demonstrated no predictive capability at as little as 3 months future intervals.
    It produces products of less value than cow flop.

    The computing capability is not at fault. The weather models are completely inadequate and have demonstrated they are emphatically invalid.

    Rather than continue to calculate crap at blinding speed, the prodigious computing capability should be redirected to support real-world current needs such as improving the combustion efficiency of coal fired power plants, enhancing scrubber technologies, and reducing costs of the delivered kilowatts to the consumer.

  17. Anything is possible says:

    “..which can perform 100trillion calculations a second,…”

    In other words, they can get the wrong answer a lot quicker!

  18. SC-Slywolf says:

    “The reduction in Arctic sea ice caused by climate change is playing a role in the UK’s recent colder and drier winter weather, according to the Met Office. Speaking to MPs on the influential environmental audit committee about the state of the warming Arctic, Julia Slingo, the chief scientist at the Met Office, said that decreasing amounts of ice in the far north was contributing to colder winters in the UK and northern Europe as well as to drought. “

    Why didn’t they tell the computer about the reduction in Arctic sea ice before their November forecast? I don’t think it has reduced since then.

  19. Specter says:

    So….if neither the Met Office and NOAA can get any where close to forecasting the weather 3 months out…how can anybody seriously believe they can get it close to right decades out? Seriously…

  20. Man Bearpig says:

    Here is a link to the Met Office winter forecast for 2013/2014

    http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/media/pdf/m/8/A3_plots-precip-DJF-2.pdf

    Summary – Precipitation
    Confidence in the forecast for precipitation across the UK over the next three months is relatively low. For the
    December-January-February period as a whole there is a slight signal for below-average precipitation.
    The probability that UK precipitation for December-January-February will fall into the driest of our five categories is around 25%
    and the probability that it will fall into the wettest category is around 15% (the 1981-2010 probability for each of these categories
    is 20%)

  21. The MetO as the servant of the IPCC will never look at any non man made drivers of climate. IPCC is about man made change not any other process . If MetO starts looking at non man made process then it and its models become useless to the IPCC as they will no longer be able to base their man made change reports on MetO. Catch 22

    For MetO and IPCC [by its remit] is it as if there is no sun in the sky. So no point looking for any research from MetO who will continue along the tram lines of co2 driven weather and so continue passing out co2 deathstar based predictions to COBRA and the county councils who are left high and dry with NO means to prepare for extreme events making the political class look weak and stupid

    So what use would a MetO that incorporated some non co2 weighted processes like the sun in their models be to IPCC? Even if it improved predictions to the nation? None….. IPCC would have to conclude there is no fox to shoot and might as well pack up and use the money for something more interesting than co2 chasing….as long as the IPCC remit is so narrow MetO is stuck unless they are prepared to go outside the IPCC magic circle and so risk being called a denier. Which not only would be brave but career suicide. So Meto can only but play the co2 puppet while their long term forecasts to COBRA and the Counties [what they were originally being paid for] are not helping the nation. Rather the opposite.

    Is MetO about providing the best forecasting for the UK or about providing unvalidated co2 weighted models for the ipcc so they can continue to write ‘co2 deathstar is coming’ reports? Who pays them? The UK or the IPCC?

  22. When the Greenie-infested Met Office forecasts a dry winter, and the subsequent downpour causes catastrophic flooding because the Greenie-infested Environment Agency failed to carry out basic flood prevention measures, it makes the rest of the world think that Britain is being run by a bunch of student activists.

    Come to think of it…

  23. Steve from Rockwood says:

    The Met Office has a tera-flop computer? Well that is exactly what has happened to their forecasts. Their forecasts used to be only a mega-flop. But with their tendency to issue incorrect forecasts more quickly, they will be instantaneously wrong in no time.

  24. an amateur climatologist predicted the winter storms back in october 2013. He has no supercomputer but then he doesn’t have a co2 bias to blinker him either. He describes his reasoning for the winter storm predictions “from a Conservation of Angular Momentum consideration certainly lends itself to scope for the North of Britain to get some real batterings- we are set to have some of our biggest winter storms in years.”

    http://forum.netweather.tv/topic/78219-late-autumn-and-winter-201314-mild-stormy-short-cold-snaps-later/

    a farmers almanac predicted the usa winter in aug 2013 http://www.cbsnews.com/news/farmers-almanac-predicts-a-bitterly-cold-winter/

    so MetO long term forecasts are worse than amateurs and almanacs? But they still maintain the co2 weighting and the co2 feedbacks and accelerators is settled science with 95% confidence. Maybe the £80m they get a year should be put out to tender?

  25. Frank Flintstone says:

    It’s wetter than we thought!

  26. Tim Clark says:

    “100 trillion calculations a second”

    I believe this statistic was taken out of context, and more appropriately applies to the average daily raindrop count, i.e. drops/day.

  27. byz says:

    Simple take their prediction and reverse it.

    Works every time :)

  28. Hot under the collar says:

    “The three-month forecasts are now sent only to contingency planners, such as councils, government departments, and insurance companies. Using the Met Office’s super-computer, which can perform 100trillion calculations a second….”

    They don’t release the forecast to the public anymore because they can’t tolerate the ridicule they get when it is inevitably the opposite to their forecast. Instead they only send their crap global warming religion influenced predictions to agencies responsible for emergency planning because obviously it doesn’t matter if they plan for the wrong emergency does it?

    As for the “Using the Met Office’s super-computer, which can perform 100trillion calculations a second”. There is definitely something a bit ‘Douglas Adams’ about the whole situation. Next they will have to spend ten times as much to build a super-duper computer that can perform 200trillion calculations a second to get it wrong, leaving themselves open to twice the ridicule twice as fast!

  29. ntesdorf says:

    If someone could publish an ‘Old Farmers Almanac’ in the UK, they could save the full cost of the Met Office by shutting it down. People there could then access a highly accurate seasonal forecast.

  30. Joe says:

    The reduction in Arctic sea ice caused by climate change is playing a role in the UK’s recent colder and drier winter weather, according to the Met Office. Speaking to MPs on the influential environmental audit committee about the state of the warming Arctic, Julia Slingo, the chief scientist at the Met Office, said that decreasing amounts of ice in the far north was contributing to colder winters in the UK and northern Europe as well as to drought.
    ___________________________________________________________________________

    Can’t argue with that. Massive recovery in Arctic ice last year, and look what happens :D

  31. Latitude says:

    In the worst weather prediction since…NOAA predicted a normal to mild winter this year

    …and the Farmers Almanac predicted exactly what we got

  32. Matt G says:

    Joe says:
    February 21, 2014 at 2:39 pm

    The Met Office and other alarmist government organisations always blame hindsight on global warming, but never predict it before hand.

    There were many more colder and drier winters back in the Little Ice age, so must have been climate change with declining Arctic ice back then.

    The winter during 1962/63 was the coldest winter recorded for all data sets except the CET. Must have been no Arctic ice back then for it to be so cold. Last time the ENSO and AMO were both neutral the UK had a very wet January and a fairly mild Atlantic based winter.

  33. goldminor says:

    Reg. Blank says:
    February 21, 2014 at 11:07 am

    Obviously the Met Office need more public money to embiggen their supercomputers to make their Bitcoin Min^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H tea leaf reading quicker, so they can iterate through all the dry/warm models as usual and have time to run the cold/wet models that they currently have to drop & exclude from the forecast mix because they run out of time before the date being forecast.
    ————————————————-
    Perhaps they need to use a different type of tea. That is rather important with that method. Chnaging cups can also make a substantial difference. Or so I heard.

  34. Gunga Din says:

    Who needs a super computer?
    I’m sure we all know someone who can reach the wrong conclusion at light-speed.

  35. Admad says:

    The WetOrifice is, I am afraid, beyond parody.

  36. goldminor says:

    Specter says:
    February 21, 2014 at 12:03 pm

    So….if neither the Met Office and NOAA can get any where close to forecasting the weather 3 months out…how can anybody seriously believe they can get it close to right decades out? Seriously…
    —————————————
    That can be readily explained. Just add faith and bingo!

  37. goldminor says:

    Paul Homewood says:
    February 21, 2014 at 11:20 am

    Alternatively, the game could be called “No Cluedo”!
    ——————————————————————–
    Or El Clue-O. That is the mysterious oceanic influence which is rumored to lie hidden somewhere around the Bermuda Triangle. One of these days the Met will substantiate this claim.

  38. 4 eyes says:

    Shut down the Met. Let private enterprise do the weather predictions. Only those groups that get things at least approximately right will survive.

  39. Gunga Din says:

    goldminor says:
    February 21, 2014 at 3:42 pm

    Paul Homewood says:
    February 21, 2014 at 11:20 am

    Alternatively, the game could be called “No Cluedo”!
    ——————————————————————–
    Or El Clue-O. That is the mysterious oceanic influence which is rumored to lie hidden somewhere around the Bermuda Triangle. One of these days the Met will substantiate this claim.

    ===================================================
    The Bermuda Triangle. So that’s where the missing heat is hiding!

  40. M Seward says:

    Does the Met Bureau subcontract their forecasting to Tim Flannery? This all sounds very Flanneryesque to any Aussie. ( He’s the guy who said Oz was looking at permanent drought and our dams would never fill etc in the year before two very wet summers on the East Coast which had the lot including floods in Brisbane and all the dams chockablock full. Never mind the Australian BOM records which show a century long trend of 25% MORE rain across the continent. He is also the guy who thought Lindy Chamberlain must have murdered her infant Azaria because if the dingo dunnit then it would be really bad for dingoes (that last bit best read out loud – try an Aussie accent too – with a rising inflection to get the full illogical impact)). Quite Lewandowskyish.

    I might work on an Aussie version of Slingo! We have some doozy animals down here. If black swans, kangaroos and platypus’s naturally evolved here just imagine to sort of climate loons we have!

  41. Cynical Scientst says:

    It surprises me that people don’t bet on the weather. It would certainly encourage forecasters to work hard to improve their skills. And unlike sports betting, the weather is essentially unbribable.

  42. Cynical Scientst says:

    Correction: It appears that you CAN bet on the weather.

    http://mentalfloss.com/article/28636/can-you-get-rich-betting-weather

  43. Ian W says:

    So Dame Julia Slingo is convinced that the current state of the Arctic leads to dry weather, and it rains. The New Scientist Magazine – normally ‘on message’ with Dr Slingo now has an article:
    “UK Must Abandon or Adapt in the Face of Floods” (sic)
    The UK’s future is wet. How can Britons learn to live with the water, and who will have to move to higher ground?
    MAKE room for the water. Major floods are causing havoc in the UK, and such events will keep happening. The country’s future is wet, according to the latest models, and even in typical conditions it is prone to flooding”

    http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg22129572.800-uk-must-abandon-or-adapt-in-face-of-floods.html#.UwfuA5Ao7MI

    This would appear to be a new type oscillation. In US politics it would be called a ‘flip flop’

  44. Mac the Knife says:

    arthurpeacock says:
    February 21, 2014 at 12:24 pm
    …..it makes the rest of the world think that Britain is being run by a bunch of student activists. Come to think of it…

    Arthur,
    You are not alone. Many of us in the USA think similarly, about our own pathetically amateurish government agencies and Our Dear Leaders administration et. al.
    Mac

  45. P Wilson says:

    The met office play it by ear. If its a mild winter they say that global warming means milder winters. If it’s a cold winter they say global warming causes colder winters. If a dry winter, then they say AGW causes dry winters, and if it pelts it down with rain the year after, they say that global warming causes wet winters.

    Since they are an institution, they have to appear knowledgeable and confident, in the face of factors that they don’t comprehend (such as the climate)

  46. Krudd Gillard of the Commondebt of Australia says:

    Was Slingo on the Ship of Fools?

  47. Ulric Lyons says:

    jauntycyclist says:
    “So what use would a MetO that incorporated some non co2 weighted processes like the sun in their models be to IPCC?”

    There has been a recent trend towards wetter cooler summers and colder drier winters, which could be a reason for their forecast for slightly drier than normal winter (also the cooler wet July 2013 forecast). They probably have taken into account what Lockwood has said about regional effects of the weak solar conditions. Forecasting for a specific season from a trend though is bound to have spectacular failures at times.
    http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/climate/uk/actualmonthly/14/Rainfall/England.gif
    http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/climate/uk/actualmonthly/16/Rainfall/England.gif

  48. lee says:

    Cynical Scientst says:
    February 21, 2014 at 4:25 pm

    Would you bet on any prognostications from someone with no ‘skin in the game’? Hiding behind a bloated bureaucracy?

  49. Rhys Jaggar says:

    The conspiracy theory goes that the far right wait for the Met Office to issue their forecasts, and then use their HAARP facilities to geoengineer the weather to do the opposite.

    Any deep sleepers in the CIA care to comment on that??

  50. john says:

    Okay….

    In fairness, they did say 25% confidence, which is a cop out in its own right. 15% for above average.

    Hardly a solid prediction.

  51. “Forecasting for a specific season from a trend”

    that might be their problem. predicting from historical data ie always behind the curve like those playing the retail fx markets and who keep losing. Those who use sunspots/magnetism tend to be ahead of the curve?

    Meto also have the co2=warming belief and as co2 has increased they reason ‘there must be warming so the odds are in our favour if we keep saying warmer/drier’. That seems to be the MetO bias in their forecasts? They put those assumptions in the supercomputer and whatever ‘wise owl’ or whatever name they have given it churns out then that is ‘the best possible prediction’.

    If Meto removed the co2=warming bias then the IPCC would not be able to use MetO models to write co2 deathstar is coming reports?

  52. goldminor says:

    Gunga Din says:
    February 21, 2014 at 4:01 pm
    The Bermuda Triangle. So that’s where the missing heat is hiding!
    —————————————————————————————
    It was so obvious, that even I could see it, along with my fellow cave men friends and cave women.

  53. goldminor says:

    Cynical Scientst says:
    February 21, 2014 at 4:29 pm

    Correction: It appears that you CAN bet on the weather.
    ————————————————————————-
    Thanks for sharing that. I have been known to make a wager once in awhile.

  54. Stephen Richards says:

    Joe Bastardi who was stolen from Accuweather when WeatherBell formed, I believe works mostly out of his basement with essentially nothing fancier than a laptop and old weather maps. TRuly hilarious

    Joe has access to some massive computers and is very ably supported by Ryan Maue. They use the same computers that the governmental organisations use to make their forecasts.

    It’s all done by pattern recognition and a massive passion for weather.

  55. Stephen Richards says:

    goldminor says:

    February 22, 2014 at 1:37 am
    Cynical Scientst says:
    February 21, 2014 at 4:29 pm

    Correction: It appears that you CAN bet on the weather.
    ————————————————————————-
    Thanks for sharing that. I have been known to make a wager once in awhile

    It was how Piers Corbyn of weather action funded his start-up.

  56. euanmearns says:

    UK storms and floods – a post-mortem
    The main human impact on recent flooding is UK government incompetence.

    So Foul a Day and the Jet Stream
    Alastair Dawson’s book chronicles 300 years of climate hell in Scotland (1600 – 1900) most probably extending to the whole of the UK, that was followed by the quiescent 20th Century

  57. richardscourtney says:

    Euan Mearns:

    As on the other WUWT thread where you posted it, I write to draw attention to the links in your post in this thread at February 22, 2014 at 2:08 am.

    Your articles are good and the discussions in the threads – especially on the jet stream- are very good, so I am writing to commend them to others who otherwise may not have bothered to read them.

    Richard

  58. Joe says:

    Matt G says:
    February 21, 2014 at 3:14 pm

    Joe says:
    February 21, 2014 at 2:39 pm
    —————————————————————————————————

    Yeah, sorry Matt, maybe I should have used [sarc] tags ;)

    Although, don’t be surprised if they coome up with that one when looking for excuses. Something like:

    “The wet in UK and cold in US was caused by the jetstream reacting to the sudden and temporary increase in ice in 2013 due to natural variability. This validates our models of what changing ice does, so drought will return when the ice resumes its CO2 induced decline”

  59. Joe says:

    richardscourtney says:
    February 22, 2014 at 2:30 am

    Euan Mearns:

    As on the other WUWT thread where you posted it, I write to draw attention to the links in your post in this thread at February 22, 2014 at 2:08 am.

    Your articles are good and the discussions in the threads – especially on the jet stream- are very good, so I am writing to commend them to others who otherwise may not have bothered to read them.
    —————————————————————————————————————

    Thanks for that, Richard, I’m one of those who probably wouldn’t have found them otherwise. Which would mean that I would have missed a small, almost throwaway, comment in there that I think I may use from now on:

    “[...] this has all happened before and does not require a super natural explanation.”

    That pretty well puts the “science” where it belongs – super natural warming. A perfectly accurate description, obviously, simply meaning “above natural”, but “Climate scientists believe in supernatural warming” has a certain ring to it, no? :D

  60. Ulric Lyons says:

    jauntycyclist says:
    “Meto also have the co2=warming belief and as co2 has increased they reason ‘there must be warming so the odds are in our favour if we keep saying warmer/drier’. That seems to be the MetO bias in their forecasts?”

    If that case they would have forecast for wetter than normal this winter, and drier than normal last Summer.

  61. davidsimm says:

    The UK Met Office may not be able to forecast WEATHER, but they can definitely tell you what the CLIMATE will be like in 2100…

  62. Clovis Marcus says:

    In order to get anywhere in climate or environmental science you have to swim with the tide. The people who do that get to the top of the quangos and universities. They teach the next generation and the cycle continues. In fact with the influx of earnest and well meaning young people it intensifies.

    It is depressing that the cycle cannot be broken except by tearing the system down, salting the earth and starting all over again. That is not going to happen soon.

  63. John Law says:

    There’s a new panic going on in UK defence circles re the dangers of rising sea levels and storms threatening facilities. Apparently navy chiefs are considering moving the Royal Navy away from the sea.
    Where are Gilbert and Sullivan when you need them?

    All together:
    When I was a lad I served a term
    As office boy to an Attorney’s firm.
    I cleaned the windows and I swept the floor,
    And I polished up the handle of the big front door.
    Chorus.
    He polished up the handle of the big front door.
    Sir Joseph.
    I polished up that handle so carefullee
    That now I am the Ruler of the Queen’s Navee!
    Chorus.
    He polished up that handle so carefullee,
    That now he is the ruler of the Queen’s Navee!

    Rule Britannia???????????

  64. Solomon Green says:

    The Met Office was moved from Bracknell to Exeter in 2003. The move which was announced in 2001, and appears to have been made for purely political reasons, was much criticised at the time.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/science-news/4760362/The-forecast-is-bleak-for-Bracknells-Met-Office.html

    According to a friend of mine who has reason to know, many of the most experienced employees, including senior meteorologists and other scientists, refused to relocate. Since then there has been a distinct lack of expertise within the Met Office and their medium range forecasts have become notoriously inaccurate. Whether they were ever accurate is another question.

  65. Ulric Lyons says:

    @euanmearns
    February 22, 2014 at 2:08 am

    Your wordpress blog seems have lost its post comment button.

  66. euanmearns says:

    Ulric, comments are set to be live for two weeks. So if it is an older post, that may be the explanation. Otherwise there has been problems in the past with the post comment button disappearing, but thought that had sorted itself.

  67. This describes the MetOffice years before it was invented:

    “The weather is a thing that is beyond me altogether. I never can understand it. The barometer is useless; it is as misleading as the newspaper forecast.

    “There was one hanging up in a hotel at Oxford at which I was staying last spring, and, when I got there, it was pointing to ‘set fair’. It was simply pouring with rain outside, and had been all day; and I couldn’t quite make matters out. I tapped the barometer, and it jumped up and pointed to ‘very dry’. The Boots stopped as he was passing and said he expected it meant to-morrow. I fancied that maybe it was thinking of the week before last, but Boots said, No, he thought not.

    “I tapped it again the next morning, and it went up still higher, and the rain came down faster than ever. On Wednesday I went and hit it again, and the pointer went round towards ‘set fair’, ‘very dry’, and ‘much heat’, until it was stopped by the peg, and couldn’t go any further. It tried its best, but the instrument was built so that it couldn’t prophesy fine weather any harder than it did without breaking itself. It evidently wanted to go on, and prognosticate drought, and water famine, and sunstroke, and simooms, and such things, but the peg prevented it, and it had to be content with pointing to the mere commonplace ‘very dry’.
    “Meanwhile, the rain came down in a steady torrent, and the lower part of the town was under water, owing to the river having overflowed.
    “Boots said it was evident that we were going to have a prolonged spell of grand weather some time, and read out a poem which was printed over the top of the oracle, about
    Long foretold, long past;
    Short notice, soon past.
    The fine weather never came that summer. I expect that machine must have been referring to the following spring.

    ‘Three Men in a Boat’, Jerome K Jerome (1889)

  68. Brian H says:

    When does systematic bias turn into systemic stupidity? When you dedicate yourself to justifying the bias?

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