The UK Climate Impacts Programme (UKCIP) is a government funded organization with the following scientifically neutral mission statement on their home page “The UK Climate Impacts Programme (UKCIP) helps organisations to adapt to inevitable climate change. While it’s essential to reduce future greenhouse gas emissions, the effects of past emissions will continue to be felt for decades.“
Claim: Summers will continue to get hotter and drier…
- Evidence: Total summer precipitation has decreased in most parts of the UK, typically by between 10 and 40% since 1961.
According to the UK Met Office, the summer of 2007 was the wettest summer on record. Summer, 2008 was the wettest on record in Northern Ireland, and broke many local rainfall records in England. The last hot day in London (30C or 86F) was on July 27, 2006. London is normally one of the UK’s warmest locations in summer, and it has been 915 days since London has seen any “hot” weather.
Claim: Winters will continue to get milder and wetter…
- Evidence: Average winter temperature for all regions of the UK has risen by up to 0.7 °C since 1914..
The Met office reported last month: “Temperatures from the Met Office have revealed that the UK has had the coldest start to winter in over 30 years.”
Recreational boating during the winter of 2008-2009
Claim: Some weather extremes will become more common, others less common…
- Evidence: The average duration of summer heatwaves has increased in all regions of the UK by between 4 and 16 days since 1961.
- Evidence: The average duration of winter cold snaps has decreased in all regions of the UK by between 6 and 12 days since 1961.
- Evidence: There has been a trend towards heavier winter precipitation for most parts of the UK since 1961.
As mentioned above, there have been no hot days in the UK for nearly three years. The current winter has been one of the coldest and driest in recent memory.
Claim: Sea level will continue to rise…
- Evidence: Global average sea level rose by between 10 and 20 cm during the twentieth century.
- Evidence: The temperature of UK coastal waters has increased by between 0.2 and 0.6 °C per decade since 1985.
It is somewhat surprising that a scientific organisation would use this information in support of global warming. Sea level has been rising nearly continuously since the end of the last ice age, 15,000 years ago. The average sea rise rate has been about 80cm/century, 4X-8X higher than UKCIP’s reported current levels.
Regarding their discussion of UK sea temperatures since 1985, there hasn’t been much glacial activity in the UK over the last 25 years and it is unlikely that UK ice sheet melt is adding much to sea level. Their reported UK SST changes are more likely due to ocean circulation patterns like the AMO. Current SST anomaly maps show ocean temperatures around the UK near or below normal. And according to the University Of Colorado, global sea level has scarcely risen since 2005.