Joined: 14 Sep 2005
Location: Rhode Hill, Uplyme
|Posted: 01/08/09, 21:49 Post subject: Barbecue Summers, Climate Change and the European Monsoon.
|Pronouncing this summer as one of the barbecue variety, as the Met Office did, was bound to put the kibosh on the weather. What turned out was what meteorologists call the "Return of the Westerlies" or more explicitly the “European Monsoon”. Apparently this phenomenon occurs in seven out of ten years and has been noted for about a century. But the intensity of the “Monsoon” is increasing. I have been recording rainfall at Rhode Hill since 1994 (and as a Met Office recording station for the last seven years) and have produced a chart clearly showing the worrying trend regarding rainfall in July over these 16 years. http://homepages.nildram.co.uk/~rhg/july.gif
This is bad news for those people who on being told that climate change would bring us hot dry summers rejoiced with a “Bring it on”. Climate change was never going to manifest itself by universal global warming.
How do I, someone with no education regarding meteorology, interpret what is happening?
As warming of the Atlantic takes place during the northern hemisphere's summer increased water vapour is taken up into the atmosphere which is discharged once it reaches land. The warmer the Atlantic becomes the more moisture is taken up and eventually released over the British Isles. Can it merely be coincidence that July is the warmest month of the year and has now become the wettest?
Accepting that most Julys in the future are going to be washouts can we look forward to dry Junes and Augusts? I fear not. For as Atlantic temperatures increase in June and August we will see the “Monsoon” extend into these months. I think that we are now beginning to see how climate change will disrupt our lives in the future.
In my post last summer “Wettest Day for 3 years” I commented on the extremely wet July with its record 146 mm of rain. That record was short live with 166.2 mm being recorded this July. It was also the wettest of any month since October 2004.
It's later than you think