« The Great Protestant Wind from the north smashed the Papist idolaters on the rocks. | Main | Food News »

Caroline Spelman is worried the roads are melting due to Global Warming

Cancún climate talks are vital to the UK | Caroline Spelman | Environment | guardian.co.uk

Caroline Spelman, the UK's environment secretary, says we are already feeling the effects of climate change and must adapt fast

The past decade has been the warmest on record, and this summer saw the National Farmers Union warn that the driest first six months in almost 70 years has hit domestic wheat production particularly badly.
UK temperatures are now an average of 1c higher than they were just 40 years ago. That doesn't sound like much, but the 2003 heatwave which caused the premature deaths of up to 2,000 in the UK was only 2c hotter than the summer average. These risks need to be managed.
Unless we boost our efforts to mitigate and adapt, our future could involve thousands of roads being resurfaced to cope with higher temperatures or dug up to provide bigger storm drains while offices close at noon because the heat is too intense. Far fetched? Not really – the experiences of other countries show that extreme measures sometimes need to be taken if temperatures are not brought under control.
That's why supporting a strong and sustainable green economy – resource efficient and resilient to climate change – is one of my department's key priorities.
The time for speculation about climate change is over. Its impact– and the escalating costs of adapting to it – await us down the road if we don't, together, make it a priority now.
Whatever happens at Cancún, we need to speed up the pace of adaptation at home. Mitigating the causes of climate change and adapting to its effects are now two sides of the same coin.

Digging the roads up in case they melt? How about actually preparing for a touch of snow and ice and ensuring the roads are actually usable instead of the bloody shambles we are in already this winter.


Big freeze could cost UK economy more than £6bn | UK news | The Guardian

That is real and happening now.

Comments

I have added this:

Ms Spelman is being fed some very selective information. Forty years ago the Central England Temperature average to the end of October was 10.3 degrees C. For 2010 it is 10.15 C.

When November figures come in we are in line for a colder year. The average for 1961-90 was 9.47C and this is the period against which all temperatures are compared, one of the coldest periods of the last century, guaranteed to produce positive anomalies, which is why they use it.

The average temperature for 1931-1960 was 9.6C. Why was it warmer in the earlier period? To talk of the last forty years as indicative of global warming is quite disingenuous.

The forty year average for 1930 to 1969, which takes in the very cold decade of the sixties, with 1963 the second coldest winter in the 350 year record, was 9.51C

The forty year average for 1970 to 2009, which takes in the super El Nino year of 1998 and the heatwave of 2006, was 9.88C.

This is a difference of only 0.37degrees C. Some global warming. Even the Hadley graph is on a downward trend and will continue downwards. They still show the warmest winter as 1869, the warmest spring as 1893, warmest summer 1976 and yes, warmest autumn 2006.

Flooding incidents in the last ten years are nothing compared to the disastrous floods in earlier decades and earlier centuries. The difference now is that they are reported and seen on TV and because of coastal and flood plain developments, the economic damage is greater.

The British public are being woefully misled and it is costing us billions, which could be used to replace aging infrastructure and drainage.

Caroline Spelman talks of "2000 excess deaths" in 2006. How many excess deaths will there be this winter?

I was going to make the same point but without your bountiful supply of temperature day.
May I please use it in a letter to local papers and cand you give me the source, in case someone asks?

Meanwhile, here in Canada, deep in the Ottawa Valley countryside, Christmas is fast approaching and we barely even have a rumour of snow.

It will not do!

It's not fair that you folks are getting it all!

More people die during colder than hotter weather. Other countries, even Greece, cope without roads melting in much higher temperatures. This is just more of the "British disease" bullshit: never improving incompetent public services, muddling through, never being ready for winter, etc, etc.
I saw some RAC spokesweasel today excusing the state of the roads & rail by, "Other countries, like Canada & in Scandinavia, know when winter will start and are prepared for it, but we never know when to expect it". What an imbecile - the date it starts is irrelevant if the necessary equipment & salt are ready! I couldn't run a business if I waited until something had run out before reordering it. Like I said above, this is a peculiarly British disease, no planning, no understanding, carry on the same because we always have and employ half-wits to manage winter conditions. Pah!

Slightly encouraging: she mentioned "adapting" to change. Perhaps she will eventually realise that building a wood-fired power plant is not a good idea, especially if the wood must be imported. Or that fewer lives are at risk if there is an adequate supply of power than if power supply is cut 10-30 percent.

Post a comment