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Thread: Is Our Weather Getting Worse (Channel 4)?

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    Politics.ie Member owedtojoy's Avatar
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    Default Is Our Weather Getting Worse (Channel 4)?

    Maybe a strange question, given the balmy winter weather (well may it continue!)

    But this documentary aired on Channel 4 tonight: Is Our Weather Getting Worse? - 4oD - Channel 4

    It basically made a statement and asked a question: "Britain has had extreme weather before in previous centuries, but are cases getting more frequent?"

    Answer was in the affirmative. Since 2000, Britain was experienced its warmest, wettest, coldest and driest periods ever recorded. It has even had some intense tornadoes like one in 2005 in suburban Birmingham that caused 40million damage.

    Is the case the same here? I am a good threescore years but I cannot quite recall anything like the last 4 years - two of the coldest winters ever, then two of the mildest winters I can remember (no freeze-up for 30 days or so now!), bone-dry springs and autumns, wet summers.

    As for the statistics, that is another story. However, last year the Irish Met Office raised out average temperature expectations by 0.4C, which may not seem like much but an average change of 1C would mean a substantially different climate.

    So, is our weather changing, and what are the implications?

    (As for the reasons? Well, there is a thread for that.)
    "A wise man proportions his belief to the evidence" - David Hume

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    Politics.ie Member owedtojoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by seabhcan View Post
    The sky is falling, the sky is falling...
    These people of Ballinasloe certainly felt that way in 2009:



    Don't buy or build in a floodplain, whatever you do.
    "A wise man proportions his belief to the evidence" - David Hume

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    Politics.ie Member seabhcan's Avatar
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    It is actually possible (whisper it...) to control the weather to a reasonable degree. The Russians have been doing it for decades and it is extremely low tech.

    When they want clear skies, the load up a cargo plane with bags of cement and some strong lads with shovels. They fly into the wind and just above the clouds. Then they open the cargo bay doors and start shoveling out the cement powder into the clouds.

    The particles form nucleation points and very quickly it rains, dispersing the clouds.

    Ireland could do the same for very little money. Imagine being able to guarantee a sunny August bank holiday weekend - or preventing a flood - or providing reliable harvest time for farmers.

    All we'd have to do is dump the cement 15km offshore and the incoming rain clouds would dump their rain harmlessly into the sea.

    What is a sunny day worth to you?
    Last edited by seabhcan; 5th January 2013 at 11:02 PM.

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    I was in a pub in Waterford that has an old painting of skaters on the river Suir.Now that's extreme. The warmer it get's the better as far as I'm concerned,we could get some vineyards going if it was a bit warmer,olives and oranges if we're lucky.

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    Politics.ie Member Cynicist's Avatar
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    Here in Cork its been wet for so long that farmers have to empty their slurry pits on any ground that will take a tractor and tanker
    There is a concentration of slurry (animal sh1te to the urban dweller) on all the rocks and off field laneways so that many sea gulls are stuck up to their arm-pits and people are wearing face masks when having to brave the open country air.

    The slurry is a big worry but does not concern the authorities who are more focussed on the underground human slurry in septic tanks which despite is insignificance relative to the animal slurry disposal will harvest a good lot of largesse from the stupid householders.
    Not to worry - its all about climate adaptation.

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    Politics.ie Member seabhcan's Avatar
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    Its high time the farmers of Cork started growing rice in paddy fields.

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    If the greens were still in Government would our climate be better of worse?

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    Politics.ie Member owedtojoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by good dog View Post
    If the greens were still in Government would our climate be better of worse?
    Neither, obviously. Mother Nature does not care if you are a Communist, an Anarchist or a full-on free market Libertarian.

    We might be better prepared for future changes, though. Even that is debatable.

    PS I am not a Green, never voted for them. Maybe next time.
    "A wise man proportions his belief to the evidence" - David Hume

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    Politics.ie Member owedtojoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by seabhcan View Post
    It is actually possible (whisper it...) to control the weather to a reasonable degree. The Russians have been doing it for decades and it is extremely low tech.

    When they want clear skies, the load up a cargo plane with bags of cement and some strong lads with shovels. They fly into the wind and just above the clouds. Then they open the cargo bay doors and start shoveling out the cement powder into the clouds.

    The particles form nucleation points and very quickly it rains, dispersing the clouds.

    Ireland could do the same for very little money. Imagine being able to guarantee a sunny August bank holiday weekend - or preventing a flood - or providing reliable harvest time for farmers.

    All we'd have to do is dump the cement 15km offshore and the incoming rain clouds would dump their rain harmlessly into the sea.

    What is a sunny day worth to you?
    Weather may be controllable (and I think you are wrong, it might be possible to trigger rainfall, but not weather in general), but climate is not. If we get a more energetic atmosphere from global warming then climate (which is only long-term weather) will be inherently more unpredictable and uncontrollable. You can't send up an airplane to stop a blizzard, a drought or a hurricane.

    PS. Cloud seeding does not seem to be the complete success you claim it to be. I would not bet the farm on it, if my farm or house was in a flood plain. But a full program (which would not be cheap) might help.
    Last edited by owedtojoy; 6th January 2013 at 01:41 PM.
    "A wise man proportions his belief to the evidence" - David Hume

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