Christopher Brooker – Telegraph.co.uk January 2, 2010
Shortly after midnight on Friday morning, as 200,000 merrymakers were departing from the Thames after enjoying a spectacular fireworks show in sub-zero temperatures, flakes of snow began to fall on Whitehall. In light of the Met Office's prediction that this would be a "mild" winter, with temperatures above average, it seemed an apt way to start the New Year. But hasn't the time come for us to stop treating the serial inaccuracy of Met Office forecasts as just a joke and see it for what it is – a national scandal?
The reason the Met Office so persistently gets its seasonal forecasts wrong is that it has been hi-jacked from the role for which we pay it nearly £200 million a year, to become one of the world's major propaganda engines for the belief in man-made global warming. Over the past three years, it has become a laughing stock for forecasts which are invariably wrong in the same direction.
The year 2007, it predicted, would be "the warmest ever" – just before global tempratures plunged by more than the entire net warming of the 20th century, Three years running it predicted warmer than average winters – as large parts of the northern hemisphere endured record cold and snowfalls. Last year's "barbecue summer" was the third time running that predictions of a summer drier and warmer than average prefaced weeks of rain and cold. Last week the Met Office was again predicting that 2010 will be the "warmest year" on record, while Europe and the US look to be facing further weeks of intense cold.
What is not generally realised is that the UK Met Office has been, since 1990, at the very centre of the campaign to convince the world that it faces catastrophe through global warming. (Its website now proclaims it to be "the Met Office for Weather and Climate Change".) Its then-director, Dr John Houghton, was the single most influential figure in setting up the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) as the chief driver of climate alarmism. Its Hadley Centre for Climate Change, along with the East Anglia Climatic Research Unit (CRU), was put in charge of the most prestigious of the four official global temperature records. In line with IPCC theory, its computers were programmed to predict that, as CO2 levels rose, temperatures would inevitably follow. From 1990 to 2007, the Department of the Environment gave the Met Office no less than £146 million for its "climate predictions programme".
But in the past three years, with the Met Office chaired by Robert Napier, a former global warming activist and previously head of WWF UK, its pretensions have been exposed as never before. The "Climategate" leak of documents from the CRU, along with further revelations from Russian scientists, have shown the CRU/Met Office alliance systematically manipulating temperature data, past and present, to show the world growing warmer than the evidence justified. And those same computers used to predict temperatures 100 years ahead for the IPCC have also been used to produce those weather forecasts that prove so consistently wrong.
Scientific method has gone out of the window, to support a theory that looks more questionable than ever. The whole set-up – Met Office, Hadley Centre, the CRU, the IPCC – looks hopelessly compromised. It is a state of affairs so bizarre that it cries out for political intervention. Yet our politicians, from Gordon Brown and David Cameron down, are so in thrall to this new religion that they cannot see evidence staring them in the face – that the show has gone off the rails. How many more winters and summers will it take before sanity finally breaks in to put an end to this scandal?
Last updated 06/01/2010