Leading scientists and meteorologists are meeting at the Met Office to discuss the UK's unusual weather patterns in recent years.
will discuss the reasons for 2010's icy winter, last year's washout
summer and this year's spring, which is set to be the coldest in more
than 50 years.
Discussions at the Met Office in Exeter on Tuesday
will seek to answer whether the unusual seasons were the result of
natural variation or linked to the effects of climate change, such as melting Arctic sea ice.
Belcher, head of the Met Office Hadley Centre and chairman of the
workshop, said: "We have seen a run of unusual seasons in the UK and
northern Europe, such as the cold winter of 2010, last year's wet weather and the cold spring this year.
may be nothing more than a run of natural variability, but there may be
other factors impacting our weather. For example, there is emerging
research which suggests there is a link between declining Arctic sea ice
and European climate – but exactly how this process might work, and how
important it may be among a host of other factors, remains unclear.
Met Office is running a workshop to bring together climate experts from
across the UK to look at these unusual seasons, the possible causes
behind them, and how we can learn more about those drivers of our
The meeting will assess the research done so far and
discuss what needs to be studied in the future to get a better idea of
what could be causing the weather extremes.
Earlier this month the
Met Office said below-average temperatures through March, April and May
made it the fifth coldest spring in national records dating back to
1910 and the coldest spring since 1962.
Provisional findings show
the UK's mean temperature for the season was 6C (42.8F), while March was
"exceptionally" cold, averaging 2.2C.
Source: The Guardian