The BBC Radio 4 headline at 7am this morning opened with
“The Met Office says Britain’s weather is becoming more extreme”
Yes, this was top of the headline news. The news bulletin then started with
“A new Met Office report says the UK has experienced more weather extremes over the past ten years than in previous decades.”
But where was this new report? Some people seemed puzzled, such as climate scientist Tim Osborn. Bob Ward was unable to find it.
At some stage it did emerge, hidden away in an obscure link on the Met Office website. But despite this, the media somehow seemed to find the report very easily, and as usual, massively over-hyped its findings. So it looks as though the report was pushed out by the Met Office to the usual suspects in the media. Yet report author Mark McCarthy claims to be surprised that the report got so much coverage.
The BBC’s Matt McGrath wrote an article with headline “Rise in UK weather extremes in last decade”, but that has now been changed (click the link in that BBC tweet) to the somewhat less terrifying statement that the UK is experiencing hotter days. Just a few days ago, as noted by Ben Pile, McGrath’s article on the IPCC report had its headline changed twice.
The actual report itself says very little except that it’s got a bit warmer recently. It seems that the Met Office regards this as “extreme weather”. But the Met Office and the BBC must be congratulating themselves on a job well done — the British public misled again. They can ignore any complaints and go ahead and do the same thing again in a couple of weeks.