Sunday, 23 January 2011

The Met Office's Prediction for winter 2010.

In October 2010, National Grid published its Winter Outlook 2010/11




It bases its purchasing and transmission commitments upon many variables, perhaps the most important being the weather.





The country's energy supply, and, reliable security-of-supply therefore depends upon the accuracy of weather forecasts.


This is particularly important for the Nation's gas supply because sufficient gas has to have been previously committed to storage; and, contracted to be withdrawn from storage [whilst the distribution system remains topped-up].

Unlike electrical power supplies which can be temporarily interrupted & then switched back on again, the Gas Transmission System MUST remain pressurised.




Perhaps the organisation which was responsible for those weather predictions ought to invest in a more accurate computational model?

Met Office Global long-range probability maps [Enter 'Issued' - Oct 2010; 'Period' - 2-4 months; 'Region' - Europe to see how warm they thought it'd be.]


Because that forecast also heavily influenced local authority road-salt purchasing & storage decisions, it perhaps explains why so many councils were 'unprepared' for the prolonged snow + ice conditions.



A guest post by Joe Public.

8 comments:

Brian said...

The ptoblem is that the weather is a dynamical system highly sensitive to initial conditions (ie every individual air molecule) and the smallest difference will radically alter the outcome even in a deterministic system based on the laws of physics. The longer the timespan, the wider the divergence and the less accurate the forecast. Thus, the best that can be achieved with a computer model is to run it billions of times with slightly different input data and turn the outcomes into probabilities of particular types of weather occurring.
The Met Office computer model of the world's weather system is very sophisticated but the pernicious effect of climate change theory has unfortunately compromised it. Maybe by as much as half a butterfly's wingflap but that's enough.

junican said...

I like your comment, Brian, but is it not true that whether or not global warming is a fact, the vagaries of our weather cannot be forecast for any significant period of time in advance? I know that you say this by implication, but ought it not to be stated clearly as a matter of fact? The climatologists are talking about the whole world temperature increasing by, say, half of a degree c over 50 years. But our Island climate varies enormously within a 20 degree c scale, even in winter.

Where the Met Office have gone wrong is in mixing together world temperatures and local temperatures.

Anyone with any sense at all must say that the whole matter of world temperatures needs to be reconsidered - the people ought not to be financing multiple organisations whose principle objective is to measure world temperatures. There need be only one, provided that there are enough weather stations.

Again, we see politicians failing in their duty. How long have they been financing, at the people's expense, multiple groups of climatologists when one is sufficient? And why?

Can I say the following?

People have gut feelings. They can see that there is something wrong, without knowing precisely what is wrong. Sometimes, it takes quite a while for the important things to come through, as I have said above. But I think that politicians are adept at hiding their cock-ups. Do not expect any change in the near future. Why? Because no politician is concerned with the reality - all politics is concerned with compromise, and compromise is the enemy of truth.

JuliaM said...

I'm sure it is why they were unprepared - but ce la vie, it's done now.

So, could they PLEASE use the money they didn't spend on preparing for the snow on fixing the potholes caused by the snow?

Some of my local roads look like Port Stanley airport runway after the Vulcan commenced its bombing run..

Brian said...

Junican, many thanks for your kind comment. I ought to have made it clearer that the further ahead forecasts are made the more generalised they are, hence seasons can be forecast but not weather on a particular day more than 3 or 4 days ahead at a particular place with any accuracy.
I agree that more weather stations should be established but disagree with your idea of a single world weather authority. That would be as good (haha) as the IPCC. If weather forecasters and climatologists could be weaned from the teat of climate change (cos that's where the money's to be made by the greenie-financial scum out of the rest of us) and back to proper science, we'd have a better system.
@JuliaM: I'd prefer Black Buck to Jack Frost.

Joe Public said...

@ Brian 23:59 (23/1)

I agree that weather is dynamic; and, the Met Office's predictions are always 'forecasts'.

However, even in November, their Long Rang Probability Maps were missing the UK's December's exceptionally cold weather.

Joe Public said...

@ Junican

1. "The climatologists are talking about the whole world temperature increasing by, say, half of a degree c over 50 years."

But they're not comparing like-for-like. Certain climatologists seem to be very selective in which readings + locations are included in their current data.

Modern instruments are more accurate than older ones. There is no 'satellite' data from 50 years ago.


2. "But our Island climate varies enormously within a 20 degree c scale, even in winter." As do most other places on earth.

3. "...the people ought not to be financing multiple organisations whose principle objective is to measure world temperatures. There need be only one, provided that there are enough weather stations."

After the Phil Jones CRU/UEA fiasco, 'The people' will never trust just one organisation. Therefore, who selects which organisation(s) will carry out the research?

4. "I think that politicians are adept at hiding their cock-ups."

Some cock-ups are so obvious or so blatant that even British Prime Ministers cannot hide them.

Joe Public said...

@ JuliaM

Ah, but winter isn't finished yet. There's no point in your council repairing potholes that might need repairing again in another couple of months.

Ironically (or presciently?) The Met Office's Jan 2011 2-4 month ahead forecast is that it'll be colder than their similar Oct 2010 forecast.

Joe Public said...

@ Brian 24/1/11 11:07

Yes, I agree that specific future forecasts won't be accurate to the day. However, there is an expectation of reasonable accuracy for short-term 'look-ahead' periods. The whole economy depends upon it. I'm not referring to brief traffic disruption from a few snow falls; it's the overall strategic planning. The energy & power industries will have committed (or not) to significant quantities of fuel based upon the forecasts they & we pay for.

Local authorities will have contracted for less road salt. Pharmaceutical companies would have made less cold remedies. Flu jabs were in short supply. Food manufacturers would have prepared seasonal foods etc, etc.

I totally agree that there must never be a 'single world weather authority'.

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