20th January - Today's News: Storms Hit Southern Europe

A weekend of wild weather across southern Europe: Knee-deep hail hits Lisbon in severe storm on Friday.  Not sure it looks knee-deep, but impressive nontheless.  Two dead, hundreds evacuated in flood-hit French Riviera and landslides in Italy force 200 from their homes. Whilst further north,  woman drowns, many fall through treacherous  Gulf of Finland ice - which is thinner than it normally is this time of year

Is our Sun falling silent?  Maybe.  But the Little Ice Age began 250 years before the Maunder Minimum and we're in a high CO2, warming world now.  So whatever happens, it won't be the same as the late 17th century.   Meanwhile, apparently new scientific evidence claims a slowdown in the Gulf Stream will mean Britain will get hotter not colder as previously thought .....  The story is based on a study by Dr Jon Robson published in Nature Geoscience - but he's published a summary on his blog: Atlantic overturning in decline?  I see no mention of Britain turning hotter  .... but he does speculate that northern Europe could have drier summers.   That may or may not include us.

Tidal energy: Pentland Firth 'could power half of Scotland' - so then they wouldn't need any land turbines ....

And you thought 'extreme weather' was to blame for the floods? Wrong. The real culprit is the European subsidies that pay UK farmers to destroy the very trees that soak up the storm - okay, it's not quite as simple as that, but George Monbiot does have a point.  Meanwhile  UKIP councillor blames storms and floods on gay marriage to prove primitive bronze-age superstition isn't just restricted these days to America .....


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