'As I sit in London watching the rain fall as it has for the last few July days, indeed as it did for much of the summers of 2007 and 2008, I remember the certainty with which The Guardian reported in 2006 as fact that:So how are the reservoirs looking in 2016?
"Scientists know a lot about how events will unfold...which means that whatever we do, our climate destiny is fixed for the next few decades... Rainfall will decline in the summer and the increased deluges in winter will struggle to replenish thirsty reservoirs because much of the water will run off the baked ground."Scientists know... climate destiny is fixed... Rainfall will decline in the summer..." It's all rubbish folks; most of these scientists are not predicting based on science, they are designing science to fit the desired predictions.
What about the second part of what "scientists know"? "Rainfall will decline in the summer and the increased deluges in winter will because much of the water will run off the baked ground."
Shall we take a look at reservoir levels in the baked South of England, the area with the biggest water problem? South East Water report the levels at their two largest reservoirs: Arlington Reservoir was 89% full on 16 June (the last day they report levels), Ardingly Reservoir was just under 97% full on the same date.
What about the South West maybe they are faring worse? Well South West Water are somewhat more up to date than South East Water and they report data up until the week ending 19 July, well done South West Water. They report percentage data for their five reservoirs: Roadford, Colliford, Wimbleball, Stithians and Burrator. The figures show that the average storage levels across these five reservoirs was 88.7%. As a comparison it was around 65% in 1995; water shortage getting worse? Does it look as though there are problems replenishing thirsty reservoirs because of the declining rainfall that scientists know about?
How about Severn Trent? They report that for July - "Current water storage levels in the Severn Trent region are at 87.3% of capacity".
I could go on and on but I think that the pattern will be similar across most of the UK regions.
So how about The Environment Agency the body that is so certain about Climate Change that they confidently state on their web site:"It's an inescapable fact: our planet is warming up. Records show that temperatures around the world have risen steadily since 1900...Maybe these are some of the scientists who know what's going to happen to the climate in the UK. After all they also seem to know that we are going to experience "wetter winters with an increased risk of floods, and hotter, drier summers that put pressure on water resources". Let's look at the Environment Agency's own figures...
Climate change is the biggest environmental challenge facing the world today. We know the Earth's climate does change naturally over a long timescale, but the overwhelming majority of the scientific community now accepts that human activities are causing significant, rapid changes to our climate.
Over the past century, global temperatures have risen - the 10 warmest years on record have all been since 1990. The contribution to global warming from human activity is linked to increases in the amounts of heat-trapping "greenhouse gases" in the atmosphere. As the concentrations of greenhouse gases increase, less heat can escape from the atmosphere, making the Earth warmer. The main greenhouse gas is carbon dioxide, which is released by burning fossil fuels like coal, oil and natural gas.
What will happen if we do nothing?
The latest data tells us that some climate change is already inevitable, so we will need to adapt to its impacts. We must plan for more extreme weather conditions: wetter winters with an increased risk of floods, and hotter, drier summers that put pressure on water resources. Sea levels will also rise, increasing the risk of flooding around our coastline."
The Environment Agency publish their Water Situation for England and Wales figures on a monthly basis so the latest report is for June and tells us that:"At the end of June stocks were normal or higher for the time of year at three quarters of reservoir or reservoir groups. Stocks at six reservoirs were below normal and notably low at one reservoir (Vyrnwy)."So after years of knowing that reservoirs would not be replenished by winter rains we have a situation, as the rain pours off my roof, where three quarters of UK reservoirs have higher than normal stocks...
Scientists know? I think not.'
South East England - interestingly not updated since March so I presume the levels haven't dropped.
And The Environment Agency
Summary for May 2016Although May has been considerably drier than April, especially in the north and west, the average rainfall for England has been above average for the 7th consecutive month.
Monthly mean river flows have decreased at all indicator sites, but remain normal across much of England.
Soil moisture deficits increased across most of England, as expected for the time of year.
Groundwater levels decreased at the majority of indicator sites, but remain normal or higher at all but one of the sites.
Reservoir stocks decreased at just over two-thirds of reported reservoirs and reservoir groups during May.
So when you next hear the BBC / Guardian report that a scientific expert knows what the climate will do, remember this:
"Scientists know a lot about how events will unfold...which means that whatever we do, our climate destiny is fixed for the next few decades... Rainfall will decline in the summer and the increased deluges in winter will struggle to replenish thirsty reservoirs because much of the water will run off the baked ground."