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Archive for February 2013

Have you heard the of the weather folklore that cows lie down when it's going to rain? We're going to investigate what's behind this statement in our new mythbusting feature! This one is presented by a new member of the podcast team, Sam, who went as far as interviewing a cow called Ermintrude to find out the truth. Enjoy!!

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Extreme cases of precipitation and temperature can lead to extreme events such as e.g. flooding drought and fires, which have the potential to cause large damage as well as disrupt and threaten lives.

In this episode we are "Going to Extremes" and discuss extreme rainfall and flooding events in the UK, as well take a look at extreme events elsewhere on the globe, such as drought and fires in the Americas and Australia and we also touch on the extreme cases of smog in Beijing, China.

As record breaking events are now reported quite often, we delve into the question what role climate change plays in the kind of extreme events we observe and whether they are becoming more frequent.

Finally we reflect on responding and adapting to extreme events and look towards the challenges a changing climate brings.

We mention a lot of different studies and sources of information, please find links to some of them below. Hope you find them useful!

The Great Flood of 1953

UK rainfall and flooding, which has been a big deal over the last years: the New York Times reckons that the combined insurance payout for 2007, 2009 and 2012 floods in the UK was $6.5 billion!

Coverage by the BBC - The science behind Britain's wild weather in 2012

MetOffice weather summary for 2012 , Infographic by MetOffice, MetOffice Blog on rainfall

England and Wales Precipitation record started in 1766, find out about it here.

The US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) also provides an annual State of the Climate summary, including Anomalies & Events.

Number of Hurricanes in the Atlantic

Warmer, wetter world study - summary & paper

Historical heat waves analysis - Summary & paper

The 2005 Amazon drought was equivalent to more than 80 times the size of Wales in terms of area affected. Second mega-drought was in 2010 with a smaller drought in between 2007. Find the details here:

NASA mega drought study (and coverage in the Guardian)

Australia heatwave & wildfires

Interesting paper looking at the challenges society faces: summary and full paper

***Correction for Hurricanes Episode***We said the storm naming was done by the German Weather Service, but it is actually the University of Berlin. Apologies for the error. Find out all about it here on their website

Also apologies for some minor dodgy recording this time round, some syllables and even full words didn't record properly.

Panel: Hugo Ricketts, Grant Allen, Will Morgan, Nicky Young and Jennifer Muller

Production: Jennifer Muller

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