Met Office scientists to feature in BBC Horizon programme ‘Global Weirding’

BBC Horizon will broadcast ‘Global Weirding’ on BBC Two tonight at 9pm, exploring the science behind why the world’s weather seems to be getting more extreme and if these patterns are a taste of what is to come.

Horizon say: “Something weird seems to be happening to our weather – it appears to be getting more extreme. In the past few years we have shivered through two record-breaking cold winters and parts of the country have experienced intense droughts and torrential floods. It is a pattern that appears to be playing out across the globe. Hurricane chasers are recording bigger storms and in Texas, record-breaking rain has been followed by record-breaking drought.

“Horizon follows the scientists who are trying to understand what’s been happening to our weather and investigates if these extremes are a taste of what’s to come.”

The producers of the programme visited the Met Office headquarters and Operations Centre in Exeter to film for the programme at the end of last year, interviewing Adam Scaife, Head of Monthly to Decadal Forecasting and Helen Chivers, a Met Office Forecaster.  In the programme we discuss the science being undertaken here at the Met Office into the effects of Climate Change on ourt weather including the effects of Arctic sea ice depletion on European winter weather, and our role in forecasting extreme weather for the UK.

Adam Scaife and Helen Chivers from the Met Office appear in the programme

Other contributors to the programme include Mike Lockwood (University of Reading) on solar observations, Kerry Emmanuel (MIT) on hurricanes and Katharine Hayhoe (Texas Tech University) on extreme wet and dry conditions in Texas.

This weeks Radio Times also previewed the programme saying:

“This week’s Very Big Number from Horizon: the Met Office’s computer can do one hundred trillion calculations — a second. It needs to, in order to process the gouts of data gathered from satellites, data which means, we’re told, that a five-day forecast today is as accurate as a one-day forecast was 30 years ago. (Were we so long-suffering in 1982?)

All this technology isn’t to feed some quaint British obsession with weather, it’s to keep track of increasingly freakish extremes in meteorology, not just here but around the world: from record rains in Scotland to droughts in Texas and a boom in hurricanes. Scientists are trying to get to grips with it all and Horizon follows them, in one amazing scene, right into the heart of the storm.”

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7 Responses to Met Office scientists to feature in BBC Horizon programme ‘Global Weirding’

  1. James Edward says:

    Cue large stream of denial comments…..

  2. beesaman says:

    More like weather amnesia than weather weirding!

    At least the sun got a look in and CO2 barely got a mention, that is progress!

  3. Mark Hancock says:

    I think that this is probably the worst programme which pretends to be science that i have seen for a long time. To spend so much time on solar effects and then concluding it was not responsible for the current extreme weather events and then not to mention carbon dioxide at all against the overwhelming scientific evidence beggars belief. I don ‘t want to believe it but one has to suspect a covert campaign to discredit the science. Heavy energy users and fossil fuel industries which encourage us to use their services are the short term gainers and rest of us including future generations the losers. How can the BBC put this out after the excellent last episode of Frozen Planet narrated by Attenborough which clearly spelt out the properly founded scientific view.

  4. catgoespurr says:

    Interesting how this program featured some “scientists” talking about increasing hurricanes and higher magnitude hurricanes in the US…. i guess the US Hurricane Centre needs it’s data normalized (cherry picked)

    After a quick look into what Katherine Hayhoe actually does for research and what kind of business services she offers I realised that I had wasted enough time on researching this programs’ opinions…

    At least Horizon retain a tiny touch of credibility as they have yet to feature (to the best of my knowledge) the master fudger who goes by the name of Dr. James Hansen.

  5. jeremyp99 says:

    Five years ago, if a sceptic like I suggested a very cold winter shows the globe was cooling, I was told that this was NOT climate, rather weather.

    Now, any extreme WEATHER event is climate.

    Please advise. How does that work? All the more so given that the IPCC and Nature refuse to sign up to this, yet idiots with far more sway than they should have – Gor for example – are pushing this line, which as noted used to be used to ridicule sceptics.

    This reminds me of something a blogger said recently.

    “For the Left, the truth is whatever it wants it to be”. Add to “the Left”, “climate activists masquerading as scientists”!

    • Dave Britton says:

      Unusual or extreme weather and climate-related events are of great public concern and interest, yet there are often conflicting messages from scientists about whether such events can be linked to climate change. We propose a way forward. Through the development of carefully calibrated physically-based assessments of observed weather and climate-related events, we can identify any changed risk of such events attributable to particular factors.

      Research is under way, coordinated as part of the international Attribution of Climate-related Events (ACE) initiative, to develop the science needed to better respond to the demand for timely, objective, and authoritative explanations of extreme events.

      The ACE group aims to meet the challenges involved in developing systems to provide regularly updated and reliable attribution assessments of extreme weather and climate-related events.

      You can find out more at

  6. Robin Jones says:

    ..and no mention of Geoengineering, HAARP, Global dimming etc….what a cover up… getting rather tired of hearing the same old story from ‘scientists’

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