Ladybird Experts book on Climate Change

The new Ladybird Expert book on Climate Change co-authored by HRH The Prince of Wales, Dr Tony Juniper and Dr Emily Shuckburgh will be released tomorrow (Thursday 26th January).

The book impressively covers the essential scientific facts and evidence for climate change, as well as the consequences and possible solutions to limit the extent of the changes in only 5,000 words. Included is an online annex of further information and scientific literature. The book demonstrates the facts and evidence to such a standard that I think and hope that it will formulate the public’s understanding of climate change for years to come. I would encourage deniers of climate change to purchase this book! It is clear and accessible with helpful charts and the most beautiful illustrations by the artist Ruth Palmer.

At the request of the authors the Royal Meteorological Society (RMetS) orchestrated a thorough peer review process of the content by eminent academics. This illustrates the accuracy of the material presented. It is also the first time that a Ladybird book has been through academic peer review.

His Royal Highness was interviewed about the book by Sky News:

I am reviewing the book for the RMetS journal Weather. I will post a summary of my full findings once my review is complete.

Acknowledgements

I wish to thank Penguin Books UK and the Royal Meteorological Society for providing a copy for review.

Links:

Press Release: https://www.rmets.org/sites/default/files/resources/Ladybird%20Experts%20Climate%20Change%20Press%20Release.pdf

RMetS: https://www.rmets.org/ladybird

Royal Meteorological Society – Young People’s Edition

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I am excited to announce that the Royal Meteorological Societies (RMetS) Young Persons Special Edition of Weather has now been published and can be downloaded for free at: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/wea.2015.70.issue-S1/issuetoc

If you want to find out what this edition is all about, here is a link to my editorial which will hopefully guide you through this special edition: http://goo.gl/uTBMef

RMetS and I wish to thank everyone involved for their contributions to the edition. We received around 30+ submissions of articles and the photographic competition received 115 entries.

It has been a pleasure to be the Guest Editor of this special edition.

Meteorology and Me

Meteorology is one subject in physics that truly impacts on everyone everyday of their life. From important decisions in government to whether you should take sunglasses or an umbrella, meteorology has a role. The weather is chaotic, it is uncontrollable by man. Man can build bridges over rivers, topple mountains and fight disease, but he cannot control the weather. Weather is ever present in peace or war, and nearly all occupations must take it into account. Be you a farmer, pilot or supermarket buyer – the weather has an impact on what you do. The medical profession realize there is a link between the weather and certain diseases and the housing engineer must know the climate of where he is to build a house. I find the complex composition, and physical processes of the atmosphere enthralling.

Something which has interested me in recent years is the effect of solar variability on our atmosphere. The winters of 2009/10/11 were exceptionally harsh, with temperatures of near -20°C being recorded in central England. In 2012 the Met Office published research explaining a potential mechanism for these very cold winters in Europe. The Met Office study observed that due to periods of low UV activity from the Sun, the upper stratosphere (around 50 km up) cooled in the tropics. The atmosphere is like one giant equation, it must all be balanced. To balance this change in the stratosphere, a more Easterly airflow occurred in the mid-latitudes. Over time these changes propagated to the surface, bringing cold polar continental air from the East over northern Europe.

The Sun is the greatest source of all energy for the earth’s atmosphere, powering life and weather on our planet. The complex, chaotic and forever changing nature of our weather is what makes meteorology special and unique for me.

“In physics the truth is rarely perfectly clear, and that is certainly universally the case in human affairs. Hence, what is not surrounded by uncertainty cannot be the truth.” Richard Feynman

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