Climate lecture packs Sidmouth observatory

THE WORLD S climate has changed, with a long-term warming trend being shown in temperatures over the past 50 years.

THE WORLD'S climate has changed, with a long-term warming trend being shown in temperatures over the past 50 years.

Dr Vicky Pope from the Met Office, spoke to a lecture hall filled to capacity at the Norman Lockyer Observatory on Friday, at an event about climate change organised by the Vision Group for Sidmouth.

Dr Pope headed a panel, whose other speakers included an expert on ice cores from the Met Hadley Research Centre, the carbon manager from Devon County Council and a representative from DARE: Devon Association for Renewable Energy.

Jenny Budden, reports on the event, which covered climate science, natural variations in the 11-year solar cycle, manmade climate change; the greenhouse gas effect, and evidence of manmade climate change and its impact.

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"The changes in the last 150 years of observable data have seen a rise in temperature of 0.7degrees Centigrade and if nothing is done to curb carbon emissions, the temperature will rise by 2.0 degrees C by 2050," reports Jenny.

"As sea ice reflects sunlight as it melts, there will be an increase in temperature. Glaciers are retreating and getting smaller, apart from a rare few, which are increasing due to more snowfall.

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"It is estimated there will be 150 million environmental refugees by 2050 in Africa and Asia.

"The Greenland ice sheet is beginning to melt and will put sea levels up by three metres."

Speakers said a two degree rise in temperatures would give Cornwall hottest days of 35 degrees C, while coastal erosion and flooding would increase due to a rise in sea levels and storm surges.

The panel said the UK Climate Change Act would place mandatory targets for emissions.

To limit global warming to two percent emissions must be limited. Currently they are increasing by three percent a year.

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