ITV News reporter Rupert Evelyn reports on latest UK state of climate report
we spend more than the earth can provide and for 2021, today is the day we go into the red.
Earth Overshoot Day is “when humanity’s demand for ecological resources and services in a given year exceeds what the Earth can regenerate in that year”.
Highlighting the impact of our insatiable appetite for nature’s products, the Met Office released its annual report on the state of the climate in the United Kingdom and again, this is an austere reading.
Last year, 2020, was the 3rd warmest, 5th wettest and 8th sunniest on record for the UK. Worryingly, this makes last year the first year that annual values for precipitation, temperature, and sunshine were all in the top ten for the same year.
Senior Climate Scientist at the Met Office, Mike Kendon, said: “2020 has been another remarkable year for the UK climate, with records broken for daily precipitation and monthly sunshine hours.
“Average temperatures for the UK continue to climb, with almost a degree of warming when you compare the last 30 years with the previous 30 years. “
Devastating floods in london and continental Europe have recently increased in frequency and with tragic consequences.
We expect the government to protect us, but despite the hundreds of millions invested, Environment Agency president Emma Howard Boyd told ITV News: “It is essential that the general public know that we cannot protect everyone and everywhere from future flooding. , that’s why part of our flood strategy is to make sure people know the steps they need to take to prepare, act and survive.
“And as the recent floods have shown us in Europe, the last word ‘survive’ is essential for people to understand. ”
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In England, the government is spending £ 860million on flood control programs this year.
Inevitably, many people will be left behind, but Flood Minister Rebecca Pow says they are trying to keep up with demand. “There are areas where they are frequently flooded, but they don’t quite reach the funding window,” she said. “So we’re looking at this very closely and how we could better help some of these areas. “
Plugging holes with flood defenses to protect homes and businesses is a science mole-kick game.
As soon as you fill in a gap, another that was not considered appears. The increasing frequency of extreme weather events is alarming and today’s data further reminds us of the fragility of the situation we are facing.