Thursday 14 January 2010

The Benefits Of Global Warming

So, how is climate affecting mortality in Britain.

David Davies (Monmouth, Conservative)

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office how many people have died from injuries and illnesses related to (a) cold and (b) hot weather in each of the last five years.

A very good question. And the answer?

Table 1: Excess mortality during periods when temperatures were above the heat wave threshold in one or more regions, England and Wales, 2003-08

4 to 13 August 2003 - 2,139
1 to 7 July 2006 - No excess
16 to 28 July 2006 - 680

All that warming and only three instances of heat wave in the last 5 years? Interesting.

OK, what about the cold?

Table 2 : Excess winter deaths, England and Wales, 2004-05 to 2008-09

2004-05 - 31,640
2005-06 - 25,270
2006-07 - 23,740
2007-08 - 24,690
2008-09 - 36,700

Estimates of excess winter deaths are based on the difference between the number of deaths during the four winter months (December to March) and the average number of deaths during the preceding four months (August to November) and the following four months (April to July).

So, according to the Office for National Statistics, cold weather in this country is dramatically more dangerous than warm. Think of the thousands of lives that could be 'saved' - to use righteous parlance - if global warming occurred.

Suits us, Sir.


SaltedSlug said...

Nah, we're the UK remember?
Not getting into an argument about AGW, but assuming it is real and happening, global temperature changes could shift the likes of the gulf stream and leave us even colder.

Fucking typical.

BTS said...

I've never trusted that gulf stream..

SaltedSlug said...

You're right not to, it's a shifty fucker (har!).

Mark Wadsworth said...

Good stats, but they don't actually say anything about warming or cooling. They just say that more people die in winter, with no discernible up or downward trend.

But they certainly put the Swine Flu deaths into perspective!!

Unknown said...

Next time some smug git tells you smokers should pay for medical treatment, ask them this question. A guy in Stockport broke his back in Bramhall Park last week toboganing down a slope. Who pays for that then?

John Pickworth said...

"I've never trusted that gulf stream..."

You've got to admit though, they do make some very nice private jets?


Dick Puddlecote said...

Salty: Not going to argue with you ... not with your coffee consumption!

MW: Indeed, it sort of cocks up other fictional causes of death too.

banned said...

Meanwhile the Met Office are now telling us that last year was "warmer than usual" despite it starting off with Februarys big freeze and having the third crap summer in a row.
Just three days were designated as "heatwave" ( later downgraded to 2 days) in which we were all supposed to die of heatstroke.
The lengthy Indian Summer was nice even though they failed to predict it, indeed each day they said it was going to end 'tomorrow' though it lasted for 6 weeks.

bayard said...

@ Salted Slug: There's much uncontroversial evidence (e.g. Romans growing grapes outside near York) that the UK was once much warmer than it is today and the Gulf Stream didn't pack up then, so why should it now?

Dominic Allkins said...


Only just picked this up today. Good post.

I blogged about how the Climate Change Models kill people - not climate change itself obviously - since the current tsunami of legislation is based on the findings of the models.

@MW: good point re: trends. But if the legislation based on the GCMs continues to drive prices higher then we may begin to see an upward trend.