Last month was not only the wettest December on record, but also the wettest calendar month overall since records began in 1910, while 2015 is the sixth wettest year on record. The UK mean temperature for 2015 is 9.2 °C, notably warm but not exceptional. The warmest year on record was set in 2014 at 9.9 °C. The UK mean temperature for December is record breaking at 7.9 °C, which is 4.1 °C above the long-term average. The previous record was 6.9 °C in 1934.
Responding to provisional figures from the Met Office, Friends of the Earth climate campaigner Guy Shrubsole said:
“This is yet another indicator that our climate is changing, and highlights the need for a radical rethink on UK flood defences and climate change policies. The government must recognise that climate change will increase the frequency of extreme weather, such as the devastating flooding that has battered Britain recently.
“Adequate defences must be put in place to help the nation deal with this, and ecosystems restored so that rainwater is retained upstream. David Cameron’s government must also end its short-sighted support for climate-wrecking fossil fuels and put energy efficiency and renewable power at the heart of UK energy policy.”