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Anorak | War With The Weather

War With The Weather

by | 24th, July 2007

flooding1.jpg “FLOOD PANIC,” screams the Express. There are one million “VICTIMS OF THE DELUGE”, chimes the Mail.

But we will not panic. The Express shows families queuing for water at a branch of Tesco’s in Gloucester. There are umbrellas and order.

“Panic buying hits Bournemouth,” says the caption above a front-page picture of a man loading bottles of water into the boot of a 4×4.

But there is no flooding in Bournemouth. The picture is only an illustration as to how one man shops. He stocks up. He drinks bottled water. He drives a 4×4. This is not a life-saving choice but one of lifestyle.

Voices of Gaia tell it’s his sort that got us into this mess? And now he’s buying up all the water.

This is no time for selfishness. We are all in this together. The Express talks of “siege conditions”. This is language of war. Yesterday we read of the spirit of the Blitz. Today it’s “Dunkirk spirit” in the Express.

“MAN THE PUMPS”, says the Sun. Rescuers are pumping water away from the flooded Castlemeads power station onto fields across the road. “Now the battle to keep the lights on,” says the Mail.

And it’s not just war with the weather – this is class war. “First up North, now down here,” says a resident of the Isle of Tewkesbury. “Too hot one minute, too wet the next. Global warming, I suppose.” The paper sees him smile. That’s the way. Chin up. Look on the bright side. “Mind you, London’s on flood alert now,” he says. “That’ll worry the bigwigs.”

The suspicion things only become serious when they hit the capital will ring true with some.

But London is expected to escape, says the Sun. Flooding is due to stop west of the capital at Shepperton.

London will stand alone. But is it ready? Is the UK equipped for climate change? The Express hears Gordon Brown put that question to “experts”.

We could butt in and say that this flooding might not be evidence climate change but just the climate. Britain is a wet country. There have been floods before. There will floods again. The trick might be not to build properties on flood plains and to travel by helicopter, like Gordon Brown (“A flying visit is as close as Brown gets to misery faced by thousands,” says the Times). But we digress.

And we read that there is to be a “comprehensive study of the national infrastructure”. Brown says climate chance means we have to presume more extreme weather”. Says he: “The investment is moving up and will continue to move up.” (Such is the way with inflation.)

“We will have to invest in coastal defences, flood defences and of course drainage and infrastructure in the years to come,” says he.

But these things have always been done. What’s the difference now? Does climate change mean we can blame the vagaries of the weather on mankind? Before the new religion of climate change, wet British summers were just the way of things. Now they are to be combated and taken in hand. It’s war.

But not yet. Not until we’ve taken stock and worked out what to do. Meanwhile, the weather carries on regardless…



Posted: 24th, July 2007 | In: Tabloids Comments (16) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink