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Snow and Ice

Defence written question – answered on 2nd February 2007.

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Photo of Christopher Huhne Christopher Huhne Shadow Secretary of State for the Environment, Environment, Food & Rural Affairs

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what estimate the Meteorological Office has made of the number of days of snow fall in (a) London, (b) Edinburgh, (c) Bristol and (d) Inverness in (i) 2010, (ii) 2020, (iii) 2030 and (iv) 2050.

Photo of Adam Ingram Adam Ingram Minister of State (Armed Forces), Ministry of Defence

Climate models are not yet sufficiently finely resolved to make predictions of the number of days of snowfall for individual towns or cities.

During the 21st century, a trend towards reduced snowfall is expected over the UK due to climate change. The predicted changes vary with location, and some parts of the UK could experience periods of increased snowfall, due to the influence of natural climate variability. However, by 2050 a reduction in snowfall can be predicted with some confidence.

With future investment in supercomputing capacity the Met Office expects to increase the resolution of its climate models and provide more local scale predictions with reduced uncertainty.

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