The ifs and buts of long-term weather forecasting

Dopolni vsako prazno mesto z eno manjkajočo besedo. / Fill in each gap with one suitable word.

the-ifs-and-buts-weatherEver since the Met Office was derided for predicting a barbecue summer, long-range weather forecasting for the season ahead has been avoided. The most that is attempted is 30 days, and the current forecast contains so many ifs, buts and possibilities that almost any weather might occur in November and no one could complain.

That does not _______________ (1)  that predicting the weather for the coming season is not the ambition of every meteorologist and scientist, especially as climate change makes extreme weather both more likely _______________ (2) economically important.

In Britain the track of depressions across the country that turn _______________ (3) winter storms and bring the threat of flooding are of increasing concern. The warmer atmosphere out in _______________ (4)  Atlantic means more water in the clouds has to be deposited as rain.

The second threat, extreme _______________ (5), is posed by changes in the Arctic. According to the latest research, the jet stream, that is responsible _______________ (6) pushing the depressions towards us across the Atlantic, is developing a wavy habit. This has led to the current dry spell as long lasting high-pressure systems block the path of the lows that would normally bring autumn rain.

If the weather pattern persists, or returns in the winter, the weather _______________ (7) turn cold and could remain bleak for days and possibly weeks. Researchers say this has _______________ (8) happened in the past in the UK, and brought the winters that the Eastern United States has suffered recently with record snowfalls. And it may soon happen again.

On the other hand, as the Met Office would be careful to say, it might just rain a lot.

(Adapted from on 31 October 2016)

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