Unprecedented times – The warmest, wettest and sunniest

There’s been a lot of media hype from the Met Office recently about how 2020 has been a year of extremes. They have been banging the drum about it a bit, but you have to forgive them for it, because as Macaulay Culkin said that’s their job. Personally I was in no doubt that the weather in 2020 had been unusual for the extremes especially the way the weather switched from very wet to dry during the late winter and spring. I decided to write some code that looked at ranked warm, wet and sunny years across the UK using the gridded data from the Met Office. Unfortunately because the sunshine stats still don’t extend before 1929, I could only look at the last 90 year or so. All the code does is rank the years for each of the three elements, add that rank up and divide by three to produce a mean ranking.

Warmest, wettest and sunniest years

As you can see from the results, each year of the 21st century bar 2010 is present and correct in the top thirty, in fact they dominate the top 10 with 8 of the years. The oldest year in the rankings is 1948 in the joint 15th spot. From this table of results we certainly seem to be living in unprecedented times at least as far as weather and climate are concerned here in the UK.

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