The Met Office are forecasting and early and possibly prolonged cold spell. As the IPCC's next climate change meeting at Cancun starts in 5 days' time, this may be used by sections of the press and climate change contrarians as further "evidence" that global warming is a scam.
 
Such a point fails to distinguish between weather and climate. In January this year, UK and some N. American temperatures were away below average, but the Earth as a whole was 0.6 degree above the average since satellite documentation began in 1979.
 
For the impending cold snap, here is a link to a BBC weather item that graphically displays how the N.E. Europe is currently entering a cold spell, but note that  the warm air just moves elsewhere. As such, this is a regional weather variation and must not be confused with the global climatological picture. View the video at:
 
http://news.bbc.co.uk/weather/hi/news/newsid_9221000/9221616.stm
 
Alastair.
 
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