Tuesday 16 January 2018

We must get better at weathering these storms

YET again Ireland's 'Clerk of the Weather' has shown his love of the macabre by ordering in arctic conditions, garnished by torrential rain and flash floods, and all for the tail-end of March. Yet again we are reminded that we cannot legislate for all of the vagaries of our often crazy Irish weather. But the damage and distress caused by flooding in Cork, and the transport disruption in Dublin and Wicklow, prominent among the problems also in many other places, must now prompt serious reflection.

We have experienced many 'weather happenings' considered to be out of the ordinary in recent years. The arguments about 'climate change' persist, with some prominent refuseniks holding out against the firm agreement among the mainstream scientific community who believe that it is now a reality.

But let us park that debate about causes and learn how to deal with the day-to-day reality that we will continue to have to cope more frequently with things like longer cold snaps and a greater risk of flooding. It is clear that our traditional response – waiting until the worst has passed and then mopping up – is no longer very practical.

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