It is not evidence of climate change, but something is happening to our weather. While a fairly cool summer afflicts Britain, apart from the odd sunny day or two, continental USA has been experiencing its hottest July ever recorded and the worse drought since 1953. This combination of heat and drought has dried out much of the farmland and crops have been far less successful than usual. Since the middle of June corn prices have risen by 62%, and this inevitably has a knock on effect on food prices in the world and on fuel prices in the world as much of US ethanol is made from corn.
Food prices are also going to be increased as a result of below average rainfall in the Indian monsoon ( 17% so far below its normal levels of rainfall) and exceptionally dry weather in Russia, which is affecting its wheat harvest. Mr Putin has banned all exports of wheat from Russia as crops perish in the worse heat wave since records began there 130 years ago. Expect your corn flakes and bread to cost more, and also your baked beans as bean crops, particularly soya bean crops, are also drought afflicted.
I shall not blame climate change, because a exceptional year of unusual weather is not evidence that the climate is changing rapidly, but there have been so many weather records broken this year in the United Kingdom and in the United States.
In West Africa’s Sahel region Oxfam estimates that the lives of thirteen million people are in peril as a result of the drought there.
If you want to escape the US drought do not go to Manila in the Philippines. Rain that usually falls in a month fell in two days. About six hundred people are sheltering in emergency shelters as a result of floods and most reports estimate that two million souls are badly affected by the floods.
It is not, of course, evidence of climate change, but is is a cause for concern.