Tuesday 4 December 2012, 15:21
Only two thirds of average rainfall needs to fall across the UK in December for 2012 to end up in the top ten wettest years on record, according to Met Office data which was first collated over a hundred years ago in 1910.
Should this be the case, it would also mean that nearly half of the years since 1998 would be in the UK's top ten wettest years on record.
2000 (wettest), 2008, 2002, 1999, 1998, and if rainfall is sufficient, 2012, would all make it into the top 10.
1923, 1927 and 1928 are also in the top 10, illustrating that wet years do come in clusters, but the 1920's sequence is nothing like what we have experienced in recent years.
Such a rainfall sequence suggests that over and above any cyclical change to weather patterns that are naturally occurring, other factors are likely to be at work, fuelling suspicions that climate change is playing its part.
November was another wet month.
Across England and Wales, rainfall was 128 per cent of the 1981-2010 average, making it the 8th successive month with above average rainfall.
And in the last 100 years only 20 Novembers had more rainfall, despite the fact it was only the wettest since 2009.
The continued positioning of the jet stream further south than normal is responsible for the very wet weather.
Current computer projections suggest that December is unlikely to be another washout month dominated by the Atlantic.
Although more rain (or snow) is expected at times, high pressure is likely to exert much more of an influence than in recent months, leading overall to colder but somewhat drier conditions to develop.
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