Climate: Present, Past and Future - Vol. 1

Climate: Present, Past and Future - Vol. 1

Climate: Present, Past and Future - Vol. 1

Climate: Present, Past and Future - Vol. 1

Excerpt

The author acknowledges his indebtedness to two successive Directors-General of the Meteorological Office, Sir Graham Sutton, F.R.S., and Dr B.J. Mason, F.R.S., who arranged the facilities for research and study over the past fifteen years through which he built up the knowledge to write this book. Much of the ground covered is either new or has never been accessible in a reference book before. There are still very few meteorologists engaged in research on changes of climate, especially the climatic record of the past and the probable physical causes and mechanisms underlying the changes observed. Until lately all this was left by meteorologists, apart from a few honoured exceptions such as the late Sir George Simpson and Dr C.E.P. Brooks, to be the province of geologists, botanists and others who uncovered the evidence but who could only hazard interpretations in an uncharted field. There are still far too few meteorologists, or others, with the basic knowledge of past climates and of the processes that continually bring about changes of weather and climate, when one considers the importance of the latter to the practical problems of the present day. The subject is, however, beginning to develop. Only now has the fund of available knowledge reached the stage at which a wide, and balanced, survey such as is here attempted can be made. The first volume of this work has taken seven years to write. For this very reason, the author extends his thanks to all those (probably including colleagues and employers) whose patience has been tried by the effects of his exertions or by the long waiting for their completion; especial thanks are due to his wife and family whose devotion has been equal to putting up with late hours and much forbearance in whatever direction was required.

Several colleagues have helped by reading and commenting on parts of the text. Mr C. Hawson's advice helped greatly in Chapter 5; Mr R.P.W. Lewis, also of the Meteorological Office, and Dr G. Brier of the United States Weather Bureau, looked over the statistical methods section of Chapter 6; and the author here repeats his thanks to them. The contributions of others are acknowledged at appropriate points in the book.

The author gratefully acknowledges the kindness of the copyright-holders in allowing him to reproduce their diagrams and maps. Specifically, he expresses his thanks to Professor C. W.ALLEN and the Royal Meteorological Society for the use of fig. 2.11; to Dr R.Y. ANDERSON of the University of New Mexico for fig. 6.9 (a); to Professor FRANZ BAUR

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