Reported in The Daily Telegraph online is data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) which show that last winter 25,300 more people died in the winter months than in the summer, an increase of seven per cent on the previous year.
Although most of these are due to circulatory and respiratory diseases and the majority occur among the elderly, the statistics do illustrate a point which global warmists are apt to ignore in pursuit of their obsession – the fact that cold is far more deadly than hot weather.
The Telegraph story highlights concerns that the death toll will be higher this year "as forecasters predict lower temperatures than last year", utility bills have risen and the credit crunch means many households are struggling to make ends meet.
Two issues are not highlighted though. Firstly, for a newspaper that is an enthusiastic cheerleader for the warmist cause, and quick to attribute any weather anomaly to "global warming", it is strangely silent about the causes or otherwise of the significantly colder weather we are experiencing, and the fact – which it acknowledges – that forecasters are predicting even more cold.
Secondly, it is just as silent about the greenie agenda to drive up fuel prices, currently through the climate change levy, the emissions trading scheme and the renewables obligation. Yet, at the very heart of the drive to limit carbon dioxide emissions is the strategy of increasing energy costs, thus reducing "consumer demand".
It does not take rocket science to work out that, if "consumer demand" reduces when the temperatures are low, then this means people are cutting back on heating, which also means that some – the elderly and frail – will die prematurely. That is the inevitable consequence of the greenie policy.
The obvious rejoinder to the alarums about runaway global warming, therefore, is to ask the greenies how many "wrinklies" they want to kill to make their policy work.