What have we done to deserve this?

WE should all have believed nature's pre-Christmas warning of a hard winter ahead '” the country's stoats suddenly acquired beautiful white coats.

Or we could have heeded an even earlier sign when, also last year, an April 6 blizzard gave us an unseasonably heavy snowfall to remember.

As I swept four inches of snow off my frozen car on Monday morning this week, I asked myself, do we deserve all this misery in view of the sacrifices we're making to beat global warming?

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Global warming! Since moving to Worthing, I've found this winter to be the coldest and most miserable since that Arctic experience back in 1962-63.

And I can remember being just as frozen in that awful, snowbound winter of 1947.

Forget all that guff about a frosty ambience getting rid of unhealthy bugs.

I contracted a bronchial cold at the start of this year's post-Christmas freeze-up and I still haven't got rid of it.

The way I feel at the moment, I regard all those predictions of balmier, parched (even hot!) summers ahead due to global warming as just so much hot air.

Worthing Council decided to spend tens of thousands of pounds on drought-resistant plants and gardens '“ and soon after work commenced, it started to bucket down, with regular drenchings ever since.

I mentioned sacrifices.

Well, the first that springs to mind is the way we're all being bullied into using those ghastly, expensive, fluorescent, long-life, energy-saving bulbs, which, it has now transpired, have a much over-rated reputation for extended life and easy-on-the eye efficiency.

All in the supposed cause of preventing millions of tons of invisible carbon being pumped into the atmosphere. How do they work these things out?

Then, the government imposed an iniquitous stealth tax on motorists in the form of an annual, automatic rack-up in fuel duty.

I like to think that, of late, they've been partially shamed into relaxing that money-grabbing exercise.

Many of us who own modestly-sized family saloons already pay more than enough road tax to fund our inadequate roads programme, thanks to the new grading based on "eemish-ons!"

And is global warming a fact? I remember when, 20 years ago, the paper on which I was then working reported that the monthly meeting of the Global Warming Society had been cancelled due to cold weather.

That, to me, typifies an Al Gore attitude which prefers to ignore much of what's actually going on around them.

Are the polar caps shrinking?

It depends on which scientific study you're reading.

Has the global average temperature increased since the Kyoto Protocol of 1996?

Are the ocean levels still rising at the same rate? Again, it depends on whose figures you believe.

Yes, I know Australia is sizzling in its current heatwave, but the Aussies have always had climatic fry-ups.

Until we get a regular taste of the same, I'll continue to be something of a global warming sceptic.

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