RISING sea levels flooding Weymouth and sweltering summers with little water were predicted in a 'scary' forecast by former weatherman Michael Fish.

He may have famously got it wrong in 1987, but Mr Fish's predictions could shake up the sceptics.

The former BBC forecaster, who played down the threat of a hurricane approaching Britain in 1987, gave a lecture on the threat of climate change to a packed audience at the Corn Exchange in Dorchester.

His appearance came as part of events to mark Climate Week.

Revealing data of computer models for the future based on current carbon dioxide emissions, Mr Fish warned of 'scary' weather systems facing the county - forecasting sweltering summers and drastic water shortages playing havoc with current farming practices.

He also painted a frightening scenario for a rise in sea levels that could devastate low-lying communities like Weymouth, West Bay and parts of Lyme Regis.

He said: “If we do nothing about climate change and just stay as we are now, sea levels could rise by a metre by the end of the century.”

Mr Fish added: “We could well see a six degree increase in temperatures over southern Britain by the end of the century.

“We could see 30C days in London increasing from the current rate of seven days a year to 50 days a year.

“And by the middle of the century, apart from on the highest Scottish mountains, snowfall could be unknown in the rest of the UK.”

Mr Fish acknowledged that none of the audience would ever know if the predictions were correct.

He said: “It won't be in any of our lifetimes whether we'll know if the models are right or wrong.

“I just hope that there is someone somewhere, some genius, who will come up with a new energy source that we haven't thought of. What we need is genius.”

Marking Climate Week

MICHAEL Fish, who became a national icon through his weather forecasts on the BBC and spent more than 40 years with the Meteorological Office, appeared at an event organised by Communities Living Sustainably in Dorset.

It came at the launch of Dorset Climate Week.

The charity revealed a five-point plan to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and slow climate change in Dorset.

The plans include:

  • Carshare Dorset - urging drivers not to make trips alone but to share a lift with a friend
  • Cycling instead of using the car or the bus
  • Regularly reading energy meters or switching to an energy monitor to save up to 10 per cent on bills
  • Switching to a green energy supplier
  • Growing your own food

For more details of Climate Week in Dorset, which runs until March 9, see clsdorset.org.uk