Hubert Lamb

British climatologist Hubert Lamb

Hubert Horace Lamb (22 September 1913 in Bedford – 28 June 1997 in Holt, Norfolk) was an English climatologist who founded the Climatic Research Unit in 1972 in the School of Environmental Sciences at the University of East Anglia.



Most of Lamb's scientific life was spent at the Meteorological Office, UK, where he started as a Technical Officer progressing by special merit promotion. As a Quaker and conscientious objector, Lamb refused to work on the meteorology of gas spraying during World War II, and was transferred to the Irish Meteorological Service, then still closely associated with the UK Met Office. On returning to the UK service after the war his responsibilities were in the fields of long range weather forecasting, world climatology and climate change. In this capacity he was assigned to West Germany and Malta. Earlier he was also posted as meteorological adviser on a Norwegian whaling factory ship to Antarctica. He became a Member of the World Meteorological Organization's Working Group on Climate Fluctuations.

Lamb was one of the first to propose that climate could change within human experience, going against the orthodox view of the time that climate could be treated as constant for practical purposes. He developed early theories about the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age. He became known for his prediction of gradual global cooling and a coming glacial period (colloquially an "ice age"), and he subsequently highlighted a more immediate future prospect of global warming.

Medieval warm epoch

In 1965 he published his study on "The early medieval warm epoch and its sequel", based on "data from the realms of botany, historical document research and meteorology". His view was that "Evidence has been accumulating in many fields of investigation pointing to a notably warm climate in many... more

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