A government report published today warns that climate change could damage the UK's wireless communications infrastructure.
It may sound like a last-ditch attempt to get us on board with wind farms, but the secretary of state for the environment, Caroline Spelman, insists that our communications could be under threat.
"If climate change threatens the quality of your signal, or you can't get it because of extreme fluctuations in temperature, then you will be disadvantaged, which is why we must address the question," she said.
Article continues below
The report comes from the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), which found that future high temperatures could reduce the quality and range of the UK's wireless signal, affecting television broadcasts and mobile signal, among other things.
Save our comms
The primary focus of the report is on how the government can strengthen the UK's infrastructure (wires and cables and so on) to lessen the impact of the changing weather.
Other problems we could face in the UK include flood damage to underground cables, overhead line damage due to falling trees and changes in the UK's flora and fauna that could even change the way radio waves travel through the air.
Greenpeace, naturally, is all over this. Chief policy adviser Ruth Davis said: "What this report reminds us is that sudden shifts in global climate will affect our world and our daily lives in chaotic and unusual ways.
"The UK will not be immune, and the government's discovery that one of the most important sectors for the UK's economic recovery – electronic communications – could be affected by climate change, shows just how vital it is for our prosperity that we curb emissions now."
Update: All mentions of Wi-Fi in this article have been amended.
Via The Guardian