Global warming is unlikely to take hold before the end of the century according to a controversial new statistical study.
The report, published by the think-tank the Global Warming Policy Foundation, claims that while winters are likely to be slightly warmer, there will be no change in the summer.
Using statistical forecasting methods, the report, written a statistician at Loughborough University, contradicts predictions made by climate scientists.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has previously warned the planet was on course to experience warming of between 1¬∞F (0.6¬∞C) and 7.2¬∞F (4¬∞C) by the year 2100 based on climate models.
But Professor Terence Mills claims statistical forecasting methods, which uses data from the past to predict the future by identifying patterns and trends, suggests temperatures will change little.
However, he does warn in his report that the forecasts contain ‘rather large measures of imprecision’.
Climate scientists have also described the study as ‘silly’ and pointed out it failed to take account of basic atmospheric physics.
Professor Mills used statistical models that are more commonly used to forecast economic and financial changes and applied them to three climate data sets.
These included records of global surface temperatures, the global lower troposphere temperatures and the Central England Temperature series, which dates back to 1660.
Writing in his paper, Professor Mills argues that climate scientists may have made errors in their predictions by focusing on recent uplifts in global temperatures.
He said such an approach can be ‘highly misleading’.
‘There is simply no substitute for analysing the entire temperature record using a variety of well-specified models,’ he wrote.
Professor Mills work was seized upon by climate change sceptics as evidence that the predictions being made by climate models are exaggerating the risk posed by global warming.