Winter Fuel Payment
Testing Temperatures 3
What Made France 'HOT'?
Météo-France is the French equivalent of the UK’s Met Office. It is a Government Agency which provides all the weather details and archived material for both Metropolitan France and France Overseas - otherwise known as ‘Outre-mer’.
Below is the weather map for France on 20 December 2016. The northern parts of France look similar to the UK 13 hours later, but colder in the middle, and as you would expect, warmer in the south. All in all, colder than SW England!
There is nothing to indicate the inclusion of tropical locations in the temperatures listed. In fact, there is a menu item headed Outre-mer, which when you click on it reveals the tropical locations in the Caribbean and the Indian Ocean.
SW England a little earlier on the same day compared to France.
We looked at French Guiana, on the same day as France.
Alongside is our chart comparing temperatures for the ORs.
That didn’t matter to IDS and the DWP. French Guiana, or Guyane as the French call it, HAD to be added to Metropolitan France to inflate the average winter temperatures for France, because, and only because, the DWP said so! And, as we showed earlier, French Guiana was the prime culprit which inflated the average winter temperature for Metropolitan France!
Doesn’t take much these days to imagine a pop-up app, depicting IDS holding up a little banner saying, ‘you must add 2.1°C to your daily temperature, otherwise our claim that France is ‘Hot’ cannot be justified’.
The example of French Guiana is a perfect illustration of how desperate IDS and the DWP were to find a way to make the 'Temperature Link' policy work, to deprive more than 40,000 UK Pensioners living in France of their legal entitlement to the 'old-age risk benefit' of the Winter Fuel Payment. Much more seriously, the use of such poor quality temperature data from French Guiana, is proof of the level to which IDS and his cohorts in the DWP were ready to descend to, in order to con MPs and the general public. And of course, the fact that French Guiana is more than 7,000 kilometres from Paris was never even considered as being in any way important!
In a letter dated 31st October 2015 signed by Iain Duncan Smith, he wrote this: "The Overseas French Departments (DOMs) are considered part of metropolitan France…."
That statement provides proof that all UK Citizens throughout the EU were not being treated equally on matters affecting social security regulations based in the UK. If temperature rules are to be invoked, then those temperature rules should apply equally, proportionately and legitimately, wherever one lives in the European Union, and they should focus on the need for elderly British Pensioners to heat their homes in cold winter temperatures.
The ‘new’ average winter temperature declared for France gave a figure of 7.0°C. It is a temperature which does not exist other than in the minds of DWP officials and Ministers, and for the DWP to keep repeating: ‘the hotter French Overseas Departments had to be included in the calculation of the average winter temperature’ simply compounds the deliberate lies being told, for there is no rhyme or reason for the inclusion of those temperatures.
Here's a cartoon, drawn for us so well by
Thank you Nicholas for using the temperature signs outside
French Pharmacies to illustrate
the stupidity of the IDS
'Temperature Link' policy
result in France!
Our map above illustrates the absurdity of trying to convince anyone that tropical paradises, in both the Northern and the Southern Hemispheres, should in some mysterious way be used to influence the temperature of a country which is, on average 7,849 kilometres from them!
The French Government does NOT do it; Météo-France does NOT do it, so why do the DWP think it is correct to do it? The Climatic Research Unit (CRU) did NOT do it either! The DWP must reveal the evidence, which they originally refused to do during a Freedom of Information request, by hiding behind ‘not in the public interest’! There is in fact nothing to support it!
The true average winter temperature for France was 4.9°C in the Met Office Report to the DWP of December 2012!
In a letter to a fellow MP, dated 12th February 2015, Iain Duncan Smith said the following: "The situation is different for the départements d'outre mer (DOMs), which are integral parts of the French State just as is the case for any of France's other departments. The DOMs included in the average winter temperature calculation were: Guadeloupe; Martinique; La Réunion; and French Guiana."
The addition of the average winter temperatures of those four locations inflated the temperature for France from 4.9°C to 7.0°C. The temperatures alone did not make the difference - the huge land mass of French Guiana exerted a massive influence on the complex calculations necessary to cause the temperature to change. French Guiana alone has a land mass 3.5 times larger than the S W of England. French Guiana is equal to 15% of the land mass of Metropolitan France. French Guiana is equal to 34% of the land mass of the UK.
Our illustration above reproduces copies of temperature tables published in the Met Office Report to the DWP for France, Italy, Greece, Spain and Portugal. UK Pensioners in four of those countries have lost Winter Fuel Payments - France, Greece, Spain and Portugal. Three of those countries ended up with average winter temperatures of 7.0°C, 7.1°C, and 7.3°C respectively, even though 20 Regions had average winter temperatures LOWER than S W England!
One country, Italy, has kept the Winter Fuel Payment, and yet, this illustration shows that 5 Italian Regions (the 5 BLUE upward arrows) all have average winter temperatures which were ‘HOTTER’ than every Region of France, 7 Regions of Greece, 11 Regions of Spain, and 3 Regions of Portugal (the 43 RED downward arrows).
This example provides the evidence which shows that the so-called 'Temperature Link' policy can ever be proportionate to the legitimate objective of the national provisions, and therefore is in
breach of CJEU Judgments, and Article 7 of EU Regulation 883/2004.
UK Pensioners all over Italy were paid WFP in
November/December 2016 for the 2016/2017 winter!
It should not be forgotten that in the Met Office Report to the DWP of 12th December 2012, Italy was shown to have an average winter temperature of 5.7°C, compared to the whole of the UK at 4.1°C. However, the DWP decided to use S W England as their yardstick region to compare with every other country in the EEA. That produced an average winter temperature of 5.6°C.
And so, technically, at 5.7°C Italy was ‘hot’ compared to S W England. Despite that difference, the DWP declared that Italy was to be ‘cold’ - in other words, allowing ALL claimants living in Italy to retain the WFP, IDS and the DWP justified their decision to allow Italy to be ‘cold’ by stating: “an average winter temperature that is close enough to that to be statistically equivalent”! Quite hard to justify that statement when you appreciate that all temperatures used by the DWP from the Met Office Report, had a built-in margin of error of ± 2.0°C! Anyway, what on earth did it mean?
There can be only one other possible explanation.
The average winter temperatures from the four tropical locations were added, as a deliberate act designed to 'inflate' the temperature of France and make it appear ‘hotter’ than S W England, and thereby achieve the original aim. To remove the WFP from as many as possible, with particular reference to Spain and France
Finally, contrary to Met Office advice, IDS and the DWP opted to redefine winter, ignoring what all meteorologists and climatologists recognise as winter in the Northern Hemisphere. The DWP redefined winter to be 1st November to 31st March, stretching winter from 90 days to 151 days, together with all the implications that embraces for the calculations of averages. The DWP justified this by saying: “The period 1 November to 31 March is used for Cold Weather Payment purposes. Therefore, there is a consistency with existing policies.”
It is very odd therefore to learn, that letters are mailed out from the DWP in the second half of November stating the Winter Fuel Payment was being made ‘in time for the start of winter’!
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