Author Archives: Robin Paice

Which? and Government claim credit for UKMA campaign

Both the Consumers’ Association (aka Which?) and the Government’s Business Department have claimed the credit for the success of their campaign to persuade supermarkets to price goods transparently.  But who actually started the campaign? and is it enough? Likes(0)Dislikes(0)

Posted in Consumer affairs, General, Law | Tagged , , , | 7 Comments

Independent Scotland would keep …

In its White Paper today (26 November 2013) the Scottish Government has tried to reassure nervous sceptics with a list of things that they hope a future independent Scotland would keep.  Widely reported have been the Queen, the pound sterling … Continue reading

Posted in General | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments

Will EU-US trade agreement bring in metric-only labelling in the US?

A key point of President Obama’s State of the Union address on 13 February was the proposed EU-US trade agreement, which has been under preliminary discussion for the past year. (See http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/feb/13/state-of-the-union-free-trade-europe).  As this agreement is supposed to remove regulatory barriers … Continue reading

Posted in Consumer affairs, General, Law, Views from abroad | Tagged , , , , , , | 24 Comments

Myths, misinformation and fallacies (1) – Are imperial units “natural”?

The claim is often made by last-ditch defenders of miles, feet, pints and acres that “Imperial units are natural whereas metric units are artificial”.   In the first of an occasional series of articles on “myths, misinformation and fallacies” used by … Continue reading

Posted in General, Myths, Technical | Tagged , , , | 19 Comments

DfT misses another trick

The Department for Transport wants to reduce sign clutter.  Very commendable, you might think.  So why don’t they adopt an obvious measure that would make many signs smaller, simpler and easier to read – and thereby reduce clutter? Likes(0)Dislikes(0)

Posted in General, Road signs, Transport | Tagged , , , , , | 11 Comments

Cabinet Office gets its kilowatts in a twist

Visitors to the Cabinet Office website will see that this branch of the Government is measuring its energy use in “kilowatt-hours per hour”.  It is a sad reflection on the quality of civil service support given to this crucial part … Continue reading

Posted in Education, General, Science, Technical | Tagged , , , , | 20 Comments

50 years of Celsius weather forecasts – time to kill off Fahrenheit for good?

Fifty years ago, on 15th October 1962, British weather forecasts switched over from the Fahrenheit scale to Celsius. Fifty years on, some parts of the British media inexplicably cling on to Fahrenheit measures, and the UK Metric Association (UKMA) says … Continue reading

Posted in General, History, Science | Tagged , , | 149 Comments

Two enduring controversies are highlighted by a food labelling consultation

A recent consultation by the UK Department of Health about food labelling has drawn attention to two long-standing issues, both relating to food energy and the calorie. Likes(0)Dislikes(0)

Posted in Consumer affairs, Health, Science | Tagged , , , , , | 7 Comments

UKMA launches Measurement Units Style Guide

In an attempt to bring about some improvement in the sloppy and inconsistent way in which metric units are often written, the UK Metric Association has today (5 July 2012) published a “Measurement Units Style Guide”.  Aimed at anybody who … Continue reading

Posted in Education, General, Media | Tagged , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

Howe calls for metrication progress

Lord Howe of Aberavon, the former Conservative Chancellor and Deputy Prime Minister, intervened in the Queen’s Speech debate on Tuesday to reiterate his call for the Government to complete the conversion of the UK’s weights and measures to metric units. … Continue reading

Posted in Consumer affairs, General, Road signs | Tagged , , , , | 45 Comments