After an exhaustive three year study, scientists at the University of the Isle of Dogs, East London, (UIDEL) have discovered what they think could be the real cause of global warming - people all over the world hanging out their washing to dry writes special washing correspondent Barry Rooster.
The boffins say that when freshly-laundered clothes - especially whites and light coloureds - are hung on washing lines, they reflect the sun's rays upwards, leading to an increase in the greenhouse effect.
Head of Research Gunther Smallpiece comments: "We've previously been told to reduce the temperature on our washing machines to save electricity, but this is fact counter-effective. We will recommend to the government that the population use the full drying cycle on their machines, instead of hanging the garments outside in the fresh air". And he goes further: "This is so serious, we'd like to see hanging washing outdoors to be banned in the same way as smoking indoors."
"We'd like to see it become, if you like, a 'hanging offence'!", he jokes, proving conclusively that even dull scientists do have a sense of humour.