Subject: Re: [Fwd: FOI Request]
Date: Wed Nov 12 09:31:31 2008
Another point to discuss when you have your conference call - is
why don't they ask Douglass for all his data. It is essentially the same.
You can also think of all this positively - they think a few of us do really
important work, so they concentrate on what they think are the cutting edge
pieces of work.
I have a big review on paleo coming out soon in The Holocene - with 20+ others.
Won't be out till next year, but I can say for certain that it will feature strongly on
CA. Not too much they can request via FOI, but they will think of something. This
paper will explain where a Figure came from in the First IPCC Report - the infamous
one that Chris Folland put together on the last 1000 yeas. CA will say they found this out
- they had
a thread on it 9 months ago according to Gavin. I have the submission date of the article
and more detail though - to show we found out first.
At 03:57 12/11/2008, you wrote:
Thanks for your email regarding Steven McIntyre's twin requests under the Freedom of
Information (FOI) Act. Regarding McIntyre's request (1), no "monthly time series of
output from any of the 47 climate models" was "sent by Santer and/or other coauthors of
Santer et al 2008 to NOAA employees between 2006 and October 2008".
As I pointed out to Mr. McIntyre in the email I transmitted to him yesterday, all of the
raw (gridded) model and observational data used in the 2008 Santer et al. International
Journal of Climatology (IJoC) paper are freely available to Mr. McIntyre. If Mr.
McIntyre wishes to audit us, and determine whether the conclusions reached in our paper
are sound, he has all the information necessary to conduct such an audit. Providing Mr.
McIntyre with the quantities that I derived from the raw model data (spatially-averaged
time series of surface temperatures and synthetic Microwave Sounding Unit [MSU]
temperatures) would defeat the very purpose of an audit.
I note that David Douglass and colleagues have already audited our calculation of
synthetic MSU temperatures from climate model data. Douglass et al. obtained "model
average" trends in synthetic MSU temperatures (published in their 2007 IJoC paper) that
are virtually identical to our own.
McIntyre's request (2) demands "any correspondence concerning these monthly time series
between Santer and/or other coauthors of Santer et al 2008 and NOAA employees between
2006 and October 2008". I do not know how you intend to respond this second request. You
and three other NOAA co-authors on our paper (Susan Solomon, Melissa Free, and John
Lanzante) probably received hundreds of emails that I sent to you in the course of our
work on the IJoC paper. I note that this work began in December 2007, following online
publication of Douglass et al. in the IJoC. I have no idea why McIntyre's request for
email correspondence has a "start date" of 2006, and thus predates publication of
Douglass et al.
My personal opinion is that both FOI requests (1) and (2) are intrusive and
unreasonable. Steven McIntyre provides absolutely no scientific justification or
explanation for such requests. I believe that McIntyre is pursuing a calculated strategy
to divert my attention and focus away from research. As the recent experiences of Mike
Mann and Phil Jones have shown, this request is the thin edge of wedge. It will be
followed by further requests for computer programs, additional material and
explanations, etc., etc.
Quite frankly, Tom, having spent nearly 10 months of my life addressing the serious
scientific flaws in the Douglass et al. IJoC paper, I am unwilling to waste more of my
time fulfilling the intrusive and frivolous requests of Steven McIntyre. The supreme
irony is that Mr. McIntyre has focused his attention on our IJoC paper rather than the
Douglass et al. IJoC paper which we criticized. As you know, Douglass et al. relied on a
seriously flawed statistical test, and reached incorrect conclusions on the basis of
that flawed test.
I believe that our community should no longer tolerate the behavior of Mr. McIntyre and
his cronies. McIntyre has no interest in improving our scientific understanding of the
nature and causes of climate change. He has no interest in rational scientific
discourse. He deals in the currency of threats and intimidation. We should be able to
conduct our scientific research without constant fear of an "audit" by Steven McIntyre;
without having to weigh every word we write in every email we send to our scientific
In my opinion, Steven McIntyre is the self-appointed Joe McCarthy of climate science. I
am unwilling to submit to this McCarthy-style investigation of my scientific research.
As you know, I have refused to send McIntyre the "derived" model data he requests, since
all of the primary model data necessary to replicate our results are freely available to
him. I will continue to refuse such data requests in the future. Nor will I provide
McIntyre with computer programs, email correspondence, etc. I feel very strongly about
these issues. We should not be coerced by the scientific equivalent of a playground
I will be consulting LLNL's Legal Affairs Office in order to determine how the DOE and
LLNL should respond to any FOI requests that we receive from McIntyre. I assume that
such requests will be forthcoming.
I am copying this email to all co-authors of our 2008 IJoC paper, to my immediate
superior at PCMDI (Dave Bader), to Anjuli Bamzai at DOE headquarters, and to Professor
Glenn McGregor (the editor who was in charge of our paper at IJoC).
I'd be very happy to discuss these issues with you tomorrow. I'm sorry that the tone of
this letter is so formal, Tom. Unfortunately, after today's events, I must assume that
any email I write to you may be subject to FOI requests, and could ultimately appear on
McIntyre's "ClimateAudit" website.
With best personal wishes,
FYI --- Jolene can you set up a conference call with all the parties listed below
-------- Original Message --------
Subject: FOI Request
Date: Mon, 10 Nov 2008 10:02:00 -0500
From: Steve McIntyre <email@example.com>
CC: Thomas R Karl <Thomas.R.Karl@noaa.gov>
Nov. 10, 2008
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Public Reference Facility (OFA56)
Attn: NOAA FOIA Officer
1315 East West Highway (SSMC3)
Silver Spring, Maryland 20910
Re: Freedom of Information Act Request
Dear NOAA FOIA Officer:
This is a request under the Freedom of Information Act.
Santer et al, Consistency of modelled and observed temperature trends in
the tropical troposphere, (Int J Climatology, 2008), of which NOAA employees J. R.
Lanzante, S. Solomon, M. Free and T. R. Karl were co-authors, reported on a statistical
analysis of the output of 47 runs of climate models that had been collated into monthly
time series by Benjamin Santer and associates.
I request that a copy of the following NOAA records be provided to me: (1) any monthly
time series of output from any of the 47 climate models sent by Santer and/or other
coauthors of Santer et al 2008 to NOAA employees between 2006 and October 2008; (2) any
correspondence concerning these monthly time series between Santer and/or other
coauthors of Santer et al 2008 and NOAA employees between 2006 and October 2008.
The primary sources for NOAA records are J. R. Lanzante, S. Solomon, M. Free and T. R.
In order to help to determine my status for purposes of determining the applicability of
any fees, you should know that I have 5 peer-reviewed publications on paleoclimate; that
I was a reviewer for WG1; that I made a invited presentations in 2006 to the National
Research Council Panel on Surface Temperature Reconstructions and two presentations to
the Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce
In addition, a previous FOI request was discussed by the NOAA Science Advisory Boards
Data Archiving and Access Requirements Working Group (DAARWG). http:// www.
I believe a fee waiver is appropriate since the purpose of the request is academic
research, the information exists in digital format and the information should be easily
located by the primary sources.
I also include a telephone number (416-469-3034) at which I can be contacted between 9
and 7 pm Eastern Daylight Time, if necessary, to discuss any aspect of my request.
Thank you for your consideration of this request.
I ask that the FOI request be processed promptly as NOAA failed to send me a response to
the FOI request referred to above, for which Dr Karl apologized as follows:
due to a miscommunication between our office and our headquarters, the response was not
submitted to you. I deeply apologize for this oversight, and we have taken measures to
ensure this does not happen in the future.
25 Playter Blvd
Toronto, Ont M4K 2W1
Benjamin D. Santer
Program for Climate Model Diagnosis and Intercomparison
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
P.O. Box 808, Mail Stop L-103
Livermore, CA 94550, U.S.A.
Tel: (925) 422-3840
FAX: (925) 422-7675
Prof. Phil Jones
Climatic Research Unit Telephone +44 (0) 1603 592090
School of Environmental Sciences Fax +44 (0) 1603 507784
University of East Anglia
Norwich Email firstname.lastname@example.org