Climategate emails

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The following are some of the controversial ClimateGate emails, grouped by category, main source is the list at [1]. Key points are in bold:


Because how can we be critical of Crowley for throwing out 40-years in the middle of his calibration, when we’re throwing out all post-1960 data ‘cos the MXD has a non-temperature signal in it, and also all pre-1881 or pre-1871 data ‘cos the temperature data may have a non-temperature signal in it! If we write the Holocene forum article then we’ll have to be critical or our paper as well as Crowley’s!

... Also we have applied a completely artificial adjustment to the data after 1960, so they look closer to observed temperatures than the tree-ring data actually were

Also, we set all post-1960 values to missing in the MXD data set (due to decline), and the method will infill these, estimating them from the real temperatures – another way of “correcting” for the decline, though may be not defensible![Tim Osborne][2]

ddate: Mon, 18 Feb 2002 17:58:49 +100 from: subject: Kelly-paper to: Keith Briffa <>

Keith, I now found the time to read the paper more carefully, together with the figures. I think except of my basic critics (no regard of replication) the results are astonishing good. The trick to substract pdsi-values and to calculate significance in comparison to the previous year does pretty nice hide the information how many of the negative signature years in the 20th century had really been dry years - at least in 1956 the opposite is true. However astonishing interesting results, especially for me the 3-4 years ring widt suppressions following cold winters which you explain by climatic reasons and which I see as medium term reaction on damage in cold winters. So - from my side no hints for changes in the hurry (this week I am overbusy with an everyday course in Dendrochronology for students) but the hope that we will one day find the time to repeat the study a bit more carefully. Cheers Hubert Dr. Hanns Hubert Leuschner Univ. Goettingen -Labor f. Dendrochronologie u. Dendroklimatologie- Von-Siebold-Str. 3a D-37075 Goettingen Phone: +49-551-3912153 [3]

The main point to make, one that Richard seems to be totally oblivious to, is that there is no evidence for loss of sensitivity prior to the 20th century in a large-scale NH sense like that seen in the 20th century. On the other hand, there is evidence that there was not a loss of sensitivity in a large-scale NH sense in my QSR paper (Fig. 6). I acknowledge the weakness in the data prior to about 1200, but even so the regional comparisons only show divergence between north and south in the 20th century, with none indicated during the putative MWP. [Ed Cook]

... I do think that if Richard is suspect, dendro has a real problem [overpeck]

As you probably know, I was originally invited to give a talk on The Topic (a scientific version of the The Troubles in Northern Ireland) that Rosanne gave before the NRC panel....I recommended that Keith give a talk to the NRC panel in my place because, in my estimation, he is the only other person in the world who can discuss in a totally objective way the hockystick and other reconstructions of past temperatures at the methodological level that is really at the heart of all the controversy, e.g. the hockeystick. [Ed Cook] ...Peck--I almost sent this to Susan tonight, copied to you, but then thought I had better run it by you first, quickly. I think that Susan has to be notified--I fear that the tree-ring reconstructions really are in bad shape, and that the IPCC and chapter 6 have a big problem coming up. I'll be in the office tomorrow if you want to call--814???--but I want to notify Susan soon.--Richard [4]

I am not sure whether it is wise to add me to the CA list, just because the reviewer is supposed to be impartial and a CA loses that appearance of impartiality if he has now been included as a CA - may want to check with Susan S. on this one to be sure - still happy to provide advice [Crowley]

My own position on this is that you are an "unofficial" referee, who has (and still is) making a significant contribution - I see no conflict [Briffa] --- What we worry very much about, however, is that we should not produce a Figure that then conflicts with the picture of proxy evidence for Hemispheric mean warmth as a whole,shown in the main Chapter Figure. By showing a composite (as Tom has done) and scaling against another (30-90degrees N) temperature record - this is just what is done. [briffa]



We actually eliminate records with negative correlations (this is mentioned breifly in the GRL article,), and we investigated a variety of weighting schemes to assure the basic robustness of the composite--but I certainly endorse your broader point here. Many of these records have some significant uncertainties or possible sources of bias, and this isn't the place to get into that. [Michael Mann]

... It was a majority decision to leave the Mann and Jones 2000-year series in the Figure 1 (as it was to remove the Briffa and Osborn tree-ring based one) , and the details of the logic used to derive the Mann and Jones series is to be found in the (cited) text of their paper. Signing on to this letter , in my mind. implies agreement with the text and not individual endorsement of all curves by each author. I too have expressed my concern to Phil (and Ray) over the logic that you leave all series you want in but just weight them according to some (sometimes low) correlation (in this case based on decadal values). I also believe some of the series that make up the Chinese record are dubious or obscure , but the same is true of other records Mann and Jones have used (e.g. how do you handle a series in New Zealand that has a -0.25 correlation?) . Further serious problems are still (see my and Tim's Science comment on the Mann 1999 paper) lurking with the correction applied to the Western US tree-ring PC amplitude series used (and shown in Figure 2). There are problems (and limitations ) with ALL series used. At this stage , singling out individual records for added (and unavoidably cursory added description) is not practical. [Keith Briffa][2]

1. There are few tree-core series that extend beyond the early 1980s. This is because many of the sites we're using were cored before the early 1980s. So most tree-ring records just don't exist post 1980. [Phil Jones]

... If you look at the figure in the attached article in Science by Briffa and Osborn, you will note that tree-ring temperature reconstructions are flat from 1950 onward. I asked Mike Mann about this discrepancy at a meeting recently, and he said he didn't have an explanation. It sounded like it is an embarrassment to the tree ring community that their indicator does not seem to be responding to the pronounced warming of the past 50 years. Ed Cook of the Lamont Tree-Ring Lab tells me that there is some speculation that stratospheric ozone depletion may have affected the trees, in which case the pre-1950 record is OK. But alternatively, he says it is possible that the trees have exceeded the linear part of their temperature-sensitive range, and they no longer are stimulated by temperature. In this case there is trouble for the paleo record. Kieth Briffa first documented this late 20th century loss of response.

Personally, I think that the tree ring records should be able to reproduce the instrumental record, as a first test of the validity of this proxy. To me it casts doubt on the integrity of this proxy that it fails this test.

Sincerely, Jeff [Severinghaus][3]

If you examine my Fig 1 closely you will see that the Campito record and Keith's reconstruction from wood density are extraordinarily similar until 1850. After that they differ not only in the lack of long-term trend in Keith's record, but in every other respect - the decadal-scale correlation breaks down. I tried to imply in my e-mail, but will now say it directly, that although a direct carbon dioxide effect is still the best candidate to explain this effect, it is far from proven. In any case, the relevant point is that there is no meaningful correlation with local temperature. Not all high-elevation tree-ring records from the West that might reflect temperature show this upward trend. It is only clear in the driest parts (western) of the region (the Great Basin), above about 3150 meters elevation, in trees old enough (>~800 years) to have lost most of their bark - 'stripbark' trees. As luck would have it, these are precisely the trees that give the chance to build temperature records for most of the Holocene. I am confident that, before AD1850, they do contain a record of decadal-scale growth season temperature variability. I am equally confident that, after that date, they are recording something else. [Malcolm Hughes][4]
date: Mon Nov 13 09:29:49 2006 from: Keith Briffa subject: Re: Mitrie to: "Nanne Weber"

Between you and I , I believe there may be problems with the analysis of the Bristlecone data. We can talk by phone about this Keith [5]

Ice Cores

Hi Keith,

Of course, I agree with you. We both know the probable flaws in Mike's recon, particularly as it relates to the tropical stuff. Your response is also why I chose not to read the published version of his letter. It would be too aggravating. The only way to deal with this whole issue is to show in a detailed study that his estimates are clearly deficient in multi-centennial power, something that you actually did in your Perspectives piece, even if it was not clearly stated because of editorial cuts. It is puzzling to me that a guy as bright as Mike would be so unwilling to evaluate his own work a bit more objectively. Ed [Cook]

I have just read this lettter - and I think it is crap. I am sick to death of Mann stating his reconstruction represents the tropical area just because it contains a few (poorly temperature representative ) tropical series. He is just as capable of regressing these data again any other "target" series , such as the increasing trend of self-opinionated verbage he has produced over the last few years , and ... (better say no more) Keith [Briffa]

At every meeting I go to where Mike gives a talk, he always presents more on why his series is correct. Honestly, most people I talk to think that he is being way too defensive (as we all know too well). In any case, he is coming out with a new NH reconstruction. It will be interesting to see what it looks like. One problem is that he will be using the RegEM method, which provides no better diagnostics (e.g. betas) than his original method. So we will still not know where his estimates are coming from. Cheers, Ed [Cook]

[Met Office/Hadley's Simon Tett] 1) Didn't see a justification for use of tree-rings and not using ice cores -- the obvious one is that ice cores are no good -- see Jones et al, 1998. 2) No justification for regional reconstructions rather than what Mann et al did (I don't think we can say we didn't do Mann et al because we think it is crap!)[6]

Solution 1: fudge the issue. Just accept that we are Fast-trackers and can therefore get away with anything. [Mike Hulme]

In any simple global formula, there should be at least two clearly identifiable sources of uncertainty. One is the sensitivity (d(melt)/dT) and the other is the total available ice. In the TAR, the latter never comes into it in their analysis (i.e., the 'derivation' of the GSIC formula) -- but my point is that it *does* come in by accident due to the quadratic fudge factor. The total volume range is 5-32cm, which is, at the very least, inconsistent with other material in the chapter (see below). 5cm is clearly utterly ridiculous.[Tom Wigley, 2004]

I will press on with trying to work out why the temperature needs a 'fudge factor' along with the poorer modelling for winter. [Colin Harpham, UEA, 2007]

With GCMs the issue is different. Tuning may be a way to fudge the physics. For example, understanding of clouds or aerosols is far from complete - so (ideally) researchers build the "best" model they can within the constraints of physical understanding and computational capacity. Then they tweak parameters to provide a good approximation to observations. It is this context that all the talk about "detuning" is confusing. How does one speak of "detuning" using the same physical models as before? A "detuned" model merely uses a different set of parameters that match observations - it not hard to find multiple combinations of parameters that give the similar model outputs (in complex models with many parameters/degrees of freedom) So how useful is a detuned model that uses old physics? Why is this being seen as some sort of a breakthrough? [Milind Kandlikar]

We had to remove the reference to "700 years in France" as I am not sure what this is , and it is not in the text anyway. The use of "likely" , "very likely" and my additional fudge word "unusual" are all carefully chosen where used. [Keith Briffa, 2004]

Either the scale needs adjusting, or we need to fudge the figures... [Elaine Barrow, UEA, 2005][7]

Coral Dating

cc: Malcolm Hughes

date: Mon, 20 Mar 2006 13:55:44 -0500 from: “Michael E. Mann” subject: [Fwd: Re: Trees] to: Jonathan Overpeck , Keith Briffa

FYI, Mike

From: “Michael E. Mann” Reply-To: Organization: Dept. of Meteorology, Penn State University To: Richard Alley Subject: Re: Trees References:

Hi Richard, Thanks, that sounds reasonable. Let me respond to one point, though. I rebuked Cuffey for asking the wrong question. I pointed out to him that we certainly don’t know the GLOBAL mean temperature anomaly very well, and nobody has ever claimed we do (this is the question he asked everyone). There is very little information at all in the Southern Hemisphere on which to base any conclusion. So I told him that of course the answer to that question is *no* and it would be surprising if anyone answered otherwise. But, as I proceeded to point out, that’s the wrong question. I pointed out that a far more sensible question is, “do we know the relative temperature anomaly for the NORTHERN HEMISPHERE to within that accuracy, and that we almost certainly do know that. I pointed to a comparison of about a dozen different reconstructions, at least one of them based entirely on non-tree ring information, all of which agree within about 0.2 C on average temperature of the 11th century relative to the late 20th century, and suggested that this reflects a reasonable estimate of the uncertainty, though some of the reconstructions are not entirely independent, so the non-independence needs to be taken into account in estimating the true uncertainty–but that this is almost certainly smaller than about 0.2C given the multiple estimates that roughly agree. I then pointed out that we don’t need the global temperature to draw conclusions about the relative roles of different natural and anthropogenic forcings, because the models tell us that the NH alone is a good proxy for the response of the climate system to estimated forcings over the past 1000 years, and that the simulations (also about a dozen now) look very much like the reconstructions, within estimated uncertainties. I could be wrong, but I thought I sensed that the panel was quite satisfied with my answer (and my correction of Cuffey) and that they also probably recognized, in the context of my explanation, that Cuffey had been asking speakers the wrong question! I must confess I was not impressed by Cuffey’s questions. I thought the other panel members asked more insightful questions. But that’s just my view. talk later, mike The question by Richard Alley wrote:

Mike–Thanks. Comments embedded, I hope. On 3/19/06 4:53 PM, “Michael E. Mann” [1] wrote:

Hi Richard, Thanks for your email, and for your earnest views. There was indeed considerable discussion of thes issues on friday, the day after your talk. Both Malcolm Hughes and I discussed these issues in some detail with the committee. Please feel free to take a look at the presentation I gave to the committee: [2] Quite nice. Thanks. There is no doubt that there are issues with the potential non-stationarity of tree responses to climate, and this introduces caveats. As I pointed out to the committee, these issues were actually stressed in our ’99 article which produced the millennial temperature reconstruction, the title of which was (emphasis added) “Northern Hemisphere Temperatures During the Past Millennium: Inferences, Uncertainties, and Limitations“. The underlying assumption of our own work has always been that each of the proxies have their own potential problems, and “multiproxy” approaches are probably the most robust. I don’t have a particular axe to grind about any particular proxy, and recognize that there are some pretty serious potential problems with all proxies, including ice core delta o18 (as you’re aware, these are not clean paleotemperature proxies at all), and Sr/Ca or o18 from corals. There is a good discussion of the strengths and weaknesses in all of the proxies in Jones and Mann (2004): Jones, P.D., Mann, M.E., Climate Over Past Millennia, Reviews of Geophysics, 42, RG2002, doi: 10.1029/2003RG000143, 2004. Agreed completely on value of multiproxy. And yes, a lot of my earlier work was on figuring out how much of the isotopic signal in ice cores is temperature and not other things. The reassuring result was that all the big stuff is temperature, although with a rather bizarrely unexpected calibration. Of the little stuff, stack several cores and you get up toward order of half of the variance being temperature with the rest left for something else. The devil is in the details of when big meets little, as well as what calibration to use. But, there is a pile of data from the 3% of the globe that is ice sheets that have not been assembled properly. I’ve been trying in a quiet way to do what is possible so that the recommendations are forward-going; if the recommendations are appropriate, who knows, maybe money will become available to get someone to pull the data together.

I won’t try to defend Rosanne D’Arrigo’s analysis, because frankly many in the tree-ring community feel it was not very good work.You should be aware that her selection criteria were not as rigorous as those used by other researchers, and the conclusions she comes to reflect only the data and standardization methods she used–they don’t speak for many other, in my mind, more careful studies. If you want the views of the leading experts in this community, I would refer you to my colleagues Malcolm Hughes and Keith Briffa, who have been carefully researching these issues for decades. With your permission, I’d like to forward your email to them for a more informed response–would that be ok? My comments may not be ideally suited for Keith. When I sent inquiry to Overpeck (who coincidentally happens to be one of the convening lead authors of the IPCC paleoclimate chapter), he promptly sent it to several others including Keith. Keith’s reassurances were among those that I found less than reassuring–Rosanne probably screwed it up, there are some unpublished data that make it look better. (Unfortunately, in my switch from my old Sun to my new G4, I can’t find that message and a couple of related ones. I fear that I will repeat this statement a few times in the near future–what was supposed to be an afternoon changeover took three weeks, and a lot of things were in limbo during the interim. I’m now trying to adapt a file system that developed on Suns since 1988 to a different computer…). Ed Cook was also on the list; I can’t for the life of me remember whether Malcolm was or not. So fine to send there, and to Keith if you’d like, but it will probably insult him, and I would hate to do that. >From the questions asked by the community, I really only sensed from one individual the sort of extreme tree-ring skepticism that you describe. And I frankly think the individual proved himself to be not especially informed. The committee appeared to be convinced by the responses I provided to that individual. In short (and please see my presentation for further information) I made the following points: 1) multiproxy reconstructions that don’t use tree-ring information at all for the long-term variability (Moberg et al, 2005) agree w/ all other (roughly a dozen now) reconstructions that late 20th century warmth is anomalous in the context of the past 2000 years at the hemispheric scale. This is one key point (i.e, the take home conclusion doesn’t depend on tree-rings at all!). Another point I made is that the criticism (by some) that tree-rings underestimate the low-frequency variability is seriously challenged by the fact that temperature reconstructions based on data such as northern hemisphere glacier mass balance inversions (i.e. Oerlemans et al, 2005) show less hemispheric LIA cooling than many of the purely tree-ring based reconstructions. Another point I made in response to this line of criticism is that many of the long-term tree-ring series used in these reconstructions (see e.g. the recent Science article by Osborn and Briffa) show late 20th century conditions that are unprecedented in at least a millennial context. That is to say, if there is some upper temperature threshold in the past beyond which trees do not record, they do not appear to have encountered that threshold prior to the late 20th century, because the most positive anomalies in more than a thousand years are encountered in the last 20th century for most regions. The Osborn and Briffa science paper (attached) shows that the conclusion of anomalous 20th century warmth is spatially robust in a pan-hemispheric data set, it does not just reflect one region (in fact, they show that their conclusion of anomalous late 20th century warmth is robust to the elimination of any three data series used). Of course, Lonnie Thompson comes to the same conclusion using composites of his tropical ice cores. i.e., that the late 20th century behavior is anomalous in a greater-than-millennial context. Of course, tropical ice core delta o18 is difficult to defend as a purepaleothermometer too, but in this case it is difficult to see where non-climatic impacts could enter into the anomalous late 20th century behavior. I had read Osborn and Briffa with great interest when it came out. I attach my talk; Lonnie’s data figured prominently. His isotopic ratios have always worried me; he personally is coauthor on a paper pointing out that whatever they are, they probably aren’t temperature. I am more optimistic than that, but not much. And his beautiful stack that looks so much like the instrumental record is almost entirely a couple of cores. But what he does have are i) the loss of annual layering in Quelccaya after more than a millennium; ii) the appearance of melt at the top of Kilimanjaro after more than 10 millennia; and iii) the appearance of organic matter from one of the outlets of Quelccaya after more than 5 millennia. Unfortunately, (iii) is not published yet, (ii) is not as well published as it should be (he noted the appearance of melt in the paper, but the slide I showed is from him and not published, and the details of the physical nature of the cores are not out there), and (iii) is also not published–his papers note the existence of the annual layers and then their loss in isotopes, but the actual deepest level reached is not in the papers but given as a personal communication. The difficulty of spending your life at high altitude or publishing Science papers is that the mundane parts don’t come out so easily. So, in short, while the issues you mention are real (and have been emphasized by those actually working in this area for decades, as well as by us in all of our key publications), the primary conclusions (i.e. that late 20th century warmth is robust in at least a millennial context) appears robust, and is common to reconstructions whether or not they use tree-rings to reconstruct the low-frequency variability. . There is yet another study (embargoed right now in Science) that comes precisely to this same conclusion yet again. I’ll actually be quite surprised if the committee comes to a *different* conclusion from that. Nonetheless, I appreciate your comments and your concerns, and your message does highlight a few issues which would be useful for us to clarify for the committee in case there is still any misunderstanding of the key points I have raised. I surely hope you’re right, but I would wager a beer that they are less favorable than you’d like. I don’t know how you answered, but all the people I heard were asked the same thing: Do we know the temperature of a millennium ago within 0.5 C? All gave some qualified version of “no”. As I said, I’d like to be able to forward your message to Keith and Malcolm, if this is ok w/ you, so that they can provide a perhaps even better informed response to the criticisms you raise. So please let me know if that would be ok… As noted above, I want to get the science right, and if you think appropriate, go ahead. But, I fear that Keith will view them as insulting, and I don’t want to do that. thanks, mike Thank you. Also as noted above, I don’t have time for this… But it is interesting. –Richard

– Michael E. Mann Associate Professor Director, Earth System Science Center (ESSC)

Department of Meteorology Phone: (814) 863-4075 503 Walker Building FAX: (814) 865-3663 The Pennsylvania State University email: [3] University Park, PA 16802-5013[4] [8]

Global Warming Methodology

the results of this study will show that we can probably say a fair bit about <100 year extra-tropical NH temperature variability (at least as far as we believe the proxy estimates), but honestly know f***-all about what the >100 year variability was like with any certainty (i.e. we know with certainty that we know f***-all).[Ed Cook][9]
The odd periods are the 1920s and the period from 1940-60. For the latter if the SSTs were adjusted they would look much better. The 1900s, 1910s for some reason look amazingly good.[10]
Sorry for sounding a bit testy here. I've been fielding a whole raft of questions, comments, and criticisms from Mike Mann, Tom Crowley, and Malcolm Hughes. Some of them useful, many of them tiresome or besides the point. I never wanted to get involved in this quixotic game of producing the next great NH temperature reconstruction because of the professional politics and sensitivities involved...I should also say that the amount of ignorance about tree rings in the global change/paleo/modeling community is staggering given what has been published. Like it or not, they simply don't read our papers.).

... This all reinforces my determination to leave this NH/global temperature reconstruction junk behind me once I get this paper submitted. It's not worth the aggravation. [Ed Cook][11]

I am increasingly unconvinced by the majority of climate impact studies - including some of those I am involved in - and feel we are not really giving the right message to our audiences.[Mike Hulme][12]
All methods strongly underestimates the amplitude of low-frequency variability and trends. This means that it is almost impossible to conclude from reconstruction studies that the present period is warmer than any period in the reconstructed period.[Bo Christiansen][13]
in the past five years, climate researchers have growing increasingly aware of how little they really know about the natural variability from which they must pick out the "signal" of human influence.[Fred Pearce][14]
From: GIORGI FILIPPO To: Chapter 10 LAs -- Congbin Fu , GIORGI FILIPPO , Bruce Hewitson , Mike Hulme , Jens Christensen , Linda Mearns , Richard Jones , Hans von Storch , Peter Whetton Subject: On "what to do?" Date: Mon, 11 Sep 2000 16:58:02 +0200 ???(MET DST)

...First let me say that in general, as my own opinion, I feel rather unconfortable about using not only unpublished but also un reviewed material as the backbone of our conclusions (or any conclusions). I realize that chapter 9 is including SRES stuff, and thus we can and need to do that too, but the fact is that in doing so the rules of IPCC have been softened to the point that in this way the IPCC is not any more an assessment of published science (which is its proclaimed goal) but production of results. The softened condition that the models themself have to be published does not even apply because the Japanese model for example is very different from the published one which gave results not even close to the actual outlier version (in the old dataset the CCC model was the outlier). Essentially, I feel that at this point there are very little rules and almost anything goes. I think this will set a dangerous precedent which might mine the IPCC credibility, and I am a bit unconfortable that now nearly everybody seems to think that it is just ok to do this. Anyways, this is only my opinion for what it is worth.[15]

Phil, Here are some speculations on correcting SSTs to partly explain the 1940s warming blip. If you look at the attached plot you will see that the land also shows the 1940s blip (as I'm sure you know). So, if we could reduce the ocean blip by, say, 0.15 degC, then this would be significant for the global mean -- but we'd still have to explain the land blip. I've chosen 0.15 here deliberately. This still leaves an ocean blip, and i think one needs to have some form of ocean blip to explain the land blip (via either some common forcing, or ocean forcing land, or vice versa, or all of these). When you look at other blips, the land blips are 1.5 to 2 times (roughly) the ocean blips -- higher sensitivity plus thermal inertia effects. My 0.15 adjustment leaves things consistent with this, so you can see where I am coming from. Removing ENSO does not affect this. It would be good to remove at least part of the 1940s blip, but we are still left with "why the blip". [Tom Wigley, to Phil Jones and Ben Santer][16]
[David Thompson] As for the dip in 1945. After iterating with John Kennedy, it appears that the dip in 1945 corresponds to a sudden drop in US measurements in Aug 1945 (the US measurements were known to be biased warm, so the cooling is consistent with the loss of US data). But it is also now clear that the SST is fraught with many instrument changes between the 30s and 1961. So a conclusion we'll likely make is that the trend in SSTs between 1900 and the present is

reliable, but the behavior of the time series from the 1930s to the 1960s is not. That the data are so unreliable between the 30s and 60s means we don't know for sure what happened in terms of global-mean temperatures during that period. In fact, if you blank out the data from the 30s to the 60s, you can actually imagine the globe warming weakly but continuously during that period... Hence, the only real evidence we have of a midcentury about-turn in global warming comes from the land data.[17]

Date: Thu Mar 27 16:46:23 2008 from: Phil Jones subject: Re: Truncating tem series before filtering to: Mike Salmon

Mike, Good. I doubt if any of them will notice. Cheers Phil At 16:44 27/03/2008, you wrote:

Hi Phil, [1] now has the final year removed if incomplete. Batten hatches and prepare for Skeptix! Mike

Prof. Phil Jones Climatic Research Unit Telephone +44 ??? School of Environmental Sciences Fax +44 ??? University of East Anglia Norwich Email ??? NR4 7TJ UK [18]

What has struck me is how different an impression one gets of the 20th century change if one puts one's finger over the war year results--just seems very suspicious, and my recollection is that you are already making some pretty large adjustments over that period to things like nighttime marine air temperature (due to more measurements being near the wheelhouse instead of at the bow of the ship, etc.). [Mike MacCracken]

I think there was also an important and unfortunate psychological result of the 1940s high pointnamely it hid the early human influences and so let the argument be made that natural variability (internal and external) was larger than it has been, so the problem was not as bad as it really is. I have for quite a number of years asked people to put their finger over the WWII period and then look at the global record, and one gets a quite different impression of hat has been happening and its relation to human activities, etc. Basically, now, it will seem much more evident that human activities started earlier. [Mike MacCracken][19]

With 243 stations needing adjustments, and 728 used, I presume the other 485 were considered to be OK without adjustment.[Phil Jones][20]
Many of us were pleasantly surprised that our leading scientific societies have recently adopted such strong statements as to the reality and seriousness of anthropogenic climate change. There really is a scientific consensus, and it cannot be refuted or disproved by attacking any single data set.

I also think people need to come to understand that the scientific uncertainties work both ways. We don't understand cloud feedbacks. We don't understand air-sea interactions. We don't understand aerosol indirect effects. The list is long. Singer will say that uncertainties like these mean models lack veracity and can safely be ignored. What seems highly unlikely to me is that each of these uncertainties is going to make the climate system more robust against change. It is just as likely a priori that a poorly understood bit of physics might be a positive as a negative feedback.[21]

cc: "Folland, Chris" <>,, Keith Briffa <>, "Brohan, Philip" <>, date: Wed, 23 Feb 2005 12:29:03 +0100 from: subject: Re: FW: More on the "Hocky Stick" to: "Tett, Simon" <>

Simon, I think one should list three publications which have stirred some disucsions, namely ours, the one by Anders Moberg and colleagues and Steve Mcintyre's in GRL. I would assign the following significance ot these articles (just among us, please): -- ours: methodical basis for hockey stick reconstruction is weak; discussion was unwisely limited by IPCC declaring MBH to be "true". (Stupid, politicized action by IPCC, not MBH's responsbilkity. IPCC did one more of these silly oversellings - by showing the damage curve by Munich Re without proper caveat in the fig caption); -- Moberg: an alternative suggestion - this may turn out to be more or lesa accurate at a later time, but it is at least a serious hypothesis, which is consistent with the independent bore hole reconstruction and our model simulations. -- Mc&Mc: As far as I can say (we did not redo the analysis, but Francis Zwires did) the identfied glitch is real. One should not do it this way. ...Cheers Hans Hans von Storch ... Keith/Hans/Chris, Defra do ask the impossible! Can you help me? Are there other papers I should be aware of? Hans/Chris are the statistical criticisms of Mackintyre and McKitrick OK? Philip -- do you have any thoughts? [Beyond that the paleo community cannot do stats!] (Keith/Hans we can claim to the EU that SOAP is informing policy now!) Simon Dr Simon Tett Managing Scientist, Data development and applications. Met Office Hadley Centre (Reading Unit)[22]

[Phil Jones] I've shown that the borehole data in Europe agree well with the long instrumental data in both the UK and Europe. The biggest differences/problems seem to come with the North American borehole data, which show the 16/17/18th data much cooler than the European/Asian/African data in the 16/17th century. I'm still reminded by the potential effects of land-use changes, principally in the eastern US, which could be making your North American series too cool. I realise you've taken great care with the selection, but this is a nagging doubt and will be picked up by the few skeptics trying to divide us all about the course of change over the last millennium.[23]

Freedom of Information Act Sidestepping

[Phil Jones] When the FOI requests began here, the FOI person said we had to abide by the requests. It took a couple of half hour sessions - one at a screen, to convince them otherwise showing them what CA was all about. Once they became aware of the types of people we were dealing with, everyone at UEA (in the registry and in the Environmental Sciences school - the head of school and a few others) became very supportive.

...At 01:17 03/12/2008, Ben Santer wrote:

...One of the problems is that I'm caught in a real Catch-22 situation. At present, I'm damned and publicly vilified because I refused to provide McIntyre with the data he requested. But had I acceded to McIntyre's initial request for climate model data, I'm convinced (based on the past experiences of Mike Mann, Phil, and Gavin) that I would have spent years of my scientific career dealing with demands for further explanations, additional data, Fortran code, etc. (Phil has been complying with FOIA requests from McIntyre and his cronies for over two years). And if I ever denied a single request for further information, McIntyre would have rubbed his hands gleefully and written: "You see - he's guilty as charged!" on his website.You and I have spent over a decade of our scientific careers on the MSU issue, Tom. During much of that time, we've had to do science in "reactive mode", responding to the latest outrageous claims and inept science by John Christy, David Douglass, or S. Fred Singer. For the remainder of my scientific career, I'd like to dictate my own research agenda. I don't want that agenda driven by the constant need to respond to Christy, Douglass, and Singer. And I certainly don't want to spend years of my life interacting with the likes of Steven McIntyre.

I hope LLNL management will provide me with their full support. If they do not, I'm fully prepared to seek employment elsewhere.[24]

Any work we have done in the past is done on the back of the research grants we get – and has to be well hidden. I’ve discussed this with the main funder (US Dept of Energy) in the past and they are happy about not releasing the original station data.[Phil Jones][25]
I’ve been told that IPCC is above national FOI Acts. One way to cover yourself and all those working in AR5 would be to delete all emails at the end of the process[Phil Jones][26]
Dear Phil I am sorry that Peter was so aggressive rather than just sharp. Not really like that as you know. I think he got overenthusiastic because of the nature of some of the CCSP exchanges on vertical temperature trends between other scientists which have not helped the cause of gentlemanly conduct or clear thinking for that matter. Not a good example! The job of an IPCC reviewer at the ZOD stage is to make positive suggestions to help the Strawman along and not to be too critical. In the IPCC TAR at the ZOD stage we were fortunate that this was realised, though we did try and create this atmosphere in covering emails. I will have a look at the chapter soon. Cheers Chris Professor Chris Folland

... [Peter Thorne] There is little effective communication in the main text of the uncertainty that is inherent in these measures due to the poor quality of the underlying data and metadata and to the choices made - "structural uncertainty". It seems that a decision has been made that RSS and the Fu et al. method are "right" or at least "most right" and this is what we will put forward as gospel truth almost. Other datasets are given a cursory once over almost. This completely ignores legitimate concerns that "structural uncertainty" is large aloft - seemingly reasonable choices made as to how you homogenise and then analyse the data can have very large effects. This is not at all clearly communicated in the current draft.[27]

FOI is causing us a lot of problems in CRU and even more for Dave, as he has to respond to them all. It would be good if UEA went along with any other Universities who might be lobbying to remove academic research activities from FOI. FOI is having an impact on my research productivity. I also write references for people leaving CRU, students and others. If I have to write a poor one, I make sure I get the truth to the recipient in a phone call. I'm also much less helpful responding to members of the public who email CRU regularly than I was 2-3 years ago. I've seen some of what I considered private and frank emails appear on websites. Issue here is blogsites have allowed these climate change deniers to find one another around the world. Cheers Phil [28]
From: Phil Jones To: "Tas van Ommen" Subject: Re: FW: Law Dome O18 Date: Mon Feb 9 09:23:43 2004 Cc: ???

Dear Tas, Thanks for the email. Steve McIntyre hasn't contacted me directly about Law Dome (yet), nor about any of the series used in the 1998 Holocene paper or the 2003 GRL one with Mike. I suspect (hope) that he won't. I had some emails with him a few years ago when he wanted to get all the station temperature data we use here in CRU. At that time, I hid behind the fact that some of the data had been received from individuals and not directly from Met Services through the Global Telecommunications Service (GTS) or through GCOS.[29]


Do I understand it correctly – if he doesn’t pay the £10 we don’t have to respond?

With the earlier FOI requests re David Holland, I wasted a part of a day deleting numerous emails and exchanges with almost all the skeptics. So I have virtually nothing. I even deleted the email that I inadvertently sent. There might be some bits of pieces of paper, but I’m not wasting my time going through these.

Cheers Phil

Two years ago, someone hacked into a University of East Anglia server and anonymously posted thousands of emails from climate scientists. Quickly dubbed "Climategate", global warming deniers jumped on this, trying to show that these scientists were engaging in fraudulent activities. However, it was clear to anyone familiar with how research is done that this was complete and utter bilge; the scientists were not trying to hide anything, were not trying to trick anyone, and were not trying to falsely exaggerate the dangers of climate change.

Mike, This is for YOURS EYES ONLY. Delete after reading - please ! I'm trying to redress the balance. One reply from Pfister said you should make all available !! Pot calling the kettle black - Christian doesn't make his methods available. I replied to the wrong Christian message so you don't get to see what he said. Probably best. Told Steve separately and to get more advice from a few others as well as Kluwer and legal. PLEASE DELETE - just for you, not even Ray and Malcolm

Cheers Phil [30]

It is distressing to read that American Stinker item. But Keith does seem to have got himself into a mess. As I pointed out in emails, Yamal is insignificant. And you say that (contrary to what M&M say) Yamal is *not* used in MBH, etc. So these facts alone are enough to shoot down M&M is a few sentences (which surely is the only way to go -- complex and wordy responses will be counter productive). But, more generally, (even if it *is* irrelevant) how does Keith explain the McIntyre plot that compares Yamal-12 with Yamal-all? And how does he explain the apparent "selection" of the less well-replicated chronology rather that the later (better replicated) chronology? Of course, I don't know how often Yamal-12 has really been used in recent, post-1995, work. I suspect from what you say it is much less often that M&M say -- but where did they get their information? I presume they went thru papers to see if Yamal was cited, a pretty foolproof method if you ask me. Perhaps these things can be explained clearly and concisely -- but I am not sure Keith is able to do this as he is too close to the issue and probably quite pissed of. And the issue of with-holding data is still a hot potato, one that affects both you and Keith (and Mann). Yes, there are reasons -- but many *good* scientists appear to be unsympathetic to these. The trouble here is that with-holding data looks like hiding something, and hiding means (in some eyes) that it is bogus science that is being hidden. I think Keith needs to be very, very careful in how he handles this. I'd be willing to check over anything he puts together. Tom.[31]
They've [McKitrick et al] been making threats against NSF about supposed data policies and even against Ray, Tom Crowley, and others too, claiming that they have a right to all of our data and computer programs (the hubris!). Confidentially, NSF lawyers have found their threats baseless as well as obnoxious, and will be telling them formally that NSF policy in no way legally requires funded scientists to provided their data (let alone computer codes!) for public access, but scientists are *encouraged* to provide their data. NSF will be telling them to stop pestering them. I'm forwarding a formal email (based on numerous informal discussion w/ Dave Verardo) to NSF, which is confidential (!), that provides some more information.... As we all know, we had made all of our data available previously, so the accusations by these bozos are baselss, though we agree that we would have given more care to the completeness of documentation had we known a stunt like this was to be pulled by the contrarians..[Michael Mann][32]
Wei-Chyung, Tom,

I won't be replying to either of the emails below, nor to any of the accusations on the Climate Audit website.

I've sent them on to someone here at UEA to see if we should be discussing anything with our legal staff.

The second letter seems an attempt to be nice to me, and somehow split up the original author team.

I do now wish I'd never sent them the data after their FOIA request!

Cheers Phil [33]

Ethics Breaches

[2009 email, Mike Mann to Phil Jones] On a completely unrelated note, I was wondering if you, perhaps in tandem w/ some of the other usual suspects, might be interested in returning the favor this year ;) I've looked over the current list of AGU fellows, and it seems to me that there are quite a few who have gotten in (e.g. Kurt Cuffey, Amy Clement, and many others) who aren't as far along as me in their careers, so I think I ought to be a strong candidate. anyway, I don't want to pressure you in any way, but if you think you'd be willing to help organize,I would naturally be much obliged. Perhaps you could convince Ray or Malcolm to take the lead? The deadline looks as if it is again July 1 this year. looking forward to catching up w/ you sometime soon, probably at some exotic location of Henry's choosing ;) mike [34]
BUT this must be done calmly , and in the meantime a restrained statement but out saying we have full confidence in Mike's objectivity and independence - which we can not say of the sceptics.

In fact I am moved tomorrow to contact Nature and urge them to do an editorial on this . The political machinations in Washington should NOT dictate the agenda or scheduling of the work - but some cool statement can be made saying we believe the "prats have really f***ed up someway" - and that the premature publication of their paper is reprehensible . Much of the detail in Mikes response though is not sensible (sorry Mike) and is rising to their bate. Keith At 11:55 AM 10/30/03 -0500, raymond s. bradley wrote:

Tim, Phil, Keef: I suggest a way out of this mess. Because of the complexity of the arguments involved, to an uniformed observer it all might be viewed as just scientific nit-picking by "for" and "against" global warming proponents. However, if an "independent group" such as you guys at CRU could make a statement as to whether the M&M effort is truly an "audit", and if they did it right, I think that would go a long way to defusing the issue... a quick and forceful statement from The Distinguished CRU Boys would help quash further arguments, although here, at least, it is already quite out of control.....yesterday in the US Senate the debate opened on the McCain-Lieberman bill to control CO2 emissions from power plants. Sen Inhofe stood up & showed the M & M figure and stated that Mann et al--& the IPCC assessment --was now disproven and so there was no reason to control CO2 emissions.....I wonder how many times a "scientific" paper gets reported on in the Senate 3 days after it is published.... Ray [35]

Sexing-up evidence is so easy to do, isn't it? Reading your letter in the EDP today makes me wonder who your source inside the Tyndall Centre was supplying you with such exaggerated evidence? Surely it wasn't me, was it? Treating Dick Lindzen with the esteem of flat- earthers; could this claim have been inserted by politicians seeking to make a dramatic point to their audience? Or was it really what the experts in the Tyndall Centre think? Perhaps we need an enquiry. Don't worry - I'm not thinking of committing suicide should I be exposed as the source of this story; but then again, it couldn't have been me, could it? I didn't say that after all; all I said was that we are well aware of Dick Lindzen and his arguments (in fact, Dick Lindzen is a pretty smart meteorologist who just takes a more cautious view of the scientific evidence for human causes of global warming; similar in caution in some ways to David Kelly even).

Yes, sexing-up is so easy to do. Be warned. Mike [36]

From: Joseph Alcamo <> To:, Subject: Timing, Distribution of the Statement Date: Thu, 9 Oct 1997 18:52:33 0100 Reply-to:

Mike, Rob,

Sounds like you guys have been busy doing good things for the cause.

I would like to weigh in on two important questions --

Distribution for Endorsements -- I am very strongly in favor of as wide and rapid a distribution as possible for endorsements. I think the only thing that counts is numbers. The media is going to say "1000 scientists signed" or "1500 signed". No one is going to check if it is 600 with PhDs versus 2000 without. They will mention the prominent ones, but that is a different story.

Conclusion -- Forget the screening, forget asking them about their last publication (most will ignore you.) Get those names!

Timing -- I feel strongly that the week of 24 November is too late. 1. We wanted to announce the Statement in the period when there was a sag in related news, but in the week before Kyoto we should expect that we will have to crowd out many other articles about climate. 2. If the Statement comes out just a few days before Kyoto I am afraid that the delegates who we want to influence will not have any time to pay attention to it. We should give them a few weeks to hear about it. 3. If Greenpeace is having an event the week before, we should have it a week before them so that they and other NGOs can further spread the word about the Statement. On the other hand, it wouldn't be so bad to release the Statement in the same week, but on a diffeent day. The media might enjoy hearing the message from two very different directions.

Prof. Dr. Joseph Alcamo, Director Center for Environmental Systems Research University of Kassel Kurt Wolters Strasse 3 D-34109 Kassel Germany [37]


We want to avoid any accusation that you are trying to get people fired because they disagree with you. Best, Annie...Annie Ogden, Head of Communications, University of East Anglia

...Since Sonja retired I am a lot more free to push my environmental interests without ongoing critique of my motives and supposed misguidedness - I've signed my department up to 10:10 campaign and have a taskforce of staff and students involved in it.... Every now and then people say to me sotto voce with some bemusement, 'and when Sonja finds out, how will you explain it to her...!' The thought is whether we should follow the same course with these two at Anglia Ruskin and Oxford? I'm away tomorrow and Mon/Tues next week. Cheers Phil [38]

[Santer] John Christy is not a good scientist. I'm not a religious man, but I'm sure willing to thank some higher authority that Dr. John Christy is not the"gatekeeper" of what constitutes sound science.

[Christy] This gets to the issue that the "consensus" reports now are just the consensus of those who agree with the consensus. The government-selected authors have become gatekeepers rather than honest brokers of information. That is a real tragedy, because when someone becomes a gatekeeper, they don't know they've become a gatekeeper - and begin to (sincerely) think the non-consensus scientists are just nuts (... it's more comfortable that way rather than giving them credit for being skeptical in the face of a paradigm).[39]

Thanks Mike

It seems to me that this "Kinne" character's words are disingenuous, and he probably supports what De Freitas is trying to do. It seems clear we have to go above him. I think that the community should, as Mike H has previously suggested in this eventuality, terminate its involvement with this journal at all levels--reviewing, editing, and submitting, and leave it to wither way into oblivion and disrepute, Thanks, mike [40]

[Phil Jones]Susan offered John Mitchell some advice, but that was all. She did get tough with McIntyre when he began requesting in press/submitted papers that were referred to in AR4 drafts - saying he couldn't do an adequate review without seeing them. He stopped once she threatened to remove him from the reviewer's list.

--- What will amuse is the paragraph about structured archiving. As you both know Keith and me work on the sedimentary sequence approach to filing![41]

I responded to [Chris Landsea's] earlier message in a fairly low key fashion. I think he has behaved irresponsibly and ought to be fired by NOAA for not have an open

enough mind to even consider that climate change might be affecting hurricanes. I am quickly becoming outraged by this and I hope it backfires on him!!!! Kevin [Trenberth][42]

PS Re CR, I do not know the best way to handle the specifics of the editoring. Hans von Storch is partly to blame -- he encourages the publication of crap science 'in order to stimulate debate'. One approach is to go direct to the publishers and point out the fact that their journal is perceived as being a medium for disseminating misinformation under the guise of refereed work. I use the word 'perceived' here, since whether it is true or not is not what the publishers care about -- it is how the journal is seen by the community that counts.

I think we could get a large group of highly credentialed scientists to sign such a letter -- 50+ people.

Note that I am copying this view only to Mike Hulme and Phil Jones. Mike's idea to get editorial board members to resign will probably not work -- must get rid of von Storch too, otherwise holes will eventually fill up with people like Legates, Balling, Lindzen, Michaels, Singer, etc. I have heard that the publishers are not happy with von Storch, so the above approach might remove that hurdle too. [Tom Wigley][43]

In my personal opinion, Michaels should be kicked out of the AMS, the University of Virginia, and the scientific community as a whole. He cannot on the one hand engage in vicious public attacks on the reputations of individual scientists (in the past he has attacked Tom Karl, Tom Wigley, Jim Hansen, Mike Mann, myself, and numerous others), and on the other hand expect to be treated as a valued member of our professional societies.

The sad thing here is that Phil Jones is one of the true gentlemen of our field. I have known Phil for most of my scientific career. He is the antithesis of the secretive, "data destroying" character the CEI and Michaels are trying to portray to the outside world. Phil and Tom Wigley have devoted significant portions of their scientific careers to the construction of the land surface temperature component of the HadCRUT dataset. They have conducted this research in a very open and transparent manner - examining sensitivities to different gridding algorithms, different ways of adjusting for urbanization effects, use of various subsets of data, different ways of dealing with changes in spatial coverage over time, etc. They have thoroughly and comprehensively documented all of their dataset construction choices. They have done a tremendous service to the scientific community - and to the planet - by making gridded surface temperature datasets available for scientific research. They deserve medals as big as soup plates - not the kind of crap they are receiving from Pat Michaels and the CEI.[Ben Santer][44]

David - here are some relevant excerpts from an essay recently published by von Storch:

"...there is indeed a serious problem for the natural sciences: namely, the public depiction and perception of climate change. Research has landed in a crisis because its public actors assert themselves on the saturated market of discussion by overselling the topic....

...The costs of stirring up fear are high... A scarce resource - public attention and trust in the reliability of science - is used up without being renewed by the practice of positive examples...

...The concealment of dissent and uncertainty in favor of a politically good cause takes its toll on credibility, for the public is more intelligent than is usually assumed. In the long term, these allegedly so helpful dramatizations achieve the opposite of that which they wish to achieve."[45]

Susan Solomon was here on Tuesday getting an honorary degree. She says we will

have to deal with all these crackpots in the IPCC ! There will be a number in the atmos obs, paleo and in your chapter I suspect - will likely be the hardest bits to write. Still awaiting from you a revised draft to comment for IDAG. As for your email, there was some press activity related to this skeptic [Timo Hämeranta?] below, but managed to talk the BBC out of doing anything.[46]

Solar Warming

Simon Tett and I went to conference that the press releases relates to. This was in Tenerife last week. The conference was entitled solar variability and climate, but climatologists were very thin on the ground...Many in the solar terrestrial physics community seem totally convinced that solar output changes can explain most of the observed changes we are seeing. The far-sighted ones are begining to doubt with the rapid rate of recent warming, however.

... There was nothing new at the conference, but the solar terrestrial group are not going to go away. The next IPCC report may keep them quiet for a while, but trying to downplay solar influences in thier mind will probably be impossible. As with the greenhouse skeptics they are so set in their ways and have little comprehension of our literature beyond what they read in Science and Nature.[Phil Jones][47]

The range of scientific opinion is quite broad on the topic of how much climate variability and change is driven by solar variations. Nevertheless, as more observational data and improved statistical analysis techniques become available, it is becoming increasingly obvious that solar variations are important. For temperature, many scientists now feel that natural solar variations were the main contributor to the early 20th century warming that occurred between about 1910 and 1950. The dramatic warming since 1980, however, cannot be explained by changes in solar output. [UEA's Tim Osborn, Nov 2000][48]

Medieval Warming Period and Little Ice Age

But it will be very difficult to make the MWP [Medieval Warm Period] go away in Greenland.[Pollack][49]
date: Wed, 30 Aug 2000 14:07:38 -0400

from: Ed Cook subject: Oroko Swamp to: Keith Briffa

Hi Keith,

Here is the Oroko Swamp RCS chronology plot in an attached Word 98 file and actual data values below. It certainly looks pretty spooky to me with strong "Medieval Warm Period" and "Little Ice Age" signals in it. It's based on substantially more replication than the series in the paper you have to review (hint, hint!)...[Ed Cook][50]

It is important to learn about past climate change, especially over the past 1000 years, but it is even important to use new and improved evidence from proxy sources (i.e. not to cling to outdated concepts of the past such as the MWP and LIA). How can we ever hope to progress if we have conform to incorrect concepts? On the early mid-20th century warming - look at the figures in Ch 9. The decrease from 1940-75 didn't happen if you look at global records. MBH was published in 1998 and wasn't just a tree-ring study. [Phil Jones][51]
Hi Phil, Kevin, Mike, Susan and Ben - I'm looking for some IPCC-related advice, so thanks in advance. The email below recently came in and I googled "We have to get rid of the warm medieval period" and "Overpeck" and indeed, there is a person David Deeming that attributes the quote to an email from me. He apparently did mention the quote (but I don't think me) in a Senate hearing. His "news" (often with attribution to me) appears to be getting widespread coverage on the internet. It is upsetting.

I have no memory of emailing w/ him, nor any record of doing so (I need to do an exhaustive search I guess), nor any memory of him period. I assume it is possible that I emailed w/ him long ago, and that he's taking the quote out of context, since know I would never have said what he's saying I would have, at least in the context he is implying.

Any idea what my reaction should be? I usually ignore this kind of misinformation, but I can imagine that it could take on a life of it's own and that I might want to deal with it now, rather than later. I could - as the person below suggests - make a quick statement on a web site that the attribution to me is false, but I suspect that this Deeming guy could then produce a fake email. I would then say it's fake. Or just ignore? Or something else?[52]