Saturday, April 14, 2012


date: Mon, 27 Sep 1999 13:52:32 +0100 (GMT Daylight Time)
from: Julie Burgess <>
subject: first email

Here it is Keith.

27 September 1999


*Re EC proposal/(Prescient also)*

Sorry to be slow in getting something to you - other things etc�

As regards our phone conversation, my recollection is that you (Had. Cen.)
would consider being a partner in an application to the EC under the second
call of Framework 5. The likely call date is 15th November for final
submission by 15th February.

My idea is to submit under the "Natural Variability" heading but to offer a
specific focus on how to answer the need to test the veracity of control run
variability in European GCMs, without external forcing and the 'sensitivity'
and realism of this variability to the inclusion of natural forcings (volcanoes
and solar) in Had. Cen. models (2 + 3 - see later) and also in Hamburg model
data (with Cubasch(?) as another partner).

The "research task" is to quantify the likelihood of genuine "detection" of
anthropogenic warming by comparing enhanced greenhouse gas perturbed output on
regional and global scales with the unforced and 'natural' forced output
involving comparison of the above with selected palaeodata, calibrated (with
explicit uncertainty) in degrees Celsius for different periods (see later).

In practice, the work is a continuation of our ongoing collaboration and could
make use of ideas in the current NERC project (Tim Osborn) and follow on from
your recent volcanic and solar forced runs. It will complement and extend this
work (as will our future collaboration under PRESCIENT). It will be necessary
to put together and improve/update palaeodata sets and forcing data sets and do
carefully chosen runs of HadCen2 and HadCen3, looking at different timescales.
We discussed possible new model runs:

A longer (1000 year) run of HadCM2 - I now think 2 x 500 year runs would be
better - with revised volcanic and solar forcing (based on acidity data in ice
cores and Be/Milankovitch) - in association with runs you've already done) -
these can be compared with our, and other, palaeodata.

Last few hundred years (or ensemble) with HadCM3 to explore recent patterns and
rates of change against palaeo and instrumental data and also detailed
exploration of certain time windows, e.g. representing specific eruptions
(1600, 1815, etc.) or anomalous periods (around 1000 A.D., around 1640s).

Explore behaviour or responses of specific climate processes (e.g. AO/NAO;
ENSO, TPI) as well as larger spatial responses and global mean.

The above will involve detailed comparisons with the best palaeo and
instrumental data we can assemble (with heavy emphasis on our recent tree-ring

The implications for veracity of forced/unforced run variability as gauged
against the palaeodata will be a constant theme and then uncertainty of
unprecedented warming at global/hemispheric/regional scale quantified.

>From our point of view, a major task is continuing development of long
chronologies (Swedish, Finnish, Germany, and Russian partners - these working
on multimillennial chronologies and tree line movements) and updating of our
denser network of multicentury chronologies (with Swiss and the Russian
colleagues, perhaps involving work in Tibet also). This work is necessary to
explore the 'decline' phenomenon (loss of decadal timescale temperature
response in densitometric chronologies) over recent decades. This has
implications for carbon cycle and I wonder whether we should involve a partner
to look specifically at this? Any ideas of linking this to model data? The
network updating should, anyway, be part of an international initiative (wider
than the EC) including Canadians, and Americans, as the task is enormous. I
will be contacting various laboratories to push this idea and these other labs
could apply for support from their own funders (NSF, Canadian Government).

These are just initial thoughts as we discussed them on the 'phone. This is to
get the ball rolling. Did you talk to John? What do you think?

Keith Briffa

Julie Burgess
Climatic Research Unit
University of East Anglia
Norwich NR4 7TJ
Tel. +44 (0)1603 592722
Fax. +44 (0) 1603 507784
CRU web site:

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