date: Thu, 08 Oct 2009 19:27:04 -0400
from: Mike MacCracken <mmaccracatXYZxyzcast.net>
subject: FW: CEI formal petition to derail EPA GHG endangerment finding
to: Phil Jones <P.JonesatXYZxyz.ac.uk>
Hi Phil--In case you have not seen the latest charge of the Skeptics (I'm not sure how the
Briffa dust-up is related), but indeed, as the US gets closer to Congressional action, the
anti's are making as much commotion as they can. Are you all putting something out on these
things? If not over there, someone over here will likely have to do.
------ Forwarded Message
From: "Rick Piltz (Web-based)" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, 08 Oct 2009 17:47:50 -0400
To: Tom Wigley <email@example.com>, Tom Karl <Thomas.R.Karl@noaa.gov>, Jim Hansen
Cc: Bob Watson <Robert.Watson@defra.gsi.gov.uk>, Ben Santer <firstname.lastname@example.org>, Mike
Subject: CEI formal petition to derail EPA GHG endangerment finding with charge that
destruction of CRU raw data undermines integrity of global temperature record
I expect that you have already been made aware of the petition to EPA from the Competitive
Enterprise Institute (and Pat Michaels) calling for a re-opening of public comment on EPA's
prospective "endangerment" finding on greenhouse gases. CEI is charging that the CRU at
East Anglia has destroyed the raw data for a portion of the global temperature record, thus
destroying the integrity of the IPCC assessments and any other work that treats the UK
Jones-Wigley global temperature data record as scientifically legitimate. I have attached
the petition in PDF, with a statements by CEI and Michaels.
The story was reported in Environment & Energy Daily yesterday (below). They called me for
it, presumably because I am on their call list as someone who gets in the face of the
global warming disinformation campaign, among other things. I hit CEI, but I don't have a
technical response to their allegations.
Who is responding to this charge on behalf of the science community? Surely someone will
have to, if only because EPA will need to know exactly what to say. And really I believe
all of you, as the authoritative experts, should be prepared to do that in a way that has
some collective coherence.
I am going to be writing about this on my Climate Science Watch Website as soon as I think
I can do so appropriately. I am most interested in what you have to say to set the record
straight and put things in perspective -- either on or off the record, whichever you wish.
Will someone please explain this to me?
1. CLIMATE: Free-market group attacks data behind EPA 'endangerment' proposal (E&E News PM,
Robin Bravender, E&E reporter
A free-market advocacy group has launched another attack on the science behind U.S. EPA's
proposed finding that greenhouse gases endanger human health and welfare.
The Competitive Enterprise Institute -- a vocal foe of EPA's efforts to finalize its
"endangerment finding" -- petitioned
<http://www.eenews.net/features/documents/2009/10/07/document_pm_02.pdf> the agency this
week to reopen the public comment period on the proposal, arguing that critical data used
to formulate the plan have been destroyed and that the available data are therefore
At issue is a set of raw data from the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East
Anglia in Norwich, England, that includes surface temperature averages from weather
stations around the world. According to CEI, the data provided a foundation for the 1996
second assessment report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which EPA used
when drafting its endangerment proposal.
According to the Web site for East Anglia's research unit, "Data storage availability in
the 1980s meant that we were not able to keep the multiple sources for some sites, only the
station series after adjustment for homogeneity issues. We, therefore, do not hold the
original raw data but only the value-added (i.e. quality controlled and homogenized) data."
CEI general counsel Sam Kazman said this lack of raw data calls the endangerment finding
into question. "EPA is resting its case on international studies that in turn relied on CRU
data. But CRU's suspicious destruction of its original data, disclosed at this late date,
makes that information totally unreliable," he said. "If EPA doesn't re-examine the
implications of this, it's stumbling blindly into the most important regulatory issue we
In a statement filed with CEI's petition, Cato Institute senior fellow Patrick Michaels
called the development a "totally new element" in the endangerment debate. "It violates
basic scientific principles and throws even more doubt onto the contention that
anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions endanger human welfare," he wrote.
Michaels is a University of Virginia professor and author of the book, "The Satanic Gases:
Clearing the Air about Global Warming." He stepped down from his post as Virginia's state
climatologist in 2007 after he came under fire for publicly doubting global warming while
taking money from the utility industry ( Greenwire
<http://eenews.net/Greenwire/2007/09/27/archive/9> , Sept. 27, 2007).
Representatives of East Anglia University's Climatic Research Unit were not available to
comment on the CEI petition.
EPA spokeswoman Adora Andy said the agency will evaluate the petition. "But after initial
review of the statement their position rests upon," Andy added, "it certainly does not
appear to justify upheaval."
The petition is the latest in a string of CEI challenges to the proceedings surrounding the
endangerment finding and other Obama administration climate policies. Last week, the group
threatened to sue the administration over documents related to the costs of a federal
cap-and-trade program to curb greenhouse gas emissions. And in June, the group accused EPA
officials of suppressing dissenting views from an EPA environmental economist during the
run-up to the release of the endangerment proposal.
Rick Piltz, director of the watchdog group Climate Science Watch and a former official at
the U.S. Climate Change Science Program, said that although the research unit's data are
among key data sets used by the IPCC, "it's not the only data set that they use." He also
said EPA drew on "multifaceted, robust" data in the technical support document underlying
EPA's endangerment finding relies most heavily on IPCC's 2007 fourth assessment; synthesis
and assessment products of the U.S. Climate Change Science Program; National Research
Council reports under the U.S. National Academy of Sciences; the EPA annual report on U.S.
greenhouse gas emission inventories; and the EPA assessment of the effects of global change
on regional U.S. air quality, according to the agency's technical support document.
"You do not need to reopen the IPCC reports and the technical support document on the EPA
endangerment finding because of something having to do with the raw data from the
temperature record from East Anglia University in the 1980s," Piltz said, adding that the
IPCC carefully vets its data.
Piltz said CEI is on an ideological mission to head off EPA attempts to finalize the
endangerment finding and is "grasping at straws" by challenging the IPCC data.
"Their bottom line is an antiregulatory ideology," Piltz said. "When they use science, they
use it tactically, and they will go to war with the mainstream science community."
Republican senators also weighed in yesterday, urging EPA to reopen the public comment
period on the endangerment finding to investigate the scientific merit of the research
"It's astonishing that EPA, so confident in the scientific integrity of its work, refuses
to be transparent with the public about the most consequential rulemaking of our time,"
said Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), ranking member of the Environment and Public Works
Committee. Inhofe sent a joint press release with Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) accusing EPA
of relying upon flawed data.
"Now the evidence shows that scientists interested in testing some of EPA's assertions
can't engage in basic scientific work, such as assuring reproducibility and objectivity,
because the data they seek have been destroyed," Inhofe said. "In order to conform to
federal law and basic standards of scientific integrity, EPA must reopen the record so the
public can judge whether EPA's claims are based on the best available scientific
Director, Climate Science Watch
<http://www.climatesciencewatch.org/> Climate Science Watch is a sponsored project of
the Government Accountability Project, Washington, DC, dedicated to holding public
officials accountable for using climate science and related research effectively and with
integrity in responding to the challenges posed by global climate disruption.
The right to search for truth implies also a duty; one must not conceal any part of what
one has recognized to be true.
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