One year ago today, after returning from a conference in Brussels, I sat down in Dulles airport, connected to WiFi, researched and wrote this article, called two people, CEI’s Chris Horner to check legality issues, and Marc Morano (who was traveling in car on the PCH in California) to give him a heads up, and pressed the “publish” button just seconds before they closed the door to my flight back to Sacramento. When I landed five hours later, I immediately got back on WiFi and found the the story had exploded, and we lived in a different world. I spent so much time moderating and checking the responses elsewhere, that when I looked up from the computer, I found the airport deserted, and my bag was to lone one sitting on the carousel.
This story, written in haste, uncertainty, and pressure to board a plane, is the most viewed story on WUWT, and spawned hundreds of other stories and links. I’m repeating it again to mark the event, consider this an open thread on Climategate, one year later. – Anthony
UPDATE: Response from CRU in interview with another website, see end of this post.
The details on this are still sketchy, we’ll probably never know what went on. But it appears that University of East Anglia Climate Research Unit has been hacked and many many files have been released by the hacker or person unknown.
UPDATED: Original image was for Met Office – corrected This image source: http://www.cru.uea.ac.uk
I’m currently traveling and writing this from an airport, but here is what I know so far:
An unknown person put postings on some climate skeptic websites that advertised an FTP file on a Russian FTP server, here is the message that was placed on the Air Vent today:
We feel that climate science is, in the current situation, too important to be kept under wraps.
We hereby release a random selection of correspondence, code, and documents
The file was large, about 61 megabytes, containing hundreds of files.
It contained data, code, and emails from Phil Jones at CRU to and from many people.
I’ve seen the file, it appears to be genuine and from CRU. Others who have seen it concur- it appears genuine. There are so many files it appears unlikely that it is a hoax. The effort would be too great.
Here is some of the emails just posted at Climate Audit on this thread:
I’ve redacted email addresses and direct phone numbers for the moment. The emails all have US public universities in the email addresses, making them public/FOIA actionable I believe.
From: Phil Jones
Subject: Fwd: John L. Daly dead
Date: Thu Jan 29 14:17:01 2004
From: Timo H‰meranta
Subject: John L. Daly dead
Date: Thu, 29 Jan 2004 12:04:28 +0200
X-Mailer: Microsoft Outlook, Build 10.0.4510
In an odd way this is cheering news ! One other thing about the CC paper – just found
another email – is that McKittrick says it is standard practice in Econometrics journals
to give all the data and codes !! According to legal advice IPR overrides this.
“It is with deep sadness that the Daly Family have to announce the sudden death of John
Daly.Condolences may be sent to John’s email account (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Reported with great sadness
Timo H‰meranta, LL.M.
Martinlaaksontie 42 B 9
Finland, Member State of the European Union
Home page: personal.inet.fi/koti/hameranta/climate.htm
Moderator of the discussion group “Sceptical Climate Science”
“To dwell only on horror scenarios of the future
shows only a lack of imagination”. (Kari Enqvist)
“If the facts change, I’ll change my opinion.
What do you do, Sir” (John Maynard Keynes)
Prof. Phil Jones
Climatic Research Unit Telephone +44 (0)xxxxxx
School of Environmental Sciences Fax +44 (0) xxxxxx
University of East Anglia
Norwich Email email@example.com
From: Phil Jones
To: ray bradley ,firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
Subject: Diagram for WMO Statement
Date: Tue, 16 Nov 1999 13:31:15 +0000
Dear Ray, Mike and Malcolm,
Once Tim’s got a diagram here we’ll send that either later today or
first thing tomorrow.
I’ve just completed Mike’s Nature trick of adding in the real temps
to each series for the last 20 years (ie from 1981 onwards) amd from
1961 for Keith’s to hide the decline. Mike’s series got the annual
land and marine values while the other two got April-Sept for NH land
N of 20N. The latter two are real for 1999, while the estimate for 1999
for NH combined is +0.44C wrt 61-90. The Global estimate for 1999 with
data through Oct is +0.35C cf. 0.57 for 1998.
Thanks for the comments, Ray.
Prof. Phil Jones
Climatic Research Unit Telephone +44 (0) xxxxx
School of Environmental Sciences Fax +44 (0) xxxx
University of East Anglia
Norwich Email firstname.lastname@example.org
From: Jonathan Overpeck
To: “Michael E. Mann”
Subject: letter to Senate
Date: Tue, 22 Jul 2003 16:49:31 -0700
Cc: Caspar M Ammann , Raymond Bradley , Keith Briffa , Tom Crowley , Malcolm Hughes , Phil Jones , email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, Tim Osborn , Kevin Trenberth , Tom Wigley
Hi all – I’m not too comfortable with this, and would rather not sign – at least not
without some real time to think it through and debate the issue. It is unprecedented and
political, and that worries me.
My vote would be that we don’t do this without a careful discussion first.
I think it would be more appropriate for the AGU or some other scientific org to do this -
e.g., in reaffirmation of the AGU statement (or whatever it’s called) on global climate
Think about the next step – someone sends another letter to the Senators, then we respond,
I’m not sure we want to go down this path. It would be much better for the AGU etc to do
What are the precedents and outcomes of similar actions? I can imagine a special-interest
org or group doing this like all sorts of other political actions, but is it something for
scientists to do as individuals?
Just seems strange, and for that reason I’d advise against doing anything with out real
thought, and certainly a strong majority of co-authors in support.
Dear fellow Eos co-authors,
Given the continued assault on the science of climate change by some on Capitol Hill,
Michael and I thought it would be worthwhile to send this letter to various members of
the U.S. Senate, accompanied by a copy of our Eos article.
Can we ask you to consider signing on with Michael and me (providing your preferred
title and affiliation). We would like to get this out ASAP.
Thanks in advance,
Michael M and Michael O
Professor Michael E. Mann
Department of Environmental Sciences, Clark Hall
University of Virginia
Charlottesville, VA 22903
e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Phone: (434) 924-7770 FAX: (434) xxx-xxxxx
Attachment converted: Macintosh HD:EOS.senate letter-final.doc (WDBN/MSWD) (00055FCF)
Jonathan T. Overpeck
Director, Institute for the Study of Planet Earth
Professor, Department of Geosciences
Mail and Fedex Address:
Institute for the Study of Planet Earth
715 N. Park Ave. 2nd Floor
University of Arizona
Tucson, AZ 85721
direct tel: +xxxx
fax: +1 520 792-8795
It appears that the proverbial Climate Science Cat is out of the bag.
Developing story – more later
UPDATE1: Steve McIntyre posted this on Climate Audit, I used a screen cap rather than direct link because CA is overloaded and slow at the moment.
UPDATE2: Response from CRU h/t to WUWT reader “Nev”
The director of Britain’s leading Climate Research Unit, Phil Jones, has told Investigate magazine’s TGIF Edition tonight that his organization has been hacked, and the data flying all over the internet appears to be genuine.
In an exclusive interview, Jones told TGIF, “It was a hacker. We were aware of this about three or four days ago that someone had hacked into our system and taken and copied loads of data files and emails.”
“Have you alerted police”
“Not yet. We were not aware of what had been taken.”
Jones says he was first tipped off to the security breach by colleagues at the website RealClimate.
“Real Climate were given information, but took it down off their site and told me they would send it across to me. They didn’t do that. I only found out it had been released five minutes ago.”
TGIF asked Jones about the controversial email discussing “hiding the decline”, and Jones explained what he was trying to say….
UPDATE3: McIntyre has posted an article by Jean S at climateaudit.org which is terribly overloaded. We have mirrored it.