My input for The Global Warming Project submitted 2007 July 19
My year by year work summary and attachments (3) on my experience at
NOAA from 2000 to 2005 related to climate and hydrologic change while
I was a Senior Hydrologist at the National Weather Service (NWS),
North Central River Forecast Center (NCRFC) office in Chanhassen,
Minnesota, by Patrick J. Neuman, residence in Chanhassen, Minnesota -
July 18, 2007
2000: Although I was aware that annual snowmelt in the Upper Midwest
had been trending earlier nearly every spring during the 1990s, I
became did not become convinced that the trend was due to global
warming until my brother, Mike Neuman brought the subject of global
warming up to me in early January of 2000. I then sent e-mail asking
for information on global warming to people at the NOAA National
Climatic Data Center (NCDC) and to people with the Environmental
Protection Agency (EPA). I received an extensive amount of information
from both NCDC and EPA during the first week of January. I watched
CBS Evening News with Dan Rather interviews aired in mid-January with
Dr. James Baker, director of NOAA. By late January I was firmly
convinced that the trends I observed, as Snow, Ice and Water Supply
Hydrologist at the NCRFC, were evidence that climate change was
happening in the Upper Midwest and that the change was due to global
warming. I wanted to inform others about my findings and conclusion.
However, I was told by NWS supervisors not to mention global warming
in my spring snowmelt flood outlook presentation at an inter-agency
government planning meeting in January and I was told by NWS
supervisors not to go to the Mall of America where a government
services exposition was held in February. I was given two (2)
suspensions in 2000. My grievance documentation was denied by NWS
directors in headquarters for lacking in merit.
2001: I was issued a third suspension by NWS supervisors saying
disciplinary action was needed for the good of the service.
2002: I asked former NWS director Jack Kelly, who is now Deputy
Director in NOAA, why NWS did not consider climate change in its
hydrologic modeling. I was uncertain regarding the content of his reply.
2003: I gave a poster presentation titled "Earlier Seasonal Snowmelt
Runoff in the Upper Midwest-Northern Great Plains" at a NWS Climate
Prediction Center / Desert Research Institute conference near Reno,
Nevada and I had a national press release (30 Oct. 2003) issued which
identified my study and expressed my concerns on global warming.
2004: I served a 14-day suspension which I was given for issuing the
2003 press release.
2005: I was removed from government service by NWS supervisors in July.
Three (3) attachments included below:
(1) U.S. Newswire Press Release, 30 Oct. 2003
(2) August 11, 2004 E-mail to Conrad Lautenbacher, NOAA Administrator
(3) August 17, 2004 E-mail from Conrad Lautenbacher, NOAA Administrator
(1) U.S. Newswire Press Release
Senior Scientist: Rapid Global Warming is Happening Now
10/30/03 8:28:00 AM
To: National Desk, Environment, Political, Transportation Reporter
Contact: Patrick Neuman of the National Weather Service,
952-906-2824, or Jack Saporito of the Alliance of Residents
Concerning O'Hare, 847-506-0670
CHICAGO, Oct. 30 /U.S. Newswire/ -- Following is a statement of
Patrick Neuman, senior hydrologist with the National Weather Service
An enormous number of well-documented findings on climate change by
the world's most knowledgeable scientists are being put together ...
like pieces to a giant puzzle.
The picture is clear. Rapid global warming is happening now. Rapid
global warming, by this author, means a climate that is warming much
too quickly to allow adaptation by many species of plants and animals.
Neuman just presented his findings on regional climate warming to
colleagues at the NOAA 28th Annual Climate Diagnostics and Prediction
Workshop. The Workshop was sponsored by the NWS Climate Prediction
Center, the Desert Research Institute, and the American Meteorological
Society. Neuman's work was received with great concern by several
The paper with Neuman's findings is titled: "Earlier Seasonal Snowmelt
Runoff in the Upper Midwest-Northern Great Plains". The area includes
headwaters to Hudson Bay, the Great Lakes and the Mississippi River basin.
Interestingly, the snowmelt runoff study was not based on air
temperature data. Instead, daily river flows from the United States
Geological Survey (USGS) were used to evaluate timing of spring
snowmelt runoff over the last 100 years.
The study shows that the beginning dates of spring snowmelt runoff
have been occurring two to four weeks earlier now than occurred
historically at USGS river stations analyzed in the study. Most
significantly, the study shows an increase of much earlier snowmelt
runoff from 1980 to current.
We know that the cause of this rapid global warming is the heavy
accumulation of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere from massive
emissions from burning fossil fuels for power generation. Very
damaging is the direct discharge of greenhouse gas emissions
and secondary effects such as contrail effects, which are coming from
commercial jet aviation, an industry that disregards the damage to the
global environment and to human health.
We know that global warming will continue for hundreds of years, and
likely well beyond. What is uncertain now is whether the enormous
amounts of greenhouse gases being emitted annually will continue to
increase or decrease, and the specific time frames involved.
Neuman stated, "We are already witness to conclusive evidence that
human activities have caused rapid increases in temperatures in the
United States and the world. We know the rate of warming is and will
continue to be rapid. We just aren't sure how rapid, and
exactly what impacts we face as a human race now responsible by our
actions for the survival of all living species on Earth."
Editors note: The figures and tables that go with the narrative are
extremely important and telling of rapid regional climate warming in
the Upper Midwest-Great Plains. The narrative for the Workshop and
data can be found at:
/© 2003 U.S. Newswire 202-347-2770/
(2) August 11, 2004 E-mail to Vice Admiral Conrad Lautenbacher, NOAA
August 11, 2004
To Vice Admiral Conrad C. Lautenbacher, Jr., U.S. Navy (Ret.),
Undersecretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and
Dear Vice Admiral Lautenbacher,
I plan to attend your presentation in Chanhassen, MN tomorrow. I am a
senior hydrologist with the North Central River Forecast Center (NCRFC).
I would appreciate your suggestions on if / how I might be able to
continue work on hydrologic climate change in the Upper Midwest and
Northern Great Plains, at the NWS NCRFC.
I made a presentation on earlier snowmelt runoff in the Upper Midwest
at a NOAA Climate Prediction Center (CPC) / Desert Research Institute
(DRI) workshop in October, 2003. Please view my work at the web site
which follows, showing the material which I presented at the workshop:
The final draft of my paper for my presentation at the CPC / DRI
workshop was not acted upon by NWS Central Region. After returning
from the workshop, I wanted others to view my work, so I arranged a 30
October 2004 press release. I prepared a draft that included giving
attention to my paper and my general comments on global warming, but I
had no intention that the press release give an appearance of support
by NWS. Changes were made by wire services after my final approval,
which I did not approve of.
Earlier this year, my supervisor Dan Luna,Hydrologist in Charge (HIC),
regarding climate change, said: "That subject is not part of the
NCRFC/NWS mission". I have shown that hydrologic climate change has
already been occurring in the NCRFC area and therefore must be part of
the NCRFC mission, in my view.
In 2002 and 2003 I researched NWS cooperative climate data and flow
data from the US Geological Survey. I used the results of my research
in preparing my presentation for the CPC / DRI workshop.
In 2000 and 2001, HIC Dean Braatz stated: "global warming was beyond
the time window of our hydrologic forecast mission". The statement was
supported by NWS directors in giving final approval to suspensions I
received that were directly related to my efforts in hydrologic
climate change and model needs. I provided Mr. Braatz and others with
data showing trends for earlier snowmelt runoff in the Red River
basin, which indicated that climate warming was in the time window for
the NCRFC mission, in fact already occurring.
Please reply at your convenience concerning this request for your
suggestions on if / how I might be able to continue work on hydrologic
climate change in the Midwest and Northern Great Plains, at the NCRFC.
NCRFC Senior Hydrologist
Cc Ms. Dee L. Nelson, NOAA Alternative Dispute Resolution, Seattle, WA
Ms. Nelson suggested that I write to Vice Admiral Conrad C.
Lautenbacher on this matter, by voice mail to me on July 21, 2004.
(3) August 17, 2004 E-mail from Vice Admiral Conrad Lautenbacher, NOAA
From "Conrad C Lautenbacher" <Conrad.C.Lautenbacher@...
Date Tuesday, August 17, 2004 6:57 pm
To Pat Neuman <Pat.Neuman@...
Cc Dee L Nelson <Dee.L.Nelson@...
Subject Re: Hydrologic climate change work in the NCRFC area
Now that I have had a chance to review your paper, which appears to me
as a noteworthy and scholarly addition to the body of scientific
knowledge -- however, remember that peer reviewers on really the ones
to go to for critical comments -- and a chance to look at your request
in more detail, I have the following thoughts for you.
First I encourage you to continue to do the best scientific work
possible and to find outlets that are personally satisfying to you.
Second, I really can't and do not want to try to interfere with what
your supervisor assigns to you for work in support of his mission
within the agency. There are avenues for you to discuss these issues
within the chain of command and our organization.
Third, I hope that you can come to terms with your work assignments
whatever they may be or what they may or may not include.
Finally, I appreciate your service and your contributions to NOAA and
I hope that you will continue to gain personal satisfaction from being
part of an organization that is so vital to the future!