The Department of Energy has sent a “litigation hold notice” to all employees at the Department of Energy Savannah River unit instructing them to preserve all documents related to “global warming, the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia In England, and/or climate change science.”
It is not clear what has prompted this, but it would seem that someone has filed a lawsuit and it could signal that what we have seen of Climategate to date could be just the tip of the iceberg.
Thanks to Watts Up With That? for breaking this story:
December 14, 2009
DOE Litigation Hold Notice
DOE-SR has received a “Litigation Hold Notice” from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) General Council and the DOE Office of Inspector General regarding the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia in England. Accordingly, they are requesting that SRNS, SRR and other Site contractors locate and preserve all documents, records, data, correspondence, notes, and other materials, whether official or unofficial, original or duplicative, drafts or final versions, partial or complete that may relate to the global warming, including, but not limited to, the contract files, any related correspondence files, and any records, including emails or other correspondence, notes, documents, or other material related to this contract, regardless of its location or medium on which it is stored. In other words, please preserve any and all documents relevant to “global warming, the Climate Research Unit at he University of East Anglia In England, and/or climate change science.”
As a reminder, this Litigation Hold preservation obligation supersedes any existing statutory or regulatory document retention period or destructive schedule. The determination of what information may be potentially relevant is based upon content and substance and generally does not depend on the type of medium on which the information exists. The information requested may exist in various forms, including paper records, hand-written notes, telephone log entries, email, and other electronic communication (including voicemail), word processing documents (including drafts, spreadsheets, databases, and calendars), telephone logs, electronic address books, PDAs (like Palm Pilots and Blackberries), internet usage files, systems manuals, and network access information in their original format. All ESI should be preserved in its originally-created, or “native” format, along with related metadata. Relevant backup tapes and all indexes for those tapes should also be preserved. Further, information that is reasonably accessible must nonetheless be preserved, because such sources will, at the very least, need to be identified and, under compelling circumstances, may need to be produced.
If you have any doubts as to whether specific information is responsive, err on the side of preserving that information.
Any employee who has information covered by this Litigation Hold is requested to contact Madeline Screven, Paralegal, SRNS Office of General Council, 5-4634, for additional instructions.
Michael L. Wamsted
Associate General Council