Wednesday, November 30, 2011


date: Thu, 17 Sep 2009 15:11:27 -0400
from: Brian Luckman <>
subject: RE: Divergence Project
to: "'Tom Melvin'" <>, BRIFFA <>

Dear Tom and Keith,

That is great news- both that you have got the project and that Keith is
recovering well. As I said in earlier correspondence with Keith this is an
essential project for the discipline and I fully support it.

However, at this time I have no active dendroclimate students here (nor do I
expect any future ones as I am already almost two years post retirement and
renewing year by year) so I would not expect to contribute significantly in
terms of analysis or techniques. However, over the last 10 years we have
collected almost 100 new spruce and fir sites in the Yukon and Northern B.C.
that would be of some interest to you in the project. These have been the
focus of a master's project analyzing 20+ sites along the Dempster Highway
that bracket Gordon's TTHH site and I sent a copy of this M.Sc. Thesis to
Jonathan Barichivitch earlier this summer (when I last contacted Keith). The
analysis was very simple and looked at whether there were differences in the
correlations with climate data from Dawson for the 1900-1950 and 1951-2000
I also have a doctoral student who is working with the entire network but
that work is proceeding very slowly and he has experienced serious family
crises, is currently on leave and I am not optimistic that he will finish. I
am therefore prepared to release these data to other projects as, having
gone through 6 field seasons to collect it I would hate to see the work go
to waste.
Accordingly, about 9 months ago I sent all of these data to Martin Wilmking
for his project and have no objection to sending you the same data (I assume
you would want the raw data). Alternatively, based on your address listing,
I assume Martin is likely part of this project also and you might want to
check how far he has progressed with the analysis of that data and maybe he
would share any results from that work. I don't know what state his work is

As I am not likely to be doing much additional dendroclimate work I could,
if you so wish, send you other data from the Canadian Cordillera (Picea and
Larix) which includes some relatively long chronologies but they end in the
early to mid 1990s. Let me know what you would like.

I expect to be in Finland though, as I will probably be contributing to a
dendrogeomorph session on Natural Hazards, I am unlikely to have anything
particularly new to say on the Divergence issue. If I were to participate
and present it would likely simply be based on the master's work that you
may already have seen- though I would obviously attend any such discussion.

So, that's the state of play here. Great to know Keith is back in the system
and the project is a go. Having not heard about it for so long I was worried
that maybe it didn't fly- but it has. Let me know how I can contribute.



-----Original Message-----
From: Tom Melvin []
Sent: September 11, 2009 9:32 AM
Cc: Keith; Tim
Subject: Divergence Project

Dear Colleagues and Friends,

We are writing now to inform you that our application to the UK NERC for
support to investigate the so-called "Divergence" phenonomen in
temperature-sensitive trees over a range of geographical and ecological
situations has formally been approved. This message is addressed to those of
you who generously offered support and indicated willingness to collaborate
with us in this work. We were and are grateful and excited by the prospect
of our collaboration.

Most of you will know that I was diagnosed a few months back as having a
kidney tumour. I have since then had an operation to remove the offending
organ and, providing all continues to go well, I intend to be back at work
in October.
The formal start date of the project will be 1st May 2010 and Tom will be
paid full time for the 30 month duration of this contract. In the meantime
we are anxious to establish a close working relationship between ourselves
and all of you - but ideally a collaborative network involving us all.

The first idea we had was to organise a small "forum" on our website so that
we can maintain contact, discuss problems, keep each other informed of
progress, and exchange ideas, data and software. It would help us if Tom's
dendroclimatic software, including some novel techniques, was tried out and
discussed (maybe as beta testing) before we make it openly available.
We also would like you opinion on the suggestion of holding a session on
"divergence" at the next International Tree Ring Conference to be held in
Rovaniemi in June next year - would any of you be willing to contribute to
such a session?

Anyway, this is to let you know that we were very serious in expressing our
wish that this project be a collaborative effort with all of you. Thanks for
your help in getting this project and thanks for your collaborative support.

Best wishes

Keith and Tom
Dr. Tom Melvin
Climatic Research Unit
University of East Anglia
Norwich, NR4 7TJ, U.K.

Phone: +44-1603-593161
Fax: +44-1603-507784

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