Here's just one part of the request:
1. of all records, documents, internal communications, and other relevant covered
material created by, provided to, received, and or sent by an official or employee
of NASA including but not limited to NASSA GISS, that in any way relate to the,
receipt, handling, processing, or disposition of “Freedom of Information Act,” or
This request doesn't just mean "give us any FOIA request NASA has received" (since Jan 2000, a slight limitation put on it later in the letter), it means give every document that was ever copied and produced in response to any FOIA request that was previously received. For every FOIA request in the past ten years that produced thousands of documents and tens of thousands of pages of response, they just asked for each one of those searches to be repeated and copied and given to them.
NASA doesn't really have to give all the records requested by this piece of dreck, if I'm remembering my somewhat dated FOIA law correctly, but it shows the lack of care for taxpayer resources by the makers of the request, and total abuse of taxpayer dollars for other parts of the request that fall, barely, within the legal limit.
The quoted excerpt above is part 1 of a seven-part request. Parts 2 and possibly 7 are also abusive. Parts 3 through 6 may be okay, but will require extensive review by scientists and by FOIA officers. I don't know how many more of these are coming from CEI, but at a certain point, enough is enough.
Might also be worthwhile to mention that once, to avoid a similar fishing expedition and waste of California taxpayer money, we contacted a California agency outside of the FOIA-type process we have here and went through voluntarily-provided documents and information that helped us limit our ultimate request. I've generally followed a similar practice of asking for information informally first, or offering to negotiate ways to limit the burden of an information request.
CEI just wants to spend taxpayer money.
UPDATE: Eli points out in the comments that copying costs shouldn't be waived. CEI's claim to be a scientific organization is a sad joke, and as an educational institution it's just ironic. CEI should have to pay for anything it gets.
Bonus blogging: take the Risk Intelligence Test, which estimates whether you can accurately predict the likelihood that you're right or wrong about a factual issue. I scored 85, apparently "very high", slightly underconfident in my answers.