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Where’s the data?

Filed under: — group @ 27 November 2009

Much of the discussion in recent days has been motivated by the idea that climate science is somehow unfairly restricting access to raw data upon which scientific conclusions are based. This is a powerful meme and one that has clear resonance far beyond the people who are actually interested in analysing data themselves. However, many of the people raising this issue are not aware of what and how much data is actually available.

Therefore, we have set up a page of data links to sources of temperature and other climate data, codes to process it, model outputs, model codes, reconstructions, paleo-records, the codes involved in reconstructions etc. We have made a start on this on a new Data Sources page, but if anyone has other links that we’ve missed, note them in the comments and we’ll update accordingly.

The climate science community fully understands how important it is that data sources are made as open and transparent as possible, for research purposes as well as for other interested parties, and is actively working to increase accessibility and usability of the data. We encourage people to investigate the various graphical portals to get a feel for the data and what can be done with it. The providers of these online resources are very interested in getting feedback on any of these sites and so don’t hesitate to contact them if you want to see improvements.

Update: Big thank you to all for all the additional links given below. Keep them coming!


407 Responses to “Where’s the data?”

  1. 1
    JPSobel says:

    The problem is more than just access to raw data. It is knowing which data has been used in which papers. It is knowing how the data has been manipulated and the justification of that manipulation. This is particularly true in a field that requires as much statistical analysis as paleoclimatology.

    Replication of results is key to the scientific method. Data and data analysis should be released with all published papers. It should be released when requested for academic study. And it should definitely be released when demanded under the FOIA.

  2. 2
    Dr. Alan Keller says:

    Just a question. Is there anywhere one can view the purloined emails to form one’s own opinion about how damaging they may be? I am deeply concerned for example by Monbiot’s opinions on the content and would like to judge for myself. Thanks.

    [Response: The easiest way is through here. But some of the emails are strangely truncated, not sure why. Please note that these are illegally obtained, though curiosity is a powerful driver.... - gavin]

  3. 3
    Richard says:

    Agree totally with #1 JP Sobel – I’ve requested data from Briffa and never had a reply to numerous emails. I have never experienced that before in my entire scientific career in the many science fields I work in. I’ve always had an email back in reply with data given freely and in a friendly, helpful manner. In fact, one of the past posts on this site about this subject now reflects poorly on the group as a whole in light of the leaked CRU emails. Better to post all data, all algorithms and all methodology at time of publication so others can replicate with ease. Then, when all of it has to released under FOI request, there will be no emails, papers or statements that can be “taken out of context”.

    [Response: There will always be people to take things out of context - whether these things are released via FOI or stolen. If you want Briffa's data, go to the NOAA Paleoclimate link. - gavin]

  4. 4
    tamino says:

    I recommend including a link to the world data center for greenhouse gases:

    http://gaw.kishou.go.jp/wdcgg/

  5. 5
    Jeffrey Park says:

    if you *really* want to see how scientists talk behind closed doors . . . . see the following video!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-VRBWLpYCPY&feature=player_embedded

    Gavin is the co-author on the far left.

  6. 6
    donQ says:

    Gavin,
    all you have to do is go open source–no need to hide and invent excuses, you are obviously not very good at that anyway.
    Release all the data (you can keep the 2% of inexplicably protected data that you might have) even if it is just 98% of the total and also release the codes that were used to create/prove the conclusions/graphs that were published.
    It is very simple … people do this [public release of specific work] daily .. see linux and OSS, if you don’t know how to do it and how it works.

    The context is quite clear when it comes to the e-mails of the CRU folks … the only way out, for your gang, is to go open source.

    [Response: GISTEMP has. Why aren't you interested in that? - gavin]

  7. 7
    donQ says:

    Gavin,
    thank you for [Response: GISTEMP has. Why aren't you interested in that? - gavin] …
    unfortunately this is insufficient.
    1) There is no source code provided
    2) There is no coherent data provided (within the context of how such data is used to provide results)

    I also have gone through the codes available in the CRU FOI2009.zip — those source files betray astounding level of incompetence from several angles … 1) management 2) computer-science 3) quality assurance.

    So … again, release the codes that according to you are used to generate your results.

    Perhaps you weren’t aware of it, but the page you provide links to http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/sources/GISTEMP_sources.tar.gz which is not available according to your web-site. So again, where is the source code?

    [Response: Not sure why that isn't up, it was before. Maybe they are updating for some recent changes in source data. In the mean time, you can see the code here: http://code.google.com/p/open-gistemp/ - gavin]

  8. 8
    F. Flintstone says:

    Wow – and they used to call me a flat earther…

    Barney Rubble (my best friend) says that if we used techniques like the CRU during our quest for fire (taxing the roots and berries of all our friends for years to fund our preconceived notion that fire is caused by a complete lack of water) then we would have miserably failed.

    Instead, we just stoned our detractors regularly. Eventually, Barney threw a piece of flint at some poor guy, and started a fire. Voila. I credit our discovery not only to the regular stonings of detractors (a technique CRU did apparently use) but mostly to one thing we had back then that seems to be completely lacking at East Anglia – minds that are open to alternate theories.

    See, even during the stone age our approaches and techniques were vastly superior to the CRU’s.

    - Cheers,
    - Fred Flintstone

  9. 9
    Chad says:

    Could you also add links for radiosonde data?

    [Response: Good idea. I added RAOBCORE and HadAT - but I think there are a couple more sources. Links welcome. - gavin]

  10. 10
    Lawrence Coleman says:

    Slightly off topic again but u know me. Has anyone read the preliminary warning from University of Manitoba researcher David Barber. He has recently been around arctica including the areas that appear white on the satellite that was believed to be intact multi-year ice. According to his research it’s only solid on the surface beneath that it’s completely ‘rotten’, indicating to me that the warmer arctic ocean currents are contributing far more to the arctic ice loss that air temps. There is virtually no more solid multi year ice left. When he was there he witnessed a massive multi year ice floe break up before his eyes. His prediction is that within 6 years there will be no summer sea ice in the arctic. This data should be rushed through to the IPCC for evaluation and presented in Copenhagen ASAP!

  11. 11
    donQ says:

    Gavin,
    thank you. The google link has code. ;-)
    The total amount of it [code + support files] is 5 MB ... is this all that you have?

    [Response: Me personally? If you want my code, go here. If you mean why isn't there more data for processing the temperature stations, I'm not sure why you want more. It's not that hard (and I'm sure a determined team to cut it down radically). - gavin]

    [PS: The other link to the GISTEMP sources (up to date) is now live again. It's all about who you know.... ;) - gavin]

  12. 12
    Groucho48 says:

    Long time lurker. Great site to find info to smite Deniers with. Not that they ever realize they’ve been smited, unfortunately.

    Anyway, with the links provided, could a skeptic/denier perform an analysis that would disprove man made global warming? (If, in fact, man made global warming WAS just a liberal conspiracy?) If so, why haven’t they already done so? Is there any data missing that would be needed? If so, are there teams of denialists out there working their butts off to gather such data?

    Or are FOI requests the only way they know how to do research?

  13. 13
  14. 14
    David Horton says:

    Lawrence Coleman – Barber is obviously mistaken (those scientists, always believing what their senses and sensors tell them) because a CRU staff member said something rude in an email. Just ask George Monbiot, or the 2000 or so responses to his mea culpa (well, thea culpa, really I suppose) – global warming is all over. Pouff, never existed, gone, just like a bad dream. All the fault of Phil Jones and his vivid imagination. We were so close to a one world government by communists – just as well someone leaked emails before we were all living in ice caves again.

  15. 15
    Assad says:

    Gavin, have you ever looked into software to support “reproducible
    research” and “literate programming”? There are some good packages out there, like Sweave, org-babel, python.sty, and Literate Haskell. The basic idea is go make a .tar.gz which has code + latex + data + a build script. The paper plus all the figures can then be rebuilt in one command by anyone. This technique is used by a lot of people in bioinformatics and statistics and I think it could be the answer to a lot of problems.

  16. 16
    jl says:

    http://mathsci.ucd.ie/~rca/climt/ CliMT
    http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/oa/ncdc.html
    http://www.pyclimate.org/ for processing ??
    maybe a link gistemp
    this is a VERY good step forward

  17. 17
  18. 18
    matt says:

    When this first broke, I was absolutely horrified. Being a true believer myself, I was crestfallen to find out that the science behind a major and popular theory was “fudged” and had gone unchecked. Even worse were the comments about peer reviewed literature. I felt is if I had been betrayed. I was angry and fearful.

    But this controversy seems to be unraveling by the day. The more I read, the more context that is provided about what actually happened…the more the motivations of the deniers and internet foamers become readily apparent.

    The longer this controversy drags on it seems that the accusations of fudging data seem to be sticking to the deniers.

    I’m really happy that they’ve released the raw data.

    Hey kiddos, the data is out there now. BTW You are not the first to recompile it or analyze it. A few DIYers have recompiled the data with their own methods and produced similar results…and yes I’m “hiding” that link from you….because I forgot what page I found it on earlier today. (the conspiracy continues!!!)

    This controversy has actually turned out to be good for the AGW crowd. I suspect 2 months from now, this will be barely a blip on the radar screen.

  19. 19
    john moore says:

    Monthly global sea level and rate reconstruction from tide gauges with errors
    http://www.pol.ac.uk/psmsl/author_archive/jevrejeva_etal_gsl/

    useful software for examining coherence between time series based on wavelets.
    http://www.pol.ac.uk/home/research/waveletcoherence/

  20. 20
    Jonathan Fischoff says:

    Hey thanks for consolidating all of this in one place. I was wondering about where to get the raw world data the CRU uses. I’m assuming that is the GHCN v.2?

    Gavin, it is unfortunate that people believe NASA is hiding data and code. I have never found this to be the case. Hopefully that will get cleared up.

    Could at some point you speak to what sources are not publicly available? If that is stated clearly in a list, it won’t seem like anyone is trying to hide the data. Obviously you can’t cover everything, but if there is some set of major importance that is not publicly available, it might be worthwhile to address it.

  21. 21
    Edward Greisch says:

    Looks like a mountain of data to me. Could the deniers possibly have anything in common with the people who say that there is no evidence for evolution?

  22. 22
    Ellen Thomas says:

    How about adding a link to NGDC (as distinct from NCDC) http://www.ngdc.noaa.gov/ngdcinfo/onlineaccess.html
    - has many paleodata. As editor of Marine Micropaleontology, my co-editor and I request all authors to submit all raw data in addition to statistically treated data, in downloadable form (mainly excel files). I wonder how people can say that they can’t get data – I’ve always been able to find what I want on-line at one of the data centers.

  23. 23
    Edward Greisch says:

    Has anybody added up how many terabytes of data that is in total? I’m sure I couldn’t afford that much hard drive space. I’m forwarding your email to my friends.

  24. 24
    lumpy says:

    “But this controversy seems to be unraveling by the day. The more I read, the more context that is provided about what actually happened…the more the motivations of the deniers and internet foamers become readily apparent.”

    I think we get so used to lies and non-science in the denialosphere so often, we forget just how much comes from there, the latest being the New Zealand non scandal. They aren’t interested in genuine enquiry, debate and advancement of science, but tearing it all down because the implications upset them.

  25. 25
    Annabelle says:

    Reasonable requests for data (the actual data used, plus the code used to process it) have been fobbed off for years, with Real Climate fully supporting and justifying the refusals to release data (usually with a very arrogant tone). Now all of a sudden you’re very interested in appearing to be as open and user-friendly as possible (while still not releasing or encouraging others to release the actual datasets used to support their papers).

    If you really want to limit the damage to your credibility in the eyes of the public (and many in the scientific community), you’ll have to do better than this. Pretending all the data has been available all along won’t cut it.

  26. 26
    JohnW says:

    But this controversy seems to be unraveling by the day. — matt @ 18

    Well, the main stream media seems to have yet picked up on the unravelling (I exclude FOX as it wouldn’t report the unravelling in any event). NPR ran with a story the other day, picking on a particularly miffed climatologist that his paper showing snowfall in the Sierras (I believe; haven’t gone back to check the story on that yet) hasn’t diminished despite what he claims are the consensus predictions, hinting at dark conspiracies — and the NPR reporter went with this in spite of his own reporting in the same story that the paper was merely cumulative of others that had already pointed out the “anomoly”!

    I also want to say that, as a lay person, I find it sometimes very hard to follow what the posts are saying as there tends to be a lapse into technical jargon, higher math, or just a focus on one specific component of climate modelling. I appreciate what I can understand, and am grateful for it, but, please, remember that this is something that affects the lives of people without Phds and they need to be able to cut through the blizzard of talking points and sound bites spewing forth from Washington and the main stream media (and this time I include FOX). So, please, everybody, even in the comments, try to leave the tech language in the lab for the sake of the millions, nay billions upon whose lives this issue impacts. Thank you.

  27. 27
    Patrick Caldon says:

    If I could also make a suggestion – it’s not much good putting all that code up without a description of how to interpret it.

    I decided to wrap my head around how a GCM worked two years ago. I downloaded code (modelE as it happens) and could not understand it. I thought documentation was the problem, so I got the NCAR documentation and model and could not understand it. The various IPCC reports might be fine literature reviews but they are lousy texts.

    Then I ordered Washington and Parkinson’s textbook – with that (and EdGCM – no longer free sadly) finally I was getting somewhere.

    For people who are actually interested in finding out how this stuff works in detail a short reading list of 3-5 textbooks would be a *lot* more useful than a mass of code. Perhaps a link to your “books” page and a brief reading list would be a good idea?

    Also the “Giovanni” link looks broken.

  28. 28
    Kees van der Leun says:

    The “data sources” page is a valuable resource.
    Small correction: The link to Sealevel (U. Colorado) does not work like this, it is sealevel.colorado.edu, without the “www.” bit.

  29. 29
    Hank Roberts says:

    http://www.cru.uea.ac.uk/cru/data/
    (This website is currently being served from the CRU Emergency Webserver.
    Some pages may be out of date.)

  30. 30
    Didactylos says:

    Perhaps you could clarify in the main post that all this data has been available for a long, long time? From some of the comments, it would seem that many still can’t get their head around the idea that there has always been oceans of data out there waiting for the deniers to analyse.

    I can’t imagine what’s holding them back.

  31. 31
    Eli Snyder says:

    Gavin, this is exactly the right approach — you are taking the issue seriously and patiently, without legitimizing spurious accusations. Well done.

    Of course hardcore deniers will never be satisfied by any amount of data, as that is not what they are after, but I think most reasonable people, following an exchange like yours above with donQ, can easily tell who is being reasonable and who is not.

    That this meme of “hiding the data” is so successful is because it is an instance of the broader meme that scientists are an elite cabal of liberal intellectuals bent on controlling everybody’s lives. Your patience and honesty in responding to this does much to counter that meme. I think this is the right approach and should be continued.

    This is just one instance of what I think is a crisis of credibility for science in general. It is in the interest of some who benefit from the status quo to isolate scientists from the general population and vice versa. Scientists ignore or allow this isolation to the detriment of all. The best bet, IMHO, is to open up the conversation frankly and honestly and patiently as you have done.

    Thank you. You rock. Your modesty in earlier threads is becoming — you stated that you are not engaged in “saving the world,” only in producing good science, which is an admirable response. However, for your tireless efforts to communicate that science to the general public, I think it is possible that history will not remember you as a hero only because real heroes are often forgotten. Just ask the last guy who saved the world.

    Keep going with this approach, I think it will work in the long term.

  32. 32
    John O'Connor says:

    Gavin,

    Calling it a powerful meme still sounds like you are in the denial stages.

    It may be that the e-mails have been hacked “illegally” as you put it – much in the same way that the UK Parliamentary expenses were “stolen and leaked”. The reaction there was that Michael Martin instituted a police enquiry and eventually he became the first Speaker of the House to be forced out of office for 300 years.

    The e-mail chain reveals a disturbing pattern of obfuscation etc. etc. instead of opennesss. Coupled with patters in a major media organisation here that seems to want to push only one argument and stream.

    Personally I have a background in engineering with two Masters behind me – one involving computer simulation of a very simple eletrical system. I have 25+ years systems and software engineering experience, and enough wit to know how difficult it is to model any sort of physical system.

    The science of modelling is a really complex field that I don’t have the bandwidth to fully understand (day job and family commitments too), but I do have an interest in it, and a very natural suspicion when I am told to simply trust models etc. etc. A very useful suspicion that has served me well professionally in the software industry in assisting to build and work on various parts of system reliability etc.

    There has been far too much “the science is settled – trust us – we are the ones to trust”. In fact – it sounds rather like another religious institution in Ireland that has just got a well deserved pasting for what was actually very serious criminal activity. I’m not putting you guys in the same category as the irish bishops – but just to say, the manner of your communication has very similar patterns to their way of handling a serious issue.

    Sorry if this has rambled over a number of different thoughts.

    It is a very important topic, and you need to do justice to legitimate concerns from various fields that might not all be attached to or paid for by big oil !!!!!

  33. 33
    Garrett says:

    “His prediction is that within 6 years there will be no summer sea ice in the arctic. ”

    Just what Big Pil wants!

    Anyone that thinks for a second that Big Oil doesn’t want global warming is a fool. Imagine how much money they can make drilling all that oil in the artic now that it will be ice free! Hook, line, sinker.

    Heck, their effort to convince people that global warming ISNT’T true plays right into their hands, making sure nothing is done about it! These people aren’t stupid, just the drones that believe the nonsense they are spewing. It’s quite ingenious if you ask me.

    Here is what they are after: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Azolla_event

  34. 34
    wagdog says:

    This is how the denialist blogs will spin this: Thanks to their speaking truth to power, the intrepid hackers who liberated the secret emails, and the irresistible pressure on the elitist scientist cabal in recent days, Gavin has finally backed down and ordered his minions to release the closely guarded secret data and code.

    [Response: And I would have got away with it too, if it hadn't been for those pesky kids.... ;) - gavin]

  35. 35
    debreuil says:

    Just trying to get a rough idea of what the raw ghcnv2 data looks like (I think that is the only raw temp data there, right?).

    I tried averaging all the monthly data that isn’t invalid per year and looking at that, but didn’t get anything that looked significant (I understood that’s totally crude, just wanted a rough idea).

    I then realized the problem looking closer at the data — the test points are not the same at all over time. For one, there seems to be a huge drop off in station count in recent times. eg 1955 has over 7000 while 2004 is more like 2300. Any idea why there are so many fewer stations now that before? I would have thought it would be the opposite. Is there a selection for stations in this data? If so, is there a place where all stations data is available (selected and discarded)? I’m assuming they didn’t shut down stations that were reporting regularly in the past, but maybe they just don’t include them for some reason.

    I understand there will be places that will have warmed, and others that have cooled, but there should be a large number (majority) of places that show the dramatic warming we see in IPCC graphs (and some more extreme even I assume).

    I will keep trying… thanks for posting these links. It would be very helpful to see how you get from this data to those graphs as well, hopefully that can get posted at some time.

  36. 36

    I’ve been maintaining my own links to data now for a long time; I do a bit of amateur analysis of my own from time to time. But it is always useful to have another convenient directory for finding stuff.

    Above in comment at 28 Nov 2009 12:26 AM Matt says:

    I’m really happy that they’ve released the raw data.

    Hey kiddos, the data is out there now.

    It’s worth emphasizing — and I suspect Matt actually knows this — that this directory is not some new release of data or a renewed openness in response to the hack affair. These are links to already available data. And there always has been a power of work going on to make data available and accessible.

    You may want to add to the radiosonde sources the following:

    Radiosonde Temperature Anomalies in the Troposphere and Lower Stratosphere for the Globe, Hemispheres, and Latitude Zones. Cite as: Sterin, A.M., 2007. Radiosonde Temperature Anomalies in the Troposphere and Lower Stratosphere for the Globe, Hemispheres, and Latitude Zones. In Trends Online: A Compendium of Data on Global Change. Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, U.S. Department of Energy, Oak Ridge, Tennessee, U.S.A. doi: 10.3334/CDIAC/cli.004

    Global, Hemispheric, and Zonal Temperature Deviations Derived From Radiosonde Records. CITE AS: Angell, J.K. 2009. Global, hemispheric, and zonal temperature deviations derived from radiosonde records. In Trends Online: A Compendium of Data on Global Change. Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, U.S. Department of Energy, Oak Ridge, Tennessee, U.S.A. doi: 10.3334/CDIAC/cli.005

    I don’t think they are in your current radiosonde list.

  37. 37
    pjclarke says:

    Regarding releasing supporting code and data and paper in one package, I’ve amused myself for quite some time playing with the interactive pages that Dr. Hansen and other GISS researchers often put up alongside their papers e.g. http://data.giss.nasa.gov/modelE/transient/dangerous.html ISTR another where one could tweak forcings and plot the output from GISS Model E, for those without the time to download and compile the fortran…, but a quick Google doesn’t find it. Maybe its been taken down or memory is playing tricks…

    also http://data.giss.nasa.gov/modelforce/ghgases/ ,of course.

    I repeat my thanks to Gavin and Eric for assembling a 1800 comment archive of rebuttals and context in a matter of days. Impressive.

  38. 38
    Ed Hawkins says:

    Lots of processed data at:
    http://www.hadobs.org

    Ed.

  39. 39
    Ole Juul says:

    I am relatively new to the climate politics and science discussion and it was the recent CRU email affair that caught my attention. It seems that this has brought out the worst all around. The sceptics are making idiots out of themselves as can be seen by the rude comments posted everywhere, I expect that, but it is interesting how the mainstream scientific community is handling this – at first not very well. In fact, I have been disappointed a number of times by a downright defensive attitude which, I find, quite unbecoming.

    It does look like some people are rising to the occasion and realizing that perhaps an more inclusive view of “community” needs to be adopted. Large parts of the software world has benefited greatly by adopting an open source methodology and general quality has reached higher levels. Perhaps the scientific community can also benefit from this approach. The challenge is to learn to live and work with people who are on very different levels.

    I am glad to see postings such as this “Where’s the data?” It is both a good idea and a good gesture. The matter of there still (as I understand) being proprietary data out there is a serious problem that can probably not be addressed from the scientific community, but needs to be dealt with by legislators when they concern themselves with copyright laws and public service funding.

  40. 40
    Lucibee says:

    I can fully appreciate the concerns about releasing raw data to those who might not know how to use it properly, and particularly if it requires a lot of extra work to adequately describe the variables and potential variations in their collection.

    Maybe someone should explain what sort of data processing happens to raw climate data to get it into usable form? I suspect that some deniers simply do not understand that all data need some form of processing, and I would guess that this is particularly the case for proxy data.

    As an aside, The Daily Mash provided an amusing summary:
    http://www.thedailymash.co.uk/news/environment/climate-change-emails-stop-glaciers-from-melting-200911252254/

  41. 41
    Matti Virtanen says:

    First you state that, it is just a “powerful meme” that access to raw data is somehow restricted. And then you tell us that, you are “actively working to increase accessibility and usability of the data.”

    Obviously there is a contradiction here and you might consider dropping the pejorative word “meme” from the first paragraph. Your objective is not to label those calling for openness as just parrots, is it?

    [Response: huh? Not at all. Free speech concerns are also a powerful meme - witness the furor when Hansen was prevented from speaking to the media in 2005/2006. Many people were outraged by that even if they hadn't been paying attention to the details. You only need to look at the comment threads to see that this has touched a nerve. In this case, while the concern is real and needs addressing, the real attitude or practices of the climate science community are very different from that perceived. - gavin]

  42. 42

    OT–Can anyone there point me to an equation or method for determining the extinction coefficient at different wavelengths due to Rayleigh scattering? Or a table of such values, or a paper which mentions it? I want to go to full-scale use of the complete ERT in my RCMs and I need to calculate, rather than parameterize, Rayleigh scattering.

  43. 43
    uncle pete says:

    Sorry to post an off topic question, but here goes nevertheless.
    (IF this is a no brainer, or I am stupid or something please don’t shoot me down in flames)
    As we know a standard ic engine converts about 30% of the available energy in a given fossil fuel into motion energy.
    The remaining 60 to 70 % is “lost” as heat, ie dumped into the atmosphere. Multiply that individual car, truck. diesel locomotive , stationary engines and what have you by the millions of vehicles out there.
    On top of that also add the waste heat from electric power stations, and even the thermal pollution from nuke plants (Even though they do not emit co2) and airplanes and I reckon that is a lot of heat energy that used to be a form of carbon now warming up the atmosphere.
    So my question is , is this total amount of “waste ” heat negligible compared with the total solar radiation received by the earth, or is this large enough to play a role in influencing the climate and thus has to be included in the models?
    Thanks to anyone who can enlighten me

    [Response: Not a dumb question at all. Locally - in heavily urban environments for instance - this can be an issue, but on a global basis it is about 2 orders of magnitude smaller than the warming effect of increasing CO2 (1.7 W/m2). This is discussed here, but the calculation is easy - global energy use is about 15 TW, area of the planet is 5.1x10^14 m2, therefore the heat flux is ~0.03 W/m2. - gavin]

  44. 44

    Please add the IPCC data distribution centre to your Data Sources page (http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/data-sources/). The URL is http://www.ipcc-data.org/

    Thanks and I use this opportunity to thank you in general for the good work you do @ RealClimate

  45. 45
    Alan of Oz says:

    Thanks RC! I’m sure you realise that the innumerable trolls and astroturfer’s who claim they cannot find ANY climate data will never find this page either.

    Hat tip to your web developers too, I imagine you guys are getting more hack attempts than NASA right now.

  46. 46
    Tim Croker says:

    OT, but just quick thank-you; Realclimate is an incredibly useful site. The levels of dedication and patience shown are exemplary. Your book’s on my Christmas wish-list as a small token of my appreciation.

  47. 47
    afeman says:

    This is quite lovely. I hope established bloggers will link to it and make it come up on searches. You want data? Here you go.

    You also might include mitgcm.org for a model link, though I’m not sure which climate papers it’s been used for.

    I’m curious about how putting GISS data fit into a welcome trend of making geophysical data easily available on the web. It seems like a lot of uncontroversial data sets (MODIS products, HYCOM output to name two) have been put in relatively user-friendly form the past several years — were you going in this direction regardless?

    Thanks so much for all your work.

    [Response: Yes. Regardless of the disproportionate amount of public attention being given to the paleo-reconstructions, the big drive for more efficient access to data sets is simply the size and complexity of the models' output and satellite retrievals. It became apparent years ago that the groups who produced this data were not on their own capable of doing all the analysis or synthesis that needs to (or just could) be done. The creation of the CMIP3 data base back in 2004 (and planned well before that) and the huge number of external groups who have used that data for all sorts of research ideas (500 papers and counting), way beyond what the IPCC used, showed to all the model groups how much value-added work can be done with unrestricted access. - gavin]

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    Mike G says:

    Thanks Gavin, this is an awesome link to send to the automatons out there repeating the “they won’t release the data” meme. Unfortunately, as I’m sure you realize, most of them are just trying to score rhetorical points, so whether they have the data or not doesn’t really matter. Now that they’ve been proven wrong about the availability of the data, they will continue to bitch about how it’s not pretty or user friendly so they don’t have to address the fact that they have no clue what to do with it now that they know where to find it.

    Now you just have to provide them with GUIs for everything, instruction books with full-color illustrations, and a 24-hour helpline in the interest of full scientific transparency. ;)

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    Jimi Bostock says:

    Hi Folks, a skeptic here

    I am saddened by the tone of many of the comments. I just can not understand why the sarcastic comment and calling us names and suggesting we are just the same as the creationists

    Surely this is how you got in the mess you have.

    I am a skeptic simply because I have developed some doubts. I became more skeptical when I started to understand that much of the data and models seemed to be getting witheld. I was not sure why the secrecy but was always opne to an explanation.

    Then I just kept hearing things about maybe there was some cooling going on. So, I thought, well that sounds like worth doing some serious checking on. Then I started to hear the old “it’s all settled” line. Gosh, I have never known anything to be settled in my long life.

    So, this just kepy adding up and then the name calling and all of that started me thinking, could group think and politics really be in play.

    Som the CRU emails come along. I have read most now and looked at a good amount of the code and the read me files. Of course, I am shocked and, of course, I am even more skeptical.

    So, here I am on your site and I see a mix of people being reasoned and others attacking people like me. Then there is some folks saying that it is a storm in a teacup and it will all go away. Surely they can not be serious.

    I think that the reasoned people on yoru ‘side’ need to take control of this baby. I can;t see how attacking us with names is going to work. I think it will only make the “alarmist” tag stick.

    That is just my thoughts, please don’t attack me, I have done nothing wrong, nothing more than question the dominant paradigm and have doubts, that is not a sin or a crime.

    Peace


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