On Aug 12, I wrote to Ralph Cicerone, President of NAS, asking him to request unarchived data from various authors relied upon by the NAS Panel as follows:
I enjoyed the opportunity to chat with you during the most recent hearings of the House Energy and Commerce Committee. As I have previously written to you, I view the contributions of the National Academy of Sciences panel to paleoclimate debate as being very helpful, although I obviously do not agree with all aspect of the report.
One of the ongoing problems in paleoclimate is the failure of authors to properly archive data and methods. While Mann has deservedly attracted much publicity in this respect, the problem is much more pervasive, as recognized by the NAS Panel on Surface Temperature Reconstructions and by the Wegman report. The NAS panel once again stated the necessity for a clear and public description and archiving of data and methods, but inconsistently cited and relied on many studies, which have either not archived data and methods or done so in such an inadequate way that replication is impossible.
In many cases, I have corresponded both with the authors and the journals in an effort to obtain such data without success. In some cases, the correspondence has gone on for nearly three years without resolution. In several cases, the NAS Panel relied on such studies, even hearing personal presentations, but did not take the opportunity to request the authors to archive their data.
However, now that the NAS has relied on these studies, it is of paramount importance that these studies are closely examined to determine if their conclusions are robust, or have limitations such as the NAS panel described for Mann’s work.
I believe that a letter to authors who have refused to archive data and methods in a complete manner, coming from you in your capacity as President of the National Academies, which has just published a study relying on their reports, might be effective in achieving the mutually desired goal of inspiring the authors to archive their data and methods. In Lonnie Thompson’s case, since some of the results have recently been published in the Proceedings of the NAS, the request could also be made via the journal.
In an Appendix to this letter, I have set out missing and pertinent data for six authors. Considering all of the above, I request that you promptly write to each of the authors asking that they promptly archive the data at the World Data Center for Paleoclimatology or other archive acceptable to the NAS. Thank you for your consideration.
Cicerone has just replied, declining to take any action on the grounds that he could not “command” the authors to do so, which I already had expressly acknowledged – I merely asked him to request that they do so,
I then wrote to Gerry North who, to his credit, agreed to write to the various authors. Update: No further response from North or any of the authors.