On Oct 20, 2008, I sent Santer the following request:
Dear Dr Santer,
Could you please provide me either with the monthly model data (49 series) used for statistical analysis in Santer et al 2008 or a link to a URL. I understand that your version has been collated from PCMDI ; my interest is in a file of the data as you used it (I presume that the monthly data used for statistics is about 1-2 MB). Thank you for your attention, Steve McIntyre
I received an automated response saying that Santer was at a workshop (Chapman Water Vapor) and would be returning on Oct 30. On Nov 7, 2008, not having received a reply, I sent a reminder to Santer
Could you please reply to the request below, Regards, Steve McIntyre
I once again received an automated reply, this time that he was at a meeting of the Hadley Centre Science Review Group in Exeter and that he would be back in his office on Nov. 10th
I received the following discourteous reply today:
Dear Mr. McIntyre,
I gather that your intent is to “audit” the findings of our recently-published paper in the International Journal of Climatology (IJoC). You are of course free to do so. I note that both the gridded model and observational datasets used in our IJoC paper are freely available to researchers. You should have no problem in accessing exactly the same model and observational datasets that we employed. You will need to do a little work in order to calculate synthetic Microwave Sounding Unit (MSU) temperatures from climate model atmospheric temperature information. This should not pose any difficulties for you. Algorithms for calculating synthetic MSU temperatures have been published by ourselves and others in the peer-reviewed literature. You will also need to calculate spatially-averaged temperature changes from the gridded model and observational data. Again, that should not be too taxing.
In summary, you have access to all the raw information that you require in order to determine whether the conclusions reached in our IJoC paper are sound or unsound. I see no reason why I should do your work for you, and provide you with derived quantities (zonal means, synthetic MSU temperatures, etc.) which you can easily compute yourself.
I am copying this email to all co-authors of the 2008 Santer et al. IJoC paper, as well as to Professor Glenn McGregor at IJoC.
I gather that you have appointed yourself as an independent arbiter of the appropriate use of statistical tools in climate research. Rather that “auditing” our paper, you should be directing your attention to the 2007 IJoC paper published by David Douglass et al., which contains an egregious statistical error.
Please do not communicate with me in the future.
I sent the following FOI request today to NOAA:
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Public Reference Facility (OFA56)
Attn: NOAA FOIA Officer
1315 East West Highway (SSMC3)
Silver Spring, Maryland 20910
Re: Freedom of Information Act Request
Dear NOAA FOIA Officer:
This is a request under the Freedom of Information Act.
Santer et al, Consistency of modelled and observed temperature trends in the tropical troposphere, (Int J Climatology, 2008), of which NOAA employees J. R. Lanzante, S. Solomon, M. Free and T. R. Karl were co-authors, reported on a statistical analysis of the output of 47 runs of climate models that had been collated into monthly time series by Benjamin Santer and associates.
I request that a copy of the following NOAA records be provided to me: (1) any monthly time series of output from any of the 47 climate models sent by Santer and/or other coauthors of Santer et al 2008 to NOAA employees between 2006 and October 2008; (2) any correspondence concerning these monthly time series between Santer and/or other coauthors of Santer et al 2008 and NOAA employees between 2006 and October 2008.
The primary sources for NOAA records are J. R. Lanzante, S. Solomon, M. Free and T. R. Karl.
In order to help to determine my status for purposes of determining the applicability of any fees, you should know that I have 5 peer-reviewed publications on paleoclimate; that I was a reviewer for WG1; that I made a invited presentations in 2006 to the National Research Council Panel on Surface Temperature Reconstructions and two presentations to the Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee.
In addition, a previous FOI request was discussed by the NOAA Science Advisory Board’s Data Archiving and Access Requirements Working Group (DAARWG). http://www.joss.ucar.edu/daarwg/may07/presentations/KarL_DAARWG_NOAAArchivepolify-v0514.pdf.
I believe a fee waiver is appropriate since the purpose of the request is academic research, the information exists in digital format and the information should be easily located by the primary sources.
I also include a telephone number (___) at which I can be contacted between 9 and 7 pm Eastern Daylight Time, if necessary, to discuss any aspect of my request.
Thank you for your consideration of this request.
I ask that the FOI request be processed promptly as NOAA failed to send me a response to the FOI request referred to above, for which Dr Karl apologized as follows: “due to a miscommunication between our office and our headquarters, the response was not submitted to you. I deeply apologize for this oversight, and we have taken measures to ensure this does not happen in the future.”
I sent the following letter to the editor of the journal:
Dear Dr McGregor,
I am writing to you in your capacity as editor of International Journal of Climatology.
Recently Santer et al published a statistical analysis of monthly time series that they had collated from 47 climate nodels. I recently requested a copy of this data from Dr Santer and received the attached discourteous refusal.
I was unable to locate any information of data policies of your journal and would appreciate a copy of such policies.
The form of my request was well within the scope of the data policies of most academic journals and I presume that this is also the case in respect to the policies of your journal. If this is the case, I would also appreciate it if you required the authors to provide the requested collation in the form used for their statistical analysis. While the authors argue that the monthly series could be collated from PCMDI data, my interest lies with the statistical properties of the time series, rather than with the collation of the data.
Regards, Steve McIntyre