While this is encouraging news, releasing a subset will fuel some suspicion. A better choice would be to release the entire set. It may be too little, too late, the die of public opinion has been cast. Had they done this six months ago, they would have appeared visionary, rather than reactionary. The most encouraging news is the statement: “We intend that as soon as possible we will also publish the specific computer code…”. I applaud that, and I hope they do a better job than NASA GISS did, whose code is so esoteric, it is difficult to get running. Many have tried, one may have succeeded. – Anthony
From the Met Office Press Release:
Release of global-average temperature data
05 December 2009
The Met Office has announced plans to release, early next week, station temperature records for over one thousand of the stations that make up the global land surface temperature record.
This data is a subset of the full HadCRUT record of global temperatures, which is one of the global temperature records that have underpinned IPCC assessment reports and numerous scientific studies. The data subset will consist of a network of individual stations that has been designated by the World Meteorological Organisation for use in climate monitoring. The subset of stations is evenly distributed across the globe and provides a fair representation of changes in mean temperature on a global scale over land.
This subset is not a new global temperature record and it does not replace the HadCRUT, NASA GISS and NCDC global temperature records, all of which have been fully peer reviewed. We are confident this subset will show that global average land temperatures have risen over the last 150 years.
This subset release will continue the policy of putting as much of the station temperature record as possible into the public domain.
We intend that as soon as possible we will also publish the specific computer code that aggregates the individual station temperatures into the global land temperature record.
As soon as we have all permissions in place we will release the remaining station records – around 5000 in total – that make up the full land temperature record. We are dependant on international approvals to enable this final step and cannot guarantee that we will get permission from all data owners.
UEA fully supports the Met Office in making this data publicly available and is continuing to work with the Met Office to seek the necessary permission from national data owners to publish, as soon as possible as much of the data that we can gain permission for.