GCOS and WCRP Call for Strengthening Collaboration on Climate Data Records

12 May 2010: In a joint letter to worldwide organizations, the Directors of the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS) and the World Climate Research Programme (WCRP) are asking for support to international expert groups involved in scientific analysis, inter-comparison and review of climate data records.

In their letter, Carolin Richter, Director of the GCOS Secretariat, and Ghassem Asrar, Director of the WCRP, highlight continuing efforts of their organizations related to the international coordination of climate science and monitoring. They emphasize, however, that "there is currently no systematic international approach to ensure transparency, traceability and sound scientific judgement in the generation of climate data records across all fields of climate science and related Earth observations, and there are no dedicated sustained resources in place to support such an objective."

The GCOS and WCRP therefore call for urgent action and support to: empower existing international scientific working groups to carry out, on a regular basis, expert reviews of climate data records and derived products, through appropriate mandates and with adequate resources; instigate such groups in areas where they do not currently exist; and raise awareness of the need for organizations to promote transparency, traceability and scientific judgement of climate data records.

The GCOS and WCRP Directors state that climate science and climate change monitoring could be significantly advanced by the relatively modest investments associated with these measures. [WCRP Press Release] [GCOS and WCRP Joint Letter]