Factors affecting global flow of scientific knowledge in environmental sciences – ScienceDirect

Abstract:  Here we present our view on the current Open Access debate, predatory journals and the on-going publication and promotion strategy of some countries and research institutions. We urge the world’s researchers, journals and grant holders in collaboration to carefully consider how best to ensure continuous high-quality scientific publications in the future in a way so that limited funding results in important data and information being unpublished.


ASR – Interactive open access to climate observations from Germany

Abstract:  During recent years, Germany’s national meteorological service (Deutscher Wetterdienst, DWD) has significantly expanded the open access to its climate observations. A first step was a simple FTP-site with the possibility for downloading archives with various categories of data, e.g. national and international station-based meteorological data, derived parameters, gridded products and special categories as e.g. phenological data. The data are based on the observing systems of DWD for Germany as well as international activities of DWD. To improve the interactive and user-friendly access to the data, a new portal has been developed. The portal serves a variety of user requirements that result from the broad range of applications of DWD’s climate data. Here we provide an overview of the new climate data portal of DWD. It is based on a systematic implementation of OGC-based technologies. It allows easy graphical access to the station data, but also supports access via technical interfaces, esp. Web-Map- and Web-Feature-Services.

Methodical approach to the estimation of possible energy production by wind and solar power plants using weather station data – NASA/ADS

Abstract:  The expediency of using several sources of information on climate factors for estimating the potential of wind and solar energy is substantiated. Specific features of the methodology and developed software for estimating the generation of energy by wind power plants based on weather stations open access data are considered. The possibility of taking into account the results of aerodynamic modeling of the flow of the terrain by the wind flow is realized. The methodology is implemented in the form of a computer program called Wind-MCA. It includes a module for analyzing wind power potential, a module for analyzing wind turbines, an economic analysis module, and a multi-criteria analysis module. Specific features of the methodology and developed software for estimating the generation of energy by solar power plants based on data on the transparency of the atmosphere, temperature and cloudiness are considered. The technique is implemented in the form of a computer program called Sun-MCA. The estimation of the wind energy and solar energy potential of several settlements in the central zone of the Baikal region is carried out taking into account the climate change in the region.

Opinion | The Senate Should Reject Trump’s NOAA Nominee – The New York Times

The safety and economic well-being of Americans will be put at risk if the Senate confirms Barry Lee Myers as the next administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

As a nonscientist, Mr. Myers lacks the professional credentials to lead a science-centric agency responsible for daily weather forecasts, severe storm warnings, climate monitoring, fisheries management, coastal restoration and support for marine commerce.

As the former chief executive of the private weather-forecasting company AccuWeather, which relies on data from NOAA’s National Weather Service, he spent years trying to privatize NOAA’s public weather information so his company could profit from it. His family continues to run the family-owned company, raising concerns that they could benefit from decisions he might make as NOAA’s administrator….”

How Shared, Open Data Can Help Us Better Overcome Disasters | WIRED

“Hopefully, interest in data about air quality and the difficulty in getting a comprehensive view will drive more people to consider an open data and approach over proprietary ones. Right now, big companies and governments are the largest users of data that we’ve handed to them—mostly for free—to lock up in their vaults. Pharmaceutical firms, for instance, use the data to develop drugs that save lives, but they could save more lives if their data were shared. We need to start using data for more than commercial exploitation, deploying it to understand the long-term effects of policy, and create transparency around those in power—not of private citizens. We need to flip the model from short-term commercial use to long-term societal benefit….”

Data Sharing and Citations: New Author Guidelines Promoting Open and FAIR Data in the Earth, Space, and Environmental Sciences – Science Editor

“New author guidelines supporting open and FAIR data in scholarly publishing are being adopted throughout the Earth, space, and environmental sciences community. With the new guidelines, supporting resources are provided. These include a new tool for finding the right repository and answers to frequently asked questions. Adoption of these new guidelines requires a shift in the scientific culture around data sharing. Support for this change is needed by researchers, institutions, funders, journals, repositories, and connecting infrastructure—which will advance research across the geosciences….”

How open data can help the world better manage coral reefs

Climate change is a complex, worldwide problem that needs a global solution. One part of which is good monitoring systems, that operate at a large scale. Broad scale datasets from these systems are required to understand how vulnerable ecosystems like coral reefs are changing, and to separate that information from natural variation.

Often, however, scientists that collect coral reef monitoring data do so in isolation. They work on independent research projects, or for relatively small programmes with specific local agenda, and so don’t always make their data available to the scientific community. The pressure on academic researchers to be the first to publish their findings also disincentives data sharing. So there can be a conflict of interest between the motivations of an individual scientist and the larger advancement of science.

More practically, getting data ready to share is time consuming, particularly when there aren’t standardised monitoring procedures or a good data management infrastructure in place. In the absence of good management, data can simply be lost as people move on, taking lab books, data sheets and external hard drives with them.

But these barriers can be overcome. Through, for example, open access journals that publish scientifically valuable datasets. Peer-reviewed, citable datasets with standardised meta-data promotes sharing and reusability, while also recognising the researchers behind it….”

EPA fight against ‘secret science’ slowed amid pushback from researchers – ABC News

“A furious public response has slowed down the Trump administration’s plan to stop using so-called “secret science,” a move that scientists complained could have restricted the types of research used to regulate toxins, pesticides and pollution….”

EPA quietly puts controversial ‘secret science’ plan on hold — for now – ThinkProgress

“The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) appears to have put a deeply controversial plan limiting the use of scientific data in policymaking on hold for the time being. The move follows significant outcry from experts and the agency’s own staff….

On its face, that push for transparency might resonate with some — but experts have repeatedly emphasized that confidential data is private for a reason. Making it public could violate patient privacy or industry confidentiality, in many instances breaking the law and potentially allowing for distortions of the information. Limiting the data government officials can use, meanwhile, could hinder efforts to protect both human health and the environment….”