Long term data are invaluable in both understanding the properties and dynamics of ecological systems as well as in forecasting future system dynamics. Trends in long term data are critical to the ability to: (1) distinguish temporal variability from directional changes, (2) relate changes in response variables to changes in drivers or other response variables, (3) relate changes in ecological dynamics with changes in socio-economic systems, (4) forecast future dynamics under changing climatic, disturbance, and landuse. Although LTER sites and other sites have collected vast amounts of data, in many cases, these data are not easily accessible or usable by others. Individual site web pages contain many data sets, but it is often difficult to distinguish long-term datasets from short-term datasets. It is also challenging to conduct cross-site analyses using similar datasets from many different sites. It is only by creating a common interface for accessing these data that successful synthesis products can be developed. These synthesis products are essential for improving our site- to network-level understanding, and for providing a key product in the Strategic Analysis of LTER, as requested by NSF for the LTER Planning Process