WorldWideScience

Sample records for glaciers rising sea

  1. The future sea-level rise contribution of Greenland’s glaciers and ice caps

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Machguth, H; Rastner, P; Bolch, T; Mölg, N; Sørensen, L Sandberg; Aðalgeirsdottir, G; Van Angelen, J H; Van den Broeke, M R; Fettweis, X

    2013-01-01

    We calculate the future sea-level rise contribution from the surface mass balance of all of Greenland’s glaciers and ice caps (GICs, ∼90 000 km 2 ) using a simplified energy balance model which is driven by three future climate scenarios from the regional climate models HIRHAM5, RACMO2 and MAR. Glacier extent and surface elevation are modified during the mass balance model runs according to a glacier retreat parameterization. Mass balance and glacier surface change are both calculated on a 250 m resolution digital elevation model yielding a high level of detail and ensuring that important feedback mechanisms are considered. The mass loss of all GICs by 2098 is calculated to be 2016 ± 129 Gt (HIRHAM5 forcing), 2584 ± 109 Gt (RACMO2) and 3907 ± 108 Gt (MAR). This corresponds to a total contribution to sea-level rise of 5.8 ± 0.4, 7.4 ± 0.3 and 11.2 ± 0.3 mm, respectively. Sensitivity experiments suggest that mass loss could be higher by 20–30% if a strong lowering of the surface albedo were to take place in the future. It is shown that the sea-level rise contribution from the north-easterly regions of Greenland is reduced by increasing precipitation while mass loss in the southern half of Greenland is dominated by steadily decreasing summer mass balances. In addition we observe glaciers in the north-eastern part of Greenland changing their characteristics towards greater activity and mass turnover. (letter)

  2. A reconciled estimate of glacier contributions to sea level rise: 2003 to 2009.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gardner, Alex S; Moholdt, Geir; Cogley, J Graham; Wouters, Bert; Arendt, Anthony A; Wahr, John; Berthier, Etienne; Hock, Regine; Pfeffer, W Tad; Kaser, Georg; Ligtenberg, Stefan R M; Bolch, Tobias; Sharp, Martin J; Hagen, Jon Ove; van den Broeke, Michiel R; Paul, Frank

    2013-05-17

    Glaciers distinct from the Greenland and Antarctic Ice Sheets are losing large amounts of water to the world's oceans. However, estimates of their contribution to sea level rise disagree. We provide a consensus estimate by standardizing existing, and creating new, mass-budget estimates from satellite gravimetry and altimetry and from local glaciological records. In many regions, local measurements are more negative than satellite-based estimates. All regions lost mass during 2003-2009, with the largest losses from Arctic Canada, Alaska, coastal Greenland, the southern Andes, and high-mountain Asia, but there was little loss from glaciers in Antarctica. Over this period, the global mass budget was -259 ± 28 gigatons per year, equivalent to the combined loss from both ice sheets and accounting for 29 ± 13% of the observed sea level rise.

  3. The future sea-level rise contribution of Greenland’s glaciers and ice caps

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Machguth, H.; Rastner, P.; Bolch, T.

    2013-01-01

    We calculate the future sea-level rise contribution from the surface mass balance of all of Greenland's glaciers and ice caps (GICs, ~90 000 km2) using a simplified energy balance model which is driven by three future climate scenarios from the regional climate models HIRHAM5, RACMO2 and MAR...... experiments suggest that mass loss could be higher by 20–30% if a strong lowering of the surface albedo were to take place in the future. It is shown that the sea-level rise contribution from the north-easterly regions of Greenland is reduced by increasing precipitation while mass loss in the southern half...... feedback mechanisms are considered. The mass loss of all GICs by 2098 is calculated to be 2016 ± 129 Gt (HIRHAM5 forcing), 2584 ± 109 Gt (RACMO2) and 3907 ± 108 Gt (MAR). This corresponds to a total contribution to sea-level rise of 5.8 ± 0.4, 7.4 ± 0.3 and 11.2 ± 0.3 mm, respectively. Sensitivity...

  4. The rise of sea level. To understand and to anticipate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2013-03-01

    By proposing and briefly commenting graphs and drawings, this publication propose brief presentations of the main issues related to sea level rise: global warming and climate disturbance, description of the phenomenon of sea level rise (difference between sea ice and ground ice, melting of glaciers), increase of sea level rise during the twentieth century, territories at risk (examples of Greenland, Tuvalu, Shanghai), acceleration of ice melting during the twenty first century with many coastal areas at risk, already noticed and possible future impacts in France (glaciers runoff, threatened coasts, example of the Xynthia tempest), how to be united and to anticipate (a threat for millions of people, adaptation to sea level rise, limitation of global warming to limit sea level rise)

  5. Towards a unified estimate of arctic glaciers contribution to sea level rise since 1972.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dehecq, A.; Gardner, A. S.; Alexandrov, O.; McMichael, S.

    2017-12-01

    Glaciers retreat contributed to about 1/3 of the observed sea level rise since 1971 (IPCC). However, long term estimates of glaciers volume changes rely on sparse field observations and region-wide satellite observations are available mostly after 2000. The recently declassified images from the reconnaissance satellite series Hexagon (KH9), that acquired 6 m resolution stereoscopic images from 1971 to 1986, open new possibilities for glaciers observation. But the film-printed images represent a processing challenge. Here we present an automatic workflow developed to generate Digital Elevation Models (DEMs) at 24 m resolution from the raw scanned KH9 images. It includes a preprocessing step to detect fiducial marks and to correct distortions of the film caused by the 40-year storage. An estimate of the unknown satellite position is obtained from a crude geolocation of the images. Each stereo image pair/triplet is then processed using the NASA Ames Stereo Pipeline to derive an unscaled DEM using standard photogrammetric techniques. This DEM is finally aligned to a reference topography, to account for errors in translation, rotation and scaling. In a second part, we present DEMs generated over glaciers in the Canadian Arctic and analyze glaciers volume changes from 1970 to the more recent WorldView ArcticDEM.

  6. Updating the results of glacier contribution to the sea level change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dyurgerov, Mark B.; Abdalati, Waleed Dr. (Technical Monitor)

    2005-01-01

    I have completed an update of global glacier volume change. All data of glacier annual mass balances, surface area over the period 1945/46 till 2004, outside the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets were included in this update. As the result global glacier volume change have been calculated, also in terms of glacier contribution to sea level change. These results were sent to Working Group 1 and 2 of IPCC-4 as the basis for modeling of sea level towards the end of 2100. In this study I have concentrated on studying glacier systems of different scales, from primary (e.g. Devon ice cap) to regional (e.g. Canadian Arctic), continental scale (e,g., entire Arctic), and global (e.g., change in glacier volume and contribution to sea level rise).

  7. Accelerated contributions of Canada's Baffin and Bylot Island glaciers to sea level rise over the past half century

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Gardner

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Canadian Arctic glaciers have recently contributed large volumes of meltwater to the world's oceans. To place recently observed glacier wastage into a historical perspective and to determine the region's longer-term (~50 years contribution to sea level, we estimate mass and volume changes for the glaciers of Baffin and Bylot Islands using digital elevation models generated from airborne and satellite stereoscopic imagery and elevation postings from repeat airborne and satellite laser altimetry. In addition, we update existing glacier mass change records from GRACE satellite gravimetry to cover the period from 2003 to 2011. Using this integrated approach, we find that the rate of mass loss from the region's glaciers increased from 11.1 ± 3.4 Gt a−1 (271 ± 84 kg m−2 a−1 for the period 1963–2006 to 23.8 ± 6.1 Gt a−1 (581 ± 149 kg m−2 a−1 for the period 2003–2011. The doubling of the rate of mass loss is attributed to higher temperatures in summer with little change in annual precipitation. Through both direct and indirect effects, changes in summer temperatures accounted for 70–98% of the variance in the rate of mass loss, to which the Barnes Ice Cap was found to be 1.7 times more sensitive than either the Penny Ice Cap or the region's glaciers as a whole. This heightened sensitivity is the result of a glacier hypsometry that is skewed to lower elevations, which are shown to have a higher mass change sensitive to temperature compared to glacier surfaces at higher elevations. Between 2003 and 2011 the glaciers of Baffin and Bylot Islands contributed 0.07 ± 0.02 mm a−1 to sea level rise accounting for 16% of the total contribution from glaciers outside of Greenland and Antarctica, a rate much higher than the longer-term average of 0.03 ± 0.01 mm a−1 (1963 to 2006.

  8. Contemporary sea level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cazenave, Anny; Llovel, William

    2010-01-01

    Measuring sea level change and understanding its causes has considerably improved in the recent years, essentially because new in situ and remote sensing observations have become available. Here we report on most recent results on contemporary sea level rise. We first present sea level observations from tide gauges over the twentieth century and from satellite altimetry since the early 1990s. We next discuss the most recent progress made in quantifying the processes causing sea level change on timescales ranging from years to decades, i.e., thermal expansion of the oceans, land ice mass loss, and land water-storage change. We show that for the 1993-2007 time span, the sum of climate-related contributions (2.85 +/- 0.35 mm year(-1)) is only slightly less than altimetry-based sea level rise (3.3 +/- 0.4 mm year(-1)): approximately 30% of the observed rate of rise is due to ocean thermal expansion and approximately 55% results from land ice melt. Recent acceleration in glacier melting and ice mass loss from the ice sheets increases the latter contribution up to 80% for the past five years. We also review the main causes of regional variability in sea level trends: The dominant contribution results from nonuniform changes in ocean thermal expansion.

  9. Contribution of glacier melt to sea-level rise since AD 1865: a regionally differentiated calculation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zuo, Z.; Oerlemans, J.

    1997-01-01

    The contribution of glacier melt, including the Greenland ice-sheet, to sea-level change since AD 1865 is estimated on the basis of modelled sensitivity of glacier mass balance to climate change and historical temperature data. Calculations are done in a regionally differentiated manner to overcome

  10. A decade of sea level rise slowed by climate-driven hydrology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reager, J T; Gardner, A S; Famiglietti, J S; Wiese, D N; Eicker, A; Lo, M-H

    2016-02-12

    Climate-driven changes in land water storage and their contributions to sea level rise have been absent from Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change sea level budgets owing to observational challenges. Recent advances in satellite measurement of time-variable gravity combined with reconciled global glacier loss estimates enable a disaggregation of continental land mass changes and a quantification of this term. We found that between 2002 and 2014, climate variability resulted in an additional 3200 ± 900 gigatons of water being stored on land. This gain partially offset water losses from ice sheets, glaciers, and groundwater pumping, slowing the rate of sea level rise by 0.71 ± 0.20 millimeters per year. These findings highlight the importance of climate-driven changes in hydrology when assigning attribution to decadal changes in sea level. Copyright © 2016, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  11. Observed sea-level rise in the north Indian Ocean coasts during the past century

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Unnikrishnan, A.S.

    Content-Type text/plain; charset=UTF-8 91 Observed sea-level rise in the north Indian Ocean coasts during the past century A. S. Unnikrishnan National Institute of Oceanography, Dona Paula, Goa-403004 unni@nio.org Introduction Sea-level... rise is one of the good indicators of global warming. Rise in sea level occurs mainly through melting of glaciers, thermal expansion due to ocean warming and some other processes of relatively smaller magnitudes. Sea level rise is a global...

  12. Present-day sea level rise: a synthesis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cazenave, A.; Llovel, W.; Lombard, A.

    2008-01-01

    Measuring sea level change and understanding its causes have improved considerably in the recent years, essentially because new in situ and remote sensing data sets have become available. Here we report on the current knowledge of present-day sea level change. We briefly present observational results on sea level change from satellite altimetry since 1993 and tide gauges for the past century. We next discuss recent progress made in quantifying the processes causing sea level change on time scales ranging from years to decades, i.e., thermal expansion, land ice mass loss and land water storage change. For the 1993-2003 decade, the sum of climate-related contributions agree well (within the error bars) with the altimetry-based sea level, half of the observed rate of rise being due to ocean thermal expansion, land ice plus land waters explaining the other half. Since about 2003, thermal expansion increase has stopped, whereas the sea level continues to rise, although at a reduced rate compared to the previous decade (2.5 mm/yr versus 3.1 mm/yr). Recent increases in glacier melting and ice mass loss from the ice sheets appear able to account alone for the rise in sea level reported over the last five years. (authors)

  13. Fate of water pumped from underground and contributions to sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wada, Yoshihide; Lo, Min-Hui; Yeh, Pat J.-F.; Reager, John T.; Famiglietti, James S.; Wu, Ren-Jie; Tseng, Yu-Heng

    2016-08-01

    The contributions from terrestrial water sources to sea-level rise, other than ice caps and glaciers, are highly uncertain and heavily debated. Recent assessments indicate that groundwater depletion (GWD) may become the most important positive terrestrial contribution over the next 50 years, probably equal in magnitude to the current contributions from glaciers and ice caps. However, the existing estimates assume that nearly 100% of groundwater extracted eventually ends up in the oceans. Owing to limited knowledge of the pathways and mechanisms governing the ultimate fate of pumped groundwater, the relative fraction of global GWD that contributes to sea-level rise remains unknown. Here, using a coupled climate-hydrological model simulation, we show that only 80% of GWD ends up in the ocean. An increase in runoff to the ocean accounts for roughly two-thirds, whereas the remainder results from the enhanced net flux of precipitation minus evaporation over the ocean, due to increased atmospheric vapour transport from the land to the ocean. The contribution of GWD to global sea-level rise amounted to 0.02 (+/-0.004) mm yr-1 in 1900 and increased to 0.27 (+/-0.04) mm yr-1 in 2000. This indicates that existing studies have substantially overestimated the contribution of GWD to global sea-level rise by a cumulative amount of at least 10 mm during the twentieth century and early twenty-first century. With other terrestrial water contributions included, we estimate the net terrestrial water contribution during the period 1993-2010 to be +0.12 (+/-0.04) mm yr-1, suggesting that the net terrestrial water contribution reported in the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report report is probably overestimated by a factor of three.

  14. A scaling approach to project regional sea level rise and its uncertainties

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Perrette

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Climate change causes global mean sea level to rise due to thermal expansion of seawater and loss of land ice from mountain glaciers, ice caps and ice sheets. Locally, sea level can strongly deviate from the global mean rise due to changes in wind and ocean currents. In addition, gravitational adjustments redistribute seawater away from shrinking ice masses. However, the land ice contribution to sea level rise (SLR remains very challenging to model, and comprehensive regional sea level projections, which include appropriate gravitational adjustments, are still a nascent field (Katsman et al., 2011; Slangen et al., 2011. Here, we present an alternative approach to derive regional sea level changes for a range of emission and land ice melt scenarios, combining probabilistic forecasts of a simple climate model (MAGICC6 with the new CMIP5 general circulation models. The contribution from ice sheets varies considerably depending on the assumptions for the ice sheet projections, and thus represents sizeable uncertainties for future sea level rise. However, several consistent and robust patterns emerge from our analysis: at low latitudes, especially in the Indian Ocean and Western Pacific, sea level will likely rise more than the global mean (mostly by 10–20%. Around the northeastern Atlantic and the northeastern Pacific coasts, sea level will rise less than the global average or, in some rare cases, even fall. In the northwestern Atlantic, along the American coast, a strong dynamic sea level rise is counteracted by gravitational depression due to Greenland ice melt; whether sea level will be above- or below-average will depend on the relative contribution of these two factors. Our regional sea level projections and the diagnosed uncertainties provide an improved basis for coastal impact analysis and infrastructure planning for adaptation to climate change.

  15. Probabilistic reanalysis of twentieth-century sea-level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hay, Carling C; Morrow, Eric; Kopp, Robert E; Mitrovica, Jerry X

    2015-01-22

    Estimating and accounting for twentieth-century global mean sea level (GMSL) rise is critical to characterizing current and future human-induced sea-level change. Several previous analyses of tide gauge records--employing different methods to accommodate the spatial sparsity and temporal incompleteness of the data and to constrain the geometry of long-term sea-level change--have concluded that GMSL rose over the twentieth century at a mean rate of 1.6 to 1.9 millimetres per year. Efforts to account for this rate by summing estimates of individual contributions from glacier and ice-sheet mass loss, ocean thermal expansion, and changes in land water storage fall significantly short in the period before 1990. The failure to close the budget of GMSL during this period has led to suggestions that several contributions may have been systematically underestimated. However, the extent to which the limitations of tide gauge analyses have affected estimates of the GMSL rate of change is unclear. Here we revisit estimates of twentieth-century GMSL rise using probabilistic techniques and find a rate of GMSL rise from 1901 to 1990 of 1.2 ± 0.2 millimetres per year (90% confidence interval). Based on individual contributions tabulated in the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, this estimate closes the twentieth-century sea-level budget. Our analysis, which combines tide gauge records with physics-based and model-derived geometries of the various contributing signals, also indicates that GMSL rose at a rate of 3.0 ± 0.7 millimetres per year between 1993 and 2010, consistent with prior estimates from tide gauge records.The increase in rate relative to the 1901-90 trend is accordingly larger than previously thought; this revision may affect some projections of future sea-level rise.

  16. Visualizing Glaciers and Sea Ice via Google Earth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballagh, L. M.; Fetterer, F.; Haran, T. M.; Pharris, K.

    2006-12-01

    The NOAA team at NSIDC manages over 60 distinct cryospheric and related data products. With an emphasis on data rescue and in situ data, these products hold value for both the scientific and non-scientific user communities. The overarching goal of this presentation is to promote products from two components of the cryosphere (glaciers and sea ice). Our Online Glacier Photograph Database contains approximately 3,000 photographs taken over many decades, exemplifying change in the glacier terminus over time. The sea ice product shows sea ice extent and concentration along with anomalies and trends. This Sea Ice Index product, which starts in 1979 and is updated monthly, provides visuals of the current state of sea ice in both hemispheres with trends and anomalies. The long time period covered by the data set means that many of the trends in ice extent and concentration shown in this product are statistically significant despite the large natural variability in sea ice. The minimum arctic sea ice extent has been a record low in September 2002 and 2005, contributing to an accelerated trend in sea ice reduction. With increasing world-wide interest in indicators of global climate change, and the upcoming International Polar Year, these data products are of interest to a broad audience. To further extend the impact of these data, we have made them viewable through Google Earth via the Keyhole Markup Language (KML). This presents an opportunity to branch out to a more diverse audience by using a new and innovative tool that allows spatial representation of data of significant scientific and educational interest.

  17. Present-day sea level rise: a synthesis; Hausse actuelle du niveau de la mer: synthese

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cazenave, A.; Llovel, W. [Laboratoire d' Etudes en Geophysique et Oceanographie Spatiales (LEGOS), Observatoire Midi-Pyrenees, 31 - Toulouse (France); Lombard, A. [CNES, 31 - Toulouse (France)

    2008-11-15

    Measuring sea level change and understanding its causes have improved considerably in the recent years, essentially because new in situ and remote sensing data sets have become available. Here we report on the current knowledge of present-day sea level change. We briefly present observational results on sea level change from satellite altimetry since 1993 and tide gauges for the past century. We next discuss recent progress made in quantifying the processes causing sea level change on time scales ranging from years to decades, i.e., thermal expansion, land ice mass loss and land water storage change. For the 1993-2003 decade, the sum of climate-related contributions agree well (within the error bars) with the altimetry-based sea level, half of the observed rate of rise being due to ocean thermal expansion, land ice plus land waters explaining the other half. Since about 2003, thermal expansion increase has stopped, whereas the sea level continues to rise, although at a reduced rate compared to the previous decade (2.5 mm/yr versus 3.1 mm/yr). Recent increases in glacier melting and ice mass loss from the ice sheets appear able to account alone for the rise in sea level reported over the last five years. (authors)

  18. Associations between accelerated glacier mass wastage and increased summer temperature in coastal regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dyurgerov, M.; McCabe, G.J.

    2006-01-01

    Low-elevation glaciers in coastal regions of Alaska, the Canadian Arctic, individual ice caps around the Greenland ice sheet, and the Patagonia Ice Fields have an aggregate glacier area of about 332 ?? 103 km 2 and account for approximately 42% of all the glacier area outside the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets. They have shown volume loss, especially since the end of the 1980s, increasing from about 45% in the 1960s to nearly 67% in 2003 of the total wastage from all glaciers on Earth outside those two largest ice sheets. Thus, a disproportionally large contribution of coastal glacier ablation to sea level rise is evident. We examine cumulative standardized departures (1961-2000 reference period) of glacier mass balances and air temperature data in these four coastal regions. Analyses indicate a strong association between increases in glacier volume losses and summer air temperature at regional and global scales. Increases in glacier volume losses in the coastal regions also coincide with an accelerated rate of ice discharge from outlet glaciers draining the Greenland and West Antarctic ice sheets. These processes imply further increases in sea level rise. ?? 2006 Regents of the University of Colorado.

  19. Arctic polynya and glacier interactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Laura

    2013-04-01

    Major uncertainties surround future estimates of sea level rise attributable to mass loss from the polar ice sheets and ice caps. Understanding changes across the Arctic is vital as major potential contributors to sea level, the Greenland Ice Sheet and the ice caps and glaciers of the Canadian Arctic archipelago, have experienced dramatic changes in recent times. Most ice mass loss is currently focused at a relatively small number of glacier catchments where ice acceleration, thinning and calving occurs at ocean margins. Research suggests that these tidewater glaciers accelerate and iceberg calving rates increase when warming ocean currents increase melt on the underside of floating glacier ice and when adjacent sea ice is removed causing a reduction in 'buttressing' back stress. Thus localised changes in ocean temperatures and in sea ice (extent and thickness) adjacent to major glacial catchments can impact hugely on the dynamics of, and hence mass lost from, terrestrial ice sheets and ice caps. Polynyas are areas of open water within sea ice which remain unfrozen for much of the year. They vary significantly in size (~3 km2 to > ~50,000 km2 in the Arctic), recurrence rates and duration. Despite their relatively small size, polynyas play a vital role in the heat balance of the polar oceans and strongly impact regional oceanography. Where polynyas develop adjacent to tidewater glaciers their influence on ocean circulation and water temperatures may play a major part in controlling subsurface ice melt rates by impacting on the water masses reaching the calving front. Areas of open water also play a significant role in controlling the potential of the atmosphere to carry moisture, as well as allowing heat exchange between the atmosphere and ocean, and so can influence accumulation on (and hence thickness of) glaciers and ice caps. Polynya presence and size also has implications for sea ice extent and therefore potentially the buttressing effect on neighbouring

  20. Exceptional retreat of Novaya Zemlya's marine-terminating outlet glaciers between 2000 and 2013

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. R. Carr

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Novaya Zemlya (NVZ has experienced rapid ice loss and accelerated marine-terminating glacier retreat during the past 2 decades. However, it is unknown whether this retreat is exceptional longer term and/or whether it has persisted since 2010. Investigating this is vital, as dynamic thinning may contribute substantially to ice loss from NVZ, but is not currently included in sea level rise predictions. Here, we use remotely sensed data to assess controls on NVZ glacier retreat between 1973/76 and 2015. Glaciers that terminate into lakes or the ocean receded 3.5 times faster than those that terminate on land. Between 2000 and 2013, retreat rates were significantly higher on marine-terminating outlet glaciers than during the previous 27 years, and we observe widespread slowdown in retreat, and even advance, between 2013 and 2015. There were some common patterns in the timing of glacier retreat, but the magnitude varied between individual glaciers. Rapid retreat between 2000 and 2013 corresponds to a period of significantly warmer air temperatures and reduced sea ice concentrations, and to changes in the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO and Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO. We need to assess the impact of this accelerated retreat on dynamic ice losses from NVZ to accurately quantify its future sea level rise contribution.

  1. Distributed ice thickness and glacier volume in southern South America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carrivick, Jonathan L.; Davies, Bethan J.; James, William H. M.; Quincey, Duncan J.; Glasser, Neil F.

    2016-11-01

    South American glaciers, including those in Patagonia, presently contribute the largest amount of meltwater to sea level rise per unit glacier area in the world. Yet understanding of the mechanisms behind the associated glacier mass balance changes remains unquantified partly because models are hindered by a lack of knowledge of subglacial topography. This study applied a perfect-plasticity model along glacier centre-lines to derive a first-order estimate of ice thickness and then interpolated these thickness estimates across glacier areas. This produced the first complete coverage of distributed ice thickness, bed topography and volume for 617 glaciers between 41°S and 55°S and in 24 major glacier regions. Maximum modelled ice thicknesses reach 1631 m ± 179 m in the South Patagonian Icefield (SPI), 1315 m ± 145 m in the North Patagonian Icefield (NPI) and 936 m ± 103 m in Cordillera Darwin. The total modelled volume of ice is 1234.6 km3 ± 246.8 km3 for the NPI, 4326.6 km3 ± 865.2 km3 for the SPI and 151.9 km3 ± 30.38 km3 for Cordillera Darwin. The total volume was modelled to be 5955 km3 ± 1191 km3, which equates to 5458.3 Gt ± 1091.6 Gt ice and to 15.08 mm ± 3.01 mm sea level equivalent (SLE). However, a total area of 655 km2 contains ice below sea level and there are 282 individual overdeepenings with a mean depth of 38 m and a total volume if filled with water to the brim of 102 km3. Adjusting the potential SLE for the ice volume below sea level and for the maximum potential storage of meltwater in these overdeepenings produces a maximum potential sea level rise (SLR) of 14.71 mm ± 2.94 mm. We provide a calculation of the present ice volume per major river catchment and we discuss likely changes to southern South America glaciers in the future. The ice thickness and subglacial topography modelled by this study will facilitate future studies of ice dynamics and glacier isostatic adjustment, and will be important for projecting water resources and

  2. Iron from melting glaciers fuels phytoplankton blooms in the Amundsen Sea (Southern Ocean): Phytoplankton characteristics and productivity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Alderkamp, A.C.; Mills, M.M.; van Dijken, G.L.; Laan, P.; Thuróczy, C.-E.; Gerringa, L.J.A.; de Baar, H.J.W.; Payne, C.D.; Visser, R.J.W.; Buma, A.G.J.; Arrigo, K.R.

    2012-01-01

    The phytoplankton community composition and productivity in waters of the Amundsen Sea and surrounding sea ice zone were characterized with respect to iron (Fe) input from melting glaciers. High Fe input from glaciers such as the Pine Island Glacier, and the Dotson and Crosson ice shelves resulted

  3. The retreat of mountain glaciers: what can satellites tell us?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Berthier, E.

    2008-01-01

    Mountain glaciers are one of the best indicators of climate change and their rapid wastage make them a strong contributor to sea level rise. The estimated 160,000 mountain glaciers are spread all around the globe and remain difficult to access. Consequently, only a limited number (about 50 glaciers) are regularly monitored in the field. Today, high resolution satellite optical images are combined to some advanced methodologies to survey their fast and alarming evolution. (author)

  4. Investigating the Equatorial Gaps in Snowball Earth Sea Glaciers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spaulding-Astudillo, F.; Ashkenazy, Y.; Tziperman, E.; Abbot, D. S.

    2017-12-01

    The way photosynthetic life survived the Neoproterozoic Snowball Earth events is still a matter of debate that has deep implications for planetary habitability. One option is that gaps in thick, semi-global ice coverage (sea glaciers) could be maintained at the equator by ocean-ice-atmosphere dynamics. We investigate this idea by modifying a global ocean-thick-marine-ice model developed for modeling Neoproterozoic Snowball Events to account for gaps in thick ice and interactions with atmospheric dynamics. Our hypothesis is that in the parameter regime that allows for sea glacier flow, ice flow will make gaps in the thick ice, and therefore an open ocean solution, less likely. This would suggest that oases in thick ice are a more viable survival mechanism for photosynthetic life during a Snowball Earth event.

  5. The land-ice contribution to 21st-century dynamic sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howard, T.; Ridley, J.; Pardaens, A. K.; Hurkmans, R. T. W. L.; Payne, A. J.; Giesen, R. H.; Lowe, J. A.; Bamber, J. L.; Edwards, T. L.; Oerlemans, J.

    2014-06-01

    Climate change has the potential to influence global mean sea level through a number of processes including (but not limited to) thermal expansion of the oceans and enhanced land ice melt. In addition to their contribution to global mean sea level change, these two processes (among others) lead to local departures from the global mean sea level change, through a number of mechanisms including the effect on spatial variations in the change of water density and transport, usually termed dynamic sea level changes. In this study, we focus on the component of dynamic sea level change that might be given by additional freshwater inflow to the ocean under scenarios of 21st-century land-based ice melt. We present regional patterns of dynamic sea level change given by a global-coupled atmosphere-ocean climate model forced by spatially and temporally varying projected ice-melt fluxes from three sources: the Antarctic ice sheet, the Greenland Ice Sheet and small glaciers and ice caps. The largest ice melt flux we consider is equivalent to almost 0.7 m of global mean sea level rise over the 21st century. The temporal evolution of the dynamic sea level changes, in the presence of considerable variations in the ice melt flux, is also analysed. We find that the dynamic sea level change associated with the ice melt is small, with the largest changes occurring in the North Atlantic amounting to 3 cm above the global mean rise. Furthermore, the dynamic sea level change associated with the ice melt is similar regardless of whether the simulated ice fluxes are applied to a simulation with fixed CO2 or under a business-as-usual greenhouse gas warming scenario of increasing CO2.

  6. Snowball Earth: Asynchronous coupling of sea-glacier flow with a global climate model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pollard, D.; Kasting, J. F.; Zugger, M. E.

    2017-05-01

    During Snowball Earth episodes of the Neoproterozoic and Paleoproterozoic, limited amounts of tropical open ocean (Jormungand), or tropical ocean with thin ice cover, would help to explain (1) vigorous glacial activity in low latitudes, (2) survival of photosynthetic life, and (3) deglacial recovery without excessive buildup of atmospheric CO2. Some previous models have suggested that tropical open ocean or thin-ice cover is possible; however, its viability in the presence of kilometer-thick sea glaciers flowing from higher latitudes has not been demonstrated conclusively. Here we describe a new method of asynchronously coupling a zonal sea-glacier model with a 3-D global climate model and apply it to Snowball Earth. Equilibrium curves of ice line versus CO2 are mapped out, as well as their dependence on ocean heat transport efficiency, sea-glacier flow, and other model parameters. No climate states with limited tropical open ocean or thin ice are found in any of our model runs, including those with sea glaciers. If this result is correct, then other refugia such as cryoconite pans would have been required for life to survive. However, the reasons for the differences between our results and others should first be resolved. It is suggested that small-scale convective dynamics, affecting fractional snow cover in low latitudes, may be a critical factor accounting for these differences.

  7. Glaciers of North America - Glaciers of Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molnia, Bruce F.

    2008-01-01

    literature for each of the 11 mountain ranges, the large island, the island chain, and the archipelago was conducted to determine both the individual and the regional status of Alaskan glaciers and to characterize changes in thickness and terminus position of representative glaciers in each mountain range or island group. In many areas, observations used for determining changes date from the late 18th or early 19th century. Temperature records at all Alaskan meteorological recording stations document a 20th century warming trend. Therefore, characterizing the response of Alaska's glaciers to changing climate helps to quantify potential sea-level rise from past, present, and future melting of glacier ice (deglaciation of the 14 glacierized regions of Alaska), understand present and future hydrological changes, and define impacts on ecosystems that are responding to deglacierization. Many different types of data were scrutinized to determine baselines and to assess the magnitude of glacier change. These data include the following: published descriptions of glaciers (1794-2000), especially the comprehensive research by Field (1975a) and his colleagues in the Alaska part of Mountain Glaciers of the Northern Hemisphere, aerial photography (since 1926), ground photography (since 1884), airborne radar (1981-91), satellite radar (1978-98), space photography (1984-94), multispectral satellite imagery (since 1972), aerial reconnaissance and field observations made by many scientists during the past several decades, and various types of proxy data. The published and unpublished data available for each glacierized region and individual glacier varied significantly. Geospatial analysis of digitized U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) topographic maps is used to statistically define selected glaciological parameters in the eastern part of the Alaska Range. The analysis determined that every mountain range and island group investigated can be characterized by significant glac

  8. Spatial and temporal melt variability at Helheim Glacier, East Greenland, and its effect on ice dynamics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, M. L.; Larsen, T. B.; Nettles, M.

    2010-01-01

    Understanding the behavior of large outlet glaciers draining the Greenland Ice Sheet is critical for assessing the impact of climate change on sea level rise. The flow of marine-terminating outlet glaciers is partly governed by calving-related processes taking place at the terminus but is also in...

  9. We Are All Engineers Now: Delivering Useful Projections Of Sea Level Rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pfeffer, W. T.

    2011-12-01

    Sea level rise is among the most tangible and potentially costly global changes facing society in the near future. Much of the uncertainty in future sea level rise lies in the determination of glacier and ice sheet contributions through melting of ice and through the discharge of icebergs directly into the ocean. As a consequence, many aspects of modern glaciological research have come to be motivated wholly or in part by the need to solve societally relevant problems involving future changes in sea level. To this extent, glaciology has become - temporarily - an applied science, in which the motivating questions are not purely scientific but practical in nature, and entail goals, deadlines and constraints that may or may not mesh comfortably with the skills, resources, and interests of the glaciological research community. This shift in motivation has subtle but important effects on how the glaciological community conducts research: we are no longer fully at liberty to explore only those problems that we judge to be the most intellectually stimulating and novel, or even the most likely to produce immediate results. We are obliged, at least if we are going to claim to be serving a critical societal need, to take on the entire spectrum of problems pertinent to sea level rise: the exciting with the mundane, the low-hanging fruit with the high-hanging, the tractable with the intractable. And in those intractable cases, and in other situations where the path to a solution is unclear, we must explore alternatives to our conventional approaches, and seek the means, if not to actually obtain solutions, to at least constrain the outcome and reduce the uncertainty of future knowledge. This broadening of methods is very much an engineer's approach to problem solving, but it also fits the philosopher/physicist P.W. Bridgman's definition of the scientific method as "Doing your damnedest, no holds barred."

  10. Very small glaciers under climate change: from the local to the global scale

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huss, M.; Fischer, M.

    2015-12-01

    Very small glaciers (climate archive. Very small glaciers have generally shorter response times than valley glaciers and their mass balance is strongly dependent on snow redistribution processes. Worldwide glacier monitoring has focused on medium-sized to large glaciers leaving us with a relatively limited understanding of the behavior of very small glaciers. With warming climate there is an increasing concern that very small glaciers might be the first to disappear. Already in the next decades this might result in the complete deglaciation of mountain ranges with glacier equilibrium lines close to the highest peaks, such as in the Rocky Mountains, the European Alps, the Andes or parts of High Mountain Asia. In this contribution, we present a comprehensive modelling framework to assess past and future changes in very small glaciers at the mountain-range scale. Among other processes our model accounts for snow redistribution, changes in glacier geometry and dynamic changes in debris-coverage, and computes e.g. distributed mass balance, englacial temperature and proglacial runoff. Detailed glacier projections until 2060 are shown for the Swiss Alps based on new data sets, and the 21st century contribution of all very small glaciers worldwide to sea-level rise is quantified using a global model. Grid-based modelling of surface mass balance and retreat for 1133 very small glaciers in Switzerland indicates that 70% of them will completely vanish within the next 25 years. However, a few avalanche-fed glaciers at low elevation might be able to survive even substantial atmospheric warming. We find relatively high static and dynamic sensitivities for gently-sloping glaciers. At the global scale, glaciers presently smaller than 1 km2 make up for only 0.7% of total ice volume but account for 6.7% of sea-level rise contribution during the period 2015-2025. This indicates that very small glaciers are a non-negligible component of global glacier change, at least in the near

  11. Minimum and Maximum Potential Contributions to Future Sea Level Rise from Polar Ice Sheets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deconto, R. M.; Pollard, D.

    2017-12-01

    New climate and ice-sheet modeling, calibrated to past changes in sea-level, is painting a stark picture of the future fate of the great polar ice sheets if greenhouse gas emissions continue unabated. This is especially true for Antarctica, where a substantial fraction of the ice sheet rests on bedrock more than 500-meters below sea level. Here, we explore the sensitivity of the polar ice sheets to a warming atmosphere and ocean under a range of future greenhouse gas emissions scenarios. The ice sheet-climate-ocean model used here considers time-evolving changes in surface mass balance and sub-ice oceanic melting, ice deformation, grounding line retreat on reverse-sloped bedrock (Marine Ice Sheet Instability), and newly added processes including hydrofracturing of ice shelves in response to surface meltwater and rain, and structural collapse of thick, marine-terminating ice margins with tall ice-cliff faces (Marine Ice Cliff Instability). The simulations improve on previous work by using 1) improved atmospheric forcing from a Regional Climate Model and 2) a much wider range of model physical parameters within the bounds of modern observations of ice dynamical processes (particularly calving rates) and paleo constraints on past ice-sheet response to warming. Approaches to more precisely define the climatic thresholds capable of triggering rapid and potentially irreversible ice-sheet retreat are also discussed, as is the potential for aggressive mitigation strategies like those discussed at the 2015 Paris Climate Conference (COP21) to substantially reduce the risk of extreme sea-level rise. These results, including physics that consider both ice deformation (creep) and calving (mechanical failure of marine terminating ice) expand on previously estimated limits of maximum rates of future sea level rise based solely on kinematic constraints of glacier flow. At the high end, the new results show the potential for more than 2m of global mean sea level rise by 2100

  12. ACCELERATION OF SEA LEVEL RISE OVER MALAYSIAN SEAS FROM SATELLITE ALTIMETER

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. I. A. Hamid

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Sea level rise becomes our concern nowadays as a result of variously contribution of climate change that cause by the anthropogenic effects. Global sea levels have been rising through the past century and are projected to rise at an accelerated rate throughout the 21st century. Due to this change, sea level is now constantly rising and eventually will threaten many low-lying and unprotected coastal areas in many ways. This paper is proposing a significant effort to quantify the sea level trend over Malaysian seas based on the combination of multi-mission satellite altimeters over a period of 23 years. Eight altimeter missions are used to derive the absolute sea level from Radar Altimeter Database System (RADS. Data verification is then carried out to verify the satellite derived sea level rise data with tidal data. Eight selected tide gauge stations from Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah and Sarawak are chosen for this data verification. The pattern and correlation of both measurements of sea level anomalies (SLA are evaluated over the same period in each area in order to produce comparable results. Afterwards, the time series of the sea level trend is quantified using robust fit regression analysis. The findings clearly show that the absolute sea level trend is rising and varying over the Malaysian seas with the rate of sea level varies and gradually increase from east to west of Malaysia. Highly confident and correlation level of the 23 years measurement data with an astonishing root mean square difference permits the absolute sea level trend of the Malaysian seas has raised at the rate 3.14 ± 0.12 mm yr-1 to 4.81 ± 0.15 mm yr-1 for the chosen sub-areas, with an overall mean of 4.09 ± 0.12 mm yr-1. This study hopefully offers a beneficial sea level information to be applied in a wide range of related environmental and climatology issue such as flood and global warming.

  13. Acceleration of Sea Level Rise Over Malaysian Seas from Satellite Altimeter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamid, A. I. A.; Din, A. H. M.; Khalid, N. F.; Omar, K. M.

    2016-09-01

    Sea level rise becomes our concern nowadays as a result of variously contribution of climate change that cause by the anthropogenic effects. Global sea levels have been rising through the past century and are projected to rise at an accelerated rate throughout the 21st century. Due to this change, sea level is now constantly rising and eventually will threaten many low-lying and unprotected coastal areas in many ways. This paper is proposing a significant effort to quantify the sea level trend over Malaysian seas based on the combination of multi-mission satellite altimeters over a period of 23 years. Eight altimeter missions are used to derive the absolute sea level from Radar Altimeter Database System (RADS). Data verification is then carried out to verify the satellite derived sea level rise data with tidal data. Eight selected tide gauge stations from Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah and Sarawak are chosen for this data verification. The pattern and correlation of both measurements of sea level anomalies (SLA) are evaluated over the same period in each area in order to produce comparable results. Afterwards, the time series of the sea level trend is quantified using robust fit regression analysis. The findings clearly show that the absolute sea level trend is rising and varying over the Malaysian seas with the rate of sea level varies and gradually increase from east to west of Malaysia. Highly confident and correlation level of the 23 years measurement data with an astonishing root mean square difference permits the absolute sea level trend of the Malaysian seas has raised at the rate 3.14 ± 0.12 mm yr-1 to 4.81 ± 0.15 mm yr-1 for the chosen sub-areas, with an overall mean of 4.09 ± 0.12 mm yr-1. This study hopefully offers a beneficial sea level information to be applied in a wide range of related environmental and climatology issue such as flood and global warming.

  14. Sea level rise and the geoid: factor analysis approach

    OpenAIRE

    Song, Hongzhi; Sadovski, Alexey; Jeffress, Gary

    2013-01-01

    Sea levels are rising around the world, and this is a particular concern along most of the coasts of the United States. A 1989 EPA report shows that sea levels rose 5-6 inches more than the global average along the Mid-Atlantic and Gulf Coasts in the last century. The main reason for this is coastal land subsidence. This sea level rise is considered more as relative sea level rise than global sea level rise. Thus, instead of studying sea level rise globally, this paper describes a statistical...

  15. Past and future sea-level change from the surface mass balance of glaciers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. Marzeion

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available We present estimates of sea-level change caused by the global surface mass balance of glaciers, based on the reconstruction and projection of the surface mass balance of all the individual glaciers of the world, excluding the ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica. The model is validated using a leave-one-glacier-out cross-validation scheme against 3997 observed surface mass balances of 255 glaciers, and against 756 geodetically observed, temporally integrated volume and surface area changes of 341 glaciers. When forced with observed monthly precipitation and temperature data, the glaciers of the world are reconstructed to have lost mass corresponding to 114 ± 5 mm sea-level equivalent (SLE between 1902 and 2009. Using projected temperature and precipitation anomalies from 15 coupled general circulation models from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project phase 5 (CMIP5 ensemble, they are projected to lose an additional 148 ± 35 mm SLE (scenario RCP26, 166 ± 42 mm SLE (scenario RCP45, 175 ± 40 mm SLE (scenario RCP60, or 217 ± 47 mm SLE (scenario RCP85 during the 21st century. Based on the extended RCP scenarios, glaciers are projected to approach a new equilibrium towards the end of the 23rd century, after having lost either 248 ± 66 mm SLE (scenario RCP26, 313 ± 50 mm SLE (scenario RCP45, or 424 ± 46 mm SLE (scenario RCP85. Up until approximately 2100, ensemble uncertainty within each scenario is the biggest source of uncertainty for the future glacier mass loss; after that, the difference between the scenarios takes over as the biggest source of uncertainty. Ice mass loss rates are projected to peak 2040 ∼ 2050 (RCP26, 2050 ∼ 2060 (RCP45, 2070 ∼ 2090 (RCP60, or 2070 ∼ 2100 (RCP85.

  16. Improved regional sea-level estimates from Ice Sheets, Glaciers and land water storage using GRACE time series and other data

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Z.; Velicogna, I.; Hsu, C. W.; Rignot, E. J.; Mouginot, J.; Scheuchl, B.; Fettweis, X.; van den Broeke, M. R.

    2017-12-01

    Changes in ice sheets, glaciers and ice caps (GIC) and land water mass cause regional sea level variations that differ significantly from a uniform re-distribution of mass over the ocean, with a decrease in sea level compared to the global mean sea level contribution (GMSL) near the sources of mass added to the ocean and an increase up to 30% larger than the GMSL in the far field. The corresponding sea level fingerprints (SLF) are difficult to separate from ocean dynamics on short time and spatial scales but as ice melt continues, the SLF signal will become increasingly dominant in the pattern of regional sea level rise. It has been anticipated that it will be another few decades before the land ice SLF could be identified in the pattern of regional sea level rise. Here, we combine 40 years of observations of ice sheet mass balance for Antarctica (1975-present) and Greenland (1978-present), along with surface mass balance reconstructions of glacier and ice caps mass balance (GIC) from 1970s to present to determine the contribution to the SLF from melting land ice (MAR and RACMO). We compare the results with observations from GRACE for the time period 2002 to present for evaluation of our approach. Land hydrology is constrained by GRACE data for the period 2002-present and by the GLDAS-NOAH land hydrology model for the longer time period. Over the long time period, we find that the contribution from land ice dominates. We quantify the contribution to the total SLF from Greenland and Antarctica in various parts of the world over the past 40 years. More important, we compare the cumulative signal from SLF with tide gauge records around the world, corrected for earth dynamics, to determine whether the land ice SLF can be detected in that record. Early results will be reported at the meeting. This work was performed at UC Irvine and at Caltech's Jet Propulsion Laboratory under a contract with NASA's Cryospheric Science Program.

  17. Sea level change: lessons from the geologic record

    Science.gov (United States)

    ,

    1995-01-01

    Rising sea level is potentially one of the most serious impacts of climatic change. Even a small sea level rise would have serious economic consequences because it would cause extensive damage to the world's coastal regions. Sea level can rise in the future because the ocean surface can expand due to warming and because polar ice sheets and mountain glaciers can melt, increasing the ocean's volume of water. Today, ice caps on Antarctica and Greenland contain 91 and 8 percent of the world's ice, respectively. The world's mountain glaciers together contain only about 1 percent. Melting all this ice would raise sea level about 80 meters. Although this extreme scenario is not expected, geologists know that sea level can rise and fall rapidly due to changing volume of ice on continents. For example, during the last ice age, about 18,000 years ago, continental ice sheets contained more than double the modem volume of ice. As ice sheets melted, sea level rose 2 to 3 meters per century, and possibly faster during certain times. During periods in which global climate was very warm, polar ice was reduced and sea level was higher than today.

  18. Assessment of the impact of sea-level rise due to climate change on coastal groundwater discharge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masciopinto, Costantino; Liso, Isabella Serena

    2016-11-01

    An assessment of sea intrusion into coastal aquifers as a consequence of local sea-level rise (LSLR) due to climate change was carried out at Murgia and Salento in southern Italy. The interpolation of sea-level measurements at three tide-gauge stations was performed during the period of 2000 to 2014. The best fit of measurements shows an increasing rate of LSLR ranging from 4.4mm/y to 8.8mm/y, which will result in a maximum LSLR of approximately 2m during the 22nd century. The local rate of sea-level rise matches recent 21st and 22nd century projections of mean global sea-level rise determined by other researchers, which include increased melting rates of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets, the effect of ocean thermal expansion, the melting of glaciers and ice caps, and changes in the quantity of stored land water. Subsequently, Ghyben-Herzberg's equation for the freshwater/saltwater interface was rewritten in order to determine the decrease in groundwater discharge due to the maximum LSLR. Groundwater flow simulations and ArcGIS elaborations of digital elevation models of the coast provided input data for the Ghyben-Herzberg calculation under the assumption of head-controlled systems. The progression of seawater intrusion due to LSLR suggests an impressive depletion of available groundwater discharge during the 22nd century, perhaps as much as 16.1% of current groundwater pumping for potable water in Salento. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Landmark Study Reveals Antarctic Glacier's Long History of Retreat

    OpenAIRE

    Kuska, Dale M.

    2016-01-01

    Faculty Showcase Archive Article Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited. A major study, released in late November in the journal “Nature,” reveals the history of retreat of the massive Pine Island Glacier (PIG) in western Antarctica, widely considered one of the largest contributors to global sea-level rise.

  20. Sea level rise and the geoid: factor analysis approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexey Sadovski

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Sea levels are rising around the world, and this is a particular concern along most of the coasts of the United States. A 1989 EPA report shows that sea levels rose 5-6 inches more than the global average along the Mid-Atlantic and Gulf Coasts in the last century. The main reason for this is coastal land subsidence. This sea level rise is considered more as relative sea level rise than global sea level rise. Thus, instead of studying sea level rise globally, this paper describes a statistical approach by using factor analysis of regional sea level rates of change. Unlike physical models and semi-empirical models that attempt to approach how much and how fast sea levels are changing, this methodology allows for a discussion of the factor(s that statistically affects sea level rates of change, and seeks patterns to explain spatial correlations.

  1. Barrier response to Holocene sea-level rise

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pejrup, Morten; Andersen, Thorbjørn Joest; Johannessen, Peter N

    Normally it is believed that sea-level rise causes coastal barrier retreat. However, sea-level is only one of the parameters determining the long term coastal development of barrier coasts. Sediment supply is an equally important determinant and may overshadow the effects of sea-level rise....... Conceptually this has been known for a long time but for the first time we can show the relative effect of these two parameters. We have studied three neighboring barrier islands in the Wadden Sea, and described their 3D morphological evolution during the last 8000 years. It appears that the barrier islands...... a much stronger component of sea-level control. The distance between the islands is only 50 km, and therefore our study shows that prediction of barrier development during a period of rising sea level may be more complicated than formerly believed....

  2. The social values at risk from sea-level rise

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Graham, Sonia; Barnett, Jon; Fincher, Ruth; Hurlimann, Anna; Mortreux, Colette; Waters, Elissa

    2013-01-01

    Analysis of the risks of sea-level rise favours conventionally measured metrics such as the area of land that may be subsumed, the numbers of properties at risk, and the capital values of assets at risk. Despite this, it is clear that there exist many less material but no less important values at risk from sea-level rise. This paper re-theorises these multifarious social values at risk from sea-level rise, by explaining their diverse nature, and grounding them in the everyday practices of people living in coastal places. It is informed by a review and analysis of research on social values from within the fields of social impact assessment, human geography, psychology, decision analysis, and climate change adaptation. From this we propose that it is the ‘lived values’ of coastal places that are most at risk from sea-level rise. We then offer a framework that groups these lived values into five types: those that are physiological in nature, and those that relate to issues of security, belonging, esteem, and self-actualisation. This framework of lived values at risk from sea-level rise can guide empirical research investigating the social impacts of sea-level rise, as well as the impacts of actions to adapt to sea-level rise. It also offers a basis for identifying the distribution of related social outcomes across populations exposed to sea-level rise or sea-level rise policies

  3. The social values at risk from sea-level rise

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Graham, Sonia, E-mail: sonia.graham@unimelb.edu.au [Department of Resource Management and Geography, The University of Melbourne, 221 Bouverie St., Carlton, Victoria 3053 (Australia); Barnett, Jon, E-mail: jbarn@unimelb.edu.au [Department of Resource Management and Geography, The University of Melbourne, 221 Bouverie St., Carlton, Victoria 3053 (Australia); Fincher, Ruth, E-mail: r.fincher@unimelb.edu.au [Department of Resource Management and Geography, The University of Melbourne, 221 Bouverie St., Carlton, Victoria 3053 (Australia); Hurlimann, Anna, E-mail: anna.hurlimann@unimelb.edu.au [Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning, The University of Melbourne, Architecture and Planning Building, Parkville, Victoria 3010 (Australia); Mortreux, Colette, E-mail: colettem@unimelb.edu.au [Department of Resource Management and Geography, The University of Melbourne, 221 Bouverie St., Carlton, Victoria 3053 (Australia); Waters, Elissa, E-mail: elissa.waters@unimelb.edu.au [Department of Resource Management and Geography, The University of Melbourne, 221 Bouverie St., Carlton, Victoria 3053 (Australia)

    2013-07-15

    Analysis of the risks of sea-level rise favours conventionally measured metrics such as the area of land that may be subsumed, the numbers of properties at risk, and the capital values of assets at risk. Despite this, it is clear that there exist many less material but no less important values at risk from sea-level rise. This paper re-theorises these multifarious social values at risk from sea-level rise, by explaining their diverse nature, and grounding them in the everyday practices of people living in coastal places. It is informed by a review and analysis of research on social values from within the fields of social impact assessment, human geography, psychology, decision analysis, and climate change adaptation. From this we propose that it is the ‘lived values’ of coastal places that are most at risk from sea-level rise. We then offer a framework that groups these lived values into five types: those that are physiological in nature, and those that relate to issues of security, belonging, esteem, and self-actualisation. This framework of lived values at risk from sea-level rise can guide empirical research investigating the social impacts of sea-level rise, as well as the impacts of actions to adapt to sea-level rise. It also offers a basis for identifying the distribution of related social outcomes across populations exposed to sea-level rise or sea-level rise policies.

  4. Adapting to Rising Sea Level: A Florida Perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parkinson, Randall W.

    2009-07-01

    Global climate change and concomitant rising sea level will have a profound impact on Florida's coastal and marine systems. Sea-level rise will increase erosion of beaches, cause saltwater intrusion into water supplies, inundate coastal marshes and other important habitats, and make coastal property more vulnerable to erosion and flooding. Yet most coastal areas are currently managed under the premise that sea-level rise is not significant and the shorelines are static or can be fixed in place by engineering structures. The new reality of sea-level rise and extreme weather due to climate change requires a new style of planning and management to protect resources and reduce risk to humans. Scientists must: (1) assess existing coastal vulnerability to address short term management issues and (2) model future landscape change and develop sustainable plans to address long term planning and management issues. Furthermore, this information must be effectively transferred to planners, managers, and elected officials to ensure their decisions are based upon the best available information. While there is still some uncertainty regarding the details of rising sea level and climate change, development decisions are being made today which commit public and private investment in real estate and associated infrastructure. With a design life of 30 yrs to 75 yrs or more, many of these investments are on a collision course with rising sea level and the resulting impacts will be significant. In the near term, the utilization of engineering structures may be required, but these are not sustainable and must ultimately yield to "managed withdrawal" programs if higher sea-level elevations or rates of rise are forthcoming. As an initial step towards successful adaptation, coastal management and planning documents (i.e., comprehensive plans) must be revised to include reference to climate change and rising sea-level.

  5. Holocene glacier variations and sea level change in Wahlenbergfjorden, Nordaustlandet, Svalbard

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schomacker, A.; Farnsworth, W. R.; Ingolfsson, O.; Allaart, L.; Håkansson, L.; Retelle, M.

    2017-12-01

    Here we present preliminary results on the Holocene glacier variations in Wahlenbergfjorden on Nordaustlandet, Svalbard. The reconstructions are based on lake sediment records from Lake Kl\\overbladvatna covering the last 9500 years. This lake captures meltwater from the Etonbreen glacier, a main outlet of the Austfonna ice cap, when the glacier extends further than present. Additionally, Kl\\overbladvatna is an isolation basin capturing the postglacial isolation from the marine to lacustrine environment due to glacioisostatic rebound. The chronology is based on radiocarbon dating of terrestrial and marine macrofossils. The lake sediment record also reveals that glacial meltwater exceeded the threshold into Lake Kl\\overbladvatna during the Little Ice Age as witnessed by glacial meltwater clay in the upper part of the sediment cores. In periods of less advanced glaciers, the lake sediment record is dominated by laminated clayey gyttja. Based on radiocarbon datings of driftwood, whalebone, and marine mollusc shells in raised beaches and marine deposits in Pallanderbukta, south Wahlenbergfjorden, we also present a new postglacial sea level curve from this region.

  6. Anthropogenic forcing dominates sea level rise since 1850

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jevrejeva, Svetlana; Grinsted, Aslak; Moore, John

    2009-01-01

    The rate of sea level rise and its causes are topics of active debate. Here we use a delayed response statistical model to attribute the past 1000 years of sea level variability to various natural (volcanic and solar radiative) and anthropogenic (greenhouse gases and aerosols) forcings. We show...... that until 1800 the main drivers of sea level change are volcanic and solar radiative forcings. For the past 200 years sea level rise is mostly associated with anthropogenic factors. Only 4 ± 1.5 cm (25% of total sea level rise) during the 20th century is attributed to natural forcings, the remaining 14 ± 1...

  7. Monitoring population status of sea otters (Enhydra lutris) in Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve, Alaska: options and considerations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esslinger, George G.; Esler, Daniel N.; Howlin, S.; Starcevich, L.A.

    2015-06-25

    After many decades of absence from southeast Alaska, sea otters (Enhydra lutris) are recolonizing parts of their former range, including Glacier Bay, Alaska. Sea otters are well known for structuring nearshore ecosystems and causing community-level changes such as increases in kelp abundance and changes in the size and number of other consumers. Monitoring population status of sea otters in Glacier Bay will help park researchers and managers understand and interpret sea otter-induced ecosystem changes relative to other sources of variation, including potential human-induced impacts such as ocean acidification, vessel disturbance, and oil spills. This report was prepared for the National Park Service (NPS), Southeast Alaska Inventory and Monitoring Network following a request for evaluation of options for monitoring sea otter population status in Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve. To meet this request, we provide a detailed consideration of the primary method of assessment of abundance and distribution, aerial surveys, including analyses of power to detect interannual trends and designs to reduce variation around annual abundance estimates. We also describe two alternate techniques for evaluating sea otter population status—(1) quantifying sea otter diets and energy intake rates, and (2) detecting change in ages at death. In addition, we provide a brief section on directed research to identify studies that would further our understanding of sea otter population dynamics and effects on the Glacier Bay ecosystem, and provide context for interpreting results of monitoring activities.

  8. Sea-level rise risks to coastal cities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicholls, Robert J.

    2017-04-01

    Understanding the consequence of sea-level rise for coastal cities has long lead times and huge political implications. Civilisation has emerged and developed during a period of several thousand years during which in geological terms sea level has been unusually stable. We have now moved out of this period and the challenge will be to develop a long-term proactive assessment approach to manage this challenge. In 2005 there were 136 coastal cities with a population exceeding one million people and a collective population of 400 million people. All these coastal cities are threatened by flooding from the sea to varying degrees and these risks are increasing due to growing exposure (people and assets), rising sea levels due to climate change, and in some cities, significant coastal subsidence due to human agency (drainage and groundwater withdrawals from susceptible soils). In these cities we wish to avoid major flood events, with associated damage and potentially deaths and ultimately decline of the cities. Flood risks grow with sea-level rise as it raises extreme sea levels. As sea levels continue to rise, protection will have to be progressively upgraded. Even with this, the magnitude of losses when flood events do occur would increase as coastal cities expand, and water depths and hence unit damage increase with sea-level rise/subsidence. This makes it critical to also prepare for larger coastal flood disasters than we experience today and raises questions on the limits to adaptation. There is not an extensive literature or significant empirical information on the limits to adaptation in coastal cities. These limits are not predictable in a formal sense - while the rise in mean sea level raises the likelihood of a catastrophic flood, extreme events are what cause damage and trigger a response, be it abandonment, a defence upgrade or something else. There are several types of potential limits that could be categorised into three broad types: • Physical

  9. Sea Level Rise Data Discovery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quach, N.; Huang, T.; Boening, C.; Gill, K. M.

    2016-12-01

    Research related to sea level rise crosses multiple disciplines from sea ice to land hydrology. The NASA Sea Level Change Portal (SLCP) is a one-stop source for current sea level change information and data, including interactive tools for accessing and viewing regional data, a virtual dashboard of sea level indicators, and ongoing updates through a suite of editorial products that include content articles, graphics, videos, and animations. The architecture behind the SLCP makes it possible to integrate web content and data relevant to sea level change that are archived across various data centers as well as new data generated by sea level change principal investigators. The Extensible Data Gateway Environment (EDGE) is incorporated into the SLCP architecture to provide a unified platform for web content and science data discovery. EDGE is a data integration platform designed to facilitate high-performance geospatial data discovery and access with the ability to support multi-metadata standard specifications. EDGE has the capability to retrieve data from one or more sources and package the resulting sets into a single response to the requestor. With this unified endpoint, the Data Analysis Tool that is available on the SLCP can retrieve dataset and granule level metadata as well as perform geospatial search on the data. This talk focuses on the architecture that makes it possible to seamlessly integrate and enable discovery of disparate data relevant to sea level rise.

  10. Changes in Greenland’s peripheral glaciers linked to the North Atlantic Oscillation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bjørk, A. A.; Aagaard, S.; Lütt, A.

    2018-01-01

    Glaciers and ice caps peripheral to the main Greenland Ice Sheet contribute markedly to sea-level rise1,2,3. Their changes and variability, however, have been difficult to quantify on multi-decadal timescales due to an absence of long-term data4. Here, using historical aerial surveys, expedition...

  11. Rising tides, rising gates: The complex ecogeomorphic response of coastal wetlands to sea-level rise and human interventions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandi, Steven G.; Rodríguez, José F.; Saintilan, Neil; Riccardi, Gerardo; Saco, Patricia M.

    2018-04-01

    Coastal wetlands are vulnerable to submergence due to sea-level rise, as shown by predictions of up to 80% of global wetland loss by the end of the century. Coastal wetlands with mixed mangrove-saltmarsh vegetation are particularly vulnerable because sea-level rise can promote mangrove encroachment on saltmarsh, reducing overall wetland biodiversity. Here we use an ecogeomorphic framework that incorporates hydrodynamic effects, mangrove-saltmarsh dynamics, and soil accretion processes to assess the effects of control structures on wetland evolution. Migration and accretion patterns of mangrove and saltmarsh are heavily dependent on topography and control structures. We find that current management practices that incorporate a fixed gate for the control of mangrove encroachment are useful initially, but soon become ineffective due to sea-level rise. Raising the gate, to counteract the effects of sea level rise and promote suitable hydrodynamic conditions, excludes mangrove and maintains saltmarsh over the entire simulation period of 100 years

  12. Analysis of Sea Level Rise in Singapore Strait

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tkalich, Pavel; Luu, Quang-Hung

    2013-04-01

    Sea level in Singapore Strait is governed by various scale phenomena, from global to local. Global signals are dominated by the climate change and multi-decadal variability and associated sea level rise; at regional scale seasonal sea level variability is caused by ENSO-modulated monsoons; locally, astronomic tides are the strongest force. Tide gauge records in Singapore Strait are analyzed to derive local sea level trend, and attempts are made to attribute observed sea level variability to phenomena at various scales, from global to local. It is found that at annual scale, sea level anomalies in Singapore Strait are quasi-periodic, of the order of ±15 cm, the highest during northeast monsoon and the lowest during southwest monsoon. Interannual regional sea level falls are associated with El Niño events, while the rises are related to La Niña episodes; both variations are in the range of ±9 cm. At multi-decadal scale, sea level in Singapore Strait has been rising at the rate 1.2-1.9 mm/year for the period 1975-2009, 2.0±0.3 mm/year for 1984-2009, and 1.3-4.7 mm/year for 1993-2009. When compared with the respective global trends of 2.0±0.3, 2.4, and 2.8±0.8 mm/year, Singapore Strait sea level rise trend was weaker at the earlier period and stronger at the recent decade.

  13. Sea-level rise: towards understanding local vulnerability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rahmstorf, Stefan

    2012-06-01

    Projections of global sea-level rise into the future have become more pessimistic over the past five years or so. A global rise by more than one metre by the year 2100 is now widely accepted as a serious possibility if greenhouse gas emissions continue unabated. That is witnessed by the scientific assessments that were made since the last IPCC report was published in 2007. The Delta Commission of the Dutch government projected up to 1.10 m as a 'high-end' scenario (Vellinga et al 2009). The Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR) projected up to 1.40 m (Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research 2009), and the Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme (AMAP) gives a range of 0.90-1.60 m in its 2011 report (Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme 2011). And recently the US Army Corps of Engineers recommends using a 'low', an 'intermediate' and a 'high' scenario for global sea-level rise when planning civil works programmes, with the high one corresponding to a 1.50 m rise by 2100 (US Army Corps of Engineers 2011). This more pessimistic view is based on a number of observations, most importantly perhaps the fact that sea level has been rising at least 50% faster in the past decades than projected by the IPCC (Rahmstorf et al 2007, IPCC 2007). Also, the rate of rise (averaged over two decades) has accelerated threefold, from around 1 mm yr-1 at the start of the 20th century to around 3 mm yr-1 over the past 20 years (Church and White 2006), and this rate increase closely correlates with global warming (Rahmstorf et al 2011). The IPCC projections, which assume almost no further acceleration in the 20th century, thus look less plausible. And finally the observed net mass loss of the two big continental ice sheets (Van den Broeke et al 2011) calls into question the assumption that ice accumulation in Antarctica would largely balance ice loss from Greenland in the course of further global warming (IPCC 2007). With such a serious sea-level rise on the horizon

  14. Recent glacier mass balance and area changes in the Kangri Karpo Mountains from DEMs and glacier inventories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Kunpeng; Liu, Shiyin; Jiang, Zongli; Xu, Junli; Wei, Junfeng; Guo, Wanqin

    2018-01-01

    Due to the influence of the Indian monsoon, the Kangri Karpo Mountains in the south-east of the Tibetan Plateau is in the most humid and one of the most important and concentrated regions containing maritime (temperate) glaciers. Glacier mass loss in the Kangri Karpo is an important contributor to global mean sea level rise, and changes run-off distribution, increasing the risk of glacial-lake outburst floods (GLOFs). Because of its inaccessibility and high labour costs, information about the Kangri Karpo glaciers is still limited. Using geodetic methods based on digital elevation models (DEMs) derived from 1980 topographic maps from the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) (2000) and from TerraSAR-X/TanDEM-X (2014), this study has determined glacier elevation changes. Glacier area and length changes between 1980 and 2015 were derived from topographical maps and Landsat TM/ETM+/OLI images. Results show that the Kangri Karpo contained 1166 glaciers with an area of 2048.50 ± 48.65 km2 in 2015. Ice cover diminished by 679.51 ± 59.49 km2 (24.9 ± 2.2 %) or 0.71 ± 0.06 % a-1 from 1980 to 2015, although nine glaciers advanced. A glacierized area of 788.28 km2, derived from DEM differencing, experienced a mean mass loss of 0.46 ± 0.08 m w.e. a-1 from 1980 to 2014. Shrinkage and mass loss accelerated significantly from 2000 to 2015 compared to 1980-2000, consistent with a warming climate.

  15. Listening to Glaciers: Passive hydroacoustics near marine-terminating glaciers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pettit, E.C.; Nystuen, J.A.; O'Neel, Shad

    2012-01-01

    The catastrophic breakup of the Larsen B Ice Shelf in the Weddell Sea in 2002 paints a vivid portrait of the effects of glacier-climate interactions. This event, along with other unexpected episodes of rapid mass loss from marine-terminating glaciers (i.e., tidewater glaciers, outlet glaciers, ice streams, ice shelves) sparked intensified study of the boundaries where marine-terminating glaciers interact with the ocean. These dynamic and dangerous boundaries require creative methods of observation and measurement. Toward this effort, we take advantage of the exceptional sound-propagating properties of seawater to record and interpret sounds generated at these glacial ice-ocean boundaries from distances safe for instrument deployment and operation.

  16. Projecting Future Sea Level Rise for Water Resources Planning in California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, J.; Kao, K.; Chung, F.

    2008-12-01

    Sea level rise is one of the major concerns for the management of California's water resources. Higher water levels and salinity intrusion into the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta could affect water supplies, water quality, levee stability, and aquatic and terrestrial flora and fauna species and their habitat. Over the 20th century, sea levels near San Francisco Bay increased by over 0.6ft. Some tidal gauge and satellite data indicate that rates of sea level rise are accelerating. Sea levels are expected to continue to rise due to increasing air temperatures causing thermal expansion of the ocean and melting of land-based ice such as ice on Greenland and in southeastern Alaska. For water planners, two related questions are raised on the uncertainty of future sea levels. First, what is the expected sea level at a specific point in time in the future, e.g., what is the expected sea level in 2050? Second, what is the expected point of time in the future when sea levels will exceed a certain height, e.g., what is the expected range of time when the sea level rises by one foot? To address these two types of questions, two factors are considered: (1) long term sea level rise trend, and (2) local extreme sea level fluctuations. A two-step approach will be used to develop sea level rise projection guidelines for decision making that takes both of these factors into account. The first step is developing global sea level rise probability distributions for the long term trends. The second step will extend the approach to take into account the effects of local astronomical tides, changes in atmospheric pressure, wind stress, floods, and the El Niño/Southern Oscillation. In this paper, the development of the first step approach is presented. To project the long term sea level rise trend, one option is to extend the current rate of sea level rise into the future. However, since recent data indicate rates of sea level rise are accelerating, methods for estimating sea level rise

  17. Anthropogenic sea level rise and adaptation in the Yangtze estuary

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, H.; Chen, J.; Chen, Z.; Ruan, R.; Xu, G.; Zeng, G.; Zhu, J.; Dai, Z.; Gu, S.; Zhang, X.; Wang, H.

    2016-02-01

    Sea level rise is a major projected threat of climate change. There are regional variations in sea level changes, depending on both naturally the tectonic subsidence, geomorphology, naturally changing river inputs and anthropogenic driven forces as artificial reservoir water impoundment within the watershed and urban land subsidence driven by ground water depletion in the river delta. Little is known on regional sea level fall in response to the channel erosion due to the sediment discharge decline by reservoir interception in the upstream watershed, and water level rise driven by anthropogenic measures as the land reclamation, deep waterway regulation and fresh water reservoir construction to the sea level change in estuaries. Changing coastal cities are situated in the delta regions expected to be threatened in various degrees. Shanghai belongs to those cities. Here we show that the anthropogenic driven sea level rise in the Yangtze estuary from the point of view of the continuous hydrodynamic system consisted of river catchment, estuary and coastal sea. Land subsidence is cited as 4 mm/a (2011-2030). Scour depth of the estuarine channel by upstream engineering as Three Gauge Dam is estimated at 2-10 cm (2011-2030). The rise of water level by deep waterway and land reclamation is estimated at 8-10 cm (2011-2030). The relative sea level rise will be speculated about 10 -16 cm (2011-2030), which these anthropogenic sea level changes will be imposed into the absolute sea level rise 2 mm/a and tectonic subsidence 1 mm/a measured in 1990s. The action guideline to the sea level rise strategy in the Shanghai city have been proposed to the Shanghai government as (1) recent actions (2012-2015) to upgrade the city water supply and drainage engineering and protective engineering; (2) interim actions (2016-2020) to improve sea level monitoring and early warning system, and then the special, city, regional planning considering sea level rise; (3) long term actions (2021

  18. Future sea level rise constrained by observations and long-term commitment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mengel, Matthias; Levermann, Anders; Frieler, Katja; Robinson, Alexander; Marzeion, Ben; Winkelmann, Ricarda

    2016-01-01

    Sea level has been steadily rising over the past century, predominantly due to anthropogenic climate change. The rate of sea level rise will keep increasing with continued global warming, and, even if temperatures are stabilized through the phasing out of greenhouse gas emissions, sea level is still expected to rise for centuries. This will affect coastal areas worldwide, and robust projections are needed to assess mitigation options and guide adaptation measures. Here we combine the equilibrium response of the main sea level rise contributions with their last century's observed contribution to constrain projections of future sea level rise. Our model is calibrated to a set of observations for each contribution, and the observational and climate uncertainties are combined to produce uncertainty ranges for 21st century sea level rise. We project anthropogenic sea level rise of 28–56 cm, 37–77 cm, and 57–131 cm in 2100 for the greenhouse gas concentration scenarios RCP26, RCP45, and RCP85, respectively. Our uncertainty ranges for total sea level rise overlap with the process-based estimates of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. The “constrained extrapolation” approach generalizes earlier global semiempirical models and may therefore lead to a better understanding of the discrepancies with process-based projections. PMID:26903648

  19. Future sea level rise constrained by observations and long-term commitment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mengel, Matthias; Levermann, Anders; Frieler, Katja; Robinson, Alexander; Marzeion, Ben; Winkelmann, Ricarda

    2016-03-08

    Sea level has been steadily rising over the past century, predominantly due to anthropogenic climate change. The rate of sea level rise will keep increasing with continued global warming, and, even if temperatures are stabilized through the phasing out of greenhouse gas emissions, sea level is still expected to rise for centuries. This will affect coastal areas worldwide, and robust projections are needed to assess mitigation options and guide adaptation measures. Here we combine the equilibrium response of the main sea level rise contributions with their last century's observed contribution to constrain projections of future sea level rise. Our model is calibrated to a set of observations for each contribution, and the observational and climate uncertainties are combined to produce uncertainty ranges for 21st century sea level rise. We project anthropogenic sea level rise of 28-56 cm, 37-77 cm, and 57-131 cm in 2100 for the greenhouse gas concentration scenarios RCP26, RCP45, and RCP85, respectively. Our uncertainty ranges for total sea level rise overlap with the process-based estimates of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. The "constrained extrapolation" approach generalizes earlier global semiempirical models and may therefore lead to a better understanding of the discrepancies with process-based projections.

  20. Is sea-level rising?

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Unnikrishnan, A.S.

    correction in the estimation of trends obtained for tide gauge records. The altimeter data permits to prepare spatial maps of sea-level rise trends. We present a map prepared for the Indian Ocean (Figure 4) north of 10oS , which shows a fairly uniform... drawn information from research papers published by the author and report of the IPCC AR5 WG1 Chapter 13: Sea Level Changes, in which the author has served as a ‘Lead Author’. Figure1 is prepared using data from the University of Colorado. Nerem, R...

  1. Glacier area changes in Northern Eurasia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khromova, Tatiana; Nosenko, Gennady; Kutuzov, Stanislav; Muraviev, Anton; Chernova, Ludmila

    2014-01-01

    Glaciers are widely recognized as key indicators of climate change. Recent evidence suggests an acceleration of glacier mass loss in several key mountain regions. Glacier recession implies landscape changes in the glacial zone, the origin of new lakes and activation of natural disaster processes, catastrophic mudflows, ice avalanches, outburst floods, etc. The absence or inadequacy of such information results in financial and human losses. A more comprehensive evaluation of glacier changes is imperative to assess ice contributions to global sea level rise and the future of water resources from glacial basins. One of the urgent steps is a full inventory of all ice bodies and their changes. The first estimation of glacier state and glacier distribution on the territory of the former Soviet Union has been done in the USSR Glacier Inventory (UGI) published in 1965–1982. The UGI is based on topographic maps and air photos and reflects the status of the glaciers in the 1940s–1970s. There is information about 28 884 glaciers with an area of 7830.75 km 2 in the inventory. It covers 25 glacier systems in Northern Eurasia. In the 1980s the UGI has been transformed into digital form as a part of the World Glacier Inventory (WGI). Recent satellite data provide a unique opportunity to look again at these glaciers and to evaluate changes in glacier extent for the second part of the 20th century. About 15 000 glacier outlines for the Caucasus, Polar Urals, Pamir Alay, Tien Shan, Altai, Kamchatka and Russian Arctic have been derived from ASTER and Landsat imagery and can be used for glacier change evaluation. Results of the analysis indicate the steady trend in glacier shrinkage in all mountain regions for the second part of the 20th century. Glacier area loss for the studied regions varies from 13% (Tien Shan) to 22.3% (Polar Urals). The common driver, most likely, is an increase in summer air temperature. There is also a very large variability in the degree of

  2. A revised Canadian perspective: progress in glacier hydrology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munro, D. Scott

    2005-01-01

    Current research into glacier hydrology is occurring at a time when glaciers around the world, particularly those whose hydrological regimes affect populated areas, are shrinking as they go through a state of perpetual negative annual mass balance. Small glaciers alone are likely to contribute 0·5 to 1 mm year-1 to global sea-level rise, with associated reductions in local freshwater resources, impacts upon freshwater ecosystems and increased risk of hazard due to outburst floods. Changes to the accumulation regimes of glaciers and ice sheets may be partly responsible, so the measurement and distribution of snowfall in glacierized basins, a topic long represented in non-glacierized basin research, is now beginning to receive more attention than it did before, aided by the advent of reliable automatic weather stations that provide data throughout the year. Satellite data continue to be an important information source for summer meltwater estimation, as distributed models, and their need for albedo maps, continue to develop. This further entails the need for simplifications to energy balance components, sacrificing point detail so that spatial calculation may proceed more quickly. The understanding of surface meltwater routing through the glacier to produce stream outflow continues to be a stimulating area of research, as demonstrated by activity at the Trapridge Glacier, Canada, and Canadian involvement in the Haut Glacier d'Arolla, Switzerland. As Canadian glacier monitoring continues to evolve, effort must be directed toward developing situations where mass balance, meltwater generation and flow routing studies can be done together at selected sites. Copyright

  3. Reconciling past changes in Earth's rotation with 20th century global sea-level rise: Resolving Munk's enigma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitrovica, Jerry X; Hay, Carling C; Morrow, Eric; Kopp, Robert E; Dumberry, Mathieu; Stanley, Sabine

    2015-12-01

    In 2002, Munk defined an important enigma of 20th century global mean sea-level (GMSL) rise that has yet to be resolved. First, he listed three canonical observations related to Earth's rotation [(i) the slowing of Earth's rotation rate over the last three millennia inferred from ancient eclipse observations, and changes in the (ii) amplitude and (iii) orientation of Earth's rotation vector over the last century estimated from geodetic and astronomic measurements] and argued that they could all be fit by a model of ongoing glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA) associated with the last ice age. Second, he demonstrated that prevailing estimates of the 20th century GMSL rise (~1.5 to 2.0 mm/year), after correction for the maximum signal from ocean thermal expansion, implied mass flux from ice sheets and glaciers at a level that would grossly misfit the residual GIA-corrected observations of Earth's rotation. We demonstrate that the combination of lower estimates of the 20th century GMSL rise (up to 1990) improved modeling of the GIA process and that the correction of the eclipse record for a signal due to angular momentum exchange between the fluid outer core and the mantle reconciles all three Earth rotation observations. This resolution adds confidence to recent estimates of individual contributions to 20th century sea-level change and to projections of GMSL rise to the end of the 21st century based on them.

  4. Rising sea levels and small island states

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Leatherman, S.P.

    1994-01-01

    A review is given of the problems small island nations face with respect to sea level rise caused by global warming. Many small island nations are very vulnerable to sea level rise. Particularly at risk are coral reef atolls, which are generally quite small, lie within three metres of current sea levels, and have no land at higher elevations to relocate populations and economic activity. Volcanic islands in the Pacific have high ground, but it is largely rugged, high relief and soil-poor. The most vulnerable islands are those that consist entirely of atolls and reef islands, such as Kirabai, Maldives, Tokelau and Tuvalu. Small island states, which by themselves have little power or influence in world affairs, have banded together to form the Strategic Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS). This alliance had grown to include 42 states by the time of the 1992 U.N. Earth Summit. Although the greenhouse effect is mainly caused by industrial nations, developing countries will suffer the most from it. Choices of response strategy will depend on environmental, economic and social factors. Most small island nations do not have the resources to fight sea level rise in the way that the Dutch have. Retreat can occur as a gradual process or as catastrophic abandonment. Prohibiting construction close to the water's edge is a good approach. Sea level histories for each island state should be compiled and updated, island geomorphology and settlement patterns should be surveyed to determine risk areas, storm regimes should be determined, and information on coastal impacts of sea level rise should be disseminated to the public

  5. Sea level hazards: Altimetric monitoring of tsunamis and sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamlington, Benjamin Dillon

    Whether on the short timescale of an impending tsunami or the much longer timescale of climate change-driven sea level rise, the threat stemming from rising and inundating ocean waters is a great concern to coastal populations. Timely and accurate observations of potentially dangerous changes in sea level are vital in determining the precautionary steps that need to be taken in order to protect coastal communities. While instruments from the past have provided in situ measurements of sea level at specific locations across the globe, satellites can be used to provide improved spatial and temporal sampling of the ocean in addition to producing more accurate measurements. Since 1993, satellite altimetry has provided accurate measurements of sea surface height (SSH) with near-global coverage. Not only have these measurements led to the first definitive estimates of global mean sea level rise, satellite altimetry observations have also been used to detect tsunami waves in the open ocean where wave amplitudes are relatively small, a vital step in providing early warning to those potentially affected by the impending tsunami. The use of satellite altimetry to monitor two specific sea level hazards is examined in this thesis. The first section will focus on the detection of tsunamis in the open ocean for the purpose of providing early warning to coastal inhabitants. The second section will focus on estimating secular trends using satellite altimetry data with the hope of improving our understanding of future sea level change. Results presented here will show the utility of satellite altimetry for sea level monitoring and will lay the foundation for further advancement in the detection of the two sea level hazards considered.

  6. Recent glacier mass balance and area changes in the Kangri Karpo Mountains from DEMs and glacier inventories

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Wu

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Due to the influence of the Indian monsoon, the Kangri Karpo Mountains in the south-east of the Tibetan Plateau is in the most humid and one of the most important and concentrated regions containing maritime (temperate glaciers. Glacier mass loss in the Kangri Karpo is an important contributor to global mean sea level rise, and changes run-off distribution, increasing the risk of glacial-lake outburst floods (GLOFs. Because of its inaccessibility and high labour costs, information about the Kangri Karpo glaciers is still limited. Using geodetic methods based on digital elevation models (DEMs derived from 1980 topographic maps from the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM (2000 and from TerraSAR-X/TanDEM-X (2014, this study has determined glacier elevation changes. Glacier area and length changes between 1980 and 2015 were derived from topographical maps and Landsat TM/ETM+/OLI images. Results show that the Kangri Karpo contained 1166 glaciers with an area of 2048.50 ± 48.65 km2 in 2015. Ice cover diminished by 679.51 ± 59.49 km2 (24.9 ± 2.2 % or 0.71 ± 0.06 % a−1 from 1980 to 2015, although nine glaciers advanced. A glacierized area of 788.28 km2, derived from DEM differencing, experienced a mean mass loss of 0.46 ± 0.08 m w.e. a−1 from 1980 to 2014. Shrinkage and mass loss accelerated significantly from 2000 to 2015 compared to 1980–2000, consistent with a warming climate.

  7. Sea level rise : A literature survey

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oude Essink, G.H.P.

    1992-01-01

    In order to assess the impact of sea level rise on Water Management, it is useful to understand the mechanisrns that determine the level of the sea. In this study, a literature survey is executed to analyze these mechanisms. Climate plays a centra! role in these mechanisms, Climate mainly changes

  8. Present day sea level changes: observation and causes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lombard, A.

    2005-11-01

    Whereas sea level has changed little over the last 2000 years, it has risen at a rate of about 2 mm/year during the 20. century. This unexpected sea level rise has been attributed to the anthropogenic global warming, recorded over several decades. Sea level variations have been measured globally and precisely for about 12 years due to satellite altimeter missions Topex/Poseidon and Jason-1. These observations indicate a global mean sea level rise of about 3 mm/year since 1993, a value significantly larger than observed during previous decades. Recent observations have allowed us to quantify the various climatic factors contributing to observed sea level change: thermal expansion of sea water due to ocean warming, melting of mountain glaciers and ice sheets, and changes in the land water reservoirs. A water budget based on these new observations allows us to partly explain the observed sea level rise. In particular, we show that the thermal expansion explains only 25% of the secular sea level rise as recorded by tide-gauges over the last 50 years, while it contributes about 50% of sea level rise observed over the last decade. Meanwhile, recent studies show that glacier and ice sheet melting could contribute the equivalent of 1 mm/year in sea level rise over the last decade. In addition, the high regional variability of sea level trends revealed by satellite altimetry is mainly due to thermal expansion. There is also an important decadal spatio-temporal variability in the ocean thermal expansion over the last 50 years, which seems to be controlled by natural climate fluctuations. We question for the first time the link between the decadal fluctuations in the ocean thermal expansion and in the land reservoirs, and indeed their climatic contribution to sea level change. Finally a preliminary analysis of GRACE spatial gravimetric observations over the oceans allows us to estimate the seasonal variations in mean sea level due to ocean water mass balance variations

  9. The multimillennial sea-level commitment of global warming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levermann, Anders; Clark, Peter U; Marzeion, Ben; Milne, Glenn A; Pollard, David; Radic, Valentina; Robinson, Alexander

    2013-08-20

    Global mean sea level has been steadily rising over the last century, is projected to increase by the end of this century, and will continue to rise beyond the year 2100 unless the current global mean temperature trend is reversed. Inertia in the climate and global carbon system, however, causes the global mean temperature to decline slowly even after greenhouse gas emissions have ceased, raising the question of how much sea-level commitment is expected for different levels of global mean temperature increase above preindustrial levels. Although sea-level rise over the last century has been dominated by ocean warming and loss of glaciers, the sensitivity suggested from records of past sea levels indicates important contributions should also be expected from the Greenland and Antarctic Ice Sheets. Uncertainties in the paleo-reconstructions, however, necessitate additional strategies to better constrain the sea-level commitment. Here we combine paleo-evidence with simulations from physical models to estimate the future sea-level commitment on a multimillennial time scale and compute associated regional sea-level patterns. Oceanic thermal expansion and the Antarctic Ice Sheet contribute quasi-linearly, with 0.4 m °C(-1) and 1.2 m °C(-1) of warming, respectively. The saturation of the contribution from glaciers is overcompensated by the nonlinear response of the Greenland Ice Sheet. As a consequence we are committed to a sea-level rise of approximately 2.3 m °C(-1) within the next 2,000 y. Considering the lifetime of anthropogenic greenhouse gases, this imposes the need for fundamental adaptation strategies on multicentennial time scales.

  10. Adapting to sea-level rise in the US Southeast: The influence of built infrastructure and biophysical factors on the inundation of coastal areas

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Daniels, R.C. [Tennessee Univ., Knoxville, TN (United States). Energy, Environment and Resources Center]|[Oak Ridge National Lab., TN (United States); Gornitz, V.M. [National Aeronautics and Space Administration, New York, NY (United States). Goddard Inst. for Space Studies; Mehta, A.J.; Lee, Saychong [Florida Univ., Gainesville, FL (United States). Dept. of Coastal and Oceanographic Engineering; Cushman, R.M. [Oak Ridge National Lab., TN (United States)

    1992-11-01

    The earth` s global mean surface air temperature has increased by 0.5{degrees}C over the past 100 years. This warming trend has occurred concurrently with increases in the concentration and number of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. These gases may cause this trend to accelerate in the future and result in a net increase in the earth`s global mean surface air temperature of 1.5 to 4.5{degrees}C by the year 2100. An increase of this magnitude could cause sea surface temperatures to increase would cause sea levels to rise -from thermal expansion of the sea, and the addition of melt waters from alpine glaciers and continental ice sheets. To allow for the cost-effective analysis of the impacts that sea-level rise may have on the US Southeast, a method is needed that will allow sites that are potentially at risk to be identified for study. Previously, no objective method was available to identify such sites. This project addresses this problem by using a geographic data base with information on both physical and climatological factors to identify coastal areas of the US Southeast that are at risk to inundation or accelerated erosion due to sea-level rise. The following six areas were selected for further study from the many identified as being at high risk: Galveston, Texas; Caminada Pass, Louisiana; Bradenton Beach, Florida; Daytona Beach, Florida; McClellanville, South Carolina; and Nags Head, North Carolina. For each study area the amount of land, by land use type, in danger from inundation from three sea-level-rise scenarios was calculated. The calculated values were based on elevation alone.

  11. Adapting to sea-level rise in the US Southeast: The influence of built infrastructure and biophysical factors on the inundation of coastal areas

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Daniels, R. C. [Tennessee Univ., Knoxville, TN (United States). Energy, Environment and Resources Center Oak Ridge National Lab., TN (United States); Gornitz, V. M. [National Aeronautics and Space Administration, New York, NY (United States). Goddard Inst. for Space Studies; Mehta, A. J.; Lee, Saychong [Florida Univ., Gainesville, FL (United States). Dept. of Coastal and Oceanographic Engineering

    1992-11-01

    The earth' s global mean surface air temperature has increased by 0.5°C over the past 100 years. This warming trend has occurred concurrently with increases in the concentration and number of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. These gases may cause this trend to accelerate in the future and result in a net increase in the earth's global mean surface air temperature of 1.5 to 4.5°C by the year 2100. An increase of this magnitude could cause sea surface temperatures to increase would cause sea levels to rise -from thermal expansion of the sea, and the addition of melt waters from alpine glaciers and continental ice sheets. To allow for the cost-effective analysis of the impacts that sea-level rise may have on the US Southeast, a method is needed that will allow sites that are potentially at risk to be identified for study. Previously, no objective method was available to identify such sites. This project addresses this problem by using a geographic data base with information on both physical and climatological factors to identify coastal areas of the US Southeast that are at risk to inundation or accelerated erosion due to sea-level rise. The following six areas were selected for further study from the many identified as being at high risk: Galveston, Texas; Caminada Pass, Louisiana; Bradenton Beach, Florida; Daytona Beach, Florida; McClellanville, South Carolina; and Nags Head, North Carolina. For each study area the amount of land, by land use type, in danger from inundation from three sea-level-rise scenarios was calculated. The calculated values were based on elevation alone.

  12. Coastal sea level rise with warming above 2 °C.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jevrejeva, Svetlana; Jackson, Luke P; Riva, Riccardo E M; Grinsted, Aslak; Moore, John C

    2016-11-22

    Two degrees of global warming above the preindustrial level is widely suggested as an appropriate threshold beyond which climate change risks become unacceptably high. This "2 °C" threshold is likely to be reached between 2040 and 2050 for both Representative Concentration Pathway (RCP) 8.5 and 4.5. Resulting sea level rises will not be globally uniform, due to ocean dynamical processes and changes in gravity associated with water mass redistribution. Here we provide probabilistic sea level rise projections for the global coastline with warming above the 2 °C goal. By 2040, with a 2 °C warming under the RCP8.5 scenario, more than 90% of coastal areas will experience sea level rise exceeding the global estimate of 0.2 m, with up to 0.4 m expected along the Atlantic coast of North America and Norway. With a 5 °C rise by 2100, sea level will rise rapidly, reaching 0.9 m (median), and 80% of the coastline will exceed the global sea level rise at the 95th percentile upper limit of 1.8 m. Under RCP8.5, by 2100, New York may expect rises of 1.09 m, Guangzhou may expect rises of 0.91 m, and Lagos may expect rises of 0.90 m, with the 95th percentile upper limit of 2.24 m, 1.93 m, and 1.92 m, respectively. The coastal communities of rapidly expanding cities in the developing world, and vulnerable tropical coastal ecosystems, will have a very limited time after midcentury to adapt to sea level rises unprecedented since the dawn of the Bronze Age.

  13. Rapid thinning and collapse of lake calving Yakutat Glacier, Southeast Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trussel, Barbara Lea

    Glaciers around the globe are experiencing a notable retreat and thinning, triggered by atmospheric warming. Tidewater glaciers in particular have received much attention, because they have been recognized to contribute substantially to global sea level rise. However, lake calving glaciers in Alaska show increasingly high thinning and retreat rates and are therefore contributors to sea level rise. The number of such lake calving systems is increasing worldwide as land-terminating glaciers retreat into overdeepened basins and form proglacial lakes. Yakutat Glacier in Southeast Alaska is a low elevation lake calving glacier with an accumulation to total area ratio of 0.03. It experienced rapid thinning of 4.43 +/- 0.06 m w.e. yr-1 between 2000-2010 and terminus retreat of over 15 km since the beginning of the 20th century. Simultaneously, adjacent Yakutat Icefield land-terminating glaciers thinned at lower but still substantial rates (3.54 +/- 0.06 m w.e. yr -1 for the same time period), indicating lake calving dynamics help drive increased mass loss. Yakutat Glacier sustained a ˜3 km long floating tongue for over a decade, which started to disintegrate into large tabular icebergs in 2010. Such floating tongues are rarely seen on temperate tidewater glaciers. The floating ice was weakened by surface ablation, which then allowed rifts to form and intersect. Ice velocity from GPS measurements showed that the ice on the floating tongue was moving substantially faster than grounded ice, which was attributed to rift opening between the floating and grounded ice. Temporal variations of rift opening were determined from time-lapse imagery, and correlated well with variations in ice speeds. Larger rift opening rates occurred during and after precipitation or increased melt episodes. Both of these events increased subglacial discharge and could potentially increase the subaqueous currents towards the open lake and thus increase drag on the ice underside. Simultaneously

  14. Sea-level rise caused by climate change and its implications for society

    Science.gov (United States)

    MIMURA, Nobuo

    2013-01-01

    Sea-level rise is a major effect of climate change. It has drawn international attention, because higher sea levels in the future would cause serious impacts in various parts of the world. There are questions associated with sea-level rise which science needs to answer. To what extent did climate change contribute to sea-level rise in the past? How much will global mean sea level increase in the future? How serious are the impacts of the anticipated sea-level rise likely to be, and can human society respond to them? This paper aims to answer these questions through a comprehensive review of the relevant literature. First, the present status of observed sea-level rise, analyses of its causes, and future projections are summarized. Then the impacts are examined along with other consequences of climate change, from both global and Japanese perspectives. Finally, responses to adverse impacts will be discussed in order to clarify the implications of the sea-level rise issue for human society. PMID:23883609

  15. Present day sea level changes: observations and climatic causes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lombard, A.

    2007-01-01

    After a few thousand years of relative stability, sea level has risen of about 20 cm since the beginning of the 20. century. It currently rises at an average rate of about 3 mm/yr in response to global warming. About half of this rate is directly attributed to thermal expansion of sea water due to ocean warming, while the other half is mainly due to the melting of mountain glaciers and ice sheets. Satellite observations show that sea level rise is highly non-uniform. (author)

  16. Building more effective sea level rise models for coastal management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kidwell, D.; Buckel, C.; Collini, R.; Meckley, T.

    2017-12-01

    For over a decade, increased attention on coastal resilience and adaptation to sea level rise has resulted in a proliferation of predictive models and tools. This proliferation has enhanced our understanding of our vulnerability to sea level rise, but has also led to stakeholder fatigue in trying to realize the value of each advancement. These models vary in type and complexity ranging from GIS-based bathtub viewers to modeling systems that dynamically couple complex biophysical and geomorphic processes. These approaches and capabilities typically have the common purpose using scenarios of global and regional sea level change to inform adaptation and mitigation. In addition, stakeholders are often presented a plethora of options to address sea level rise issues from a variety of agencies, academics, and consulting firms. All of this can result in confusion, misapplication of a specific model/tool, and stakeholder feedback of "no more new science or tools, just help me understand which one to use". Concerns from stakeholders have led to the question; how do we move forward with sea level rise modeling? This presentation will provide a synthesis of the experiences and feedback derived from NOAA's Ecological Effects of Sea level Rise (EESLR) program to discuss the future of predictive sea level rise impact modeling. EESLR is an applied research program focused on the advancement of dynamic modeling capabilities in collaboration with local and regional stakeholders. Key concerns from stakeholder engagement include questions about model uncertainty, approaches for model validation, and a lack of cross-model comparisons. Effective communication of model/tool products, capabilities, and results is paramount to address these concerns. Looking forward, the most effective predictions of sea level rise impacts on our coast will be attained through a focus on coupled modeling systems, particularly those that connect natural processes and human response.

  17. Salt marsh persistence is threatened by predicted sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crosby, Sarah C.; Sax, Dov F.; Palmer, Megan E.; Booth, Harriet S.; Deegan, Linda A.; Bertness, Mark D.; Leslie, Heather M.

    2016-11-01

    Salt marshes buffer coastlines and provide critical ecosystem services from storm protection to food provision. Worldwide, these ecosystems are in danger of disappearing if they cannot increase elevation at rates that match sea-level rise. However, the magnitude of loss to be expected is not known. A synthesis of existing records of salt marsh elevation change was conducted in order to consider the likelihood of their future persistence. This analysis indicates that many salt marshes did not keep pace with sea-level rise in the past century and kept pace even less well over the past two decades. Salt marshes experiencing higher local sea-level rise rates were less likely to be keeping pace. These results suggest that sea-level rise will overwhelm most salt marshes' capacity to maintain elevation. Under the most optimistic IPCC emissions pathway, 60% of the salt marshes studied will be gaining elevation at a rate insufficient to keep pace with sea-level rise by 2100. Without mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions this potential loss could exceed 90%, which will have substantial ecological, economic, and human health consequences.

  18. Sensitivity of very small glaciers in the Swiss Alps to future climate change

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthias eHuss

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Very small glaciers (<0.5 km2 account for more than 80% of the total number of glaciers in mid- to low-latitude mountain ranges. Although their total area and volume is small compared to larger glaciers, they are a relevant component of the cryosphere, contributing to landscape formation, local hydrology and sea-level rise. Worldwide glacier monitoring mostly focuses on medium-sized to large glaciers leaving us with a limited understanding of the response of dwarf glaciers to climate change. In this study, we present a comprehensive modeling framework to assess past and future changes of very small glaciers at the mountain-range scale. Among other processes our model accounts for snow redistribution, changes in glacier geometry and the time-varying effect of supraglacial debris. It computes the mass balance distribution, the englacial temperature regime and proglacial runoff. The evolution of 1,133 individual glaciers in the Swiss Alps is modeled in detail until 2060 based on new distributed data sets. Our results indicate that 52% of all very small glaciers in Switzerland will completely disappear within the next 25 years. However, a few avalanche-fed glaciers at low elevation might be able to survive even substantial atmospheric warming. We find highly variable sensitivities of very small glaciers to air temperature change, with gently-sloping, low-elevation, and debris-covered glaciers being most sensitive.

  19. Sea-level rise caused by climate change and its implications for society.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mimura, Nobuo

    2013-01-01

    Sea-level rise is a major effect of climate change. It has drawn international attention, because higher sea levels in the future would cause serious impacts in various parts of the world. There are questions associated with sea-level rise which science needs to answer. To what extent did climate change contribute to sea-level rise in the past? How much will global mean sea level increase in the future? How serious are the impacts of the anticipated sea-level rise likely to be, and can human society respond to them? This paper aims to answer these questions through a comprehensive review of the relevant literature. First, the present status of observed sea-level rise, analyses of its causes, and future projections are summarized. Then the impacts are examined along with other consequences of climate change, from both global and Japanese perspectives. Finally, responses to adverse impacts will be discussed in order to clarify the implications of the sea-level rise issue for human society.(Communicated by Kiyoshi HORIKAWA, M.J.A.).

  20. Heat sources for glacial ice melt in a West Greenland tidewater outlet glacier fjord: The role of subglacial freshwater discharge

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bendtsen, Jørgen; Mortensen, John; Lennert, Kunuk

    2015-01-01

    The melting of tidewater outlet glaciers from the Greenland Ice Sheet contributes significantly to global sea level rise. Accelerated mass loss is related to melt-processes in front of calving glaciers, yet the role of ocean heat transports is poorly understood. Here we present the first direct...... of the area near the glacier showed that ice melt was mainly due to ocean heat transport and that direct plume-associated melt was only important in periods with high meltwater discharge rates of ~100 m3 s−1. Ocean mixing outside of the plume area was thus the primary heat source for melting glacier ice....

  1. Population dynamics of Hawaiian seabird colonies vulnerable to sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hatfield, Jeff S.; Reynolds, Michelle H.; Seavy, Nathaniel E.; Krause, Crystal M.

    2012-01-01

    Globally, seabirds are vulnerable to anthropogenic threats both at sea and on land. Seabirds typically nest colonially and show strong fidelity to natal colonies, and such colonies on low-lying islands may be threatened by sea-level rise. We used French Frigate Shoals, the largest atoll in the Hawaiian Archipelago, as a case study to explore the population dynamics of seabird colonies and the potential effects sea-level rise may have on these rookeries. We compiled historic observations, a 30-year time series of seabird population abundance, lidar-derived elevations, and aerial imagery of all the islands of French Frigate Shoals. To estimate the population dynamics of 8 species of breeding seabirds on Tern Island from 1980 to 2009, we used a Gompertz model with a Bayesian approach to infer population growth rates, density dependence, process variation, and observation error. All species increased in abundance, in a pattern that provided evidence of density dependence. Great Frigatebirds (Fregata minor), Masked Boobies (Sula dactylatra), Red-tailed Tropicbirds (Phaethon rubricauda), Spectacled Terns (Onychoprion lunatus), and White Terns (Gygis alba) are likely at carrying capacity. Density dependence may exacerbate the effects of sea-level rise on seabirds because populations near carrying capacity on an island will be more negatively affected than populations with room for growth. We projected 12% of French Frigate Shoals will be inundated if sea level rises 1 m and 28% if sea level rises 2 m. Spectacled Terns and shrub-nesting species are especially vulnerable to sea-level rise, but seawalls and habitat restoration may mitigate the effects of sea-level rise. Losses of seabird nesting habitat may be substantial in the Hawaiian Islands by 2100 if sea levels rise 2 m. Restoration of higher-elevation seabird colonies represent a more enduring conservation solution for Pacific seabirds.

  2. Mechanisms driving variability in the ocean forcing of Pine Island Glacier.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webber, Benjamin G M; Heywood, Karen J; Stevens, David P; Dutrieux, Pierre; Abrahamsen, E Povl; Jenkins, Adrian; Jacobs, Stanley S; Ha, Ho Kyung; Lee, Sang Hoon; Kim, Tae Wan

    2017-02-17

    Pine Island Glacier (PIG) terminates in a rapidly melting ice shelf, and ocean circulation and temperature are implicated in the retreat and growing contribution to sea level rise of PIG and nearby glaciers. However, the variability of the ocean forcing of PIG has been poorly constrained due to a lack of multi-year observations. Here we show, using a unique record close to the Pine Island Ice Shelf (PIIS), that there is considerable oceanic variability at seasonal and interannual timescales, including a pronounced cold period from October 2011 to May 2013. This variability can be largely explained by two processes: cumulative ocean surface heat fluxes and sea ice formation close to PIIS; and interannual reversals in ocean currents and associated heat transport within Pine Island Bay, driven by a combination of local and remote forcing. Local atmospheric forcing therefore plays an important role in driving oceanic variability close to PIIS.

  3. The Climate Science Special Report: Rising Seas and Changing Oceans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kopp, R. E.

    2017-12-01

    GMSL has risen by about 16-21 cm since 1900. Ocean heat content has increased at all depths since the 1960s, and global mean sea-surface temperature increased 0.7°C/century between 1900 to 2016. Human activity contributed substantially to generating a rate of GMSL rise since 1900 faster than during any preceding century in at least 2800 years. A new set of six sea-level rise scenarios, spanning a range from 30 cm to 250 cm of 21st century GMSL rise, were developed for the CSSR. The lower scenario is based on linearly extrapolating the past two decades' rate of rise. The upper scenario is informed by literature estimates of maximum physically plausible values, observations indicating the onset of marine ice sheet instability in parts of West Antarctica, and modeling of ice-cliff and ice-shelf instability mechanisms. The new scenarios include localized projections along US coastlines. There is significant variability around the US, with rates of rise likely greater than GMSL rise in the US Northeast and the western Gulf of Mexico. Under scenarios involving extreme Antarctic contributions, regional rise would be greater than GMSL rise along almost all US coastlines. Historical sea-level rise has already driven a 5- to 10-fold increase in minor tidal flooding in several US coastal cities since the 1960s. Under the CSSR's Intermediate sea-level rise scenario (1.0 m of GMSL rise in 2100) , a majority of NOAA tide gauge locations will by 2040 experience the historical 5-year coastal flood about 5 times per year. Ocean changes are not limited to rising sea levels. Ocean pH is decreasing at a rate that may be unparalleled in the last 66 million years. Along coastlines, ocean acidification can be enhanced by changes in the upwelling (particularly along the US Pacific Coast); by episodic, climate change-enhanced increases in freshwater input (particularly along the US Atlantic Coast); and by the enhancement of biological respiration by nutrient runoff. Climate models project

  4. Storm-induced water dynamics and thermohaline structure at the tidewater Flade Isblink Glacier outlet to theWandel Sea (NE Greenland)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kirillov, Sergei; Dmitrenko, Igor; Rysgaard, Soren

    2017-01-01

    In April 2015, an ice-tethered conductivity-temperature-depth (CTD) profiler and a down-looking acoustic Doppler current profiler (ADCP) were deployed from the landfast ice near the tidewater glacier terminus of the Flade Isblink Glacier in the Wandel Sea, NE Greenland. The 3-week time series...

  5. Timescales for detecting a significant acceleration in sea level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haigh, Ivan D; Wahl, Thomas; Rohling, Eelco J; Price, René M; Pattiaratchi, Charitha B; Calafat, Francisco M; Dangendorf, Sönke

    2014-04-14

    There is observational evidence that global sea level is rising and there is concern that the rate of rise will increase, significantly threatening coastal communities. However, considerable debate remains as to whether the rate of sea level rise is currently increasing and, if so, by how much. Here we provide new insights into sea level accelerations by applying the main methods that have been used previously to search for accelerations in historical data, to identify the timings (with uncertainties) at which accelerations might first be recognized in a statistically significant manner (if not apparent already) in sea level records that we have artificially extended to 2100. We find that the most important approach to earliest possible detection of a significant sea level acceleration lies in improved understanding (and subsequent removal) of interannual to multidecadal variability in sea level records.

  6. Inferring Ice Thickness from a Glacier Dynamics Model and Multiple Surface Datasets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guan, Y.; Haran, M.; Pollard, D.

    2017-12-01

    The future behavior of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) may have a major impact on future climate. For instance, ice sheet melt may contribute significantly to global sea level rise. Understanding the current state of WAIS is therefore of great interest. WAIS is drained by fast-flowing glaciers which are major contributors to ice loss. Hence, understanding the stability and dynamics of glaciers is critical for predicting the future of the ice sheet. Glacier dynamics are driven by the interplay between the topography, temperature and basal conditions beneath the ice. A glacier dynamics model describes the interactions between these processes. We develop a hierarchical Bayesian model that integrates multiple ice sheet surface data sets with a glacier dynamics model. Our approach allows us to (1) infer important parameters describing the glacier dynamics, (2) learn about ice sheet thickness, and (3) account for errors in the observations and the model. Because we have relatively dense and accurate ice thickness data from the Thwaites Glacier in West Antarctica, we use these data to validate the proposed approach. The long-term goal of this work is to have a general model that may be used to study multiple glaciers in the Antarctic.

  7. Glaciers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hambrey, Michael; Alean, Jürg

    2004-12-01

    Glaciers are among the most beautiful natural wonders on Earth, as well as the least known and understood, for most of us. Michael Hambrey describes how glaciers grow and decay, move and influence human civilization. Currently covering a tenth of the Earth's surface, glacier ice has shaped the landscape over millions of years by scouring away rocks and transporting and depositing debris far from its source. Glacier meltwater drives turbines and irrigates deserts, and yields mineral-rich soils as well as a wealth of valuable sand and gravel. However, glaciers also threaten human property and life. Our future is indirectly connected with the fate of glaciers and their influence on global climate and sea level. Including over 200 stunning photographs, the book takes the reader from the High-Arctic through North America, Europe, Asia, Africa, New Zealand and South America to the Antarctic. Michael Hambrey is Director of the Centre for Glaciology at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth. A past recipient of the Polar Medal, he was also given the Earth Science Editors' Outstanding Publication Award for the first edition of Glaciers (Cambridge, 1995). Hambrey is also the author of Glacial Environments (British Columbia, 1994). JÜrg Alean is Professor of Geography at the Kantonsschule ZÜrcher Unterland in BÜlach, Switzerland.

  8. Sea-Level Rise and Flood Potential along the California Coast

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delepine, Q.; Leung, C.

    2013-12-01

    Sea-level rise is becoming an ever-increasing problem in California. Sea-level is expected to rise significantly in the next 100 years, which will raise flood elevations in coastal communities. This will be an issue for private homeowners, businesses, and the state. One study suggests that Venice Beach could lose a total of at least $440 million in tourism spending and tax dollars from flooding and beach erosion if sea level rises 1.4 m by 2100. In addition, several airports, such as San Francisco International Airport, are located in coastal regions that have flooded in the past and will likely be flooded again in the next 30 years, but sea-level rise is expected to worsen the effects of flooding in the coming decades It is vital for coastal communities to understand the risks associated with sea-level rise so that they can plan to adapt to it. By obtaining accurate LiDAR elevation data from the NOAA Digital Coast Website (http://csc.noaa.gov/dataviewer/?keyword=lidar#), we can create flood maps to simulate sea level rise and flooding. The data are uploaded to ArcGIS and contour lines are added for different elevations that represent future coastlines during 100-year flooding. The following variables are used to create the maps: 1. High-resolution land surface elevation data - obtained from NOAA 2. Local mean high water level - from USGS 3. Local 100-year flood water level - from the Pacific Institute 4. Sea-level rise projections for different future dates (2030, 2050, and 2100) - from the National Research Council The values from the last three categories are added to represent sea-level rise plus 100-year flooding. These values are used to make the contour lines that represent the projected flood elevations, which are then exported as KML files, which can be opened in Google Earth. Once these KML files are made available to the public, coastal communities will gain an improved understanding of how flooding and sea-level rise might affect them in the future

  9. Progress toward Consensus Estimates of Regional Glacier Mass Balances for IPCC AR5

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arendt, A. A.; Gardner, A. S.; Cogley, J. G.

    2011-12-01

    Glaciers are potentially large contributors to rising sea level. Since the last IPCC report in 2007 (AR4), there has been a widespread increase in the use of geodetic observations from satellite and airborne platforms to complement field observations of glacier mass balance, as well as significant improvements in the global glacier inventory. Here we summarize our ongoing efforts to integrate data from multiple sources to arrive at a consensus estimate for each region, and to quantify uncertainties in those estimates. We will use examples from Alaska to illustrate methods for combining Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE), elevation differencing and field observations into a single time series with related uncertainty estimates. We will pay particular attention to reconciling discrepancies between GRACE estimates from multiple processing centers. We will also investigate the extent to which improvements in the glacier inventory affect the accuracy of our regional mass balances.

  10. Flooded! An Investigation of Sea-Level Rise in a Changing Climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillette, Brandon; Hamilton, Cheri

    2011-01-01

    Explore how melting ice sheets affect global sea levels. Sea-level rise (SLR) is a rise in the water level of the Earth's oceans. There are two major kinds of ice in the polar regions: sea ice and land ice. Land ice contributes to SLR and sea ice does not. This article explores the characteristics of sea ice and land ice and provides some hands-on…

  11. Predictability of twentieth century sea-level rise from past data

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bittermann, Klaus; Rahmstorf, Stefan; Perrette, Mahé; Vermeer, Martin

    2013-01-01

    The prediction of global sea-level rise is one of the major challenges of climate science. While process-based models are still being improved to capture the complexity of the processes involved, semi-empirical models, exploiting the observed connection between global-mean sea level and global temperature and calibrated with data, have been developed as a complementary approach. Here we investigate whether twentieth century sea-level rise could have been predicted with such models given a knowledge of twentieth century global temperature increase. We find that either proxy or early tide gauge data do not hold enough information to constrain the model parameters well. However, in combination, the use of proxy and tide gauge sea-level data up to 1900 AD allows a good prediction of twentieth century sea-level rise, despite this rise being well outside the rates experienced in previous centuries during the calibration period of the model. The 90% confidence range for the linear twentieth century rise predicted by the semi-empirical model is 13–30 cm, whereas the observed interval (using two tide gauge data sets) is 14–26 cm. (letter)

  12. Greenhouse effect, sea level rise, and coastal drainage systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Titus, J G; Kuo, C Y; Gibbs, M J; LaRoche, T B; Webb, M K; Waddell, J O

    1987-01-01

    Increasing concentrations of carbon dioxide and other gases are expected to warm the earth several degrees in the next century, which would raise sea level a few feet and alter precipitation patterns. Both of these changes would have major impacts on the operation of coastal drainage systems. However, because sea level rise and climate change resulting from the greenhouse effect are still uncertain, most planners and engineers are ignoring the potential implications. Case studies of the potential impact on watersheds in Charleston, South Carolina, and Fort Walton Beach, Florida, suggest that the cost of designing a new system to accommodate a rise in sea level will sometimes be small compared with the retrofit cost that may ultimately be necessary if new systems are not designed for a rise. Rather than ignore the greenhouse effect until its consequences are firmly established, engineers and planners should evaluate whether it would be worthwhile to insure that new systems are not vulnerable to the risks of climate change and sea level rise.

  13. Potential of sea level rise impact on South China Sea: a preliminary ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The effect of the sea level rise was involved the existence of sea water intrusion and coastal erosion phenomenon in the coastal of Terengganu. This study aim to determine fluctuation of high and low tides of the South China Sea in their relation to water quality value of Marang and Paka Rivers as well as from wells ...

  14. Population dynamics of Hawaiian seabird colonies vulnerable to sea-level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hatfield, Jeff S; Reynolds, Michelle H; Seavy, Nathaniel E; Krause, Crystal M

    2012-08-01

    Globally, seabirds are vulnerable to anthropogenic threats both at sea and on land. Seabirds typically nest colonially and show strong fidelity to natal colonies, and such colonies on low-lying islands may be threatened by sea-level rise. We used French Frigate Shoals, the largest atoll in the Hawaiian Archipelago, as a case study to explore the population dynamics of seabird colonies and the potential effects sea-level rise may have on these rookeries. We compiled historic observations, a 30-year time series of seabird population abundance, lidar-derived elevations, and aerial imagery of all the islands of French Frigate Shoals. To estimate the population dynamics of 8 species of breeding seabirds on Tern Island from 1980 to 2009, we used a Gompertz model with a Bayesian approach to infer population growth rates, density dependence, process variation, and observation error. All species increased in abundance, in a pattern that provided evidence of density dependence. Great Frigatebirds (Fregata minor), Masked Boobies (Sula dactylatra), Red-tailed Tropicbirds (Phaethon rubricauda), Spectacled Terns (Onychoprion lunatus), and White Terns (Gygis alba) are likely at carrying capacity. Density dependence may exacerbate the effects of sea-level rise on seabirds because populations near carrying capacity on an island will be more negatively affected than populations with room for growth. We projected 12% of French Frigate Shoals will be inundated if sea level rises 1 m and 28% if sea level rises 2 m. Spectacled Terns and shrub-nesting species are especially vulnerable to sea-level rise, but seawalls and habitat restoration may mitigate the effects of sea-level rise. Losses of seabird nesting habitat may be substantial in the Hawaiian Islands by 2100 if sea levels rise 2 m. Restoration of higher-elevation seabird colonies represent a more enduring conservation solution for Pacific seabirds. Conservation Biology ©2012 Society for Conservation Biology. No claim to original

  15. Estimating sea-level allowances for Atlantic Canada under conditions of uncertain sea-level rise

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. Greenan

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available This paper documents the methodology of computing sea-level rise allowances for Atlantic Canada in the 21st century under conditions of uncertain sea-level rise. The sea-level rise allowances are defined as the amount by which an asset needs to be raised in order to maintain the same likelihood of future flooding events as that site has experienced in the recent past. The allowances are determined by combination of the statistics of present tides and storm surges (storm tides and the regional projections of sea-level rise and associated uncertainty. Tide-gauge data for nine sites from the Canadian Atlantic coast are used to derive the scale parameters of present sea-level extremes using the Gumbel distribution function. The allowances in the 21st century, with respect to the year 1990, were computed for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC A1FI emission scenario. For Atlantic Canada, the allowances are regionally variable and, for the period 1990–2050, range between –13 and 38 cm while, for the period 1990–2100, they range between 7 and 108 cm. The negative allowances in the northern Gulf of St. Lawrence region are caused by land uplift due to glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA.

  16. Sea level rise in the Arctic Ocean

    OpenAIRE

    Proshutinsky, Andrey; Pavlov, Vladimir; Bourke, Robert H.

    2001-01-01

    The article of record as published may be found at http://dx.doi.org/10.1029/2000GL012760 About 60 tide-gauge stations in the Kara, Laptev, East-Siberian and Chukchi Seas have recorded the sea level change from the 1950s through 1990s. Over this 40-year period, most of these stations show a significant sea level rise (SLR). In light of global change, this SLR could be a manifestation of warming in the Artic coupled with a decrease of sea ice extent, warming of Atlantic waters, changes in...

  17. Long term mass balance of the Helheim and Kangerdlugssuaq glaciers in

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Khan, Shfaqat Abbas; Fitzner, Antje; Kjær, Kurt

    2013-01-01

    Observations over the past decade show huge ice loss associated with speeding up of glaciers in southeast Greenland in 2003, followed by a deceleration in 2006. These short-term episodic dynamic perturbations have a major impact on the mass balance at decadal scale. However, to improve the projec......Observations over the past decade show huge ice loss associated with speeding up of glaciers in southeast Greenland in 2003, followed by a deceleration in 2006. These short-term episodic dynamic perturbations have a major impact on the mass balance at decadal scale. However, to improve...... the projection of future sea level rise, a long-term data record that reveals the mass balance between episodic events is required. Here, we extend the observational record of marginal thinning of Helheim glacier (HG) and Kangerdlugssuaq glacier (KG) from 7 to 30 years. Our measurements reveal that, although...... in air temperature suggest that both outlet glaciers respond immediately to small fluctuations in both the SST and air temperature. Furthermore, we compare our observations of ice flow speed and elevation changes with predictions based on the The Parallel Ice Sheet Model (PISM) software....

  18. PERSPECTIVE: The tripping points of sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hecht, Alan D.

    2009-12-01

    When President Nixon created the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in 1970 he said the environment must be perceived as a single, interrelated system. We are nowhere close to achieving this vision. Jim Titus and his colleagues [1] highlight one example of where one set of regulations or permits may be in conflict with another and where regulations were crafted in the absence of understanding the cumulative impact of global warming. The issue here is how to deal with the impacts of climate change on sea level and the latter's impact on wetland polices, clean water regulations, and ecosystem services. The Titus paper could also be called `The tripping points of sea level rise'. Titus and his colleagues have looked at the impact of such sea level rise on the east coast of the United States. Adaptive responses include costly large- scale investment in shore protection (e.g. dikes, sand replenishment) and/or ecosystem migration (retreat), where coastal ecosystems move inland. Shore protection is limited by available funds, while ecosystem migrations are limited by available land use. The driving factor is the high probability of sea level rise due to climate change. Estimating sea level rise is difficult because of local land and coastal dynamics including rising or falling land areas. It is estimated that sea level could rise between 8 inches and 2 feet by the end of this century [2]. The extensive data analysis done by Titus et al of current land use is important because, as they observe, `property owners and land use agencies have generally not decided how they will respond to sea level rise, nor have they prepared maps delineating where shore protection and retreat are likely'. This is the first of two `tripping points', namely the need for adaptive planning for a pending environmental challenge that will create economic and environment conflict among land owners, federal and state agencies, and businesses. One way to address this gap in adaptive management

  19. Sea-level Rise Impacts on Oregon Estuaries: Biology and Hydrology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Estuaries are transitional ecosystems located at the margin of the land and ocean and as a result they are particularly sensitive to sea level rise and other climate drivers. In this presentation, we summarize the potential impacts of sea level rise on key estuarine habitats inc...

  20. How do glacier inventory data aid global glacier assessments and projections?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hock, R.

    2017-12-01

    Large-scale glacier modeling relies heavily on datasets that are collected by many individuals across the globe, but managed and maintained in a coordinated fashion by international data centers. The Global Terrestrial Network for Glaciers (GTN-G) provides the framework for coordinating and making available a suite of data sets such as the Randolph Glacier Inventory (RGI), the Glacier Thickness Dataset or the World Glacier Inventory (WGI). These datasets have greatly increased our ability to assess global-scale glacier mass changes. These data have also been vital for projecting the glacier mass changes of all mountain glaciers in the world outside the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheet, a total >200,000 glaciers covering an area of more than 700,000 km2. Using forcing from 8 to 15 GCMs and 4 different emission scenarios, global-scale glacier evolution models project multi-model mean net mass losses of all glaciers between 7 cm and 24 cm sea-level equivalent by the end of the 21st century. Projected mass losses vary greatly depending on the choice of the forcing climate and emission scenario. Insufficiently constrained model parameters likely are an important reason for large differences found among these studies even when forced by the same emission scenario, especially on regional scales.

  1. Measurement of glacier velocity at Pik Lenin, Tajikistan, by feature tracking

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumari, S.; Ghosh, S. K.; Buchroithner, M. F.

    2014-11-01

    Glaciers, especially in mountain area are sensitive indicators of climate fluctuations and also contribute to present rates of sea level rise. In Central Asia, these glaciers are the primary resource for fresh water. Understanding the seasonal behavior of these glaciers would help to make efficient use of the available water reservoir. Different methods have been employed to study glacier displacements in past. The conventional survey techniques are very cost-intensive and highly depend on accessibility to high mountain glaciers also directs us to look for new ways to study these areas. Here remote sensing comes in handy with freely available data and a good coverage with high spatial and temporal resolution. Optical satellite imagery, available free can be effectively used for research purpose. The glacier in this region fed lake Karakul (380 km2), the largest Lake in Tajikistan. The objective is to study the displacement tendency of the Glacier in Pik Lenin area using Landsat 7 dataset. Normalized cross correlation algorithm has been implemented via CIAS to estimate the motion of glacier surface. A number of combination of reference block and search area size were tested for 30 m resolution dataset. As a result the specifications: reference block size of 15 pixels and search area size of 10 pixels was found out as the best set of parameters and considered for further processing. The study derives a reliable set of data depicting the velocities in the glacier which after post processing shows peak velocity of 121 m/y of the glacier.

  2. NOAA Digital Coast Sea Level Rise and Coastal Flooding Impacts Viewer

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Sea Level Rise and Coastal Flooding Impacts Viewer depicts potential sea level rise and its associated impacts on the nation's coastal areas. These coastal areas...

  3. Improved estimates of global sea level change from Ice Sheets, glaciers and land water storage using GRACE

    Science.gov (United States)

    Velicogna, I.; Hsu, C. W.; Ciraci, E.; Sutterley, T. C.

    2015-12-01

    We use observations of time variable gravity from GRACE to estimate mass changes for the Antarctic and Greenland Ice Sheets, the Glaciers and Ice Caps (GIC) and land water storage for the time period 2002-2015 and evaluate their total contribution to sea level. We calculate regional sea level changes from these present day mass fluxes using an improved scaling factor for the GRACE data that accounts for the spatial and temporal variability of the observed signal. We calculate a separate scaling factor for the annual and the long-term components of the GRACE signal. To estimate the contribution of the GIC, we use a least square mascon approach and we re-analyze recent inventories to optimize the distribution of mascons and recover the GRACE signal more accurately. We find that overall, Greenland controls 43% of the global trend in eustatic sea level rise, 16% for Antarctica and 29% for the GIC. The contribution from the GIC is dominated by the mass loss of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago, followed by Alaska, Patagonia and the High Mountains of Asia. We report a marked increase in mass loss for the Canadian Arctic Archipelago. In Greenland, following the 2012 high summer melt, years 2013 and 2014 have slowed down the increase in mass loss, but our results will be updated with summer 2015 observations at the meeting. In Antarctica, the mass loss is still on the rise with increased contributions from the Amundsen Sea sector and surprisingly from the Wilkes Land sector of East Antarctica, including Victoria Land. Conversely, the Queen Maud Land sector experienced a large snowfall in 2009-2013 and has now resumed to a zero mass gain since 2013. We compare sea level changes from these GRACE derived mass fluxes after including the atmospheric and ocean loading signal with sea level change from satellite radar altimetry (AVISO) corrected for steric signal of the ocean using Argo measurements and find an excellent agreement in amplitude, phase and trend in these estimates

  4. Sharply increased mass loss from glaciers and ice caps in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gardner, Alex S; Moholdt, Geir; Wouters, Bert; Wolken, Gabriel J; Burgess, David O; Sharp, Martin J; Cogley, J Graham; Braun, Carsten; Labine, Claude

    2011-05-19

    Mountain glaciers and ice caps are contributing significantly to present rates of sea level rise and will continue to do so over the next century and beyond. The Canadian Arctic Archipelago, located off the northwestern shore of Greenland, contains one-third of the global volume of land ice outside the ice sheets, but its contribution to sea-level change remains largely unknown. Here we show that the Canadian Arctic Archipelago has recently lost 61 ± 7 gigatonnes per year (Gt yr(-1)) of ice, contributing 0.17 ± 0.02 mm yr(-1) to sea-level rise. Our estimates are of regional mass changes for the ice caps and glaciers of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago referring to the years 2004 to 2009 and are based on three independent approaches: surface mass-budget modelling plus an estimate of ice discharge (SMB+D), repeat satellite laser altimetry (ICESat) and repeat satellite gravimetry (GRACE). All three approaches show consistent and large mass-loss estimates. Between the periods 2004-2006 and 2007-2009, the rate of mass loss sharply increased from 31 ± 8 Gt yr(-1) to 92 ± 12 Gt yr(-1) in direct response to warmer summer temperatures, to which rates of ice loss are highly sensitive (64 ± 14 Gt yr(-1) per 1 K increase). The duration of the study is too short to establish a long-term trend, but for 2007-2009, the increase in the rate of mass loss makes the Canadian Arctic Archipelago the single largest contributor to eustatic sea-level rise outside Greenland and Antarctica.

  5. Climate Adaptation and Sea Level Rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    EPA supports the development and maintenance of water utility infrastructure across the country. Included in this effort is helping the nation’s water utilities anticipate, plan for, and adapt to risks from flooding, sea level rise, and storm surge.

  6. The Impact of Sea Level Rise on Florida's Everglades

    Science.gov (United States)

    Senarath, S. U.

    2005-12-01

    Global warming and the resulting melting of polar ice sheets could increase global sea levels significantly. Some studies have predicted mean sea level increases in the order of six inches to one foot in the next 25 to 50 years. This could have severe irreversible impacts on low-lying areas of Florida's Everglades. The key objective of this study is to evaluate the effects of a one foot sea level rise on Cape Sable Seaside Sparrow (CSSS) nesting areas within the Everglades National Park (ENP). A regional-scale hydrologic model is used to assess the sensitivities of this sea-level rise scenario. Florida's Everglades supports a unique ecosystem. At present, about 50 percent of this unique ecosystem has been lost due to urbanization and farming. Today, the water flow in the remnant Everglades is also regulated to meet a variety of competing environmental, water-supply and flood-control needs. A 30-year, eight billion dollar (1999 estimate) project has been initiated to improve Everglades' water flows. The expected benefits of this restoration project will be short-lived if the predicted sea level rise causes severe impacts on the environmentally sensitive areas of the Everglades. Florida's Everglades is home to many threatened and endangered species of wildlife. The Cape Sable Seaside Sparrow population in the ENP is one such species that is currently listed as endangered. Since these birds build their nests close to the ground surface (the base of the nest is approximately six inches from the ground surface), they are directly affected by any sea level induced ponding depth, frequency or duration change. Therefore, the CSSS population serves as a good indicator species for evaluating the negative impacts of sea level rise on the Everglades' ecosystem. The impact of sea level rise on the CSSS habitat is evaluated using the Regional Simulation Model (RSM) developed by the South Florida Water Management District. The RSM is an implicit, finite-volume, continuous

  7. Separating decadal global water cycle variability from sea level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamlington, B D; Reager, J T; Lo, M-H; Karnauskas, K B; Leben, R R

    2017-04-20

    Under a warming climate, amplification of the water cycle and changes in precipitation patterns over land are expected to occur, subsequently impacting the terrestrial water balance. On global scales, such changes in terrestrial water storage (TWS) will be reflected in the water contained in the ocean and can manifest as global sea level variations. Naturally occurring climate-driven TWS variability can temporarily obscure the long-term trend in sea level rise, in addition to modulating the impacts of sea level rise through natural periodic undulation in regional and global sea level. The internal variability of the global water cycle, therefore, confounds both the detection and attribution of sea level rise. Here, we use a suite of observations to quantify and map the contribution of TWS variability to sea level variability on decadal timescales. In particular, we find that decadal sea level variability centered in the Pacific Ocean is closely tied to low frequency variability of TWS in key areas across the globe. The unambiguous identification and clean separation of this component of variability is the missing step in uncovering the anthropogenic trend in sea level and understanding the potential for low-frequency modulation of future TWS impacts including flooding and drought.

  8. Integrating conservation costs into sea level rise adaptive conservation prioritization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mingjian Zhu

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Biodiversity conservation requires strategic investment as resources for conservation are often limited. As sea level rises, it is important and necessary to consider both sea level rise and costs in conservation decision making. In this study, we consider costs of conservation in an integrated modeling process that incorporates a geomorphological model (SLAMM, species habitat models, and conservation prioritization (Zonation to identify conservation priorities in the face of landscape dynamics due to sea level rise in the Matanzas River basin of northeast Florida. Compared to conservation priorities that do not consider land costs in the analysis process, conservation priorities that consider costs in the planning process change significantly. The comparison demonstrates that some areas with high conservation values might be identified as lower priorities when integrating economic costs in the planning process and some areas with low conservation values might be identified as high priorities when considering costs in the planning process. This research could help coastal resources managers make informed decisions about where and how to allocate conservation resources more wisely to facilitate biodiversity adaptation to sea level rise.

  9. Short Lived Climate Pollutants cause a Long Lived Effect on Sea-level Rise: Analyzing climate metrics for sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sterner, E.; Johansson, D. J.

    2013-12-01

    Climate change depends on the increase of several different atmospheric pollutants. While long term global warming will be determined mainly by carbon dioxide, warming in the next few decades will depend to a large extent on short lived climate pollutants (SLCP). Reducing emissions of SLCPs could contribute to lower the global mean surface temperature by 0.5 °C already by 2050 (Shindell et al. 2012). Furthermore, the warming effect of one of the most potent SLCPs, black carbon (BC), may have been underestimated in the past. Bond et al. (2013) presents a new best estimate of the total BC radiative forcing (RF) of 1.1 W/m2 (90 % uncertainty bounds of 0.17 to 2.1 W/m2) since the beginning of the industrial era. BC is however never emitted alone and cooling aerosols from the same sources offset a majority of this RF. In the wake of calls for mitigation of SLCPs it is important to study other aspects of the climate effect of SLCPs. One key impact of climate change is sea-level rise (SLR). In a recent study, the effect of SLCP mitigation scenarios on SLR is examined. Hu et al (2013) find a substantial effect on SLR from mitigating SLCPs sharply, reducing SLR by 22-42% by 2100. We choose a different approach focusing on emission pulses and analyse a metric based on sea level rise so as to further enlighten the SLR consequences of SLCPs. We want in particular to understand the time dynamics of SLR impacts caused by SLCPs compared to other greenhouse gases. The most commonly used physical based metrics are GWP and GTP. We propose and evaluate an additional metric: The global sea-level rise potential (GSP). The GSP is defined as the sea level rise after a time horizon caused by an emissions pulse of a forcer to the sea level rise after a time horizon caused by an emissions pulse of a CO2. GSP is evaluated and compared to GWP and GTP using a set of climate forcers chosen to cover the whole scale of atmospheric perturbation life times (BC, CH4, N2O, CO2 and SF6). The study

  10. Preparing Norfolk Area Students for America's Second Highest Sea Level Rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunbar, R. R.

    2017-12-01

    The nonprofit Elizabeth River Project located in Hampton Roads, Virginia was awarded a 3-year national NOAA Environmental Literacy award 2016-2019 to teach 21,000 K-12 youth how to help restore one of the most polluted rivers on the Chesapeake Bay and to help create a resilient community that is facing impacts from the rising seas and changing climate. Through a community collaboration, partners are also creating perhaps the nation's first Youth Resilience Strategy with a vision, goals, best practices and resources on engaging youth to help create resilient cities facing environmental and economic changes. During Year 1, 7,000 elementary students held field investigations aboard the floating classroom Learning Barge and at Paradise Creek Nature Park and helped restore wetland restoration sites. Students performed inquiry based investigations, learned stewardship actions to help create resilience and showed a 40% increase in knowledge. Year 1 best practices in teaching resilience include youth: getting out of the classroom, discovering how rain water travels, performing bioblitzes and water quality testing, engaging in hands-on GreenSTEM activities, using investigation tools, creating innovative solutions to retain and reuse rain water, creating art and voicing their opinions on creating a resilient community.Lessons learned include developing engaging inquiry questions based on creating a resilient community. These included: "What are the impact of rising tides?", "How can sea level rise affect river animals?", "How can we be safe and prepare for extreme weather and flooding as the sea level rises?", "How has the way people worked with the Elizabeth River changed?", "How could sea level rise affect the Elizabeth River's water quality?", "How hot might the air temperature get by 2050 and what can we do to keep it cooler?", "What does this park show us about sea level rise and other ways our climate is changing?", "How do trees help make our park and community

  11. Sub-ice-shelf sediments record history of twentieth-century retreat of Pine Island Glacier

    OpenAIRE

    Smith, J.A.; Andersen, T.J.; Shortt, M.; Gaffney, A.M.; Truffer, M.; Stanton, T.P.; Bindschadler, R.; Dutrieux, P.; Jenkins, A.; Hillenbrand, C.-D.; Ehrmann, W.; Corr, H.F.J.; Farley, N.; Crowhurst, S.; Vaughan, D.G.

    2016-01-01

    The article of record as published may be found at http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nature20136 The West Antarctic Ice Sheet is one of the largest potential sources of rising sea levels. Over the past 40 years, glaciers flowing into the Amundsen Sea sector of the ice sheet have thinned at an accelerating rate, and several numerical models suggest that unstable and irreversible retreat of the grounding line—which marks the boundary between grounded ice and floating ice shelf—is underway. Under...

  12. Arctic Ocean outflow and glacier-ocean interactions modify water over the Wandel Sea shelf (northeastern Greenland)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dmitrenko, Igor A.; Kirillov, Sergey A.; Rudels, Bert; Babb, David G.; Toudal Pedersen, Leif; Rysgaard, Søren; Kristoffersen, Yngve; Barber, David G.

    2017-12-01

    The first-ever conductivity-temperature-depth (CTD) observations on the Wandel Sea shelf in northeastern Greenland were collected in April-May 2015. They were complemented by CTDs taken along the continental slope during the Norwegian FRAM 2014-2015 drift. The CTD profiles are used to reveal the origin of water masses and interactions with ambient water from the continental slope and the tidewater glacier outlet. The subsurface water is associated with the Pacific water outflow from the Arctic Ocean. The underlying halocline separates the Pacific water from a deeper layer of polar water that has interacted with the warm Atlantic water outflow through the Fram Strait, recorded below 140 m. Over the outer shelf, the halocline shows numerous cold density-compensated intrusions indicating lateral interaction with an ambient polar water mass across the continental slope. At the front of the tidewater glacier outlet, colder and turbid water intrusions were observed at the base of the halocline. On the temperature-salinity plots these stations indicate a mixing line that is different from the ambient water and seems to be conditioned by the ocean-glacier interaction. Our observations of Pacific water are set within the context of upstream observations in the Beaufort Sea and downstream observations from the Northeast Water Polynya, and clearly show the modification of Pacific water during its advection across the Arctic Ocean. Moreover, ambient water over the Wandel Sea slope shows different thermohaline structures indicating the different origin and pathways of the on-shore and off-shore branches of the Arctic Ocean outflow through the western Fram Strait.

  13. Doubling of coastal flooding frequency within decades due to sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vitousek, Sean; Barnard, Patrick L.; Fletcher, Charles H.; Frazer, Neil; Erikson, Li; Storlazzi, Curt D.

    2017-01-01

    Global climate change drives sea-level rise, increasing the frequency of coastal flooding. In most coastal regions, the amount of sea-level rise occurring over years to decades is significantly smaller than normal ocean-level fluctuations caused by tides, waves, and storm surge. However, even gradual sea-level rise can rapidly increase the frequency and severity of coastal flooding. So far, global-scale estimates of increased coastal flooding due to sea-level rise have not considered elevated water levels due to waves, and thus underestimate the potential impact. Here we use extreme value theory to combine sea-level projections with wave, tide, and storm surge models to estimate increases in coastal flooding on a continuous global scale. We find that regions with limited water-level variability, i.e., short-tailed flood-level distributions, located mainly in the Tropics, will experience the largest increases in flooding frequency. The 10 to 20 cm of sea-level rise expected no later than 2050 will more than double the frequency of extreme water-level events in the Tropics, impairing the developing economies of equatorial coastal cities and the habitability of low-lying Pacific island nations.

  14. Doubling of coastal flooding frequency within decades due to sea-level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vitousek, Sean; Barnard, Patrick L; Fletcher, Charles H; Frazer, Neil; Erikson, Li; Storlazzi, Curt D

    2017-05-18

    Global climate change drives sea-level rise, increasing the frequency of coastal flooding. In most coastal regions, the amount of sea-level rise occurring over years to decades is significantly smaller than normal ocean-level fluctuations caused by tides, waves, and storm surge. However, even gradual sea-level rise can rapidly increase the frequency and severity of coastal flooding. So far, global-scale estimates of increased coastal flooding due to sea-level rise have not considered elevated water levels due to waves, and thus underestimate the potential impact. Here we use extreme value theory to combine sea-level projections with wave, tide, and storm surge models to estimate increases in coastal flooding on a continuous global scale. We find that regions with limited water-level variability, i.e., short-tailed flood-level distributions, located mainly in the Tropics, will experience the largest increases in flooding frequency. The 10 to 20 cm of sea-level rise expected no later than 2050 will more than double the frequency of extreme water-level events in the Tropics, impairing the developing economies of equatorial coastal cities and the habitability of low-lying Pacific island nations.

  15. The vulnerability of Indo-Pacific mangrove forests to sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lovelock, Catherine E.; Cahoon, Donald R.; Friess, Daniel A.; Guntenspergen, Glenn R.; Krauss, Ken W.; Reef, Ruth; Rogers, Kerrylee; Saunders, Megan L.; Sidik, Frida; Swales, Andrew; Saintilan, Neil; Thuyen, Le Xuan; Triet, Tran

    2015-01-01

    Sea-level rise can threaten the long-term sustainability of coastal communities and valuable ecosystems such as coral reefs, salt marshes and mangroves. Mangrove forests have the capacity to keep pace with sea-level rise and to avoid inundation through vertical accretion of sediments, which allows them to maintain wetland soil elevations suitable for plant growth. The Indo-Pacific region holds most of the world’s mangrove forests, but sediment delivery in this region is declining, owing to anthropogenic activities such as damming of rivers. This decline is of particular concern because the Indo-Pacific region is expected to have variable, but high, rates of future sea-level rise. Here we analyse recent trends in mangrove surface elevation changes across the Indo-Pacific region using data from a network of surface elevation table instruments. We find that sediment availability can enable mangrove forests to maintain rates of soil-surface elevation gain that match or exceed that of sea-level rise, but for 69 per cent of our study sites the current rate of sea-level rise exceeded the soil surface elevation gain. We also present a model based on our field data, which suggests that mangrove forests at sites with low tidal range and low sediment supply could be submerged as early as 2070.

  16. The vulnerability of Indo-Pacific mangrove forests to sea-level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lovelock, Catherine E; Cahoon, Donald R; Friess, Daniel A; Guntenspergen, Glenn R; Krauss, Ken W; Reef, Ruth; Rogers, Kerrylee; Saunders, Megan L; Sidik, Frida; Swales, Andrew; Saintilan, Neil; Thuyen, Le Xuan; Triet, Tran

    2015-10-22

    Sea-level rise can threaten the long-term sustainability of coastal communities and valuable ecosystems such as coral reefs, salt marshes and mangroves. Mangrove forests have the capacity to keep pace with sea-level rise and to avoid inundation through vertical accretion of sediments, which allows them to maintain wetland soil elevations suitable for plant growth. The Indo-Pacific region holds most of the world's mangrove forests, but sediment delivery in this region is declining, owing to anthropogenic activities such as damming of rivers. This decline is of particular concern because the Indo-Pacific region is expected to have variable, but high, rates of future sea-level rise. Here we analyse recent trends in mangrove surface elevation changes across the Indo-Pacific region using data from a network of surface elevation table instruments. We find that sediment availability can enable mangrove forests to maintain rates of soil-surface elevation gain that match or exceed that of sea-level rise, but for 69 per cent of our study sites the current rate of sea-level rise exceeded the soil surface elevation gain. We also present a model based on our field data, which suggests that mangrove forests at sites with low tidal range and low sediment supply could be submerged as early as 2070.

  17. Evaluation of sea level rise in Bohai Bay and associated responses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ke-Xiu LIU

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Tide gauge data from 1950 to 2015 are used to analyze sea level change, tidal change, return levels, and design tide levels under rising sea level scenarios in Bohai Bay. Results show the following: 1 Since 1950 sea levels in Bohai Bay show a significant rising trend of 3.3 mm per year. The speed has been particularly rapid in 1980–2015 at a rate of 4.7 mm per year. 2 Astronomical tides showed a clear long-term trend in 1950–2015. The amplitude and phase lag of the M2 tide constituent decreased at a rate of 0.21 cm per year and 0.11° per year, respectively and the phase lag of K1 decreased at a rate of 0.09° per year, whereas there was little change in its amplitude. The mean high and low tides increased at a rate of 0.08 and 0.52 cm per year, respectively, whereas the mean tidal range decreased at a rate of 0.44 cm per year. Results from numerical experiments show that local sea level rise plays an important role in the tidal dynamics change in Bohai Bay. 3 It is considered that the sea level return periods will decrease owing to the influence of sea level rise and land subsidence, therefore design tide level will change in relation to sea level rise. Therefore, the ability of seawalls to withstand water will diminish, and storm surge disasters will become more serious in the future.

  18. Glaciation of alpine valleys: The glacier - debris-covered glacier - rock glacier continuum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Robert S.; Anderson, Leif S.; Armstrong, William H.; Rossi, Matthew W.; Crump, Sarah E.

    2018-06-01

    Alpine ice varies from pure ice glaciers to partially debris-covered glaciers to rock glaciers, as defined by the degree of debris cover. In many low- to mid-latitude mountain ranges, the few bare ice glaciers that do exist in the present climate are small and are found where snow is focused by avalanches and where direct exposure to radiation is minimized. Instead, valley heads are more likely to be populated by rock glaciers, which can number in the hundreds. These rock-cloaked glaciers represent some of the most identifiable components of the cryosphere today in low- to mid-latitude settings, and the over-steepened snouts pose an often overlooked hazard to travel in alpine terrain. Geomorphically, rock glaciers serve as conveyor belts atop which rock is pulled away from the base of cliffs. In this work, we show how rock glaciers can be treated as an end-member case that is captured in numerical models of glaciers that include ice dynamics, debris dynamics, and the feedbacks between them. Specifically, we focus on the transition from debris-covered glaciers, where the modern equilibrium line altitude (ELA) intersects the topography, to rock glaciers, where the modern ELA lies above the topography. On debris-covered glaciers (i.e., glaciers with a partial rock mantle), rock delivered to the glacier from its headwall, or from sidewall debris swept into the glacier at tributary junctions, travels englacially to emerge below the ELA. There it accumulates on the surface and damps the rate of melt of underlying ice. This allows the termini of debris-covered glaciers to extend beyond debris-free counterparts, thereby decreasing the ratio of accumulation area to total area of the glacier (AAR). In contrast, rock glaciers (i.e., glaciers with a full rock mantle) occur where and when the environmental ELA rises above the topography. They require avalanches and rockfall from steep headwalls. The occurrence of rock glaciers reflects this dependence on avalanche sources

  19. Changes in the Surface Area of Glaciers in Northern Eurasia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khromova, T.; Nosenko, G.

    2012-12-01

    Glaciers are widely recognized as key indicators of climate change. Recent evidence suggests an acceleration of glacier mass loss in several key mountain regions. Glacier recession implies the landscape changes in the glacial zone, origin of new lakes and activation of natural disaster processes, catastrophic mudflows, ice avalanches, outburst floods, and etc. The presence of glaciers in itself threats to human life, economic activity and growing infrastructure. Economical and recreational human activity in mountain regions requires relevant information on snow and ice objects. Absence or inadequacy of such information results in financial and human losses. A more comprehensive evaluation of glacier changes is imperative to assess ice contributions to global sea level rise and the future of water resources from glacial basins. One of the urgent steps is a full inventory of all ice bodies, their volume and changes The first estimation of glaciers state and glaciers distribution in the big part of Northern Eurasia has been done in the USSR Glacier Inventory published in 1966 -1980 as a part of IHD activity. The Inventory is based on topographic maps and air photos and reflects the status of the glaciers in 1957-1970y. There is information about 23796 glaciers with area of 78222.3 km2 in the Inventory. It covers 23 glacier systems on Northern Eurasia. In the 80th the USSR Glacier Inventory has been transformed in the digital form as a part of the World Glacier Inventory. Recent satellite data provide a unique opportunity to look again at these glaciers and to evaluate changes in glacier extent for the second part of XX century. In the paper we report about 15 000 glaciers outlines for Caucasus, Pamir, Tien-Shan, Altai, Syntar-Khayata, Cherskogo Range, Kamchatka and Russian Arctic which have been derived from ASTER and Landsat imagery and could be used for glacier changes evaluation. The results show that glaciers are retreating in all these regions. There is, however

  20. Impact of External Forcing on Glacier Dynamics at Jakobshavn Isbræ during 1840-2012

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Muresan, Ioana Stefania; Khan, Shfaqat Abbas; Aschwanden, Andy

    warm period occurred. To control the acceleration and retreat based on observed front positions during 1840-2012, we use an ocean model modifier that implements forcing at the ocean boundary using melange back pressure offsets. The mean temperature anomaly in west Greenland, the North Atlantic......Greenland's main outlet glaciers have more than doubled their contribution to global sea-level rise over the past decade through acceleration of ice discharge. One of the triggering mechanisms is a reduction in resistance (buttressing) at the marine based glacier front (i.e. through reduced...... thickness or retreat of the floating tongue of a glacier) caused by enhanced calving or a longer-term thinning due to a mass deficit of the ice sheet. Recent findings indicate the reduced buttressing at the marine terminus is responsible for the recent dynamic changes observed in Greenland...

  1. Updating Maryland's sea-level rise projections

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boesch, Donald F.; Atkinson, Larry P.; Boicourt, William C.; Boon, John D.; Cahoon, Donald R.; Dalrymple, Robert A.; Ezer, Tal; Horton, Benjamin P.; Johnson, Zoe P.; Kopp, Robert E.; Li, Ming; Moss, Richard H.; Parris, Adam; Sommerfield, Christopher K.

    2013-01-01

    With its 3,100 miles of tidal shoreline and low-lying rural and urban lands, “The Free State” is one of the most vulnerable to sea-level rise. Historically, Marylanders have long had to contend with rising water levels along its Chesapeake Bay and Atlantic Ocean and coastal bay shores. Shorelines eroded and low-relief lands and islands, some previously inhabited, were inundated. Prior to the 20th century, this was largely due to the slow sinking of the land since Earth’s crust is still adjusting to the melting of large masses of ice following the last glacial period. Over the 20th century, however, the rate of rise of the average level of tidal waters with respect to land, or relative sea-level rise, has increased, at least partially as a result of global warming. Moreover, the scientific evidence is compelling that Earth’s climate will continue to warm and its oceans will rise even more rapidly. Recognizing the scientific consensus around global climate change, the contribution of human activities to it, and the vulnerability of Maryland’s people, property, public investments, and natural resources, Governor Martin O’Malley established the Maryland Commission on Climate Change on April 20, 2007. The Commission produced a Plan of Action that included a comprehensive climate change impact assessment, a greenhouse gas reduction strategy, and strategies for reducing Maryland’s vulnerability to climate change. The Plan has led to landmark legislation to reduce the state’s greenhouse gas emissions and a variety of state policies designed to reduce energy consumption and promote adaptation to climate change.

  2. A High-Resolution Sensor Network for Monitoring Glacier Dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, S.; Murray, T.; O'Farrell, T.; Rutt, I. C.; Loskot, P.; Martin, I.; Selmes, N.; Aspey, R.; James, T.; Bevan, S. L.; Baugé, T.

    2013-12-01

    Changes in Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets due to ice flow/ice-berg calving are a major uncertainty affecting sea-level rise forecasts. Latterly GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite Systems) have been employed extensively to monitor such glacier dynamics. Until recently however, the favoured methodology has been to deploy sensors onto the glacier surface, collect data for a period of time, then retrieve and download the sensors. This approach works well in less dynamic environments where the risk of sensor loss is low. In more extreme environments e.g. approaching the glacial calving front, the risk of sensor loss and hence data loss increases dramatically. In order to provide glaciologists with new insights into flow dynamics and calving processes we have developed a novel sensor network to increase the robustness of data capture. We present details of the technological requirements for an in-situ Zigbee wireless streaming network infrastructure supporting instantaneous data acquisition from high resolution GNSS sensors thereby increasing data capture robustness. The data obtained offers new opportunities to investigate the interdependence of mass flow, uplift, velocity and geometry and the network architecture has been specifically designed for deployment by helicopter close to the calving front to yield unprecedented detailed information. Following successful field trials of a pilot three node network during 2012, a larger 20 node network was deployed on the fast-flowing Helheim glacier, south-east Greenland over the summer months of 2013. The utilisation of dual wireless transceivers in each glacier node, multiple frequencies and four ';collector' stations located on the valley sides creates overlapping networks providing enhanced capacity, diversity and redundancy of data 'back-haul', even close to ';floor' RSSI (Received Signal Strength Indication) levels around -100 dBm. Data loss through radio packet collisions within sub-networks are avoided through the

  3. XXI century projections of wind-wave conditions and sea-level rise in the Black sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polonsky, A.; Garmashov, A.; Fomin, V.; Valchev, N.; Trifonova, E.

    2012-04-01

    Projection of regional climate changes for XXI century is one of the priorities of EC environmental programme. Potential worsening of the waves' statistics, sea level rise and extreme surges are the principal negative consequences of the climate change for marine environment. That is why the main purpose of this presentation is to discuss the above issue for the Black sea region (with a strong focus to the south-west subregion because the maximum heights of waves exceeding 10 m occur just here) using output of several global coupled models (GCM) for XXI century, wave simulation, long-term observations of sea level and statistical techniques. First of all we tried to choose the best coupled model (s) simulated the Black sea climate change and variability using the control experiments for 20 century (203). The principal result is as follows. There is not one model which is simulating adequately even one atmospheric parameter for all seasons. Therefore we considered (for the climate projection) different outputs form various models. When it was possible we calculated also the ensemble mean projection for the selected model (s) and emission scenarios. To calculate the wave projection we used the output of SWAN model forced by the GCM wind projection for 2010 to 2100. To estimate the sea level rise in XXI century and future surges statistics we extrapolate the observed sea level rise tendencies, statistical relation between wave heights and sea level and wave scenarios. Results show that in general, the climate change in XXI century doesn't lead to the catastrophic change of the Black sea wind-wave statistics including the extreme waves in the S-W Black sea. The typical atmospheric pattern leading to the intense storm in the S-W Black sea is characterized by the persistent anticyclonic area to the North of the Black sea and cyclonic conditions in the Southern Black sea region. Such pressure pattern causes persistent and strong eastern or north-eastern wind which

  4. Sensitivity analysis of hydrogeological parameters affecting groundwater storage change caused by sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shin, J.; Kim, K.-H.; Lee, K.-K.

    2012-04-01

    Sea level rise, which is one of the representative phenomena of climate changes caused by global warming, can affect groundwater system. The rising trend of the sea level caused by the global warming is reported to be about 3 mm/year for the most recent 10 year average (IPCC, 2007). The rate of sea level rise around the Korean peninsula is reported to be 2.30±2.22 mm/yr during the 1960-1999 period (Cho, 2002) and 2.16±1.77 mm/yr (Kim et al., 2009) during the 1968-2007 period. Both of these rates are faster than the 1.8±0.5 mm/yr global average for the similar 1961-2003 period (IPCC, 2007). In this study, we analyzed changes in the groundwater environment affected by the sea level rise by using an analytical methodology. We tried to find the most effective parameters of groundwater amount change in order to estimate the change in fresh water amount in coastal groundwater. A hypothetical island model of a cylindrical shape in considered. The groundwater storage change is bi-directional as the sea level rises according to the natural and hydrogeological conditions. Analysis of the computation results shows that topographic slope and hydraulic conductivity are the most sensitive factors. The contributions of the groundwater recharge rate and the thickness of aquifer below sea level are relatively less effective. In the island with steep seashore slopes larger than 1~2 degrees or so, the storage amount of fresh water in a coastal area increases as sea level rises. On the other hand, when sea level drops, the storage amount decreases. This is because the groundwater level also rises with the rising sea level in steep seashores. For relatively flat seashores, where the slope is smaller than around 1-2 degrees, the storage amount of coastal fresh water decreases when the sea level rises because the area flooded by the rising sea water is increased. The volume of aquifer fresh water in this circumstance is greatly reduced in proportion to the flooded area with the sea

  5. SEA-LEVEL RISE. Sea-level rise due to polar ice-sheet mass loss during past warm periods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dutton, A; Carlson, A E; Long, A J; Milne, G A; Clark, P U; DeConto, R; Horton, B P; Rahmstorf, S; Raymo, M E

    2015-07-10

    Interdisciplinary studies of geologic archives have ushered in a new era of deciphering magnitudes, rates, and sources of sea-level rise from polar ice-sheet loss during past warm periods. Accounting for glacial isostatic processes helps to reconcile spatial variability in peak sea level during marine isotope stages 5e and 11, when the global mean reached 6 to 9 meters and 6 to 13 meters higher than present, respectively. Dynamic topography introduces large uncertainties on longer time scales, precluding robust sea-level estimates for intervals such as the Pliocene. Present climate is warming to a level associated with significant polar ice-sheet loss in the past. Here, we outline advances and challenges involved in constraining ice-sheet sensitivity to climate change with use of paleo-sea level records. Copyright © 2015, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  6. An estimate of the glacier ice volume in the Swiss Alps

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farinotti, Daniel; Huss, Matthias; Bauder, Andreas; Funk, Martin

    2009-08-01

    Changes in glacier volume are important for questions linked to sea-level rise, water resource management, and tourism industry. With the ongoing climate warming, the retreat of mountain glaciers is a major concern. Predictions of glacier changes, necessarily need the present ice volume as initial condition, and for transient modelling, the ice thickness distribution has to be known. In this paper, a method based on mass conservation and principles of ice flow dynamics is applied to 62 glaciers located in the Swiss Alps for estimating their ice thickness distribution. All available direct ice thickness measurements are integrated. The ice volumes are referenced to the year 1999 by means of a mass balance time series. The results are used to calibrate a volume-area scaling relation, and the coefficients obtained show good agreement with values reported in the literature. We estimate the total ice volume present in the Swiss Alps in the year 1999 to be 74 ± 9 km 3. About 12% of this volume was lost between 1999 and 2008, whereas the extraordinarily warm summer 2003 caused a volume loss of about 3.5%.

  7. Response of small glaciers to climate change: runoff from glaciers of the Wind River range, Wyoming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bliss, A. K.; Stamper, B.

    2017-12-01

    Runoff from glaciers affects downstream ecosystems by influencing the quantity, seasonality, and chemistry of the water. We describe the present state of glaciers in the Wind River range, Wyoming and consider how these glaciers will change in the future. Wind River glaciers have been losing mass in recent decades, as seen with geodetic techniques and by examining glacier morphology. Interestingly, the 2016/7 winter featured one of the largest snowfalls on record. Our primary focus is the Dinwoody Glacier ( 3 km^2, 3300-4000 m above sea level). We present data collected in mid-August 2017 including glacier ablation rates, snow line elevations, and streamflow. We compare measured glacier mass loss to streamflow at the glacier terminus and at a USGS stream gauge farther downstream. Using a hydrological model, we explore the fate of glacial runoff as it moves into downstream ecosystems and through ranchlands important to local people. The techniques used here can be applied to similar small-glacier systems in other parts of the world.

  8. Impact of sea level rise on tide gate function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walsh, Sean; Miskewitz, Robert

    2013-01-01

    Sea level rise resulting from climate change and land subsidence is expected to severely impact the duration and associated damage resulting from flooding events in tidal communities. These communities must continuously invest resources for the maintenance of existing structures and installation of new flood prevention infrastructure. Tide gates are a common flood prevention structure for low-lying communities in the tidal zone. Tide gates close during incoming tides to prevent inundation from downstream water propagating inland and open during outgoing tides to drain upland areas. Higher downstream mean sea level elevations reduce the effectiveness of tide gates by impacting the hydraulics of the system. This project developed a HEC-RAS and HEC-HMS model of an existing tide gate structure and its upland drainage area in the New Jersey Meadowlands to simulate the impact of rising mean sea level elevations on the tide gate's ability to prevent upstream flooding. Model predictions indicate that sea level rise will reduce the tide gate effectiveness resulting in longer lasting and deeper flood events. The results indicate that there is a critical point in the sea level elevation for this local area, beyond which flooding scenarios become dramatically worse and would have a significantly negative impact on the standard of living and ability to do business in one of the most densely populated areas of America.

  9. Glacier mass balance and its potential impacts in the Altai Mountains over the period 1990-2011

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yong; Enomoto, Hiroyuki; Ohata, Tetsuo; Kitabata, Hideyuki; Kadota, Tsutomu; Hirabayashi, Yukiko

    2017-10-01

    The Altai Mountains contain 1281 glaciers covering an area of 1191 km2. These glaciers have undergone significant changes in glacial length and area over the past decade. However, mass changes of these glaciers and their impacts remain poorly understood. Here we present surface mass balances of all glaciers in the region for the period 1990-2011, using a glacier mass-balance model forced by the outputs of a regional climate model. Our results indicate that the mean specific mass balance for the whole region is about -0.69 m w.e. yr-1 over the entire period, and about 81.3% of these glaciers experience negative net mass balance. We detect an accelerated wastage of these glaciers in recent years, and marked differences in mass change and its sensitivity to climate change for different regions and size classes. In particular, higher mass loss and temperature sensitivity are observed for glaciers smaller than 0.5 km2. In addition to temperature rise, a decrease in precipitation in the western part of the region and an increase in precipitation in the eastern part likely contribute to significant sub-region differences in mass loss. With significant glacier wastage, the contribution of all glaciers to regional water resources and sea-level change becomes larger than before, but may not be a potential threat to human populations through impacts on water availability.

  10. Climate and glacier change in southwestern China during the past several decades

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li Zongxing; He Yuanqing; An Wenling; Zhang Wei; Wang Yan; Wang Shijin; Liu Huancai; Cao Weihong; Wang Shuxin; Du Jiankuo; Song Linlin; Catto, Norm; Theakstone, Wilfred H

    2011-01-01

    Glaciers are distributed in the Nyainqntanglha Mountains, Himalayas, Tanggula Mountains, Gangdise Mountains and Hengduan Mountains in Southwestern China. Daily temperature and precipitation data from 111 stations, together with the records of glacier changes, indicate that temperature patterns during 1961–2008 were consistent with warming at a statistically significant level. Seasonal warming was greatest in autumn and winter. Temperature rise showed a significant relationship with sea surface temperature in the Western Pacific, net longwave radiation flux, altitude, sunshine hours, strengthening anticyclonic circulations in summer and anomalous cyclonic circulation in winter. The increase was more apparent in higher altitude areas than in lower ones. Precipitation variations were less marked than those of temperature, generally showing weak decreasing trends during 1961–2008. Increasing trends were apparent only in spring and winter, when regional trends of precipitation increases with altitude also were evident. The strengthening Western Pacific Subtropical Highs were related to precipitation variation. Against the background of increasing temperature, especially the increasing warming with altitude, the fronts of 32 glaciers and areas of 13 glacial basins have retreated, mass losses of 10 glaciers have been considerable, glacial lakes in six regions have expanded and melt water discharge of four basins has also increased, but these glaciers and basins in our study are only a fraction of the retreating glaciers over southwestern China.

  11. Global warming and sea level rise. Chikyu Ondanka to kaimen josho

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mimura, N [Ibaraki University, Ibaraki (Japan). Faculty of Engineering

    1993-10-15

    This paper describes the following matters on the problems of global warming and sea level rise. The first evaluation report published by the inter-government panel on climate change (IPCC) in 1990 estimates that, if emission of greenhouse effect gas keeps increasing at the present rate, the air temperature and the average sea level would rise by 3[degree]C and 65 centimeters, respectively by 2100. Global warming would not only result in rise of the sea level, but also accompany changes in strengths and routes of tropical low pressure areas, and precipitation patterns. Downstream areas of large rivers and island countries on coral reefs may have a risk of getting submerged. Countries having coasts developed to high densities (Japan, for example) would be subjected to a high potential effect. An 'East Hemisphere International Conference on Sea Level Rising Problem' was held in Japan in August 1993 as part of the works to prepare the second evaluation report of the IPCC (publication scheduled for 1995). The conference was attended by 24 countries, and 43 study results were reported. 4 figs.

  12. Modelling historical and recent mass loss of McCall Glacier, Alaska, USA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Delcourt

    2008-03-01

    Full Text Available Volume loss of valley glaciers is now considered to be a significant contribution to sea level rise. Understanding and identifying the processes involved in accelerated mass loss are necessary to determine their impact on the global system. Here we present results from a series of model experiments with a higher-order thermomechanically coupled flowline model (Pattyn, 2002. Boundary conditions to the model are parameterizations of surface mass balance, geothermal heating, observed surface and 10 m ice depth temperatures. The time-dependent experiments aim at simulating the glacier retreat from its LIA expansion to present according to different scenarios and model parameters. Model output was validated against measurements of ice velocity, ice surface elevation and terminus position at different stages. Results demonstrate that a key factor in determining the glacier retreat history is the importance of internal accumulation (>50% in the total mass balance. The persistence of a basal temperate zone characteristic for this polythermal glacier depends largely on its contribution. Accelerated glacier retreat since the early nineties seems directly related to the increase in ELA and the sudden reduction in AAR due to the fact that a large lower elevation cirque – previously an important accumulation area – became part of the ablation zone.

  13. Increasing Resilience Through Engagement In Sea Level Rise Community Science Initiatives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chilton, L. A.; Rindge, H.

    2017-12-01

    Science literate and engaged members of the public, including students, are critical to building climate resilient communities. USC Sea Grant facilitates programs that work to build and strengthen these connections. The Urban Tides Community Science Initiative (Urban Tides) and the Youth Exploring Sea Level Rise Science Program (YESS) engage communities across the boundaries of public engagement, K-12 education, and informal education. YESS is an experiential sea level rise education program that combines classroom learning, field investigations and public presentations. Students explore sea level rise using a new curricula, collect their own data on sea level rise, develop communication products, and present their findings to city governments, researchers, and others. Urban Tides engages community members, informal education centers, K-12 students, and local government leaders in a citizen science program photo- documenting extreme high tides, erosion and coastal flooding in Southern California. Images provide critical information to help calibrate scientific models used to identify locations vulnerable to damage from future sea level rise. These tools and information enable community leaders and local governments to set priorities, guidelines, and update policies as they plan strategies that will help the region adapt. The program includes a mobile app for data collection, an open database to view photos, a lesson plan, and community beach walks. Urban Tides has led to an increase in data and data-gathering capacity for regional scientists, an increase in public participation in science, and an increase in ocean and climate literacy among initiative participants. Both of these programs bring informed and diverse voices into the discussion of how to adapt and build climate resilient communities. USC Sea Grant will share impacts and lessons learned from these two unique programs.

  14. Should We Leave? Attitudes towards Relocation in Response to Sea Level Rise

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jie Song

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The participation of individuals contributes significantly to the success of sea level rise adaptation. This study therefore addresses what influences people’s likelihood of relocating away from low-lying areas in response to rising sea levels. The analysis was based on a survey conducted in the City of Panama Beach in Florida (USA. Survey items relate to people’s risk perception, hazard experience, threat appraisal, and coping appraisal, whose theoretical background is Protection Motivation Theory. Descriptive and correlation analysis was first performed to highlight critical factors which were then examined by a multinomial Logit model. Results show that sea level rise awareness is the major explanatory variable. Coping appraisal is qualitatively viewed as a strong predictor for action, while threat appraisal is statistically significant in driving relocation intention. These factors should be integrated in current risk communication regarding sea level rise.

  15. Coralgal reef morphology records punctuated sea-level rise during the last deglaciation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khanna, Pankaj; Droxler, André W; Nittrouer, Jeffrey A; Tunnell, John W; Shirley, Thomas C

    2017-10-19

    Coralgal reefs preserve the signatures of sea-level fluctuations over Earth's history, in particular since the Last Glacial Maximum 20,000 years ago, and are used in this study to indicate that punctuated sea-level rise events are more common than previously observed during the last deglaciation. Recognizing the nature of past sea-level rises (i.e., gradual or stepwise) during deglaciation is critical for informing models that predict future vertical behavior of global oceans. Here we present high-resolution bathymetric and seismic sonar data sets of 10 morphologically similar drowned reefs that grew during the last deglaciation and spread 120 km apart along the south Texas shelf edge. Herein, six commonly observed terrace levels are interpreted to be generated by several punctuated sea-level rise events forcing the reefs to shrink and backstep through time. These systematic and common terraces are interpreted to record punctuated sea-level rise events over timescales of decades to centuries during the last deglaciation, previously recognized only during the late Holocene.

  16. How mangrove forests adjust to rising sea level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krauss, Ken W.; McKee, Karen L.; Lovelock, Catherine E.; Cahoon, Donald R.; Saintilan, Neil; Reef, Ruth; Chen, Luzhen

    2014-01-01

    Mangroves are among the most well described and widely studied wetland communities in the world. The greatest threats to mangrove persistence are deforestation and other anthropogenic disturbances that can compromise habitat stability and resilience to sea-level rise. To persist, mangrove ecosystems must adjust to rising sea level by building vertically or become submerged. Mangroves may directly or indirectly influence soil accretion processes through the production and accumulation of organic matter, as well as the trapping and retention of mineral sediment. In this review, we provide a general overview of research on mangrove elevation dynamics, emphasizing the role of the vegetation in maintaining soil surface elevations (i.e. position of the soil surface in the vertical plane). We summarize the primary ways in which mangroves may influence sediment accretion and vertical land development, for example, through root contributions to soil volume and upward expansion of the soil surface. We also examine how hydrological, geomorphological and climatic processes may interact with plant processes to influence mangrove capacity to keep pace with rising sea level. We draw on a variety of studies to describe the important, and often under-appreciated, role that plants play in shaping the trajectory of an ecosystem undergoing change.

  17. Bangladesh’s dynamic coastal regions and sea-level rise

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hugh Brammer

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The physical geography of Bangladesh’s coastal area is more diverse and dynamic than is generally recognised. Failure to recognise this has led to serious misconceptions about the potential impacts of a rising sea-level on Bangladesh with global warming. This situation has been aggravated by accounts giving incorrect information on current rates of coastal erosion and land subsidence. This paper describes physical conditions within individual physiographic regions in Bangladesh’s coastal area based on ground-surveyed information, and it reviews possible area-specific mitigation measures to counter predicted rates of sea-level rise in the 21st century. Two important conclusions are drawn: the adoption of appropriate measures based on knowledge of the physical geography of potentially-affected areas could significantly reduce the currently-predicted displacement of many millions of people; and the impacts of a slowly-rising sea-level are currently much less than those generated by rapidly increasing population pressure on Bangladesh’s available land and water resources and by exposure to existing environmental hazards, and the latter problems need priority attention.

  18. Committed sea-level rise under the Paris Agreement and the legacy of delayed mitigation action.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mengel, Matthias; Nauels, Alexander; Rogelj, Joeri; Schleussner, Carl-Friedrich

    2018-02-20

    Sea-level rise is a major consequence of climate change that will continue long after emissions of greenhouse gases have stopped. The 2015 Paris Agreement aims at reducing climate-related risks by reducing greenhouse gas emissions to net zero and limiting global-mean temperature increase. Here we quantify the effect of these constraints on global sea-level rise until 2300, including Antarctic ice-sheet instabilities. We estimate median sea-level rise between 0.7 and 1.2 m, if net-zero greenhouse gas emissions are sustained until 2300, varying with the pathway of emissions during this century. Temperature stabilization below 2 °C is insufficient to hold median sea-level rise until 2300 below 1.5 m. We find that each 5-year delay in near-term peaking of CO 2 emissions increases median year 2300 sea-level rise estimates by ca. 0.2 m, and extreme sea-level rise estimates at the 95th percentile by up to 1 m. Our results underline the importance of near-term mitigation action for limiting long-term sea-level rise risks.

  19. Seasonal variability of the circulation system in a West Greenland tidewater outlet glacier fjord, Godthåbsfjord (64°N)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mortensen, John; Bendtsen, Jørgen; Lennert, Kunuk

    2014-01-01

    Many tidewater outlet glacier fjords surround the coast of Greenland, and their dynamics and circulation are of great importance for understanding the heat transport toward glaciers from the ice sheet. Thus, fjord circulation is a critical aspect for assessing the threat of global sea level rise...... due to melting of the ice sheet. However, very few observational studies describe the seasonal dynamics of fjord circulation. Here we present the first continuous current measurements (April–November) from a deep mooring deployed in a west Greenland tidewater outlet glacier fjord. Four distinct...... circulation phases are identified during the period, and they are related to exchange processes with coastal waters, tidal mixing, and melt processes on the Greenland Ice Sheet. During early summer, warm intermediate water is transported toward the glacier at an average velocity of about 7 cm s−1. In late...

  20. National evaluation of Chinese coastal erosion to sea level rise using a Bayesian approach

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhan, Q; Fan, X; Du, X; Zhu, J

    2014-01-01

    In this paper a Causal Bayesian network is developed to predict decadal-scale shoreline evolution of China to sea-level rise. The Bayesian model defines relationships between 6 factors of Chinese coastal system such as coastal geomorphology, mean tide range, mean wave height, coastal slope, relative sea-level rise rate and shoreline erosion rate. Using the Bayesian probabilistic model, we make quantitative assessment of china's shoreline evolution in response to different future sea level rise rates. Results indicate that the probability of coastal erosion with high and very high rates increases from 28% to 32.3% when relative sea-level rise rates is 4∼6mm/a, and to 44.9% when relative sea-level rise rates is more than 6mm/a. A hindcast evaluation of the Bayesian model shows that the model correctly predicts 79.3% of the cases. Model test indicates that the Bayesian model shows higher predictive capabilities for stable coasts and very highly eroding coasts than moderately and highly eroding coasts. This study demonstrates that the Bayesian model is adapted to predicting decadal-scale Chinese coastal erosion associated with sea-level rise

  1. Climate-model induced differences in the 21st century global and regional glacier contributions to sea-level rise

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Giesen, R.H.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/304831603; Oerlemans, J.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/06833656X

    2013-01-01

    The large uncertainty in future global glacier volume projections partly results from a substantial range in future climate conditions projected by global climate models. This study addresses the effect of global and regional differences in climate input data on the projected twenty-first century

  2. Can sea level rise cause large submarine landslides on continental slopes?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Urlaub, Morelia

    2014-05-01

    Submarine landslides are one of the volumetrically most important sediment transport processes at continental margins. Moreover, these landslides are a major geohazard as they can cause damaging tsunamis and destroy seabed infrastructure. Due to their inaccessibility our understanding of what causes these landslides is limited and based on hypotheses that are difficult to test. Some of the largest submarine landslides, such as the Storegga Slide off Norway, occurred during times of eustatic sea level rise. It has been suggested that this global sea level rise was implicated in triggering of the landslides by causing an increase in excess pore pressure in the subseafloor. However, in a homogeneous slope a change in the thickness of the overlying water mass is not expected to affect its stability, as only the hydrostatic pressure component will change, whereas pore pressures in excess of hydrostatic will remain unaltered. Whether sufficiently rapid sea level rise, aided by rather impermeable sediment and complex layering, could cause excess pore pressures that may destabilise a continental slope is more difficult to answer and has not yet been tested. I use Finite Element Modelling to explore and quantify the direct effect of changes in the thickness of the overlying water mass on the stability of a generic sediment column with different stratigraphic conditions and hydro-mechanical properties. The results show that the direct effect of sea level rise on continental slope stability is minimal. Nevertheless, sea level rise may foster other processes, such as lithospheric stress changes resulting in increased seismicity, that could potentially cause large submarine landslides on continental slopes.

  3. Modelling sea level rise impacts on storm surges along US coasts

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tebaldi, Claudia; Strauss, Benjamin H; Zervas, Chris E

    2012-01-01

    Sound policies for protecting coastal communities and assets require good information about vulnerability to flooding. Here, we investigate the influence of sea level rise on expected storm surge-driven water levels and their frequencies along the contiguous United States. We use model output for global temperature changes, a semi-empirical model of global sea level rise, and long-term records from 55 nationally distributed tidal gauges to develop sea level rise projections at each gauge location. We employ more detailed records over the period 1979–2008 from the same gauges to elicit historic patterns of extreme high water events, and combine these statistics with anticipated relative sea level rise to project changing local extremes through 2050. We find that substantial changes in the frequency of what are now considered extreme water levels may occur even at locations with relatively slow local sea level rise, when the difference in height between presently common and rare water levels is small. We estimate that, by mid-century, some locations may experience high water levels annually that would qualify today as ‘century’ (i.e., having a chance of occurrence of 1% annually) extremes. Today’s century levels become ‘decade’ (having a chance of 10% annually) or more frequent events at about a third of the study gauges, and the majority of locations see substantially higher frequency of previously rare storm-driven water heights in the future. These results add support to the need for policy approaches that consider the non-stationarity of extreme events when evaluating risks of adverse climate impacts. (letter)

  4. What Can We Learn About Glaciers and Ice Sheets From 30 Years of Landsat Imagery?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gardner, A. S.; Scambos, T.; Fahnestock, M. A.; Moholdt, G.; Nilsson, J.

    2015-12-01

    Glacier and ice sheets are known to be rapidly changing and currently account for two thirds of observed sea level rise. Attributing the causes of the rapid decline in land ice requires separation of mass change processes, i.e. accumulation of precipitation, meltwater runoff, and solid ice discharge. Here we examine a 30 year record of Landsat imagery to determine trends in glacier velocity at a global scale in an attempt to identify anomalies in glacier flow that are contributing to changes in land ice mass. The Landsat archive represents a treasure trove of information with hundreds of thousands of images acquired over glaciers and ice sheets during the past 30 years. Gleaning useful and consistent surface displacement information from a multiple sensor archive that is heavily contaminated by cloud, saturated images, poorly resolved sensor geometry, and data gaps has proved challenging. Temporal stacking of displacement fields (Dehecq et al., 2015) and correcting for unresolved topography (Roseanau et al., 2012) have been shown to greatly improve derived velocities. Here we present results from a global processing of the complete Landsat archive for information on glacier surface displacements. We highlight patterns of coherent regional change as well as well as rapid basin-scale changes in glacier flow.

  5. Morphological changes within Florida Bay as a result of sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holmes, C. W.

    2011-12-01

    Data from Florida Bay indicates that from 10,000 year BP to 6000 BP, the rate of sea level rise averaged about 10 mm/yr. The rate slowed at the end of this period flooding the shallow shelves surrounding the reef platforms of the western Atlantic. The relative flat South Florida shelf, because of its slight tilt to the southwest is an ideal local to assess the effects of this flooding. From 6000 BP to the present, numerous banks were formed within Florida Bay. A morphological model of bank formation based on the sea level oscillations was constructed from analysis of over 120 cores. These cores record sedimentological changes which are correlated to climatic events. In the central bay, the sediment accumulation was controlled by variations in rate of progressive sea-level rise. The Key West sea-level record shows that sea level has been rising incrementally over the last century. Between 1931 and 1950, sea level rose at a rate of 5 mm/yr. After 1950, it remained stable until 1971, when it again began to rise, but at a rate of 3 mm/yr. On the leeward side of mud banks, these variations resulted in shifts in sediment- accumulation rates, with accretion increasing during rising sea level and decreasing during stable periods. Between late 1970 and early 1972, a sharp jump in sea-level rise occurred that was approximately 10 cm higher than the preceding period. This jump coincided with a strongly positive North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), a la Niña (negative ENSO), and a negative Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO). Water driven northward into Florida Bay eroded banks along the northern coastline, increased sediment accumulation in the northern lakes, and increased accretion rates on the banks. In addition to the sedimentological variations in the central portion of the bay, there was significant changes along the northern fringe. Around 1950, the northern fringe of the bay morphed from a fresh water environment to a marine environment. As a result, carbonate production

  6. Global Monitoring of Mountain Glaciers Using High-Resolution Spotlight Imaging from the International Space Station

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donnellan, A.; Green, J. J.; Bills, B. G.; Goguen, J.; Ansar, A.; Knight, R. L.; Hallet, B.; Scambos, T. A.; Thompson, L. G.; Morin, P. J.

    2013-12-01

    Mountain glaciers around the world are retreating rapidly, contributing about 20% to present-day sea level rise. Numerous studies have shown that mountain glaciers are sensitive to global environmental change. Temperate-latitude glaciers and snowpack provide water for over 1 billion people. Glaciers are a resource for irrigation and hydroelectric power, but also pose flood and avalanche hazards. Accurate mass balance assessments have been made for only 280 glaciers, yet there are over 130,000 in the World Glacier Inventory. The rate of glacier retreat or advance can be highly variable, is poorly sampled, and inadequately understood. Liquid water from ice front lakes, rain, melt, or sea water and debris from rocks, dust, or pollution interact with glacier ice often leading to an amplification of warming and further melting. Many mountain glaciers undergo rapid and episodic events that greatly change their mass balance or extent but are sparsely documented. Events include calving, outburst floods, opening of crevasses, or iceberg motion. Spaceborne high-resolution spotlight optical imaging provides a means of clarifying the relationship between the health of mountain glaciers and global environmental change. Digital elevation models (DEMs) can be constructed from a series of images from a range of perspectives collected by staring at a target during a satellite overpass. It is possible to collect imagery for 1800 targets per month in the ×56° latitude range, construct high-resolution DEMs, and monitor changes in high detail over time with a high-resolution optical telescope mounted on the International Space Station (ISS). Snow and ice type, age, and maturity can be inferred from different color bands as well as distribution of liquid water. Texture, roughness, albedo, and debris distribution can be estimated by measuring bidirectional reflectance distribution functions (BRDF) and reflectance intensity as a function of viewing angle. The non-sun-synchronous orbit

  7. Tidal marsh susceptibility to sea-level rise: importance of local-scale models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thorne, Karen M.; Buffington, Kevin J.; Elliott-Fisk, Deborah L.; Takekawa, John Y.

    2015-01-01

    Increasing concern over sea-level rise impacts to coastal tidal marsh ecosystems has led to modeling efforts to anticipate outcomes for resource management decision making. Few studies on the Pacific coast of North America have modeled sea-level rise marsh susceptibility at a scale relevant to local wildlife populations and plant communities. Here, we use a novel approach in developing an empirical sea-level rise ecological response model that can be applied to key management questions. Calculated elevation change over 13 y for a 324-ha portion of San Pablo Bay National Wildlife Refuge, California, USA, was used to represent local accretion and subsidence processes. Next, we coupled detailed plant community and elevation surveys with measured rates of inundation frequency to model marsh state changes to 2100. By grouping plant communities into low, mid, and high marsh habitats, we were able to assess wildlife species vulnerability and to better understand outcomes for habitat resiliency. Starting study-site conditions were comprised of 78% (253-ha) high marsh, 7% (30-ha) mid marsh, and 4% (18-ha) low marsh habitats, dominated by pickleweed Sarcocornia pacifica and cordgrass Spartina spp. Only under the low sea-level rise scenario (44 cm by 2100) did our models show persistence of some marsh habitats to 2100, with the area dominated by low marsh habitats. Under mid (93 cm by 2100) and high sea-level rise scenarios (166 cm by 2100), most mid and high marsh habitat was lost by 2070, with only 15% (65 ha) remaining, and a complete loss of these habitats by 2080. Low marsh habitat increased temporarily under all three sea-level rise scenarios, with the peak (286 ha) in 2070, adding habitat for the endemic endangered California Ridgway’s rail Rallus obsoletus obsoletus. Under mid and high sea-level rise scenarios, an almost complete conversion to mudflat occurred, with most of the area below mean sea level. Our modeling assumed no marsh migration upslope due to human

  8. Rising river flows throughout the twenty-first century in two Himalayan glacierized watersheds

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Immerzeel, W.W.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/290472113; Pelliciotti, F.; Bierkens, M.F.P.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/125022794

    2013-01-01

    Greater Himalayan glaciers are retreating and losing mass at rates comparable to glaciers in other regions of the world1–5 . Assessments of future changes and their associated hydrological impacts are scarce, oversimplify glacier dynamics or include a limited number of climate models6–9 . Here, we

  9. Glacier evolution in high-mountain Asia under stratospheric sulfate aerosol injection geoengineering

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Zhao

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Geoengineering by stratospheric sulfate aerosol injection may help preserve mountain glaciers by reducing summer temperatures. We examine this hypothesis for the glaciers in high-mountain Asia using a glacier mass balance model driven by climate simulations from the Geoengineering Model Intercomparison Project (GeoMIP. The G3 and G4 schemes specify use of stratospheric sulfate aerosols to reduce the radiative forcing under the Representative Concentration Pathway (RCP 4.5 scenario for the 50 years between 2020 and 2069, and for a further 20 years after termination of geoengineering. We estimate and compare glacier volume loss for every glacier in the region using a glacier model based on surface mass balance parameterization under climate projections from three Earth system models under G3, five models under G4, and six models under RCP4.5 and RCP8.5. The ensemble projections suggest that glacier shrinkage over the period 2010–2069 is equivalent to sea-level rise of 9.0 ± 1.6 mm (G3, 9.8 ± 4.3 mm (G4, 15.5 ± 2.3 mm (RCP4.5, and 18.5 ± 1.7 mm (RCP8.5. Although G3 keeps the average temperature from increasing in the geoengineering period, G3 only slows glacier shrinkage by about 50 % relative to losses from RCP8.5. Approximately 72 % of glaciated area remains at 2069 under G3, as compared with about 30 % for RCP8.5. The widely reported reduction in mean precipitation expected for solar geoengineering is unlikely to be as important as the temperature-driven shift from solid to liquid precipitation for forcing Himalayan glacier change. The termination of geoengineering at 2069 under G3 leads to temperature rise of about 1.3 °C over the period 2070–2089 relative to the period 2050-2069 and corresponding increase in annual mean glacier volume loss rate from 0.17 to 1.1 % yr−1, which is higher than the 0.66 % yr−1 under RCP8.5 during 2070–2089.

  10. Future rise of the sea level: consequences and strategies on the shoreline

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Teisson, C.

    1991-11-01

    The Mean Sea Level may rise in a near future due to the warming of the atmosphere associated with the 'greenhouse effect'. The alarming estimations issued in the 1980's (several meters of surelevation in the next centuries) are now lowered: the ice sheets, the melting of which could induce such a rise, do not present signs of instability. A rise from 30 to 50 cm is likely to occur in the middle of the next century; there is a probability of 25% that the rise of sea level relative to the year 1980 stands beyond 1 meter by 2100. The consequences of such a rise on the shoreline and the maritime works are reviewed, and planning strategies are discussed. This study has been performed in the framework of a convention between EDF-LNH and the Sea State Secretary (Service Technique des Ports Maritimes et Voies Navigables) 41 refs., 31 figs., 6 tabs

  11. US power plant sites at risk of future sea-level rise

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bierkandt, R; Levermann, A; Auffhammer, M

    2015-01-01

    Unmitigated greenhouse gas emissions may increase global mean sea-level by about 1 meter during this century. Such elevation of the mean sea-level enhances the risk of flooding of coastal areas. We compute the power capacity that is currently out-of-reach of a 100-year coastal flooding but will be exposed to such a flood by the end of the century for different US states, if no adaptation measures are taken. The additional exposed capacity varies strongly among states. For Delaware it is 80% of the mean generated power load. For New York this number is 63% and for Florida 43%. The capacity that needs additional protection compared to today increases by more than 250% for Texas, 90% for Florida and 70% for New York. Current development in power plant building points towards a reduced future exposure to sea-level rise: proposed and planned power plants are less exposed than those which are currently operating. However, power plants that have been retired or canceled were less exposed than those operating at present. If sea-level rise is properly accounted for in future planning, an adaptation to sea-level rise may be costly but possible. (letter)

  12. Coastal sensitivity to sea level rise : a focus on the mid-atlantic region

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-01-15

    The focus of this product is to identify and review the potential impacts of future sea-level rise based on present scientific understanding. To do so, this product evaluates : several aspects of sea-level rise impacts to the natural environment and ...

  13. Effective inundation of continental United States communities with 21st century sea level rise

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristina A. Dahl

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Recurrent, tidally driven coastal flooding is one of the most visible signs of sea level rise. Recent studies have shown that such flooding will become more frequent and extensive as sea level continues to rise, potentially altering the landscape and livability of coastal communities decades before sea level rise causes coastal land to be permanently inundated. In this study, we identify US communities that will face effective inundation—defined as having 10% or more of livable land area flooded at least 26 times per year—with three localized sea level rise scenarios based on projections for the 3rd US National Climate Assessment. We present these results in a new, online interactive tool that allows users to explore when and how effective inundation will impact their communities. In addition, we identify communities facing effective inundation within the next 30 years that contain areas of high socioeconomic vulnerability today using a previously published vulnerability index. With the Intermediate-High and Highest sea level rise scenarios, 489 and 668 communities, respectively, would face effective inundation by the year 2100. With these two scenarios, more than half of communities facing effective inundation by 2045 contain areas of current high socioeconomic vulnerability. These results highlight the timeframes that US coastal communities have to respond to disruptive future inundation. The results also underscore the importance of limiting future warming and sea level rise: under the Intermediate-Low scenario, used as a proxy for sea level rise under the Paris Climate Agreement, 199 fewer communities would be effectively inundated by 2100.

  14. Effective media reporting of sea level rise projections: 1989-2009

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rick, U K; Boykoff, M T; Pielke, R A Jr

    2011-01-01

    In the mass media, sea level rise is commonly associated with the impacts of climate change due to increasing atmospheric greenhouse gases. As this issue garners ongoing international policy attention, segments of the scientific community have expressed unease about how this has been covered by mass media. Therefore, this study examines how sea level rise projections-in IPCC Assessment Reports and a sample of the scientific literature-have been represented in seven prominent United States (US) and United Kingdom (UK) newspapers over the past two decades. The research found that-with few exceptions-journalists have accurately portrayed scientific research on sea level rise projections to 2100. Moreover, while coverage has predictably increased in the past 20 years, journalists have paid particular attention to the issue in years when an IPCC report is released or when major international negotiations take place, rather than when direct research is completed and specific projections are published. We reason that the combination of these factors has contributed to a perceived problem in the sea level rise reporting by the scientific community, although systematic empirical research shows none. In this contemporary high-stakes, high-profile and highly politicized arena of climate science and policy interactions, such results mark a particular bright spot in media representations of climate change. These findings can also contribute to more measured considerations of climate impacts and policy action at a critical juncture of international negotiations and everyday decision-making associated with the causes and consequences of climate change.

  15. Millennial total sea-level commitments projected with the Earth system model of intermediate complexity LOVECLIM

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Goelzer, H; Huybrechts, P; Raper, S C B; Loutre, M-F; Goosse, H; Fichefet, T

    2012-01-01

    Sea-level is expected to rise for a long time to come, even after stabilization of human-induced climatic warming. Here we use simulations with the Earth system model of intermediate complexity LOVECLIM to project sea-level changes over the third millennium forced with atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations that stabilize by either 2000 or 2100 AD. The model includes 3D thermomechanical models of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets coupled to an atmosphere and an ocean model, a global glacier melt algorithm to account for the response of mountain glaciers and ice caps, and a procedure for assessing oceanic thermal expansion from oceanic heat uptake. Four climate change scenarios are considered to determine sea-level commitments. These assume a 21st century increase in greenhouse gases according to SRES scenarios B1, A1B and A2 with a stabilization of the atmospheric composition after the year 2100. One additional scenario assumes 1000 years of constant atmospheric composition from the year 2000 onwards. For our preferred model version, we find an already committed total sea-level rise of 1.1 m by 3000 AD. In experiments with greenhouse gas concentration stabilization at 2100 AD, the total sea-level rise ranges between 2.1 m (B1), 4.1 m (A1B) and 6.8 m (A2). In all scenarios, more than half of this amount arises from the Greenland ice sheet, thermal expansion is the second largest contributor, and the contribution of glaciers and ice caps is small as it is limited by the available ice volume of maximally 25 cm of sea-level equivalent. Additionally, we analysed the sensitivity of the sea-level contributions from an ensemble of nine different model versions that cover a large range of climate sensitivity realized by model parameter variations of the atmosphere–ocean model. Selected temperature indices are found to be good predictors for sea-level contributions from the different components of land ice and oceanic thermal expansion after 1000 years. (letter)

  16. Sea-level rise and shoreline retreat: time to abandon the Bruun Rule

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooper, J. Andrew G.; Pilkey, Orrin H.

    2004-11-01

    In the face of a global rise in sea level, understanding the response of the shoreline to changes in sea level is a critical scientific goal to inform policy makers and managers. A body of scientific information exists that illustrates both the complexity of the linkages between sea-level rise and shoreline response, and the comparative lack of understanding of these linkages. In spite of the lack of understanding, many appraisals have been undertaken that employ a concept known as the "Bruun Rule". This is a simple two-dimensional model of shoreline response to rising sea level. The model has seen near global application since its original formulation in 1954. The concept provided an advance in understanding of the coastal system at the time of its first publication. It has, however, been superseded by numerous subsequent findings and is now invalid. Several assumptions behind the Bruun Rule are known to be false and nowhere has the Bruun Rule been adequately proven; on the contrary several studies disprove it in the field. No universally applicable model of shoreline retreat under sea-level rise has yet been developed. Despite this, the Bruun Rule is in widespread contemporary use at a global scale both as a management tool and as a scientific concept. The persistence of this concept beyond its original assumption base is attributed to the following factors: Appeal of a simple, easy to use analytical model that is in widespread use. Difficulty of determining the relative validity of 'proofs' and 'disproofs'. Ease of application. Positive advocacy by some scientists. Application by other scientists without critical appraisal. The simple numerical expression of the model. Lack of easy alternatives. The Bruun Rule has no power for predicting shoreline behaviour under rising sea level and should be abandoned. It is a concept whose time has passed. The belief by policy makers that it offers a prediction of future shoreline position may well have stifled much

  17. Wetland Responses to Sea Level Rise in the Northern Gulf of Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alizad, K.; Bilskie, M. V.; Hagen, S. C.; Medeiros, S. C.; Morris, J. T.

    2016-12-01

    Coastal regions are vulnerable to flood risk due to climate change, sea level rise, and wetland losses. The Northern Gulf of Mexico (NGOM) is a region in which extreme events are projected to be more intense under climate change and sea level rise scenarios [Wang et al., 2013; Bilskie et al., 2014]. Considering increased frequency and intensity of coastal flooding, wetlands are valuable natural resources that protect shorelines by dissipating waves and storm surges [Costanza et al., 2008]. Therefore, it is critical to investigate the response of salt marsh systems in different estuaries to sea level rise in the NGOM and their effects on storm surges to inform coastal managers to choose effective restoration plans. This research applies the coupled Hydro-MEM model [Alizad et al., 2016] to study three different estuarine systems in the NGOM. The model incorporates both sea level rise rate and feedbacks between physics and biology by coupling a hydrodynamic (ADCIRC) and salt marsh (MEM) model. The results of the model provide tidal hydrodynamics and biomass density change under four sea level rise projections during a 100-year period. The results are used to investigate marsh migration path in the estuarine systems. In addition, this study shows how marsh migration and biomass density change can impact storm surge modeling. The results imply the broader impacts of sea level rise on the estuarine systems in the NGOM. ReferencesAlizad, K., S. C. Hagen, J. T. Morris, P. Bacopoulos, M. V. Bilskie, J. Weishampel, and S. C. Medeiros (2016), A coupled, two-dimensional hydrodynamic-marsh model with biological feedback, Ecological Modeling, 327, 29-43. Bilskie, M. V., S. C. Hagen, S. C. Medeiros, and D. L. Passeri (2014), Dynamics of sea level rise and coastal flooding on a changing landscape, Geophysical Research Letters, 41(3), 927-934. Costanza, R., O. Pérez-Maqueo, M. L. Martinez, P. Sutton, S. J. Anderson, and K. Mulder (2008), The Value of Coastal Wetlands for Hurricane

  18. Present day sea level changes: observation and causes; Les variations actuelles du niveau de la mer: observations et causes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lombard, A

    2005-11-15

    Whereas sea level has changed little over the last 2000 years, it has risen at a rate of about 2 mm/year during the 20. century. This unexpected sea level rise has been attributed to the anthropogenic global warming, recorded over several decades. Sea level variations have been measured globally and precisely for about 12 years due to satellite altimeter missions Topex/Poseidon and Jason-1. These observations indicate a global mean sea level rise of about 3 mm/year since 1993, a value significantly larger than observed during previous decades. Recent observations have allowed us to quantify the various climatic factors contributing to observed sea level change: thermal expansion of sea water due to ocean warming, melting of mountain glaciers and ice sheets, and changes in the land water reservoirs. A water budget based on these new observations allows us to partly explain the observed sea level rise. In particular, we show that the thermal expansion explains only 25% of the secular sea level rise as recorded by tide-gauges over the last 50 years, while it contributes about 50% of sea level rise observed over the last decade. Meanwhile, recent studies show that glacier and ice sheet melting could contribute the equivalent of 1 mm/year in sea level rise over the last decade. In addition, the high regional variability of sea level trends revealed by satellite altimetry is mainly due to thermal expansion. There is also an important decadal spatio-temporal variability in the ocean thermal expansion over the last 50 years, which seems to be controlled by natural climate fluctuations. We question for the first time the link between the decadal fluctuations in the ocean thermal expansion and in the land reservoirs, and indeed their climatic contribution to sea level change. Finally a preliminary analysis of GRACE spatial gravimetric observations over the oceans allows us to estimate the seasonal variations in mean sea level due to ocean water mass balance variations

  19. Threatened by: An audiovisual experience inspired by scientific data about glaciers and climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, J.; Jeong, S.

    2017-12-01

    Glaciers often have been considered as a symbol of climate change, also its mass change is a major contributor to sea level rise. Dynamic discharge is one of the mechanisms that marine-terminating outlet glaciers loses its mass, whose trend consists of seasonal, annual and secular patterns. These patterns, along with the other climate parameters, can be inspirational to music composition, thereby it can be expressed and transferred by musical media. Here we present `Threatened by,' a piece of electronic music accompanied by animation of glaciers' movement which represent an attempt to frame the sound of the glacier in freer ways vis-à-vis acoustic music. To give expression to the sound, musical production tools such as Pro Tools, Sound Forge Pro, Logic Pro X, Max/MSP, etc. are utilized to modify and combine a variety of sounds generated by a melting glacier. After adding impact by the way of EQ, reverberation, distortion, delay, reverse, etc., we created a two-channel stereo piece in approximately 7 minutes. Along with the musical media, we also present a video clip whose visual features corresponds to glacial properties or events. We expect this work will raise awareness of glaciers' behaviour to general public, also presenting one of the examples that scientists and artists work collaboratively to come up with an artwork that has social implications.

  20. Salt Marshes as Monitors of Late Holocene Outlet Glacier Retreat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wake, L. M.; Woodroffe, S.; Long, A. J.; Milne, G. A.

    2014-12-01

    New proxy sea-level records extracted from salt marshes in the vicinity of Jakobshavn Isbrae (Pakitsoq; 69.51°N, 50.74°W) and at previous sites in central western Greenland (Sisimiut; 66.47°N, 53.61°W and Aasiaat; 68.69°N, 52.88°W) are analyzed with respect to their ability to act as proximal tide gauges detecting mass balance changes in nearby outlet glaciers associated with the transition from the Little Ice Age ("LIA", 1400-1850AD) to the Industrial Period (>1850AD). Data at Pakitsoq demonstrate that sea-level rose at a rate of 3.5 ±1.7 mm/yr prior to 1850AD and slowed to 0.3 ±0.6mm/yr thereafter, producing a slowdown in sea level of 3.2 ± 1.8 mm/yr. A similar slowdown, occurring at 1600AD, is observed at Aasiaat and Sisimiut. We interpret these observed changes using a glacial isostatic adjustment model of sea-level change truncated at degree and order 4096, with an aim to determine if the sea-level data can be used to place constraints on changes in Jakobshavn Isbrae and/or Kangiata Nunaata Sermia (Nuuk fjord) during this period. Modelled sea level at Pakitsoq is insensitive to the location of thickening (thinning) associated with grounding line advance (retreat) and the rate of advance and retreat but is sensitive to the change point in time between periods of growth associated with LIA expansion (sea level rise) and the onset of 19th century recession (sea level fall) of Jakobshavn Isbrae. We conclude that the change in sea-level rate observed at Pakitsoq circa 1850AD marks the onset of post LIA retreat of this outlet glacier. Conversely, the modelled sea-level response to the retreat of Kangiata Nunaata Sermia from its LIA maximum at ca. 1761AD is below the detection threshold of the salt marsh record at Sisimiut.

  1. Do we have to take an acceleration of sea level rise into account?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dillingh, D.; Baart, F.; de Ronde, J.

    2012-04-01

    In view of preservation of safety against inundation and of the many values and functions of the coastal zone, coastal retreat is no longer acceptable. That is why it was decided to maintain the Dutch coastline on its position in 1990. Later the preservation concept was extended to the Dutch coastal foundation, which is the area that encompasses all dune area's and hard sea defences and reaches seawards until the 20m depth contour line. Present Dutch coastal policy is to grow with sea level by means of sand nourishments. A main issue for the planning of sand nourishments is the rate of sea level rise, because that is the main parameter for the volume of the sand needed. The question is than relevant if we already have to take into account an acceleration of sea level rise. Six stations with long water level records, well spread along the Dutch coast, were analysed. Correction of the measured data was considered necessary for an adaptation of the NAP in 2005 as a consequence of movements of the top of the pleistoceen, on which the NAP bench marks have been founded, and for the 18.6 year (nodal) cycle in the time series of yearly mean sea levels. It has been concluded that along the Dutch coast no significant acceleration of sea level rise could be detected yet. Over the last 120 years sea level rose with an average speed of 19 cm per century relative to NAP (the Dutch ordnance datum). Time series shorter than about 50 years showed less robust estimates of sea level rise. Future sea level rise also needs consideration in view of the estimate of future sand nourishment volumes. Scenario's for sea level rise have been derived for the years 2050 and 2100 relative to 1990 by the KNMI (Dutch Met Office) in 2006 for the Dutch situation. Plausible curves have been drawn from 1990 tangent to the linear regression line in 1990 and forced through the high and low scenario projections for 2050 and 2100. These curves show discrepancies with measurements of the last decade

  2. Predicting the impact of tsunami in California under rising sea level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dura, T.; Garner, A. J.; Weiss, R.; Kopp, R. E.; Horton, B.

    2017-12-01

    The flood hazard for the California coast depends not only on the magnitude, location, and rupture length of Alaska-Aleutian subduction zone earthquakes and their resultant tsunamis, but also on rising sea levels, which combine with tsunamis to produce overall flood levels. The magnitude of future sea-level rise remains uncertain even on the decadal scale, with future sea-level projections becoming even more uncertain at timeframes of a century or more. Earthquake statistics indicate that timeframes of ten thousand to one hundred thousand years are needed to capture rare, very large earthquakes. Because of the different timescales between reliable sea-level projections and earthquake distributions, simply combining the different probabilities in the context of a tsunami hazard assessment may be flawed. Here, we considered 15 earthquakes between Mw 8 to Mw 9.4 bound by -171oW and -140oW of the Alaska-Aleutian subduction zone. We employed 24 realizations at each magnitude with random epicenter locations and different fault length-to-width ratios, and simulated the tsunami evolution from these 360 earthquakes at each decade from the years 2000 to 2200. These simulations were then carried out for different sea-level-rise projections to analyze the future flood hazard for California. Looking at the flood levels at tide gauges, we found that the flood level simulated at, for example, the year 2100 (including respective sea-level change) is different from the flood level calculated by adding the flood for the year 2000 to the sea-level change prediction for the year 2100. This is consistent for all sea-level rise scenarios, and this difference in flood levels range between 5% and 12% for the larger half of the given magnitude interval. Focusing on flood levels at the tide gauge in the Port of Los Angeles, the most probable flood level (including all earthquake magnitudes) in the year 2000 was 5 cm. Depending on the sea-level predictions, in the year 2050 the most probable

  3. Impacts of climate change and sea level rise to Danish near shore ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vestergaard, P.

    2001-01-01

    Salt marshes and sand dunes are important types of coastal, terrestrial nature, which like other terrestrial ecosystems will be sensible to the future changes in climate, which have been predicted. Due to the processes acting in their morphogenesis and in the development and composition of their ecosystems, they will not least be influenced by sea level rise. Especially a strong impact of a sea level rise of about 50 cm (midrange of the projected global sea level rise) for the next century can be expected on Danish salt marshes, considering their limited vertical range (50-100 cm). (LN)

  4. Sea level rise and variability around Peninsular Malaysia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tkalich, Pavel; Luu, Quang-Hung; Tay, Tze-Wei

    2014-05-01

    Peninsular Malaysia is bounded from the west by Malacca Strait and the Andaman Sea, both connected to the Indian Ocean, and from the east by South China Sea being largest marginal sea in the Pacific Basin. As a result, sea level along Peninsular Malaysia coast is assumed to be governed by various regional phenomena associated with the adjacent parts of the Indian and Pacific Oceans. At annual scale, sea level anomalies (SLAs) are generated by the Asian monsoon; interannual sea level variability is determined by the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and the Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD); whilst long term sea level trend is coordinated by the global climate change. To quantify the relative impacts of these multi-scale phenomena on sea level trend and variability surrounding the Peninsular Malaysia, long-term tide gauge record and satellite altimetry are used. During 1984-2011, relative sea level rise (SLR) rates in waters of Malacca Strait and eastern Peninsular Malaysia are found to be 2.4 ± 0.8 mm/yr and 2.7 ± 0.6 mm/yr, respectively. Discounting for their vertical land movements (0.8 ± 2.6 mm/yr and 0.9 ± 2.2 mm/yr, respectively), their pure SLR rates are 1.6 ± 3.4 mm/yr and 1.8 ± 2.8 mm/yr, respectively, which are lower than the global tendency. At interannual scale, ENSO affects sea level over the Malaysian east coast in the range of ± 5 cm with very high correlation coefficient. Meanwhile, IOD modulates sea level anomalies in the Malacca Strait in the range of ± 2 cm with high correlation coefficient. Interannual regional sea level drops are associated with El Niño events and positive phases of the IOD index; while the rises are correlated with La Niña episodes and the negative periods of the IOD index. Seasonally, SLAs are mainly monsoon-driven, in the order of 10-25 cm. Geographically, sea level responds differently to the monsoon: two cycles per year are observed in the Malacca Strait, presumably due to South Asian - Indian Monsoon; while single

  5. Experimental investigation of channel avulsion frequency on river deltas under rising sea levels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silvestre, J.; Chadwick, A. J.; Steele, S.; Lamb, M. P.

    2017-12-01

    River deltas are low-relief landscapes that are socioeconomically important; they are home to over half a billion people worldwide. Many deltas are built by cycles of lobe growth punctuated by abrupt channel shifts, or avulsions, which often reoccur at a similar location and with a regular frequency. Previous experimental work has investigated the effect of hydrodynamic backwater in controlling channel avulsion location and timing on deltas under constant sea level conditions, but it is unclear how sea-level rise impacts avulsion dynamics. We present results from a flume experiment designed to isolate the role of relative sea-level rise on the evolution of a backwater-influenced delta. The experiment was conducted in the river-ocean facility at Caltech, where a 7m long, 14cm wide alluvial river drains into a 6m by 3m "ocean" basin. The experimental delta grew under subcritical flow, a persistent backwater zone, and a range of sea level rise rates. Without sea level rise, lobe progradation produced in-channel aggradation and periodic avulsions every 3.6 ± 0.9 hours, which corresponded to when channels aggraded to approximately one-half of their flow depth. With a modest rate of sea-level rise (0.25 mm/hr), we observed enhanced aggradation in the backwater zone, causing channels to aggrade more quickly and avulse more frequently (every 2.1 ± 0.6 hours). In future work, we expect further increases in the rate of relative sea-level rise to cause avulsion frequency to decrease as the delta drowns and the backwater zone retreats upstream. Experimental results can serve as tests of numerical models that are needed for hazard mitigation and coastal sustainability efforts on drowning deltas.

  6. Mangrove sedimentation and response to relative sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodroffe, CD; Rogers, K.; Mckee, Karen L.; Lovelock, CE; Mendelssohn, IA; Saintilan, N.

    2016-01-01

    Mangroves occur on upper intertidal shorelines in the tropics and subtropics. Complex hydrodynamic and salinity conditions influence mangrove distributions, primarily related to elevation and hydroperiod; this review considers how these adjust through time. Accumulation rates of allochthonous and autochthonous sediment, both inorganic and organic, vary between and within different settings. Abundant terrigenous sediment can form dynamic mudbanks; tides redistribute sediment, contrasting with mangrove peat in sediment-starved carbonate settings. Sediments underlying mangroves sequester carbon, but also contain paleoenvironmental records of adjustments to past sea-level changes. Radiometric dating indicates long-term sedimentation, whereas Surface Elevation Table-Marker Horizon measurements (SET-MH) provide shorter perspectives, indicating shallow subsurface processes of root growth and substrate autocompaction. Many tropical deltas also experience deep subsidence, which augments relative sea-level rise. The persistence of mangroves implies an ability to cope with moderately high rates of relative sea-level rise. However, many human pressures threaten mangroves, resulting in continuing decline in their extent throughout the tropics.

  7. Mangrove Sedimentation and Response to Relative Sea-Level Rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodroffe, C D; Rogers, K; McKee, K L; Lovelock, C E; Mendelssohn, I A; Saintilan, N

    2016-01-01

    Mangroves occur on upper intertidal shorelines in the tropics and subtropics. Complex hydrodynamic and salinity conditions, related primarily to elevation and hydroperiod, influence mangrove distributions; this review considers how these distributions change over time. Accumulation rates of allochthonous and autochthonous sediment, both inorganic and organic, vary between and within different settings. Abundant terrigenous sediment can form dynamic mudbanks, and tides redistribute sediment, contrasting with mangrove peat in sediment-starved carbonate settings. Sediments underlying mangroves sequester carbon but also contain paleoenvironmental records of adjustments to past sea-level changes. Radiometric dating indicates long-term sedimentation, whereas measurements made using surface elevation tables and marker horizons provide shorter perspectives, indicating shallow subsurface processes of root growth and substrate autocompaction. Many tropical deltas also experience deep subsidence, which augments relative sea-level rise. The persistence of mangroves implies an ability to cope with moderately high rates of relative sea-level rise. However, many human pressures threaten mangroves, resulting in a continuing decline in their extent throughout the tropics.

  8. Challenges in Projecting Sea Level Rise impacts on the Coastal Environment of South Florida (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Obeysekera, J.; Park, J.; Irizarry-Ortiz, M. M.; Barnes, J. A.; Trimble, P.; Said, W.

    2010-12-01

    Due to flat topography, a highly transmissive groundwater aquifer, and a growing population with the associated infrastructure, South Florida’s coastal environment is one of the most vulnerable areas to sea level rise. Current projections of sea level rise and the associated storm surges will have direct impacts on coastal beaches and infrastructure, flood protection, freshwater aquifers, and both the isolated and regional wetlands. Uncertainties in current projections have made it difficult for regional and local governments to develop adaptation strategies as such measures will depend heavily on the temporal and spatial patterns of sea level rise in the coming decades. We demonstrate the vulnerability of both the built and natural environments of the coastal region and present the current efforts to understand and predict the sea level rise estimate that management agencies could employ in planning of adaptation strategies. In particular, the potential vulnerabilities of the flood control system as well as the threat to the water supply wellfields in the coastal belt will be presented. In an effort to understand the historical variability of sea level rise, we present linkages to natural phenomena such as Atlantic Multi-Decadal Oscillation, and the analytical methods we have developed to provide probabilistic projections of both mean sea level rise and the extremes.

  9. Rising methane emissions from northern wetlands associated with sea ice decline

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parmentier, Frans-Jan W.; Zhang, Wenxin; Zhu, Xudong; van Huissteden, Jacobus; Hayes, Daniel J.; Zhuang, Qianlai; Christensen, Torben R.; McGuire, A. David

    2015-01-01

    The Arctic is rapidly transitioning toward a seasonal sea ice-free state, perhaps one of the most apparent examples of climate change in the world. This dramatic change has numerous consequences, including a large increase in air temperatures, which in turn may affect terrestrial methane emissions. Nonetheless, terrestrial and marine environments are seldom jointly analyzed. By comparing satellite observations of Arctic sea ice concentrations to methane emissions simulated by three process-based biogeochemical models, this study shows that rising wetland methane emissions are associated with sea ice retreat. Our analyses indicate that simulated high-latitude emissions for 2005–2010 were, on average, 1.7 Tg CH4 yr−1 higher compared to 1981–1990 due to a sea ice-induced, autumn-focused, warming. Since these results suggest a continued rise in methane emissions with future sea ice decline, observation programs need to include measurements during the autumn to further investigate the impact of this spatial connection on terrestrial methane emissions.

  10. Limits on the adaptability of coastal marshes to rising sea level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirwan, Matthew L.; Guntenspergen, Glenn R.; D'Alpaos, Andrea; Morris, James T.; Mudd, Simon M.; Temmerman, Stijn

    2010-01-01

    Assumptions of a static landscape inspire predictions that about half of the world's coastal wetlands will submerge during this century in response to sea-level acceleration. In contrast, we use simulations from five numerical models to quantify the conditions under which ecogeomorphic feedbacks allow coastal wetlands to adapt to projected changes in sea level. In contrast to previous sea-level assessments, we find that non-linear feedbacks among inundation, plant growth, organic matter accretion, and sediment deposition, allow marshes to survive conservative projections of sea-level rise where suspended sediment concentrations are greater than ~20 mg/L. Under scenarios of more rapid sea-level rise (e.g., those that include ice sheet melting), marshes will likely submerge near the end of the 21st century. Our results emphasize that in areas of rapid geomorphic change, predicting the response of ecosystems to climate change requires consideration of the ability of biological processes to modify their physical environment.

  11. Glacier mass changes on the Tibetan Plateau 2003–2009 derived from ICESat laser altimetry measurements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Neckel, N; Kropáček, J; Hochschild, V; Bolch, T

    2014-01-01

    Glacier mass changes are a valuable indicator of climate variability and monsoon oscillation on the underexplored Tibetan Plateau. In this study data from the Ice Cloud and Elevation Satellite (ICESat) is employed to estimate elevation and mass changes of glaciers on the Tibetan Plateau between 2003 and 2009. In order to get a representative sample size of ICESat measurements, glaciers on the Tibetan Plateau were grouped into eight climatically homogeneous sub-regions. Most negative mass budgets of − 0.77 ± 0.35 m w.e. a −1 were found for the Qilian Mountains and eastern Kunlun Mountains while a mass gain of + 0.37 ± 0.25 m w.e. a −1 was found in the westerly-dominated north-central part of the Tibetan Plateau. A total annual mass budget of − 15.6 ± 10.1 Gt a −1 was estimated for the eight sub-regions sufficiently covered by ICESat data which represents ∼80% of the glacier area on the Tibetan Plateau. 13.9 ± 8.9 Gt a −1 (or 0.04 ± 0.02 mm a −1 sea-level equivalent) of the total mass budget contributed ‘directly’ to the global sea-level rise while 1.7 ± 1.9 Gt a −1 drained into endorheic basins on the plateau. (paper)

  12. Southern Alaska Glaciers: Spatial and Temporal Variations in Ice Volume

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sauber, J.; Molnia, B. F.; Lutchke, S.; Rowlands, D.; Harding, D.; Carabajal, C.; Hurtado, J. M.; Spade, G.

    2004-01-01

    Although temperate mountain glaciers comprise less than 1% of the glacier-covered area on Earth, they are important because they appear to be melting rapidly under present climatic conditions and, therefore, make significant contributions to rising sea level. In this study, we use ICESat observations made in the last 1.5 years of southern Alaska glaciers to estimate ice elevation profiles, ice surface slopes and roughness, and bi-annual and/or annual ice elevation changes. We report initial results from the near coastal region between Yakutat Bay and Cape Suckling that includes the Malaspina and Bering Glaciers. We show and interpret ice elevations changes across the lower reaches of the Bagley Ice Valley for the period between October 2003 and May 2004. In addition, we use off-nadir pointing observations to reference tracks over the Bering and Malaspina Glaciers in order to estimate annual ice elevation change. Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) and Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) derived DEMs are used to estimate across track regional slopes between ICESat data acquisitions. Although the distribution and quantity of ICESat elevation profiles with multiple, exact repeat data is currently limited in Alaska, individual ICESat data tracks, provide an accurate reference surface for comparison to other elevation data (e.g. ASTER and SRTM X- and C-band derived DEMs). Specifically we report the elevation change over the Malaspina Glacier's piedmont lobe between a DEM derived from SRTM C-band data acquired in Feb. 2000 and ICESat Laser #2b data from Feb.-March 2004. We also report use of ICESat elevation data to enhance ASTER derived absolute DEMs. Mountain glaciers generally have rougher surfaces and steeper regional slopes than the ice sheets for which the ICESat design was optimized. Therefore, rather than averaging ICESat observations over large regions or relying on crossovers, we are working with well-located ICESat

  13. Economic vulnerability to sea-level rise along the northern U.S. Gulf Coast

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thatcher, Cindy A.; Brock, John C.; Pendleton, Elizabeth A.

    2013-01-01

    The northern Gulf of Mexico coast of the United States has been identified as highly vulnerable to sea-level rise, based on a combination of physical and societal factors. Vulnerability of human populations and infrastructure to projected increases in sea level is a critical area of uncertainty for communities in the extremely low-lying and flat northern gulf coastal zone. A rapidly growing population along some parts of the northern Gulf of Mexico coastline is further increasing the potential societal and economic impacts of projected sea-level rise in the region, where observed relative rise rates range from 0.75 to 9.95 mm per year on the Gulf coasts of Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida. A 1-m elevation threshold was chosen as an inclusive designation of the coastal zone vulnerable to relative sea-level rise, because of uncertainty associated with sea-level rise projections. This study applies a Coastal Economic Vulnerability Index (CEVI) to the northern Gulf of Mexico region, which includes both physical and economic factors that contribute to societal risk of impacts from rising sea level. The economic variables incorporated in the CEVI include human population, urban land cover, economic value of key types of infrastructure, and residential and commercial building values. The variables are standardized and combined to produce a quantitative index value for each 1-km coastal segment, highlighting areas where human populations and the built environment are most at risk. This information can be used by coastal managers as they allocate limited resources for ecosystem restoration, beach nourishment, and coastal-protection infrastructure. The study indicates a large amount of variability in index values along the northern Gulf of Mexico coastline, and highlights areas where long-term planning to enhance resiliency is particularly needed.

  14. Glaciers in Patagonia: Controversy and prospects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kargel, J. S.; Alho, P.; Buytaert, W.; Célleri, R.; Cogley, J. G.; Dussaillant, A.; Guido, Z.; Haeberli, W.; Harrison, S.; Leonard, G.; Maxwell, A.; Meier, C.; Poveda, G.; Reid, B.; Reynolds, J.; Rodríguez, C. A. Portocarrero; Romero, H.; Schneider, J.

    2012-05-01

    Lately, glaciers have been subjects of unceasing controversy. Current debate about planned hydroelectric facilities—a US7- to 10-billion megaproject—in a pristine glacierized area of Patagonia, Chile [Romero Toledo et al., 2009; Vince, 2010], has raised anew the matter of how glaciologists and global change experts can contribute their knowledge to civic debates on important issues. There has been greater respect for science in this controversy than in some previous debates over projects that pertain to glaciers, although valid economic motivations again could trump science and drive a solution to the energy supply problem before the associated safety and environmental problems are understood. The connection between glaciers and climate change—both anthropogenic and natural—is fundamental to glaciology and to glaciers' practical importance for water and hydropower resources, agriculture, tourism, mining, natural hazards, ecosystem conservation, and sea level [Buytaert et al., 2010; Glasser et al., 2011]. The conflict between conservation and development can be sharper in glacierized regions than almost anywhere else. Glaciers occur in spectacular natural landscapes, but they also supply prodigious exploitable meltwater.

  15. Interactive Sea Level Rise App & Online Viewer Offers Deep Dive Into Climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turrin, M.; Porter, D. F.; Ryan, W. B. F.; Pfirman, S. L.

    2015-12-01

    Climate has captured the attention of the public but its complexity can cause interested individuals to turn to opinion pieces, news articles or blogs for information. These platforms often oversimplify or present heavily interpreted or personalized perspectives. Data interactives are an extremely effective way to explore complex geoscience topics like climate, opening windows of understanding for the user that have previously been closed. Layering data onto maps through programs like GeoMapApp and the Earth Observer App has allowed users to dig directly into science data, but with only limited scaffolding. The interactive 'Polar Explorer: Sea Level Explorer App' provides a richly layered introduction to a range of topics connected to sea level rise. Each map is supported with a pop up and a short audio file of supplementary material, and an information page that includes the data source and links for further reading. This type of learning platform works well for both the formal and informal learning environment. Through science data displayed as map visualizations the user is invited into topics through an introductory question, such as "Why does sea level change?" After clicking on that question the user moves to a second layer of questions exploring the role of the ocean, the atmosphere, the contribution from the world's glaciers, world's ice sheets and other less obvious considerations such as the role of post-glacial rebound, or the mining of groundwater. Each question ends in a data map, or series of maps, that offer opportunities to interact with the topic. Under the role of the ocean 'Internal Ocean Temperature' offers the user a chance to touch to see temperature values spatially over the world's ocean, or to click through a data series starting at the ocean surface and diving to 5000 meters of depth showing how temperature changes with depth. Other sections, like the role of deglaciation of North America, allow the user to click and see change through

  16. Reconciling projections of the Antarctic contribution to sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Tamsin; Holden, Philip; Edwards, Neil; Wernecke, Andreas

    2017-04-01

    Two recent studies of the Antarctic contribution to sea level rise this century had best estimates that differed by an order of magnitude (around 10 cm and 1 m by 2100). The first, Ritz et al. (2015), used a model calibrated with satellite data, giving a 5% probability of exceeding 30cm by 2100 for sea level rise due to Antarctic instability. The second, DeConto and Pollard (2016), used a model evaluated with reconstructions of palaeo-sea level. They did not estimate probabilities, but using a simple assumption here about the distribution shape gives up to a 5% chance of Antarctic contribution exceeding 2.3 m this century with total sea level rise approaching 3 m. If robust, this would have very substantial implications for global adaptation to climate change. How are we to make sense of this apparent inconsistency? How much is down to the data - does the past tell us we will face widespread and rapid Antarctic ice losses in the future? How much is due to the mechanism of rapid ice loss ('cliff failure') proposed in the latter paper, or other parameterisation choices in these low resolution models (GRISLI and PISM, respectively)? How much is due to choices made in the ensemble design and calibration? How do these projections compare with high resolution, grounding line resolving models such as BISICLES? Could we reduce the huge uncertainties in the palaeo-study? Emulation provides a powerful tool for understanding these questions and reconciling the projections. By describing the three numerical ice sheet models with statistical models, we can re-analyse the ensembles and re-do the calibrations under a common statistical framework. This reduces uncertainty in the PISM study because it allows massive sampling of the parameter space, which reduces the sensitivity to reconstructed palaeo-sea level values and also narrows the probability intervals because the simple assumption about distribution shape above is no longer needed. We present reconciled probabilistic

  17. Spatial Hedonic Models for Measuring the Impact of Sea-Level Rise on Coastal Real Estate

    OpenAIRE

    Okmyung Bin; Ben Poulter; Christopher F. Dumas; John C. Whitehead

    2009-01-01

    This study uses a unique integration of geospatial and hedonic property data to estimate the impact of sea-level rise on coastal real estate in North Carolina. North Carolina’s coastal plain is one of several large terrestrial systems around the world threatened by rising sea-levels. High-resolution topographic LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) data are used to provide accurate inundation maps for all properties that will be at risk under six different sea-level rise scenarios. A simulation...

  18. Vulnerability of marginal seas to sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gomis, Damia; Jordà, Gabriel

    2017-04-01

    Sea level rise (SLR) is a serious thread for coastal areas and has a potential negative impact on society and economy. SLR can lead for instance to land loss, beach reduction, increase of the damage of marine storms on coastal infrastructures and to the salinization of underground water streams. It is well acknowledged that future SLR will be inhomogeneous across the globe, with regional differences of up to 100% with respect to global mean sea level (GMSL). Several studies have addressed the projections of SLR at regional scale, but most of them are based on global climate models (GCMs) that have a relatively coarse spatial resolution (>1°). In marginal seas this has proven to be a strong limitation, as their particular configurations require spatial resolutions that are not reachable by present GCMs. A paradigmatic case is the Mediterranean Sea, connected to the global ocean through the Strait of Gibraltar, a narrow passage of 14 km width. The functioning of the Mediterranean Sea involves a variety of processes including an overturning circulation, small-scale convection and a rich mesoscale field. Moreover, the long-term evolution of Mediterranean sea level has been significantly different from the global mean during the last decades. The observations of present climate and the projections for the next decades have lead some authors to hypothesize that the particular characteristics of the basin could allow Mediterranean mean sea level to evolve differently from the global mean. Assessing this point is essential to undertake proper adaptation strategies for the largely populated Mediterranean coastal areas. In this work we apply a new approach that combines regional and global projections to analyse future SLR. In a first step we focus on the quantification of the expected departures of future Mediterranean sea level from GMSL evolution and on the contribution of different processes to these departures. As a result we find that, in spite of its particularities

  19. Analysis of Sea Level Rise in Action

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gill, K. M.; Huang, T.; Quach, N. T.; Boening, C.

    2016-12-01

    NASA's Sea Level Change Portal provides scientists and the general public with "one-stop" source for current sea level change information and data. Sea Level Rise research is a multidisciplinary research and in order to understand its causes, scientists must be able to access different measurements and to be able to compare them. The portal includes an interactive tool, called the Data Analysis Tool (DAT), for accessing, visualizing, and analyzing observations and models relevant to the study of Sea Level Rise. Using NEXUS, an open source, big data analytic technology developed at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, the DAT is able provide user on-the-fly data analysis on all relevant parameters. DAT is composed of three major components: A dedicated instance of OnEarth (a WMTS service), NEXUS deep data analytic platform, and the JPL Common Mapping Client (CMC) for web browser based user interface (UI). Utilizing the global imagery, a user is capable of browsing the data in a visual manner and isolate areas of interest for further study. The interfaces "Analysis" tool provides tools for area or point selection, single and/or comparative dataset selection, and a range of options, algorithms, and plotting. This analysis component utilizes the Nexus cloud computing platform to provide on-demand processing of the data within the user-selected parameters and immediate display of the results. A RESTful web API is exposed for users comfortable with other interfaces and who may want to take advantage of the cloud computing capabilities. This talk discuss how DAT enables on-the-fly sea level research. The talk will introduce the DAT with an end-to-end tour of the tool with exploration and animating of available imagery, a demonstration of comparative analysis and plotting, and how to share and export data along with images for use in publications/presentations. The session will cover what kind of data is available, what kind of analysis is possible, and what are the outputs.

  20. Surge of a Complex Glacier System - The Current Surge of the Bering-Bagley Glacier System, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herzfeld, U. C.; McDonald, B.; Trantow, T.; Hale, G.; Stachura, M.; Weltman, A.; Sears, T.

    2013-12-01

    Understanding fast glacier flow and glacial accelerations is important for understanding changes in the cryosphere and ultimately in sea level. Surge-type glaciers are one of four types of fast-flowing glaciers --- the other three being continuously fast-flowing glaciers, fjord glaciers and ice streams --- and the one that has seen the least amount of research. The Bering-Bagley Glacier System, Alaska, the largest glacier system in North America, surged in 2011 and 2012. Velocities decreased towards the end of 2011, while the surge kinematics continued to expand. A new surge phase started in summer and fall 2012. In this paper, we report results from airborne observations collected in September 2011, June/July and September/October 2012 and in 2013. Airborne observations include simultaneously collected laser altimeter data, videographic data, GPS data and photographic data and are complemented by satellite data analysis. Methods range from classic interpretation of imagery to analysis and classification of laser altimeter data and connectionist (neural-net) geostatistical classification of concurrent airborne imagery. Results focus on the characteristics of surge progression in a large and complex glacier system (as opposed to a small glacier with relatively simple geometry). We evaluate changes in surface elevations including mass transfer and sudden drawdowns, crevasse types, accelerations and changes in the supra-glacial and englacial hydrologic system. Supraglacial water in Bering Glacier during Surge, July 2012 Airborne laser altimeter profile across major rift in central Bering Glacier, Sept 2011

  1. Sea-level Rise Impacts on Oregon Estuaries: Biology and Hydrology - for posting on website

    Science.gov (United States)

    Estuaries are transitional ecosystems located at the margin of the land and ocean and as a result they are particularly sensitive to sea level rise and other climate drivers. In this presentation, we summarize the potential impacts of sea level rise on key estuarine habitats incl...

  2. Sea Level Rise in the 21st Century: Will projections ever become reliable?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Willis, J. K.

    2014-12-01

    Global sea level rise has the potential to become one of the most costly and least well predicted impacts of human caused climate change. Unlike global surface temperature, the spread of possible scenarios (as little as 1 foot and as much as 6 feet by 2100) is not due to uncertainty about future rates of greenhouse gas emissions, but rather by a fundamental lack of knowledge about how the major ice sheets will behave in a warming climate. Clearly improved projections of sea level rise should become a major research priority in the next decade. At present, controversial techniques based on comparison with historical analogs and rates of recent warming and sea level rise are often used to create projections for the 21st Century. However, many in the scientific community feel that reliable projections must be based on a sound knowledge of the physics governing sea level rise, and particularly ice sheet behavior. In particular, large portions of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet and parts of the Greenland Ice Sheet rest on solid earth that sits below sea level. These regions may be threatened, not by atmospheric warming or changes in precipitation, but rather by direct forcing from the ocean. Fledgling efforts to understand these ocean ice interactions are already underway, as are efforts to make improved models of ice sheet behavior. However a great deal of work is still needed before widely accepted projections of sea level rise become a reality. This paper will highlight the hurdles to making such projections today and suggest ways forward in this critical area of research.

  3. Coastline Mapping and Cultural Review to Predict Sea Level Rise Impact on Hawaiian Archeological Sites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clinton, J.

    2017-12-01

    Much of Hawaii's history is recorded in archeological sites. Researchers and cultural practitioners have been studying and reconstructing significant archeological sites for generations. Climate change, and more specifically, sea level rise may threaten these sites. Our research records current sea levels and then projects possible consequences to these cultural monuments due to sea level rise. In this mixed methods study, research scientists, cultural practitioners, and secondary students use plane-table mapping techniques to create maps of coastlines and historic sites. Students compare historical records to these maps, analyze current sea level rise trends, and calculate future sea levels. They also gather data through interviews with community experts and kupuna (elders). If climate change continues at projected rates, some historic sites will be in danger of negative impact due to sea level rise. Knowing projected sea levels at specific sites allows for preventative action and contributes to raised awareness of the impacts of climate change to the Hawaiian Islands. Students will share results with the community and governmental agencies in hopes of inspiring action to minimize climate change. It will take collaboration between scientists and cultural communities to inspire future action on climate change.

  4. Modeling and Analysis of Sea-level Rise Impacts on Salinity in the Lower St. Johns River

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bacopoulos, P.

    2015-12-01

    There is deliberate attention being paid to studying sea-level rise impacts on the lower St. Johns River, a drowned coastal plain-type estuary with low topographic drive, located in northeastern Florida. One area of attention is salinity in the river, which influences the entire food web, including sea and marsh grasses, juvenile crustaceans and fishes, wading birds and migratory waterfowl, marine mammals and other predator animals. It is expected that elevated ocean levels will increase the salinity of the estuarine waters, leading to deleterious effects on dependent species of the river biology. The objective of the modeling and analysis was: 1) to establish baseline conditions of salinity for the lower St. Johns River; and 2) to examine future conditions of salinity, as impacted by sea-level rise. Establishing baseline conditions entailed validation of the model for present-day salinity in the lower St. Johns River via comparison to available data. Examining future conditions entailed application of the model for sea-level rise scenarios, with comparison to the baseline conditions, for evaluation of sea-level rise impacts on salinity. While the central focus was on the physics of sea-level rise impacts on salinity, some level of salinity-biological assessment was conducted to identify sea-level rise/salinity thresholds, as related to negatively impacting different species of the river biology.

  5. On tritium content in the Abramov glacier layers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Voronskaya, G.N.; Nikolishin, I.Ya.; Romanov, V.V.

    1976-01-01

    Using the common pattern of the analysis of tritium in natural waters its concentration was determined in sampeles of annual layers of the Abramov glacier (Pamir-Altai) at the height of 4500 m above the sea level for 1927-1972. The tritium activity was measured with the help of the liquid scintillation spectrometer with the 10 per cent accuracy. The nature of the obtained curve of the distribution of tritium in the Abramov glacier annual layers was close to its, distribution in glaciers of Greenland, in the Fedchenko glacier and in the precipitation of Teheran. The absolute values of tritium concentrations in the Pamir glaciers are significantly lower than in glaciers of Greenlad. The maximum of tritium concentrations is observed in samples which correspond to 1963, its value approximating to 800 tritium units

  6. Methods and problems in assessing the impacts of accelerated sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicholls, Robert J.; Dennis, Karen C.; Volonte, Claudio R.; Leatherman, Stephen P.

    1992-06-01

    Accelerated sea-level rise is one of the more certain responses to global warming and presents a major challenge to mankind. However, it is important to note that sea-level rise is only manifest over long timescales (decades to centuries). Coastal scientists are increasingly being called upon to assess the physical, economic and societal impacts of sea-level rise and hence investigate appropriate response strategies. Such assessments are difficult in many developing countries due to a lack of physical, demographic and economic data. In particular, there is a lack of appropriate topographic information for the first (physical) phase of the analysis. To overcome these difficulties we have developed a new rapid and low-cost reconnaissance technique: ``aerial videotape-assisted vulnerability analysis'' (AVA). It involves: 1) videotaping the coastline from a small airplane; 2) limited ground-truth measurements; and 3) archive research. Combining the video record with the ground-truth information characterizes the coastal topography and, with an appropriate land loss model, estimates of the physical impact for different sea-level rise scenarios can be made. However, such land loss estimates raise other important questions such as the appropriate seaward limit of the beach profile. Response options also raise questions such as the long-term costs of seawalls. Therefore, realistic low and high estiimates were developed. To illustrate the method selected results from Senegal, Uruguay and Venezuela are presented.

  7. Portrait of a Warming Ocean and Rising Sea Levels: Trend of Sea Level Change 1993-2008

    Science.gov (United States)

    2008-01-01

    Warming water and melting land ice have raised global mean sea level 4.5 centimeters (1.7 inches) from 1993 to 2008. But the rise is by no means uniform. This image, created with sea surface height data from the Topex/Poseidon and Jason-1 satellites, shows exactly where sea level has changed during this time and how quickly these changes have occurred. It's also a road map showing where the ocean currently stores the growing amount of heat it is absorbing from Earth's atmosphere and the heat it receives directly from the Sun. The warmer the water, the higher the sea surface rises. The location of heat in the ocean and its movement around the globe play a pivotal role in Earth's climate. Light blue indicates areas in which sea level has remained relatively constant since 1993. White, red, and yellow are regions where sea levels have risen the most rapidly up to 10 millimeters per year and which contain the most heat. Green areas have also risen, but more moderately. Purple and dark blue show where sea levels have dropped, due to cooler water. The dramatic variation in sea surface heights and heat content across the ocean are due to winds, currents and long-term changes in patterns of circulation. From 1993 to 2008, the largest area of rapidly rising sea levels and the greatest concentration of heat has been in the Pacific, which now shows the characteristics of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO), a feature that can last 10 to 20 years or even longer. In this 'cool' phase, the PDO appears as a horseshoe-shaped pattern of warm water in the Western Pacific reaching from the far north to the Southern Ocean enclosing a large wedge of cool water with low sea surface heights in the eastern Pacific. This ocean/climate phenomenon may be caused by wind-driven Rossby waves. Thousands of kilometers long, these waves move from east to west on either side of the equator changing the distribution of water mass and heat. This image of sea level trend also reveals a significant

  8. Sub-ice-shelf sediments record history of twentieth-century retreat of Pine Island Glacier.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, J A; Andersen, T J; Shortt, M; Gaffney, A M; Truffer, M; Stanton, T P; Bindschadler, R; Dutrieux, P; Jenkins, A; Hillenbrand, C-D; Ehrmann, W; Corr, H F J; Farley, N; Crowhurst, S; Vaughan, D G

    2017-01-05

    The West Antarctic Ice Sheet is one of the largest potential sources of rising sea levels. Over the past 40 years, glaciers flowing into the Amundsen Sea sector of the ice sheet have thinned at an accelerating rate, and several numerical models suggest that unstable and irreversible retreat of the grounding line-which marks the boundary between grounded ice and floating ice shelf-is underway. Understanding this recent retreat requires a detailed knowledge of grounding-line history, but the locations of the grounding line before the advent of satellite monitoring in the 1990s are poorly dated. In particular, a history of grounding-line retreat is required to understand the relative roles of contemporaneous ocean-forced change and of ongoing glacier response to an earlier perturbation in driving ice-sheet loss. Here we show that the present thinning and retreat of Pine Island Glacier in West Antarctica is part of a climatically forced trend that was triggered in the 1940s. Our conclusions arise from analysis of sediment cores recovered beneath the floating Pine Island Glacier ice shelf, and constrain the date at which the grounding line retreated from a prominent seafloor ridge. We find that incursion of marine water beyond the crest of this ridge, forming an ocean cavity beneath the ice shelf, occurred in 1945 (±12 years); final ungrounding of the ice shelf from the ridge occurred in 1970 (±4 years). The initial opening of this ocean cavity followed a period of strong warming of West Antarctica, associated with El Niño activity. Thus our results suggest that, even when climate forcing weakened, ice-sheet retreat continued.

  9. Mass budget of Queen Elizabeth Islands glaciers and ice caps, Canada, from 1992 to present

    Science.gov (United States)

    Millan, R.; Rignot, E. J.; Mouginot, J.

    2015-12-01

    Recent studies indicate to say that the Canadian Artic Archipelago's mass loss has increased in recent years. However the role of ice dynamics changes in this area is not well known. In this study, we present a comprehensive velocity mapping of the CAA using ALOS/PALSAR, RADARSAT-1, ERS1 and Landsat data between 1992 and 2015. Glaciers speed are calculated using a speckle and feature tracking algorithm.The results reveals that three large marine-terminating glaciers have accelerated significantly after 2010, while most others have slowed down or retreated to a sill to become similar to land-terminating glaciers. By combining the velocities of these glaciers with ice thickness measurements from NASA's Operation IceBridge, we calculate their ice discharge. The fluxes of these glaciers increased significantly since 2000 with a marked increase after 2011. The comparison of ice discharge with the surface mass balance from RACMO-2, shows that these glaciers came out of balance after 2011, which is also a time period where their discharge almost doubled. The analysis of RACMO-2 reveals an increase in runoff between 1970's and today and a precipitation with no significant trend. We digitalize the calving front positions of the glaciers and show an increasing rate retreat since 1976. We conclude that global pattern of velocity changes shows that the mass losses due to surface mass balance will likely going to raise in the coming years and that ice discharge will have a smaller part in the contribution of the CAA to sea level rise.

  10. A framework to investigate the economic growth impact of sea level rise

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hallegatte, Stéphane

    2012-01-01

    This article reviews the channels through which sea level rise can affect economic growth, namely the loss of land, the loss of infrastructure and physical capital, the loss of social capital, the additional cost from extreme events and coastal floods, and the increased expenditure for coastal protection. It discusses how existing studies on the direct impact of sea level rise could be used to investigate the resulting consequences on economic growth, emphasizes research needs on this question, and discusses consequences on migration. (letter)

  11. Limited influence of climate change mitigation on short-term glacier mass loss

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marzeion, Ben; Kaser, Georg; Maussion, Fabien; Champollion, Nicolas

    2018-04-01

    Glacier mass loss is a key contributor to sea-level change1,2, slope instability in high-mountain regions3,4 and the changing seasonality and volume of river flow5-7. Understanding the causes, mechanisms and time scales of glacier change is therefore paramount to identifying successful strategies for mitigation and adaptation. Here, we use temperature and precipitation fields from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 output to force a glacier evolution model, quantifying mass responses to future climatic change. We find that contemporary glacier mass is in disequilibrium with the current climate, and 36 ± 8% mass loss is already committed in response to past greenhouse gas emissions. Consequently, mitigating future emissions will have only very limited influence on glacier mass change in the twenty-first century. No significant differences between 1.5 and 2 K warming scenarios are detectable in the sea-level contribution of glaciers accumulated within the twenty-first century. In the long-term, however, mitigation will exert strong control, suggesting that ambitious measures are necessary for the long-term preservation of glaciers.

  12. Climate-change-driven accelerated sea-level rise detected in the altimeter era.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nerem, R S; Beckley, B D; Fasullo, J T; Hamlington, B D; Masters, D; Mitchum, G T

    2018-02-27

    Using a 25-y time series of precision satellite altimeter data from TOPEX/Poseidon, Jason-1, Jason-2, and Jason-3, we estimate the climate-change-driven acceleration of global mean sea level over the last 25 y to be 0.084 ± 0.025 mm/y 2 Coupled with the average climate-change-driven rate of sea level rise over these same 25 y of 2.9 mm/y, simple extrapolation of the quadratic implies global mean sea level could rise 65 ± 12 cm by 2100 compared with 2005, roughly in agreement with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 5th Assessment Report (AR5) model projections. Copyright © 2018 the Author(s). Published by PNAS.

  13. Storm-induced water dynamics and thermohaline structure at the tidewater Flade Isblink Glacier outlet to theWandel Sea (NE Greenland)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kirillov, Sergei; Dmitrenko, Igor; Rysgaard, Soren

    2017-01-01

    In April 2015, an ice-tethered conductivity-temperature-depth (CTD) profiler and a down-looking acoustic Doppler current profiler (ADCP) were deployed from the landfast ice near the tidewater glacier terminus of the Flade Isblink Glacier in the Wandel Sea, NE Greenland. The 3-week time series...... are likely attributable to subglacial water from the Flade Isblink Ice Cap. It was also found that the semidiurnal periodicities in the temperature and salinity time series were associated with the lunar semidiurnal tidal flow. The vertical structure of tidal currents corresponded to the first baroclinic...... mode of the internal tide with a velocity minimum at similar to 40 m. The tidal ellipses rotate in opposite directions above and below this depth and cause a divergence of tidal flow, which was observed to induce semidiurnal internal waves of about 3 m height at the front of the glacier terminus...

  14. Preparing for Sea-level Rise: Conflicts and Opportunities in Coastal Wetlands Coexisting with Infrastructure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez, J. F.; Saco, P. M.; Sandi, S. G.; Saintilan, N.; Riccardi, G.

    2017-12-01

    Even though on a large scale the sustainability and resilience of coastal wetlands to sea-level rise depends on the slope of the landscape and a balance between the rates of soil accretion and the sea-level rise, local man-made flow disturbances can have comparable effects. Coastal infrastructure controlling flow in the wetlands can pose an additional constraint on the adaptive capacity of these ecosystems, but can also present opportunities for targeted flow management to increase their resilience. Coastal wetlands in SE Australia are heavily managed and typically present infrastructure including flow control devices. How these flow control structures are operated respond to different ecological conservation objectives (i.e. bird, frog or fish habitat) that can sometimes be mutually exclusive. For example, promoting mangrove establishment to enhance fish habitat results in saltmarsh decline thus affecting bird habitat. Moreover, sea-level rise will change hydraulic conditions in wetlands and may result in some flow control structures and strategies becoming obsolete or even counterproductive. In order to address these problems and in support of future management of flows in coastal wetlands, we have developed a predictive tool for long-term wetland evolution that incorporates the effects of infrastructure and other perturbations to the tidal flow within the wetland (i.e. vegetation resistance) and determines how these flow conditions affect vegetation establishment and survival. We use the model to support management and analyse different scenarios of sea-level rise and flow control measures aimed at preserving bird habitat. Our results show that sea-level rise affects the efficiency of management measures and in some cases may completely override their effect. It also shows the potential of targeted flow management to compensate for the effects of sea-level rise.

  15. [Vulnerability assessment on the coastal wetlands in the Yangtze Estuary under sea-level rise].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cui, Li-Fang; Wang, Ning; Ge, Zhen-Ming; Zhang, Li-Quan

    2014-02-01

    To study the response of coastal wetlands to climate change, assess the impacts of climate change on the coastal wetlands and formulate feasible and practical mitigation strategies are the important prerequisite for securing coastal ecosystems. In this paper, the possible impacts of sea level rise caused by climate change on the coastal wetlands in the Yangtze Estuary were analyzed by the Source-Pathway-Receptor-Consequence (SPRC) model and IPCC definition on the vulnerability. An indicator system for vulnerability assessment was established, in which sea-level rise rate, subsidence rate, habitat elevation, inundation threshold of habitat and sedimentation rate were selected as the key indicators. A quantitatively spatial assessment method based on the GIS platform was established by quantifying each indicator, calculating the vulnerability index and grading the vulnerability index for the assessment of coastal wetlands in the Yangtze Estuary under the scenarios of sea-level rise. The vulnerability assessments on the coastal wetlands in the Yangtze Estuary in 2030 and 2050 were performed under two sea-level rise scenarios (the present sea-level rise trend over recent 30 years and IPCC A1F1 scenario). The results showed that with the projection in 2030 under the present trend of sea-level rise (0.26 cm x a(-1)), 6.6% and 0.1% of the coastal wetlands were in the low and moderate vulnerabilities, respectively; and in 2050, 9.8% and 0.2% of the coastal wetlands were in low and moderate vulnerabilities, respectively. With the projection in 2030 under the A1F1 scenario (0.59 cm x a(-1)), 9.0% and 0.1% of the coastal wetlands were in the low and moderate vulnerabilities, respectively; and in 2050, 9.5%, 1.0% and 0.3% of the coastal wetlands were in the low, moderate and high vulnerabilities, respectively.

  16. Impact of sea-level rise on earthquake and landslide triggering offshore the Alentejo margin (SW Iberia)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neves, M. C.; Roque, C.; Luttrell, K. M.; Vázquez, J. T.; Alonso, B.

    2016-12-01

    Earthquakes and submarine landslides are recurrent and widespread manifestations of fault activity offshore SW Iberia. The present work tests the effects of sea-level rise on offshore fault systems using Coulomb stress change calculations across the Alentejo margin. Large-scale faults capable of generating large earthquakes and tsunamis in the region, especially NE-SW trending thrusts and WNW-ESE trending dextral strike-slip faults imaged at basement depths, are either blocked or unaffected by flexural effects related to sea-level changes. Large-magnitude earthquakes occurring along these structures may, therefore, be less frequent during periods of sea-level rise. In contrast, sea-level rise promotes shallow fault ruptures within the sedimentary sequence along the continental slope and upper rise within distances of failures may either increase (if triggered by shallow fault ruptures) or decrease (if triggered by deep fault ruptures) as a result of sea-level rise. Moreover, observations of slope failures affecting the area of the Sines contourite drift highlight the role of sediment properties as preconditioning factors in this region.

  17. Implications of sea-level rise in a modern carbonate ramp setting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lokier, Stephen W.; Court, Wesley M.; Onuma, Takumi; Paul, Andreas

    2018-03-01

    This study addresses a gap in our understanding of the effects of sea-level rise on the sedimentary systems and morphological development of recent and ancient carbonate ramp settings. Many ancient carbonate sequences are interpreted as having been deposited in carbonate ramp settings. These settings are poorly-represented in the Recent. The study documents the present-day transgressive flooding of the Abu Dhabi coastline at the southern shoreline of the Arabian/Persian Gulf, a carbonate ramp depositional system that is widely employed as a Recent analogue for numerous ancient carbonate systems. Fourteen years of field-based observations are integrated with historical and recent high-resolution satellite imagery in order to document and assess the onset of flooding. Predicted rates of transgression (i.e. landward movement of the shoreline) of 2.5 m yr- 1 (± 0.2 m yr- 1) based on global sea-level rise alone were far exceeded by the flooding rate calculated from the back-stepping of coastal features (10-29 m yr- 1). This discrepancy results from the dynamic nature of the flooding with increased water depth exposing the coastline to increased erosion and, thereby, enhancing back-stepping. A non-accretionary transgressive shoreline trajectory results from relatively rapid sea-level rise coupled with a low-angle ramp geometry and a paucity of sediments. The flooding is represented by the landward migration of facies belts, a range of erosive features and the onset of bioturbation. Employing Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (Church et al., 2013) predictions for 21st century sea-level rise, and allowing for the post-flooding lag time that is typical for the start-up of carbonate factories, it is calculated that the coastline will continue to retrograde for the foreseeable future. Total passive flooding (without considering feedback in the modification of the shoreline) by the year 2100 is calculated to likely be between 340 and 571 m with a flooding rate of 3

  18. The Potential Effect of Sea Level Rise on Coastal Property Values

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Donnell, J.

    2015-12-01

    It is well established that one consequence of increasing global sea level is that the frequency of flooding at low-lying coastal sites will increase. We review recent evidence that the effects coastal geometry will create substantial spatial variations in the changes in flooding frequency with scales of order 100km. Using a simple model of the evolution of coastal property values we demonstrate that a consequence of sea level rise is that the appreciation of coastal properties will peak, and then decline relative to higher properties. The time when the value reach a maximum is shown to depend upon the demand for the coastal property, and the local rate of change of flooding frequency due to sea level rise. The simple model is then extended to include, in an elementary manner, the effects on the value of adjacent but higher properties. We show that the effect of increased flooding frequency of the lower properties leads to an accelerated appreciation of the value of upland properties and an accelerated decline in the value of the coastal properties. We then provide some example calculations for selected sites. We conclude with a discussion of comparisons of the prediction of the analyses to recent data, and then comments on the impact of sea level rise on tax base of coastal communities.

  19. Effects of sea-level rise on salt water intrusion near a coastal well field in southeastern Florida

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langevin, Christian D.; Zygnerski, Michael

    2013-01-01

    A variable-density groundwater flow and dispersive solute transport model was developed for the shallow coastal aquifer system near a municipal supply well field in southeastern Florida. The model was calibrated for a 105-year period (1900 to 2005). An analysis with the model suggests that well-field withdrawals were the dominant cause of salt water intrusion near the well field, and that historical sea-level rise, which is similar to lower-bound projections of future sea-level rise, exacerbated the extent of salt water intrusion. Average 2005 hydrologic conditions were used for 100-year sensitivity simulations aimed at quantifying the effect of projected rises in sea level on fresh coastal groundwater resources near the well field. Use of average 2005 hydrologic conditions and a constant sea level result in total dissolved solids (TDS) concentration of the well field exceeding drinking water standards after 70 years. When sea-level rise is included in the simulations, drinking water standards are exceeded 10 to 21 years earlier, depending on the specified rate of sea-level rise.

  20. Can salt marshes survive sea level rise ?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tambroni, N.; Seminara, G.

    2008-12-01

    Stability of salt marshes is a very delicate issue depending on the subtle interplay among hydrodynamics, morphodynamics and ecology. In fact, the elevation of the marsh platform depends essentially on three effects: i) the production of soil associated with sediments resuspended by tidal currents and wind waves in the adjacent tidal flats, advected to the marsh and settling therein; ii) production of organic sediments by the salt marsh vegetation; iii) soil 'loss' driven by sea level rise and subsidence. In order to gain insight into the mechanics of the process, we consider a schematic configuration consisting of a salt marsh located at the landward end of a tidal channel connected at the upstream end with a tidal sea, under different scenarios of sea level rise. We extend the simple 1D model for the morphodynamic evolution of a tidal channel formulated by Lanzoni and Seminara (2002, Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans, 107, C1) allowing for sediment resuspension in the channel and vegetation growth in the marsh using the depth dependent model of biomass productivity of Spartina proposed by Morris et al. (2002, Ecology, 83, pp. 2869 - 2877). We first focus on the case of a tide dominated salt marsh neglecting wind driven sediment resuspension in the shoal. Results show that the production of biomass plays a crucial role on salt marsh stability and, provided productivity is high enough, it may turn out to be sufficient to counteract the effects of sea level rise even in the absence of significant supply of mineral sediments. The additional effect of wind resuspension is then introduced. Note that the wind action is twofold: on one hand, it generates wind waves the amplitude of which is strongly dependent on shoal depth and wind fetch; on the other hand, it generates currents driven by the surface setup induced by the shear stress acting on the free surface. Here, each contribution is analysed separately. Results show that the values of bottom stress induced by

  1. On the regional characteristics of past and future sea-level change (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Timmermann, A.; McGregor, S.

    2010-12-01

    Global sea-level rise due to the thermal expansion of the warming oceans and freshwater input from melting glaciers and ice-sheets is threatening to inundate low-lying islands and coast-lines worldwide. At present global mean sea level rises at 3.1 ± 0.7 mm/yr with an accelerating tendency. However, the magnitude of recent decadal sea-level trends varies greatly spatially attaining values of up to 10 mm/yr in some areas of the western tropical Pacific. Identifying the causes of recent regional sea-level trends and understanding the patterns of future projected sea-level change is of crucial importance. Using a wind-forced simplified dynamical ocean model, we show that the regional features of recent decadal and multidecadal sea-level trends in the tropical Indo-Pacific can be attributed to changes in the prevailing wind-regimes. Furthermore it is demonstrated that within an ensemble of ten state-of-the art coupled general circulation models, forced by increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations over the next century, wind-induced re-distributions of upper-ocean water play a key role in establishing the spatial characteristics of projected regional sea-level rise. Wind-related changes in near- surface mass and heat convergence near the Solomon Islands, Tuvalu, Kiribati, the Cook Islands and French Polynesia oppose, but can not cancel the regional signal of global mean sea-level rise.

  2. Observation-Driven Estimation of the Spatial Variability of 20th Century Sea Level Rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamlington, B. D.; Burgos, A.; Thompson, P. R.; Landerer, F. W.; Piecuch, C. G.; Adhikari, S.; Caron, L.; Reager, J. T.; Ivins, E. R.

    2018-03-01

    Over the past two decades, sea level measurements made by satellites have given clear indications of both global and regional sea level rise. Numerous studies have sought to leverage the modern satellite record and available historic sea level data provided by tide gauges to estimate past sea level rise, leading to several estimates for the 20th century trend in global mean sea level in the range between 1 and 2 mm/yr. On regional scales, few attempts have been made to estimate trends over the same time period. This is due largely to the inhomogeneity and quality of the tide gauge network through the 20th century, which render commonly used reconstruction techniques inadequate. Here, a new approach is adopted, integrating data from a select set of tide gauges with prior estimates of spatial structure based on historical sea level forcing information from the major contributing processes over the past century. The resulting map of 20th century regional sea level rise is optimized to agree with the tide gauge-measured trends, and provides an indication of the likely contributions of different sources to regional patterns. Of equal importance, this study demonstrates the sensitivities of this regional trend map to current knowledge and uncertainty of the contributing processes.

  3. Final report for sea-level rise response modeling for San Francisco Bay estuary tidal marshes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takekawa, John Y.; Thorne, Karen M.; Buffington, Kevin J.; Spragens, Kyle A.; Swanson, Kathleen M.; Drexler, Judith Z.; Schoellhamer, David H.; Overton, Cory T.; Casazza, Michael L.

    2013-01-01

    The International Panel on Climate Change has identified coastal ecosystems as areas that will be disproportionally affected by climate change. Current sea-level rise projections range widely with 0.57 to 1.9 meters increase in mea sea level by 2100. The expected accelerated rate of sea-level rise through the 21st century will put many coastal ecosystems at risk, especially those in topographically low-gradient areas. We assessed marsh accretion and plant community state changes through 2100 at 12 tidal salt marshes around San Francisco Bay estuary with a sea-level rise response model. Detailed ground elevation, vegetation, and water level data were collected at all sites between 2008 and 2011 and used as model inputs. Sediment cores (taken by Callaway and others, 2012) at four sites around San Francisco Bay estuary were used to estimate accretion rates. A modification of the Callaway and others (1996) model, the Wetland Accretion Rate Model for Ecosystem Resilience (WARMER), was utilized to run sea-level rise response models for all sites. With a mean sea level rise of 1.24 m by 2100, WARMER projected that the vast majority, 95.8 percent (1,942 hectares), of marsh area in our study will lose marsh plant communities by 2100 and to transition to a relative elevation range consistent with mudflat habitat. Three marshes were projected to maintain marsh vegetation to 2100, but they only composed 4.2 percent (85 hectares) of the total marsh area surveyed.

  4. Study of the spatial and temporal variability of local ecosystems and glaciers of the Antisana Volcano

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mauricio Valladares Borja

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available (Received: 2014/10/31 - Accepted: 2014/12/15The scientific interest in climate change allowed to uncover evidence demonstrating a general warming trend caused by human activities. Facts such as rising sea levels, extreme weather events and retreat of glaciers, are indicators of the presence of alterations of normal weather patterns. In Ecuador, the Antisana is a stratovolcano of strategic importance affecting the climate of the region, in the functioning of the surrounding ecosystems. It is also a reserve of water for the population of the Metropolitan District of Quito (DMQ. The glaciers of the tropical volcano are also suffering the effects of global warming. Its decline over time is of concern and should be analyzed. The present research work performed a spatial and temporal study based on historical series of aerial photographs taken between 1956 and 2011, through geo-processing capabilities of geographic information systems (GIS. The results show a significant decrease in the glaciers of the Antisana Volcano and significant changes in the surrounding local ecological formations.

  5. Velocities of antarctic outlet glaciers determined from sequential Landsat images

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacDonald, Thomas R.; Ferrigno, Jane G.; Williams, Richard S.; Lucchitta, Baerbel K.

    1989-01-01

    Approximately 91.0 percent of the volume of present-day glacier ice on Earth is in Antarctica; Greenland contains about another 8.3 percent of the volume. Thus, together, these two great ice sheets account for an estimated 99.3 percent of the total. Long-term changes in the volume of glacier ice on our planet are the result of global climate change. Because of the relationship of global ice volume to sea level (± 330 cubic kilometers of glacier ice equals ± 1 millimeter sea level), changes in the mass balance of the antarctic ice sheet are of particular importance.Whether the mass balance of the east and west antarctic ice sheets is positive or negative is not known. Estimates of mass input by total annual precipitation for the continent have been made from scattered meteorological observations (Swithinbank 1985). The magnitude of annual ablation of the ice sheet from calving of outlet glaciers and ice shelves is also not well known. Although the velocities of outlet glaciers can be determined from field measurements during the austral summer,the technique is costly, does not cover a complete annual cycle,and has been applied to just a few glaciers. To increase the number of outlet glaciers in Antarctica for which velocities have been determined and to provide additional data for under-standing the dynamics of the antarctic ice sheets and their response to global climate change, sequential Landsat image of several outlet glaciers were measured.

  6. A simple model to estimate the impact of sea-level rise on platform beaches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taborda, Rui; Ribeiro, Mónica Afonso

    2015-04-01

    Estimates of future beach evolution in response to sea-level rise are needed to assess coastal vulnerability. A research gap is identified in providing adequate predictive methods to use for platform beaches. This work describes a simple model to evaluate the effects of sea-level rise on platform beaches that relies on the conservation of beach sand volume and assumes an invariant beach profile shape. In closed systems, when compared with the Inundation Model, results show larger retreats; the differences are higher for beaches with wide berms and when the shore platform develops at shallow depths. The application of the proposed model to Cascais (Portugal) beaches, using 21st century sea-level rise scenarios, shows that there will be a significant reduction in beach width.

  7. Can barrier islands survive sea level rise? Tidal inlets versus storm overwash

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nienhuis, J.; Lorenzo-Trueba, J.

    2017-12-01

    Barrier island response to sea level rise depends on their ability to transgress and move sediment to the back barrier, either through flood-tidal delta deposition or via storm overwash. Our understanding of these processes over decadal to centennial timescales, however, is limited and poorly constrained. We have developed a new barrier inlet environment (BRIE) model to better understand the interplay between tidal dynamics, overwash fluxes, and sea-level rise on barrier evolution. The BRIE model combines existing overwash and shoreface formulations [Lorenzo-Trueba and Ashton, 2014] with alongshore sediment transport, inlet stability [Escoffier, 1940], inlet migration and flood-tidal delta deposition [Nienhuis and Ashton, 2016]. Within BRIE, inlets can open, close, migrate, merge with other inlets, and build flood-tidal delta deposits. The model accounts for feedbacks between overwash and inlets through their mutual dependence on barrier geometry. Model results suggest that when flood-tidal delta deposition is sufficiently large, barriers require less storm overwash to transgress and aggrade during sea level rise. In particular in micro-tidal environments with asymmetric wave climates and high alongshore sediment transport, tidal inlets are effective in depositing flood-tidal deltas and constitute the majority of the transgressive sediment flux. Additionally, we show that artificial inlet stabilization (via jetty construction or maintenance dredging) can make barrier islands more vulnerable to sea level rise. Escoffier, F. F. (1940), The Stability of Tidal Inlets, Shore and Beach, 8(4), 114-115. Lorenzo-Trueba, J., and A. D. Ashton (2014), Rollover, drowning, and discontinuous retreat: Distinct modes of barrier response to sea-level rise arising from a simple morphodynamic model, J. Geophys. Res. Earth Surf., 119(4), 779-801, doi:10.1002/2013JF002941. Nienhuis, J. H., and A. D. Ashton (2016), Mechanics and rates of tidal inlet migration: Modeling and application to

  8. Resilience of Infrastructure Systems to Sea-Level Rise in Coastal Areas: Impacts, Adaptation Measures, and Implementation Challenges

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beatriz Azevedo de Almeida

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Expansive areas of low elevation in many densely populated coastal areas are at elevated risk of storm surges and flooding due to torrential precipitation, as a result of sea level rise. These phenomena could have catastrophic impacts on coastal communities and result in the destruction of critical infrastructure, disruption of economic activities and salt water contamination of the water supply. The objective of the study presented in this paper was to identify various impacts of sea level rise on civil infrastructures in coastal areas and examine the adaptation measures suggested in the existing literature. To this end, a systemic review of the existing literature was conducted in order to identify a repository of studies addressing sea level rise impacts and adaptation measures in the context of infrastructure systems. The study focused on three infrastructure sectors: water and wastewater, energy, and road transportation. The collected information was then analyzed in order to identify different categories of sea level rise impacts and corresponding adaptation measures. The findings of the study are threefold: (1 the major categories of sea level rise impacts on different infrastructure systems; (2 measures for protection, accommodation, and retreat in response to sea level rise impacts; and (3 challenges related to implementing adaptation measures.

  9. Combining urbanization and hydrodynamics data to evaluate sea level rise impacts on coastal water resources

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, C. R.; Martin, J. B.

    2016-02-01

    Assessments of the potential for salt water intrusion due to sea level rise require consideration of both coastal hydrodynamic and human activity thresholds. In siliciclastic systems, sea level rise may cause salt intrusion to coastal aquifers at annual or decadal scales, whereas in karst systems salt intrudes at the tidal scalse. In both cases, human activity impacts the freshwater portion of the system by altering the water demand on the aquifer. We combine physicochemical and human activity data to evaluate impact of sea level rise on salt intrusion to siliclastic (Indian River Lagoon, Fl, USA) and karst (Puerto Morelos, Yucatan, Mexico) systems under different sea level rise rate scenarios. Two hydrodynamic modeling scenarios are considered; flux controlled and head controlled. Under a flux controlled system hydraulic head gradients remain constant during sea level rise while under a head controlled system hydraulic graidents diminish, allowing saltwater intrusion. Our model contains three key terms; aquifer recharge, groundwater discharge and hydraulic conductivity. Groundwater discharge and hydraulic conductivity were calculated based on high frequency (karst system) and decadal (siliciclastic system) field measurements. Aquifer recharge is defined as precipitation less evapotranspiration and water demand was evaluated based on urban planning data that provided the regional water demand. Water demand includes agricultural area, toursim, traffic patterns, garbage collection and total population. Water demand was initially estimated using a partial leaset squares regression based on these variables. Our model indicates that water demand depends most on agricultural area, which has changed significantly over the last 30 years. In both systems, additional water demand creates a head controlled scenario, thus increaseing the protential fo salt intrusion with projected sea level rise.

  10. Modelling Morphological Response of Large Tidal Inlet Systems to Sea Level Rise

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dissanayake, P.K.

    2011-01-01

    This dissertation qualitatively investigates the morphodynamic response of a large inlet system to IPCC projected relative sea level rise (RSLR). Adopted numerical approach (Delft3D) used a highly schematised model domain analogous to the Ameland inlet in the Dutch Wadden Sea. Predicted inlet

  11. Motion of the Lambert Glacier estimated by using differential Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liu, Shuang; Tong, Xiaohua; Xie, Huan; Liu, Xiangfeng; Liu, Jun

    2014-01-01

    Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) is one of the most promising remote sensing technologies and has been widely applied in constructing topographic information and estimating the deformation of the Earth's surface. Ice velocity is an important parameter for calculating the mass balance and modelling ice shelve dynamics. Ice velocity is also an important indicator for climate changes. Therefore, it plays an important role in studying the global climate change and global sea level rise. In this paper, the ERS-1/2 tandem data and the ASTER GDEM are combined together to obtained the deformation in line of sight by using the differential Interferometric SAR for the Lambert Amery glacier in Antarctica. Then the surface parallel assumption is adopted in order to achieve the ice flow velocity. The results showed that ice velocity would be increased along the Lambert glacier; the maximum ice velocity would be reach about 450m/year in the study area

  12. Holocene and latest Pleistocene climate and glacier fluctuations in Iceland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geirsdóttir, Áslaug; Miller, Gifford H.; Axford, Yarrow; Ólafsdóttir, Sædís

    2009-10-01

    Multiproxy climate records from Iceland document complex changes in terrestrial climate and glacier fluctuations through the Holocene, revealing some coherent patterns of change as well as significant spatial variability. Most studies on the Last Glacial Maximum and subsequent deglaciation reveal a dynamic Iceland Ice Sheet (IIS) that responded abruptly to changes in ocean currents and sea level. The IIS broke up catastrophically around 15 ka as the Polar Front migrated northward and sea level rose. Indications of regional advance or halt of the glaciers are seen in late Alleröd/early Younger Dryas time and again in PreBoreal time. Due to the apparent rise of relative sea level in Iceland during this time, most sites contain evidence for fluctuating, tidewater glacier termini occupying paleo fjords and bays. The time between the end of the Younger Dryas and the Preboreal was characterized by repeated jökulhlaups that eroded glacial deposits. By 10.3 ka, the main ice sheet was in rapid retreat across the highlands of Iceland. The Holocene thermal maximum (HTM) was reached after 8 ka with land temperatures estimated to be 3 °C higher than the 1961-1990 reference, and net precipitation similar to modern. Such temperatures imply largely ice-free conditions across Iceland in the early to mid-Holocene. Several marine and lacustrine sediment climate proxies record substantial summer temperature depression between 8.5 and 8 ka, but no moraines have been detected from that time. Termination of the HTM and onset of Neoglacial cooling took place sometime after 6 ka with increased glacier activity between 4.5 and 4.0 ka, intensifying between 3.0 and 2.5 ka. Although a distinct warming during the Medieval Warm Period is not dramatically apparent in Icelandic records, the interval from ca AD 0 to 1200 is commonly characterized by relative stability with slow rates of change. The literature most commonly describes Little Ice Age moraines (ca AD 1250-1900) as representing the

  13. Coastal Marsh Longevity, Ecological Succession, and Organic Carbon Dynamics During Early Holocene Sea-Level Rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vetter, L.; Schreiner, K. M.; Rosenheim, B. E.; Tornqvist, T. E.

    2016-02-01

    Coastal marsh environments perform essential ecosystem services, including nutrient filtering, soil organic matter storage, and storm surge abatement, yet much is still unknown about their formation and fate under periods of sea-level change. During the early Holocene (7-10 ka), rapid sea-level rise in coastal Louisiana was one of the primary controls over marsh development and longevity. Here, we investigate plant community composition and succession and soil organic matter storage in early Holocene coastal marshes in Louisiana using bulk elemental ratios, lignin phenol biomarkers and stable isotopes from peat layers. Sediment cores were collected in southeastern Louisiana and contain a record of an early Holocene transgressive sea-level sequence 16-25 m below present sea-level. The sedimentary record consists of an immature paleosol overlain by basal peat that accumulated in an estuarine marsh, overlain by marine lagoonal muds. A re-established marsh peat is present 1-4 m above the initial transition to marine conditions, indicating a sequence of marsh development, sea-level rise and onset of marine conditions, and then further marsh development as the rate of relative sea-level rise decelerated. Plant community composition in coastal marshes was determined through cupric oxide oxidation and lignin-phenol and non-lignin-phenol biomarker abundances. The degradation state of soil organic matter and the specific source of stabilized organic matter within the sedimentary peats were determined through lignin-phenol biomarker ratios. Organic matter sources ranged from terrestrial to marine over the course of sea-level rise, and different sites showed different amounts of marine organic matter influence and different levels of terrestrial organic matter degradation. These results have important implications for reconstructing the response of coastal marshes and their plant communities to accelerated rates of sea-level rise projected through 2100.

  14. Possible impacts of sea level rise on disease transmission and potential adaptation strategies, a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dvorak, Ana C; Solo-Gabriele, Helena M; Galletti, Andrea; Benzecry, Bernardo; Malone, Hannah; Boguszewski, Vicki; Bird, Jason

    2018-04-18

    Sea levels are projected to rise in response to climate change, causing the intrusion of sea water into land. In flat coastal regions, this would generate an increase in shallow water covered areas with limited circulation. This scenario raises a concern about the consequences it could have on human health, specifically the possible impacts on disease transmission. In this review paper we identified three categories of diseases which are associated with water and whose transmission can be affected by sea level rise. These categories include: mosquitoborne diseases, naturalized organisms (Vibrio spp. and toxic algae), and fecal-oral diseases. For each disease category, we propose comprehensive adaptation strategies that would help minimize possible health risks. Finally, the City of Key West, Florida is analyzed as a case study, due to its inherent vulnerability to sea level rise. Current and projected adaptation techniques are discussed as well as the integration of additional recommendations, focused on disease transmission control. Given that sea level rise will likely continue into the future, the promotion and implementation of positive adaptation strategies is necessary to ensure community resilience. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Estimates of the Economic Effects of Sea Level Rise

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Darwin, R.F.; Tol, R.S.J.

    2001-01-01

    Regional estimates of direct cost (DC) are commonly used to measure the economic damages of sea level rise. Such estimates suffer from three limitations: (1) values of threatened endowments are not well known, (2) loss of endowments does not affect consumer prices, and (3) international trade is disregarded. Results in this paper indicate that these limitations can significantly affect economic assessments of sea level rise. Current uncertainty regarding endowment values (as reflected in two alternative data sets), for example, leads to a 17 percent difference in coastal protection, a 36 percent difference in the amount of land protected, and a 36 percent difference in DC globally. Also, global losses in equivalent variation (EV), a welfare measure that accounts for price changes, are 13 percent higher than DC estimates. Regional EV losses may be up to 10 percent lower than regional DC, however, because international trade tends to redistribute losses from regions with relatively high damages to regions with relatively low damages. 43 refs

  16. 110 years of local glacier and ice cap changes in Central- and North East Greenland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bjork, A. A.; Aagaard, S.; Kjaer, K. H.; Khan, S. A.; Box, J.

    2014-12-01

    The local glaciers and ice caps of Greenland are becoming more apparent players in global sea-level rise, and their contribution to future changes is significant. Very little information on their historical fluctuations exists as much of the focus has been on the Greenland Ice Sheet. Now, we can for the first time present historic data that spans 110 years for more than 200 of the local glaciers and ice caps covering this large and important region of the Arctic. The central- and north eastern part of Greenland is of particular interest as these areas are predicted to exhibit a more active behavior with higher mass loss in the future - simultaneously with an increase in precipitation. Our results show that the glaciers and ice caps in the region are responding very rapidly to changes in temperature and precipitation. The present retreat is the fastest observed within the last eight decades, only surpassed by the rapid post LIA retreat. The 1930s was the golden era for scientific exploration in Central- and North East Greenland as several large expeditions visited the area and photographed from land, sea and air. We use historic recordings from Danish and Norwegian aerial missions and terrestrial recordings from the renowned American Explorer Louise Boyd. These unique pictures from the early 1930s form the backbone of the study and are supplemented the more recent aerial photographs the 1940s and onwards and satellite imagery from the mid-1960s and up until present. From high resolution aerial photographs we are able to map the maximum extent of the glaciers during the LIA (Little Ice Age), from which retreat in this area is estimated to commence in 1900. Using a new SMB (Surface Mass Balance) model and its components covering the entire observational period along with high resolution DEMs and historic sea-ice records we are now able to extract valuable information on the past and present triggers of glacial change.

  17. Effect of sea-level rise on salt water intrusion near a coastal well field in southeastern Florida.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langevin, Christian D; Zygnerski, Michael

    2013-01-01

    A variable-density groundwater flow and dispersive solute transport model was developed for the shallow coastal aquifer system near a municipal supply well field in southeastern Florida. The model was calibrated for a 105-year period (1900 to 2005). An analysis with the model suggests that well-field withdrawals were the dominant cause of salt water intrusion near the well field, and that historical sea-level rise, which is similar to lower-bound projections of future sea-level rise, exacerbated the extent of salt water intrusion. Average 2005 hydrologic conditions were used for 100-year sensitivity simulations aimed at quantifying the effect of projected rises in sea level on fresh coastal groundwater resources near the well field. Use of average 2005 hydrologic conditions and a constant sea level result in total dissolved solids (TDS) concentration of the well field exceeding drinking water standards after 70 years. When sea-level rise is included in the simulations, drinking water standards are exceeded 10 to 21 years earlier, depending on the specified rate of sea-level rise. Published 2012. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  18. Development of sea level rise scenarios for climate change assessments of the Mekong Delta, Vietnam

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doyle, Thomas W.; Day, Richard H.; Michot, Thomas C.

    2010-01-01

    Rising sea level poses critical ecological and economical consequences for the low-lying megadeltas of the world where dependent populations and agriculture are at risk. The Mekong Delta of Vietnam is one of many deltas that are especially vulnerable because much of the land surface is below mean sea level and because there is a lack of coastal barrier protection. Food security related to rice and shrimp farming in the Mekong Delta is currently under threat from saltwater intrusion, relative sea level rise, and storm surge potential. Understanding the degree of potential change in sea level under climate change is needed to undertake regional assessments of potential impacts and to formulate adaptation strategies. This report provides constructed time series of potential sea level rise scenarios for the Mekong Delta region by incorporating (1) aspects of observed intra- and inter-annual sea level variability from tide records and (2) projected estimates for different rates of regional subsidence and accelerated eustacy through the year 2100 corresponding with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) climate models and emission scenarios.

  19. Revisiting the contemporary sea-level budget on global and regional scales.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rietbroek, Roelof; Brunnabend, Sandra-Esther; Kusche, Jürgen; Schröter, Jens; Dahle, Christoph

    2016-02-09

    Dividing the sea-level budget into contributions from ice sheets and glaciers, the water cycle, steric expansion, and crustal movement is challenging, especially on regional scales. Here, Gravity Recovery And Climate Experiment (GRACE) gravity observations and sea-level anomalies from altimetry are used in a joint inversion, ensuring a consistent decomposition of the global and regional sea-level rise budget. Over the years 2002-2014, we find a global mean steric trend of 1.38 ± 0.16 mm/y, compared with a total trend of 2.74 ± 0.58 mm/y. This is significantly larger than steric trends derived from in situ temperature/salinity profiles and models which range from 0.66 ± 0.2 to 0.94 ± 0.1 mm/y. Mass contributions from ice sheets and glaciers (1.37 ± 0.09 mm/y, accelerating with 0.03 ± 0.02 mm/y(2)) are offset by a negative hydrological component (-0.29 ± 0.26 mm/y). The combined mass rate (1.08 ± 0.3 mm/y) is smaller than previous GRACE estimates (up to 2 mm/y), but it is consistent with the sum of individual contributions (ice sheets, glaciers, and hydrology) found in literature. The altimetric sea-level budget is closed by coestimating a remaining component of 0.22 ± 0.26 mm/y. Well above average sea-level rise is found regionally near the Philippines (14.7 ± 4.39 mm/y) and Indonesia (8.3 ± 4.7 mm/y) which is dominated by steric components (11.2 ± 3.58 mm/y and 6.4 ± 3.18 mm/y, respectively). In contrast, in the central and Eastern part of the Pacific, negative steric trends (down to -2.8 ± 1.53 mm/y) are detected. Significant regional components are found, up to 5.3 ± 2.6 mm/y in the northwest Atlantic, which are likely due to ocean bottom pressure variations.

  20. Twentieth-century global-mean sea level rise: Is the whole greater than the sum of the parts?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregory, J.M.; White, N.J.; Church, J.A.; Bierkens, M.F.P.; Box, J.E.; Van den Broeke, M.R.; Cogley, J.G.; Fettweis, X.; Hanna, E.; Huybrechts, P.; Konikow, Leonard F.; Leclercq, P.W.; Marzeion, B.; Oerlemans, J.; Tamisiea, M.E.; Wada, Y.; Wake, L.M.; Van de Wal, R.S.W.

    2013-01-01

    Confidence in projections of global-mean sea level rise (GMSLR) depends on an ability to account for GMSLR during the twentieth century. There are contributions from ocean thermal expansion, mass loss from glaciers and ice sheets, groundwater extraction, and reservoir impoundment. Progress has been made toward solving the “enigma” of twentieth-century GMSLR, which is that the observed GMSLR has previously been found to exceed the sum of estimated contributions, especially for the earlier decades. The authors propose the following: thermal expansion simulated by climate models may previously have been underestimated because of their not including volcanic forcing in their control state; the rate of glacier mass loss was larger than previously estimated and was not smaller in the first half than in the second half of the century; the Greenland ice sheet could have made a positive contribution throughout the century; and groundwater depletion and reservoir impoundment, which are of opposite sign, may have been approximately equal in magnitude. It is possible to reconstruct the time series of GMSLR from the quantified contributions, apart from a constant residual term, which is small enough to be explained as a long-term contribution from the Antarctic ice sheet. The reconstructions account for the observation that the rate of GMSLR was not much larger during the last 50 years than during the twentieth century as a whole, despite the increasing anthropogenic forcing. Semiempirical methods for projecting GMSLR depend on the existence of a relationship between global climate change and the rate of GMSLR, but the implication of the authors' closure of the budget is that such a relationship is weak or absent during the twentieth century.

  1. Sea-level rise modeling handbook: Resource guide for coastal land managers, engineers, and scientists

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doyle, Thomas W.; Chivoiu, Bogdan; Enwright, Nicholas M.

    2015-08-24

    Global sea level is rising and may accelerate with continued fossil fuel consumption from industrial and population growth. In 2012, the U.S. Geological Survey conducted more than 30 training and feedback sessions with Federal, State, and nongovernmental organization (NGO) coastal managers and planners across the northern Gulf of Mexico coast to evaluate user needs, potential benefits, current scientific understanding, and utilization of resource aids and modeling tools focused on sea-level rise. In response to the findings from the sessions, this sea-level rise modeling handbook has been designed as a guide to the science and simulation models for understanding the dynamics and impacts of sea-level rise on coastal ecosystems. The review herein of decision-support tools and predictive models was compiled from the training sessions, from online research, and from publications. The purpose of this guide is to describe and categorize the suite of data, methods, and models and their design, structure, and application for hindcasting and forecasting the potential impacts of sea-level rise in coastal ecosystems. The data and models cover a broad spectrum of disciplines involving different designs and scales of spatial and temporal complexity for predicting environmental change and ecosystem response. These data and models have not heretofore been synthesized, nor have appraisals been made of their utility or limitations. Some models are demonstration tools for non-experts, whereas others require more expert capacity to apply for any given park, refuge, or regional application. A simplified tabular context has been developed to list and contrast a host of decision-support tools and models from the ecological, geological, and hydrological perspectives. Criteria were established to distinguish the source, scale, and quality of information input and geographic datasets; physical and biological constraints and relations; datum characteristics of water and land components

  2. High-resolution tide projections reveal extinction threshold in response to sea-level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Field, Christopher R; Bayard, Trina S; Gjerdrum, Carina; Hill, Jason M; Meiman, Susan; Elphick, Chris S

    2017-05-01

    Sea-level rise will affect coastal species worldwide, but models that aim to predict these effects are typically based on simple measures of sea level that do not capture its inherent complexity, especially variation over timescales shorter than 1 year. Coastal species might be most affected, however, by floods that exceed a critical threshold. The frequency and duration of such floods may be more important to population dynamics than mean measures of sea level. In particular, the potential for changes in the frequency and duration of flooding events to result in nonlinear population responses or biological thresholds merits further research, but may require that models incorporate greater resolution in sea level than is typically used. We created population simulations for a threatened songbird, the saltmarsh sparrow (Ammodramus caudacutus), in a region where sea level is predictable with high accuracy and precision. We show that incorporating the timing of semidiurnal high tide events throughout the breeding season, including how this timing is affected by mean sea-level rise, predicts a reproductive threshold that is likely to cause a rapid demographic shift. This shift is likely to threaten the persistence of saltmarsh sparrows beyond 2060 and could cause extinction as soon as 2035. Neither extinction date nor the population trajectory was sensitive to the emissions scenarios underlying sea-level projections, as most of the population decline occurred before scenarios diverge. Our results suggest that the variation and complexity of climate-driven variables could be important for understanding the potential responses of coastal species to sea-level rise, especially for species that rely on coastal areas for reproduction. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  3. The Impact of Sea Level Rise on Geodetic Vertical Datum of Peninsular Malaysia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Din, A. H. M.; Abazu, I. C.; Pa'suya, M. F.; Omar, K. M.; Hamid, A. I. A.

    2016-09-01

    Sea level rise is rapidly turning into major issues among our community and all levels of the government are working to develop responses to ensure these matters are given the uttermost attention in all facets of planning. It is more interesting to understand and investigate the present day sea level variation due its potential impact, particularly on our national geodetic vertical datum. To determine present day sea level variation, it is vital to consider both in-situ tide gauge and remote sensing measurements. This study presents an effort to quantify the sea level rise rate and magnitude over Peninsular Malaysia using tide gauge and multi-mission satellite altimeter. The time periods taken for both techniques are 32 years (from 1984 to 2015) for tidal data and 23 years (from 1993 to 2015) for altimetry data. Subsequently, the impact of sea level rise on Peninsular Malaysia Geodetic Vertical Datum (PMGVD) is evaluated in this study. the difference between MSL computed from 10 years (1984 - 1993) and 32 years (1984 - 2015) tidal data at Port Kelang showed that the increment of sea level is about 27mm. The computed magnitude showed an estimate of the long-term effect a change in MSL has on the geodetic vertical datum of Port Kelang tide gauge station. This will help give a new insight on the establishment of national geodetic vertical datum based on mean sea level data. Besides, this information can be used for a wide variety of climatic applications to study environmental issues related to flood and global warming in Malaysia.

  4. THE IMPACT OF SEA LEVEL RISE ON GEODETIC VERTICAL DATUM OF PENINSULAR MALAYSIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. H. M. Din

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Sea level rise is rapidly turning into major issues among our community and all levels of the government are working to develop responses to ensure these matters are given the uttermost attention in all facets of planning. It is more interesting to understand and investigate the present day sea level variation due its potential impact, particularly on our national geodetic vertical datum. To determine present day sea level variation, it is vital to consider both in-situ tide gauge and remote sensing measurements. This study presents an effort to quantify the sea level rise rate and magnitude over Peninsular Malaysia using tide gauge and multi-mission satellite altimeter. The time periods taken for both techniques are 32 years (from 1984 to 2015 for tidal data and 23 years (from 1993 to 2015 for altimetry data. Subsequently, the impact of sea level rise on Peninsular Malaysia Geodetic Vertical Datum (PMGVD is evaluated in this study. the difference between MSL computed from 10 years (1984 – 1993 and 32 years (1984 – 2015 tidal data at Port Kelang showed that the increment of sea level is about 27mm. The computed magnitude showed an estimate of the long-term effect a change in MSL has on the geodetic vertical datum of Port Kelang tide gauge station. This will help give a new insight on the establishment of national geodetic vertical datum based on mean sea level data. Besides, this information can be used for a wide variety of climatic applications to study environmental issues related to flood and global warming in Malaysia.

  5. Potential vulnerability implications of sea level rise for the coastal zones of Cochin, southwest coast of India

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    DineshKumar, P.K.

    scenarios with particular emphasis to the coastal environment, a detailed investigation was carried out in the study region (Dinesh Kumar, 2000). Beach transect data generated in the region were analysed to determine the effects of projected sea level rise... considered valid (Are Kont et al., 2003) as the general projections on average global sea level rise, which is used in the present investigation as the projected sea level rise scenarios. According to the climate change scenario results, the projected values...

  6. A complex relationship between calving glaciers and climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Post, A.; O'Neel, S.; Motyka, R.J.; Streveler, G.

    2011-01-01

    Many terrestrial glaciers are sensitive indicators of past and present climate change as atmospheric temperature and snowfall modulate glacier volume. However, climate interpretations based on glacier behavior require careful selection of representative glaciers, as was recently pointed out for surging and debris-covered glaciers, whose behavior often defies regional glacier response to climate [Yde and Paasche, 2010]. Tidewater calving glaciers (TWGs)mountain glaciers whose termini reach the sea and are generally grounded on the seaflooralso fall into the category of non-representative glaciers because the regional-scale asynchronous behavior of these glaciers clouds their complex relationship with climate. TWGs span the globe; they can be found both fringing ice sheets and in high-latitude regions of each hemisphere. TWGs are known to exhibit cyclic behavior, characterized by slow advance and rapid, unstable retreat, largely independent of short-term climate forcing. This so-called TWG cycle, first described by Post [1975], provides a solid foundation upon which modern investigations of TWG stability are built. Scientific understanding has developed rapidly as a result of the initial recognition of their asynchronous cyclicity, rendering greater insight into the hierarchy of processes controlling regional behavior. This has improved the descriptions of the strong dynamic feedbacks present during retreat, the role of the ocean in TWG dynamics, and the similarities and differences between TWG and ice sheet outlet glaciers that can often support floating tongues.

  7. Estimating Areas of Vulnerability: Sea Level Rise and Storm Surge Hazards in the National Parks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caffrey, M.; Beavers, R. L.; Slayton, I. A.

    2013-12-01

    The University of Colorado Boulder in collaboration with the National Park Service has undertaken the task of compiling sea level change and storm surge data for 105 coastal parks. The aim of our research is to highlight areas of the park system that are at increased risk of rapid inundation as well as periodic flooding due to sea level rise and storms. This research will assist park managers and planners in adapting to climate change. The National Park Service incorporates climate change data into many of their planning documents and is willing to implement innovative coastal adaptation strategies. Events such as Hurricane Sandy highlight how impacts of coastal hazards will continue to challenge management of natural and cultural resources and infrastructure along our coastlines. This poster will discuss the current status of this project. We discuss the impacts of Hurricane Sandy as well as the latest sea level rise and storm surge modeling being employed in this project. In addition to evaluating various drivers of relative sea-level change, we discuss how park planners and managers also need to consider projected storm surge values added to sea-level rise magnitudes, which could further complicate the management of coastal lands. Storm surges occurring at coastal parks will continue to change the land and seascapes of these areas, with the potential to completely submerge them. The likelihood of increased storm intensity added to increasing rates of sea-level rise make predicting the reach of future storm surges essential for planning and adaptation purposes. The National Park Service plays a leading role in developing innovative strategies for coastal parks to adapt to sea-level rise and storm surge, whilst coastal storms are opportunities to apply highly focused responses.

  8. Keep up or drown: adjustment of western Pacific coral reefs to sea-level rise in the 21st century.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Woesik, R; Golbuu, Y; Roff, G

    2015-07-01

    Since the Mid-Holocene, some 5000 years ago, coral reefs in the Pacific Ocean have been vertically constrained by sea level. Contemporary sea-level rise is releasing these constraints, providing accommodation space for vertical reef expansion. Here, we show that Porites microatolls, from reef-flat environments in Palau (western Pacific Ocean), are 'keeping up' with contemporary sea-level rise. Measurements of 570 reef-flat Porites microatolls at 10 locations around Palau revealed recent vertical skeletal extension (78±13 mm) over the last 6-8 years, which is consistent with the timing of the recent increase in sea level. We modelled whether microatoll growth rates will potentially 'keep up' with predicted sea-level rise in the near future, based upon average growth, and assuming a decline in growth for every 1°C increase in temperature. We then compared these estimated extension rates with rates of sea-level rise under four Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs). Our model suggests that under low-mid RCP scenarios, reef-coral growth will keep up with sea-level rise, but if greenhouse gas concentrations exceed 670 ppm atmospheric CO2 levels and with +2.2°C sea-surface temperature by 2100 (RCP 6.0 W m(-2)), our predictions indicate that Porites microatolls will be unable to keep up with projected rates of sea-level rise in the twenty-first century.

  9. Regional cooling caused recent New Zealand glacier advances in a period of global warming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mackintosh, Andrew N; Anderson, Brian M; Lorrey, Andrew M; Renwick, James A; Frei, Prisco; Dean, Sam M

    2017-02-14

    Glaciers experienced worldwide retreat during the twentieth and early twenty first centuries, and the negative trend in global glacier mass balance since the early 1990s is predominantly a response to anthropogenic climate warming. The exceptional terminus advance of some glaciers during recent global warming is thought to relate to locally specific climate conditions, such as increased precipitation. In New Zealand, at least 58 glaciers advanced between 1983 and 2008, and Franz Josef and Fox glaciers advanced nearly continuously during this time. Here we show that the glacier advance phase resulted predominantly from discrete periods of reduced air temperature, rather than increased precipitation. The lower temperatures were associated with anomalous southerly winds and low sea surface temperature in the Tasman Sea region. These conditions result from variability in the structure of the extratropical atmospheric circulation over the South Pacific. While this sequence of climate variability and its effect on New Zealand glaciers is unusual on a global scale, it remains consistent with a climate system that is being modified by humans.

  10. Implications of Sea Level Rise on Coastal Flood Hazards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roeber, V.; Li, N.; Cheung, K.; Lane, P.; Evans, R. L.; Donnelly, J. P.; Ashton, A. D.

    2012-12-01

    Recent global and local projections suggest the sea level will be on the order of 1 m or higher than the current level by the end of the century. Coastal communities and ecosystems in low-lying areas are vulnerable to impacts resulting from hurricane or large swell events in combination with sea-level rise. This study presents the implementation and results of an integrated numerical modeling package to delineate coastal inundation due to storm landfalls at future sea levels. The modeling package utilizes a suite of numerical models to capture both large-scale phenomena in the open ocean and small-scale processes in coastal areas. It contains four components to simulate (1) meteorological conditions, (2) astronomical tides and surge, (3) wave generation, propagation, and nearshore transformation, and (4) surf-zone processes and inundation onto dry land associated with a storm event. Important aspects of this package are the two-way coupling of a spectral wave model and a storm surge model as well as a detailed representation of surf and swash zone dynamics by a higher-order Boussinesq-type wave model. The package was validated with field data from Hurricane Ivan of 2005 on the US Gulf coast and applied to tropical and extratropical storm scenarios respectively at Eglin, Florida and Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. The results show a nonlinear increase of storm surge level and nearshore wave energy with a rising sea level. The exacerbated flood hazard can have major consequences for coastal communities with respect to erosion and damage to infrastructure.

  11. Assessing water quality of the Chesapeake Bay by the impact of sea level rise and warming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, P.; Linker, L.; Wang, H.; Bhatt, G.; Yactayo, G.; Hinson, K.; Tian, R.

    2017-08-01

    The influence of sea level rise and warming on circulation and water quality of the Chesapeake Bay under projected climate conditions in 2050 were estimated by computer simulation. Four estuarine circulation scenarios in the estuary were run using the same watershed load in 1991-2000 period. They are, 1) the Base Scenario, which represents the current climate condition, 2) a Sea Level Rise Scenario, 3) a Warming Scenario, and 4) a combined Sea Level Rise and Warming Scenario. With a 1.6-1.9°C increase in monthly air temperatures in the Warming Scenario, water temperature in the Bay is estimated to increase by 0.8-1°C. Summer average anoxic volume is estimated to increase 1.4 percent compared to the Base Scenario, because of an increase in algal blooms in the spring and summer, promotion of oxygen consumptive processes, and an increase of stratification. However, a 0.5-meter Sea Level Rise Scenario results in a 12 percent reduction of anoxic volume. This is mainly due to increased estuarine circulation that promotes oxygen-rich sea water intrusion in lower layers. The combined Sea Level Rise and Warming Scenario results in a 10.8 percent reduction of anoxic volume. Global warming increases precipitation and consequently increases nutrient loads from the watershed by approximately 5-7 percent. A scenario that used a 10 percent increase in watershed loads and current estuarine circulation patterns yielded a 19 percent increase in summer anoxic volume, while a scenario that used a 10 percent increase in watershed loads and modified estuarine circulation patterns by the aforementioned sea level rise and warming yielded a 6 percent increase in summer anoxic volume. Impacts on phytoplankton, sediments, and water clarity were also analysed.

  12. Risks of Coastal Storm Surge and the Effect of Sea Level Rise in the Red River Delta, Vietnam

    OpenAIRE

    Neumann, James; Ludwig, Lindsay; Verly, Caroleen; Emanuel, Kerry Andrew; Ravela, Srinivas

    2015-01-01

    This paper considers the impact of sea level rise and storm surge on the Red River delta region of Vietnam an area already known to be highly vulnerable to coastal risks. By combining a range of sea level rise scenarios for 2050 with the simulated storm surge level for the 100-year storm surge, we analyze permanently inundated lands and temporary flood zones. As is well-established in the literature, sea level rise will increase the risk of storms by raising the base sea level from which surg...

  13. Nuisance Flooding and Relative Sea-Level Rise: the Importance of Present-Day Land Motion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karegar, Makan A; Dixon, Timothy H; Malservisi, Rocco; Kusche, Jürgen; Engelhart, Simon E

    2017-09-11

    Sea-level rise is beginning to cause increased inundation of many low-lying coastal areas. While most of Earth's coastal areas are at risk, areas that will be affected first are characterized by several additional factors. These include regional oceanographic and meteorological effects and/or land subsidence that cause relative sea level to rise faster than the global average. For catastrophic coastal flooding, when wind-driven storm surge inundates large areas, the relative contribution of sea-level rise to the frequency of these events is difficult to evaluate. For small scale "nuisance flooding," often associated with high tides, recent increases in frequency are more clearly linked to sea-level rise and global warming. While both types of flooding are likely to increase in the future, only nuisance flooding is an early indicator of areas that will eventually experience increased catastrophic flooding and land loss. Here we assess the frequency and location of nuisance flooding along the eastern seaboard of North America. We show that vertical land motion induced by recent anthropogenic activity and glacial isostatic adjustment are contributing factors for increased nuisance flooding. Our results have implications for flood susceptibility, forecasting and mitigation, including management of groundwater extraction from coastal aquifers.

  14. QUANTIFYING REGIONAL SEA LEVEL RISE CONTRIBUTIONS FROM THE GREENLAND ICE SHEET

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diandong Ren

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available This study projects the sea level contribution from the Greenland ice sheet (GrIS through to 2100, using a recently developed ice dynamics model forced by atmospheric parameters derived from three different climate models (CGCMs. The geographical pattern of the near-surface ice warming imposes a divergent flow field favoring mass loss through enhanced ice flow. The calculated average mass loss rate during the latter half of the 21st century is ~0.64±0.06 mm/year eustatic sea level rise, which is significantly larger than the IPCC AR4 estimate from surface mass balance. The difference is due largely to the positive feedbacks from reduced ice viscosity and the basal sliding mechanism present in the ice dynamics model. This inter-model, inter-scenario spread adds approximately a 20% uncertainty to the IPCC ice model estimates. The sea level rise is geographically non-uniform and reaches 1.69±0.24 mm/year by 2100 for the northeast coastal region of the United States, amplified by the expected weakening of the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (AMOC. In contrast to previous estimates, which neglected the GrIS fresh water input, both sides of the North Atlantic Gyre are projected to experience sea level rises. The impacts on a selection of major cities on both sides of the Atlantic and in the Pacific and southern oceans also are assessed. The other ocean basins are found to be less affected than the Atlantic Ocean.

  15. Final project memorandum: sea-level rise modeling handbook: resource guide for resource managers, engineers, and scientists

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doyle, Thomas W.

    2015-01-01

    Coastal wetlands of the Southeastern United States are undergoing retreat and migration from increasing tidal inundation and saltwater intrusion attributed to climate variability and sea-level rise. Much of the literature describing potential sea-level rise projections and modeling predictions are found in peer-reviewed academic journals or government technical reports largely suited to reading by other Ph.D. scientists who are more familiar or engaged in the climate change debate. Various sea-level rise and coastal wetland models have been developed and applied of different designs and scales of spatial and temporal complexity for predicting habitat and environmental change that have not heretofore been synthesized to aid natural resource managers of their utility and limitations. Training sessions were conducted with Federal land managers with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Park Service, and NOAA National Estuarine Research Reserves as well as state partners and nongovernmental organizations across the northern Gulf Coast from Florida to Texas to educate and to evaluate user needs and understanding of concepts, data, and modeling tools for projecting sea-level rise and its impact on coastal habitats and wildlife. As a result, this handbook was constructed from these training and feedback sessions with coastal managers and biologists of published decision-support tools and simulation models for sea-level rise and climate change assessments. A simplified tabular context was developed listing the various kinds of decision-support tools and ecological models along with criteria to distinguish the source, scale, and quality of information input and geographic data sets, physical and biological constraints and relationships, datum characteristics of water and land elevation components, utility options for setting sea-level rise and climate change scenarios, and ease or difficulty of storing, displaying, or interpreting model output. The handbook is designed

  16. Glacier change in the Gangdise Mountains, southern Tibet, since the Little Ice Age

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Qian; Yi, Chaolu; Fu, Ping; Wu, Yubin; Liu, Jinhua; Wang, Ninglian

    2018-04-01

    Delineating glacier change during the Little Ice Age (LIA) is of great importance when attempting to understand regional climatic changes and can also help to improve the understanding of any predictions of future glacial changes. However, such knowledge is still lacking for some critical regions of the Tibetan Plateau (TP). In this study, we mapped 4188 contemporary glaciers and reconstructed 1216 LIA areas of glacial coverage in the Gangdise Mountains to the north of the Himalaya using Google Earth satellite imagery. We estimated their paleoglacial areas and equilibrium line altitudes (ELAs) based on the toe-to-headwall altitude ratio (THAR) method. Results show that most glaciers are small (ELA ranges from 5516 to 6337 m asl; the LIA ELA ranged from 5476 to 6329 m asl. Contemporary and LIA ELA values rise from southeast to northwest. As a general rule, the rise in the ELA value decreases from the eastern to the central Gangdise Mountains and then increases westward, with a mean ELA rise of 45 m. Multiple regression models suggest that 46.8% of the glacier area loss can be explained by glacier elevation, area, and slope. However, only 15.5% of the rise in ELA values can be explained by glacial geometric, topographic, or locational parameters. The spatial pattern of modern ELA values in this region appears inversely related to precipitation, which decreases from southeast to northwest, implying that precipitation is one of the key controls of ELAs. This is also consistent with results from elsewhere in High Asia. In contrast to the Gangdise Mountains' eastern and western sectors, glaciers in the central sector have undergone less change, i.e., in terms of reductions in length, area loss, and rises in ELA. Topography can of course also influence glacial change by creating shielding and/or rainshadow effects and by affecting local temperatures.

  17. Atlantic Water advection vs. glacier dynamics in northern Spitsbergen since early deglaciation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Bartels

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Atlantic Water (AW advection plays an important role in climatic, oceanographic and environmental conditions in the eastern Arctic. Situated along the only deep connection between the Atlantic and the Arctic oceans, the Svalbard Archipelago is an ideal location to reconstruct the past AW advection history and document its linkage with local glacier dynamics, as illustrated in the present study of a 275 cm long sedimentary record from Woodfjorden (northern Spitsbergen; water depth: 171 m spanning the last  ∼  15 500 years. Sedimentological, micropalaeontological and geochemical analyses were used to reconstruct changes in marine environmental conditions, sea ice cover and glacier activity. Data illustrate a partial break-up of the Svalbard–Barents Sea Ice Sheet from Heinrich Stadial 1 onwards (until  ∼  14.6 ka. During the Bølling–Allerød ( ∼  14.6–12.7 ka, AW penetrated as a bottom water mass into the fjord system and contributed significantly to the destabilization of local glaciers. During the Younger Dryas ( ∼  12.7–11.7 ka, it intruded into intermediate waters while evidence for a glacier advance is lacking. A short-term deepening of the halocline occurred at the very end of this interval. During the early Holocene ( ∼  11.7–7.8 ka, mild conditions led to glacier retreat, a reduced sea ice cover and increasing sea surface temperatures, with a brief interruption during the Preboreal Oscillation ( ∼  11.1–10.8 ka. Due to a  ∼  6000-year gap, the mid-Holocene is not recorded in this sediment core. During the late Holocene ( ∼  1.8–0.4 ka, a slightly reduced AW inflow and lower sea surface temperatures compared to the early Holocene are reconstructed. Glaciers, which previously retreated to the shallower inner parts of the Woodfjorden system, likely advanced during the late Holocene. In particular, topographic control in concert with the reduced

  18. Consideration of vertical uncertainty in elevation-based sea-level rise assessments: Mobile Bay, Alabama case study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gesch, Dean B.

    2013-01-01

    The accuracy with which coastal topography has been mapped directly affects the reliability and usefulness of elevationbased sea-level rise vulnerability assessments. Recent research has shown that the qualities of the elevation data must be well understood to properly model potential impacts. The cumulative vertical uncertainty has contributions from elevation data error, water level data uncertainties, and vertical datum and transformation uncertainties. The concepts of minimum sealevel rise increment and minimum planning timeline, important parameters for an elevation-based sea-level rise assessment, are used in recognition of the inherent vertical uncertainty of the underlying data. These concepts were applied to conduct a sea-level rise vulnerability assessment of the Mobile Bay, Alabama, region based on high-quality lidar-derived elevation data. The results that detail the area and associated resources (land cover, population, and infrastructure) vulnerable to a 1.18-m sea-level rise by the year 2100 are reported as a range of values (at the 95% confidence level) to account for the vertical uncertainty in the base data. Examination of the tabulated statistics about land cover, population, and infrastructure in the minimum and maximum vulnerable areas shows that these resources are not uniformly distributed throughout the overall vulnerable zone. The methods demonstrated in the Mobile Bay analysis provide an example of how to consider and properly account for vertical uncertainty in elevation-based sea-level rise vulnerability assessments, and the advantages of doing so.

  19. Accelerated sea level rise and Florida Current transport

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Park

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available The Florida Current is the headwater of the Gulf Stream and is a component of the North Atlantic western boundary current from which a geostrophic balance between sea surface height and mass transport directly influence coastal sea levels along the Florida Straits. A linear regression of daily Florida Current transport estimates does not find a significant change in transport over the last decade; however, a nonlinear trend extracted from empirical mode decomposition (EMD suggests a 3 Sv decline in mean transport. This decline is consistent with observed tide gauge records in Florida Bay and the straits exhibiting an acceleration of mean sea level (MSL rise over the decade. It is not known whether this recent change represents natural variability or the onset of the anticipated secular decline in Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (AMOC; nonetheless, such changes have direct impacts on the sensitive ecological systems of the Everglades as well as the climate of western Europe and eastern North America.

  20. Sea Level Rise Impacts on Wastewater Treatment Systems Along the U.S. Coasts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hummel, Michelle A.; Berry, Matthew S.; Stacey, Mark T.

    2018-04-01

    As sea levels rise, coastal communities will experience more frequent and persistent nuisance flooding, and some low-lying areas may be permanently inundated. Critical components of lifeline infrastructure networks in these areas are also at risk of flooding, which could cause significant service disruptions that extend beyond the flooded zone. Thus, identifying critical infrastructure components that are exposed to sea level rise is an important first step in developing targeted investment in protective actions and enhancing the overall resilience of coastal communities. Wastewater treatment plants are typically located at low elevations near the coastline to minimize the cost of collecting consumed water and discharging treated effluent, which makes them particularly susceptible to coastal flooding. For this analysis, we used geographic information systems to assess the exposure of wastewater infrastructure to various sea level rise projections at the national level. We then estimated the number of people who would lose wastewater services, which could be more than five times as high as previous predictions of the number of people at risk of direct flooding due to sea level rise. We also performed a regional comparison of wastewater exposure to marine and groundwater flooding in the San Francisco Bay Area. Overall, this analysis highlights the widespread exposure of wastewater infrastructure in the United States and demonstrates that local disruptions to infrastructure networks may have far-ranging impacts on areas that do not experience direct flooding.

  1. Sea level rise impacts on wastewater treatment systems along the U.S. coasts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hummel, M.; Berry, M.; Stacey, M. T.

    2017-12-01

    As sea levels rise, coastal communities will experience more frequent and persistent nuisance flooding, and some low-lying areas may be permanently inundated. Critical components of lifeline infrastructure networks in these areas are also at risk of flooding, which could cause significant service disruptions that extend beyond the flooded zone. Thus, identifying critical infrastructure components that are vulnerable to sea level rise is an important first step in developing targeted investment in protective actions and enhancing the overall resilience of coastal communities. Wastewater treatment plants are typically located at low elevations near the coastline to minimize the cost of collecting consumed water and discharging treated effluent, which makes them particularly susceptible to coastal flooding. For this analysis, we used geographic information systems to assess the vulnerability of wastewater infrastructure to various sea level rise projections at the national level. We then estimated the number of people who would lose wastewater services, which could be more than three times as high as previous predictions of the number of people at risk of direct flooding due to sea level rise. We also considered several case studies of wastewater infrastructure in mid-sized cities to determine how topography and system configuration (centralized versus distributed) impact vulnerability. Overall, this analysis highlights the widespread vulnerability of wastewater infrastructure in the U.S. and demonstrates that local disruptions to infrastructure networks may have far-ranging impacts on areas that do not experience direct flooding.

  2. Groundwater reorganization in the Floridan aquifer following Holocene sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morrissey, Sheila K.; Clark, Jordan F.; Bennett, Michael; Richardson, Emily; Stute, Martin

    2010-10-01

    Sea-level fluctuations, particularly those associated with glacial-interglacial cycles, can have profound impacts on the flow and circulation of coastal groundwater: the water found at present in many coastal aquifers may have been recharged during the last glacial period, when sea level was over 100m lower than present, and thus is not in equilibrium with present recharge conditions. Here we show that the geochemistry of the groundwater found in the Floridan Aquifer System in south Florida is best explained by a reorganization of groundwater flow following the sea-level rise at the end of the Last Glacial Maximum approximately 18,000 years ago. We find that the geochemistry of the fresh water found in the upper aquifers at present is consistent with recharge from meteoric water during the last glacial period. The lower aquifer, however, consists of post-sea-level-rise salt water that is most similar to that of the Straits of Florida, though with some dilution from the residual fresh water from the last glacial period circulation. We therefore suggest that during the last glacial period, the entire Floridan Aquifer System was recharged with meteoric waters. After sea level rose, the increased hydraulic head reduced the velocity of the groundwater flow. This velocity reduction trapped the fresh water in the upper aquifers and initiated saltwater circulation in the lower aquifer.

  3. A Mediterranean coastal database for assessing the impacts of sea-level rise and associated hazards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolff, Claudia; Vafeidis, Athanasios T.; Muis, Sanne; Lincke, Daniel; Satta, Alessio; Lionello, Piero; Jimenez, Jose A.; Conte, Dario; Hinkel, Jochen

    2018-01-01

    We have developed a new coastal database for the Mediterranean basin that is intended for coastal impact and adaptation assessment to sea-level rise and associated hazards on a regional scale. The data structure of the database relies on a linear representation of the coast with associated spatial assessment units. Using information on coastal morphology, human settlements and administrative boundaries, we have divided the Mediterranean coast into 13 900 coastal assessment units. To these units we have spatially attributed 160 parameters on the characteristics of the natural and socio-economic subsystems, such as extreme sea levels, vertical land movement and number of people exposed to sea-level rise and extreme sea levels. The database contains information on current conditions and on plausible future changes that are essential drivers for future impacts, such as sea-level rise rates and socio-economic development. Besides its intended use in risk and impact assessment, we anticipate that the Mediterranean Coastal Database (MCD) constitutes a useful source of information for a wide range of coastal applications. PMID:29583140

  4. A Mediterranean coastal database for assessing the impacts of sea-level rise and associated hazards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolff, Claudia; Vafeidis, Athanasios T.; Muis, Sanne; Lincke, Daniel; Satta, Alessio; Lionello, Piero; Jimenez, Jose A.; Conte, Dario; Hinkel, Jochen

    2018-03-01

    We have developed a new coastal database for the Mediterranean basin that is intended for coastal impact and adaptation assessment to sea-level rise and associated hazards on a regional scale. The data structure of the database relies on a linear representation of the coast with associated spatial assessment units. Using information on coastal morphology, human settlements and administrative boundaries, we have divided the Mediterranean coast into 13 900 coastal assessment units. To these units we have spatially attributed 160 parameters on the characteristics of the natural and socio-economic subsystems, such as extreme sea levels, vertical land movement and number of people exposed to sea-level rise and extreme sea levels. The database contains information on current conditions and on plausible future changes that are essential drivers for future impacts, such as sea-level rise rates and socio-economic development. Besides its intended use in risk and impact assessment, we anticipate that the Mediterranean Coastal Database (MCD) constitutes a useful source of information for a wide range of coastal applications.

  5. A Mediterranean coastal database for assessing the impacts of sea-level rise and associated hazards.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolff, Claudia; Vafeidis, Athanasios T; Muis, Sanne; Lincke, Daniel; Satta, Alessio; Lionello, Piero; Jimenez, Jose A; Conte, Dario; Hinkel, Jochen

    2018-03-27

    We have developed a new coastal database for the Mediterranean basin that is intended for coastal impact and adaptation assessment to sea-level rise and associated hazards on a regional scale. The data structure of the database relies on a linear representation of the coast with associated spatial assessment units. Using information on coastal morphology, human settlements and administrative boundaries, we have divided the Mediterranean coast into 13 900 coastal assessment units. To these units we have spatially attributed 160 parameters on the characteristics of the natural and socio-economic subsystems, such as extreme sea levels, vertical land movement and number of people exposed to sea-level rise and extreme sea levels. The database contains information on current conditions and on plausible future changes that are essential drivers for future impacts, such as sea-level rise rates and socio-economic development. Besides its intended use in risk and impact assessment, we anticipate that the Mediterranean Coastal Database (MCD) constitutes a useful source of information for a wide range of coastal applications.

  6. Predicting habitat distribution to conserve seagrass threatened by sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saunders, M. I.; Baldock, T.; Brown, C. J.; Callaghan, D. P.; Golshani, A.; Hamylton, S.; Hoegh-guldberg, O.; Leon, J. X.; Lovelock, C. E.; Lyons, M. B.; O'Brien, K.; Mumby, P.; Phinn, S. R.; Roelfsema, C. M.

    2013-12-01

    Sea level rise (SLR) over the 21st century will cause significant redistribution of valuable coastal habitats. Seagrasses form extensive and highly productive meadows in shallow coastal seas support high biodiversity, including economically valuable and threatened species. Predictive habitat models can inform local management actions that will be required to conserve seagrass faced with multiple stressors. We developed novel modelling approaches, based on extensive field data sets, to examine the effects of sea level rise and other stressors on two representative seagrass habitats in Australia. First, we modelled interactive effects of SLR, water clarity and adjacent land use on estuarine seagrass meadows in Moreton Bay, Southeast Queensland. The extent of suitable seagrass habitat was predicted to decline by 17% by 2100 due to SLR alone, but losses were predicted to be significantly reduced through improvements in water quality (Fig 1a) and by allowing space for seagrass migration with inundation. The rate of sedimentation in seagrass strongly affected the area of suitable habitat for seagrass in sea level rise scenarios (Fig 1b). Further research to understand spatial, temporal and environmental variability of sediment accretion in seagrass is required. Second, we modelled changes in wave energy distribution due to predicted SLR in a linked coral reef and seagrass ecosystem at Lizard Island, Great Barrier Reef. Scenarios where the water depth over the coral reef deepened due to SLR and minimal reef accretion, resulted in larger waves propagating shoreward, changing the existing hydrodynamic conditions sufficiently to reduce area of suitable habitat for seagrass. In a scenario where accretion of the coral reef was severely compromised (e.g. warming, acidification, overfishing), the probability of the presence of seagrass declined significantly. Management to maintain coral health will therefore also benefit seagrasses subject to SLR in reef environments. Further

  7. Estuarine Response to River Flow and Sea-Level Rise under Future Climate Change and Human Development

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yang, Zhaoqing; Wang, Taiping; Voisin, Nathalie; Copping, Andrea E.

    2015-04-01

    Understanding the response of river flow and estuarine hydrodynamics to climate change, land-use/land-cover change (LULC), and sea-level rise is essential to managing water resources and stress on living organisms under these changing conditions. This paper presents a modeling study using a watershed hydrology model and an estuarine hydrodynamic model, in a one-way coupling, to investigate the estuarine hydrodynamic response to sea-level rise and change in river flow due to the effect of future climate and LULC changes in the Snohomish River estuary, Washington, USA. A set of hydrodynamic variables, including salinity intrusion points, average water depth, and salinity of the inundated area, were used to quantify the estuarine response to river flow and sea-level rise. Model results suggest that salinity intrusion points in the Snohomish River estuary and the average salinity of the inundated areas are a nonlinear function of river flow, although the average water depth in the inundated area is approximately linear with river flow. Future climate changes will shift salinity intrusion points further upstream under low flow conditions and further downstream under high flow conditions. In contrast, under the future LULC change scenario, the salinity intrusion point will shift downstream under both low and high flow conditions, compared to present conditions. The model results also suggest that the average water depth in the inundated areas increases linearly with sea-level rise but at a slower rate, and the average salinity in the inundated areas increases linearly with sea-level rise; however, the response of salinity intrusion points in the river to sea-level rise is strongly nonlinear.

  8. Responding to Sea Level Rise: Does Short-Term Risk Reduction Inhibit Successful Long-Term Adaptation?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keeler, A. G.; McNamara, D. E.; Irish, J. L.

    2018-04-01

    Most existing coastal climate-adaptation planning processes, and the research supporting them, tightly focus on how to use land use planning, policy tools, and infrastructure spending to reduce risks from rising seas and changing storm conditions. While central to community response to sea level rise, we argue that the exclusive nature of this focus biases against and delays decisions to take more discontinuous, yet proactive, actions to adapt—for example, relocation and aggressive individual protection investments. Public policies should anticipate real estate market responses to risk reduction to avoid large costs—social and financial—when and if sea level rise and other climate-related factors elevate the risks to such high levels that discontinuous responses become the least bad alternative.

  9. Assessing Flood Risk Under Sea Level Rise and Extreme Sea Levels Scenarios: Application to the Ebro Delta (Spain)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sayol, J. M.; Marcos, M.

    2018-02-01

    This study presents a novel methodology to estimate the impact of local sea level rise and extreme surges and waves in coastal areas under climate change scenarios. The methodology is applied to the Ebro Delta, a valuable and vulnerable low-lying wetland located in the northwestern Mediterranean Sea. Projections of local sea level accounting for all contributions to mean sea level changes, including thermal expansion, dynamic changes, fresh water addition and glacial isostatic adjustment, have been obtained from regionalized sea level projections during the 21st century. Particular attention has been paid to the uncertainties, which have been derived from the spread of the multi-model ensemble combined with seasonal/inter-annual sea level variability from local tide gauge observations. Besides vertical land movements have also been integrated to estimate local relative sea level rise. On the other hand, regional projections over the Mediterranean basin of storm surges and wind-waves have been used to evaluate changes in extreme events. The compound effects of surges and extreme waves have been quantified using their joint probability distributions. Finally, offshore sea level projections from extreme events superimposed to mean sea level have been propagated onto a high resolution digital elevation model of the study region in order to construct flood hazards maps for mid and end of the 21st century and under two different climate change scenarios. The effect of each contribution has been evaluated in terms of percentage of the area exposed to coastal hazards, which will help to design more efficient protection and adaptation measures.

  10. The Impact of Sea Level Rise on Developing Countries: A Comparative Analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dasgupta, S. [World Bank, Washington, DC (United States)

    2008-07-01

    Sea-level rise (SLR) due to climate change is a serious global threat: The scientific evidence is now overwhelming. In this paper, Geographic Information System software has been used to overlay the best available, spatially-disaggregated global data on land, population, agriculture, urban extent, wetlands, and GDP, to assess the consequences of continued SLR for 84 coastal developing countries. Estimates suggest that even a one-meter rise in sea level in coastal countries of the developing world would submerge 194,000 square kilometers of land area, and turn at least 56 million people into environmental refugees. At the country level results are extremely skewed.

  11. The Impact of Sea Level Rise on Developing Countries: A Comparative Analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dasgupta, Susmita (World Bank, Washington, DC (United States))

    2008-07-01

    Sea-level rise (SLR) due to climate change is a serious global threat: The scientific evidence is now overwhelming. In this paper, Geographic Information System software has been used to overlay the best available, spatially-disaggregated global data on land, population, agriculture, urban extent, wetlands, and GDP, to assess the consequences of continued SLR for 84 coastal developing countries. Estimates suggest that even a one-meter rise in sea level in coastal countries of the developing world would submerge 194,000 square kilometers of land area, and turn at least 56 million people into environmental refugees. At the country level results are extremely skewed

  12. Adaptation to Sea Level Rise in Coastal Units of the National Park Service (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beavers, R. L.

    2010-12-01

    83 National Park Service (NPS) units contain nearly 12,000 miles of coastal, estuarine and Great Lakes shoreline and their associated resources. Iconic natural features exist along active shorelines in NPS units, including, e.g., Cape Cod, Padre Island, Hawaii Volcanoes, and the Everglades. Iconic cultural resources managed by NPS include the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse, Fort Sumter, the Golden Gate, and heiaus and fish traps along the coast of Hawaii. Impacts anticipated from sea level rise include inundation and flooding of beaches and low lying marshes, shoreline erosion of coastal areas, and saltwater intrusion into the water table. These impacts and other coastal hazards will threaten park beaches, marshes, and other resources and values; alter the viability of coastal roads; and require the NPS to re-evaluate the financial, safety, and environmental implications of maintaining current projects and implementing future projects in ocean and coastal parks in the context of sea level rise. Coastal erosion will increase as sea levels rise. Barrier islands along the coast of Louisiana and North Carolina may have already passed the threshold for maintaining island integrity in any scenario of sea level rise (U.S. Climate Change Science Program Synthesis and Assessment Program Report 4.1). Consequently, sea level rise is expected to hasten the disappearance of historic coastal villages, coastal wetlands, forests, and beaches, and threaten coastal roads, homes, and businesses. While sea level is rising in most coastal parks, some parks are experiencing lower water levels due to isostatic rebound and lower lake levels. NPS funded a Coastal Vulnerability Project to evaluate the physical and geologic factors affecting 25 coastal parks. The USGS Open File Reports for each park are available at http://woodshole.er.usgs.gov/project-pages/. These reports were designed to inform park planning efforts. NPS conducted a Storm Vulnerability Project to provide ocean and coastal

  13. An Intensive Observation of Calving at Helheim Glacier, East Greenland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holland, David M.; Voytenko, Denis; Christianson, Knut; Dixon, Timothy H.; Mei, M. Jeffrey; Parizek, Byron R.; Vankova, Irena; Walker, Ryan T.; Walter, Jacob I.; Nicholls, Keith; hide

    2016-01-01

    Calving of glacial ice into the ocean from the Greenland Ice Sheet is an important component of global sea-level rise. The calving process itself is relatively poorly observed, understood, and modeled; as such, it represents a bottleneck in improving future global sea-level estimates in climate models. We organized a pilot project to observe the calving process at Helheim Glacier in east Greenland in an effort to better understand it. During an intensive one-week survey, we deployed a suite of instrumentation, including a terrestrial radar interferometer, global positioning system (GPS) receivers, seismometers, tsunameters, and an automated weather station. We were fortunate to capture a calving process and to measure various glaciological, oceanographic, and atmospheric parameters before, during, and after the event. One outcome of our observations is evidence that the calving process actually consists of a number of discrete events, spread out over time, in this instance over at least two days. This time span has implications for models of the process. Realistic projections of future global sea level will depend on an accurate parametrization of calving, and we argue that more sustained observations will be required to reach this objective.

  14. Vulnerability of the Nile Delta coastal areas to inundation by sea level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hassaan, M A; Abdrabo, M A

    2013-08-01

    Sea level changes are typically caused by several natural phenomena, including ocean thermal expansion, glacial melt from Greenland and Antarctica. Global average sea level is expected to rise, through the twenty-first century, according to the IPCC projections by between 0.18 and 0.59 cm. Such a rise in sea level will significantly impact coastal area of the Nile Delta, consisting generally of lowland and is densely populated areas and accommodates significant proportion of Egypt's economic activities and built-up areas. The Nile Delta has been examined in several previous studies, which worked under various hypothetical sea level rise (SLR) scenarios and provided different estimates of areas susceptible to inundation due to SLR. The paper intends, in this respect, to identify areas, as well as land use/land cover, susceptible to inundation by SLR based upon most recent scenarios of SLR, by the year 2100 using GIS. The results indicate that about 22.49, 42.18, and 49.22 % of the total area of coastal governorates of the Nile Delta would be susceptible to inundation under different scenarios of SLR. Also, it was found that 15.56 % of the total areas of the Nile Delta that would be vulnerable to inundation due to land subsidence only, even in the absence of any rise in sea level. Moreover, it was found that a considerable proportion of these areas (ranging between 32.32 and 53.66 %) are currently either wetland or undeveloped areas. Furthermore, natural and/or man-made structures, such as the banks of the International Coastal Highway, were found to provide unintended protection to some of these areas. This suggests that the inundation impact of SLR on the Nile Delta is less than previously reported.

  15. Effects of Sea Level Rise on Groundwater Flow Paths in a Coastal Aquifer System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morrissey, S. K.; Clark, J. F.; Bennett, M. W.; Richardson, E.; Stute, M.

    2008-05-01

    Changes in groundwater flow in the Floridan aquifer system, South Florida, from the rise in sea level at the end of the last glacial period may be indicative of changes coastal aquifers will experience with continued sea level rise. As sea level rises, the hydraulic head near the coast increases. Coastal aquifers can therefore experience decreased groundwater gradients (increased residence times) and seawater intrusion. Stable isotopes of water, dissolved noble gas temperatures, radiocarbon and He concentrations were analyzed in water collected from 68 wells in the Floridan aquifer system throughout South Florida. Near the recharge area, geochemical data along groundwater flow paths in the Upper Floridan aquifer show a transition from recently recharged groundwater to glacial-aged water. Down gradient from this transition, little variation is apparent in the stable isotopes and noble gas recharge temperatures, indicating that most of the Upper Floridan aquifer contains groundwater recharged during the last glacial period. The rapid 120-meter rise in sea level marking the end of the last glacial period increased the hydraulic head in the Floridan aquifer system near the coast, slowing the flow of groundwater from the recharge area to the ocean and trapping glacial-aged groundwater. The raised sea level also flooded half of the Florida platform and caused seawater to intrude into the Lower Floridan. This circulation of seawater in the Lower Floridan continues today as our data indicate that the groundwater is similar to modern seawater with a freshwater component entering vertically from the recharge area to the Upper Floridan.

  16. Assessment on vulnerability of coastal wetlands to sea level rise in the Yangtze Estuary, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cui, L.; Ge, Z.; Zhang, L.

    2013-12-01

    The Yangtze Delta in China is vital economic hubs in terms of settlement, industry, agriculture, trade and tourism as well as of great environmental significance. In recent decades, the prospect of climate change, in particular sea level rise and its effects on low lying coastal areas have generated worldwide attention to coastal ecosystems. Coastal wetlands, as important parts of coastal ecosystem, are particularly sensitive to sea level rise. To study the responses of coastal wetlands to climate change, assess the impacts of climate change on coastal wetlands and formulate feasible and practical mitigation strategies are the important prerequisites for securing the coastal zone ecosystems. In this study, taking the coastal wetlands in the Yangtze Estuary as a case study, the potential impacts of sea-level rise to coastal wetlands habitat were analyzed by the Source-Pathway-Receptor-Consequence (SPRC) model. The key indicators, such as the sea-level rise rate, subsidence rate, elevation, daily inundation duration of habitat and sedimentation rate, were selected to build a vulnerability assessment system according to the IPCC definition of vulnerability, i.e. the aspects of exposure, sensitivity and adaptation. A quantitatively spatial assessment method on the GIS platform was established by quantifying each indicator, calculating the vulnerability index and grading the vulnerability. The vulnerability assessment on the coastal wetlands in the Yangtze Estuary under the sea level rise rate of the present trend and IPCC A1F1 scenario were performed for three sets of projections of short-term (2030s), mid-term (2050s) and long-term (2100s). The results showed that at the present trend of sea level rise rate of 0.26 cm/a, 92.3 % of the coastal wetlands in the Yangtze Estuary was in the EVI score of 0 in 2030s, i.e. the impact of sea level rise on habitats/species of coastal wetlands was negligible. While 7.4 % and 0.3 % of the coastal wetlands were in the EVI score of

  17. Model-data comparisons of crevasses in accelerating glaciers exemplified for the 2011-2013 surge of Bering Glacier, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trantow, T.; Herzfeld, U. C.

    2017-12-01

    Glacier acceleration, ubiquitous along the periphery of the major icesheets, presents one of the main uncertainties in modeling future global sea-level rise according to the IPCC 5th Assessment Report (2013). The surge phenomenon is one type of glacial acceleration and is the least understood. During a surge, large-scale elevation change and significant crevassing occurs throughout the entire ice system. Crevasses are the most obvious manifestations of the surge dynamics and provide a source of geophysical information that allows reconstruction of deformation processes. The recent surge of the Bering-Bagley Glacier System (BBGS), Alaska, in 2011-2013 provides an excellent test case to study surging through airborne and satellite observations together with numerical modeling. A 3D full-Stokes finite element model of the BBGS has been created using the Elmer/Ice software for structural and dynamical investigations of the surge. A von Mises condition is applied to modeled surface stresses to predict where crevassing would occur during the surge. The model uses CryoSat-2 derived surface topography (Baseline-C), bedrock topography, Glen's flow law with an isothermal assumption and a uniform linear friction law at the ice/bedrock boundary to represent the surge state in early 2011 when peak velocities were observed. Additionally, geostatistical characterization applied to optical satellite imagery provides an observational data set for model-data comparisons. Observed and modeled crevasse characteristics are compared with respect to their location, magnitude and orientation. Similarity mapping applied to the modeled von Mises stress and observed surface roughness values indicates that the two quantities are correlated. Results indicate that large-scale surface crevasses resulting from a surge are connected to the bedrock topography of the glacier system. The model-data comparisons used in this analysis serve to validate the numerical model and provide insight into the

  18. Dry calving processes at the ice cliff of an antarctic local glacier: the study case of Strandline Glacier (Northern Victoria Land, Antarctica)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smiraglia, C.; Motta, M.; Vassena, G.; Diolaiuti, G.

    2003-04-01

    In Antartic coastal area, where the ice sheet and the large outlet glaciers do not reach the sea and where some rugged mountain chains are often present, many small glaciers can be found. They are the so called local or alpine type glaciers, which have their terminus ground-based such as the real alpine glaciers and rarely reach the main valley floors. They are practically isolated and independent from the supply flowing down from the plateau and their mass balance is mainly controlled by sublimation and aeolic erosion and accumulation. The glaciers closer to the coast are submitted to the melting as well, and when the terminus is cliff-shaped they are also affected by dry calving. The most known and studied Antarctic local glaciers are placed in the Dry Valleys region (Chinn, 1985), but this kind of glaciers is also diffused all along the Northern Victoria Land coastal region (Chinn and others, 1989). Since the first Italian Antarctic expedition (1985), many studies have been carried out on this type of glaciers, which can be usefull for detailed mass balance evaluations and for obtaining information about the effects of the present climatic dynamics on the Antarctic coastal environment (Baroni and Orombelli, 1987; Baroni and others, 1995; Meneghel, 1999; Vassena and others., 2001). The Strandline Glacier (74 41 S; 164 07 E), in particular is a small alpine glacier (0,79 kmq) on the coast of Terra Nova Bay, Northern Victoria Land; it is a cold glacier where accumulation and ablation basins are mainly controlled by wind processes. Its terminus forms in the central part a grounded ice cliff about 30 m high, about 130 m far from the sea. On that glacier mass balance, surface velocity and calving rate were measured. During the southern summer season 2000-2001 many topographycal profiles of the ice cliff were surveyed by using both classical topographical and glaciological methods (total station and stakes) and GPS technique. It was so possible to detect the short term

  19. Tidal marsh plant responses to elevated CO2 , nitrogen fertilization, and sea level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adam Langley, J; Mozdzer, Thomas J; Shepard, Katherine A; Hagerty, Shannon B; Patrick Megonigal, J

    2013-05-01

    Elevated CO2 and nitrogen (N) addition directly affect plant productivity and the mechanisms that allow tidal marshes to maintain a constant elevation relative to sea level, but it remains unknown how these global change drivers modify marsh plant response to sea level rise. Here we manipulated factorial combinations of CO2 concentration (two levels), N availability (two levels) and relative sea level (six levels) using in situ mesocosms containing a tidal marsh community composed of a sedge, Schoenoplectus americanus, and a grass, Spartina patens. Our objective is to determine, if elevated CO2 and N alter the growth and persistence of these plants in coastal ecosystems facing rising sea levels. After two growing seasons, we found that N addition enhanced plant growth particularly at sea levels where plants were most stressed by flooding (114% stimulation in the + 10 cm treatment), and N effects were generally larger in combination with elevated CO2 (288% stimulation). N fertilization shifted the optimal productivity of S. patens to a higher sea level, but did not confer S. patens an enhanced ability to tolerate sea level rise. S. americanus responded strongly to N only in the higher sea level treatments that excluded S. patens. Interestingly, addition of N, which has been suggested to accelerate marsh loss, may afford some marsh plants, such as the widespread sedge, S. americanus, the enhanced ability to tolerate inundation. However, if chronic N pollution reduces the availability of propagules of S. americanus or other flood-tolerant species on the landscape scale, this shift in species dominance could render tidal marshes more susceptible to marsh collapse. © 2013 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  20. Risks of Coastal Storm Surge and the Effect of Sea Level Rise in the Red River Delta, Vietnam

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James E. Neumann

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available This paper considers the impact of sea level rise and storm surge on the Red River delta region of Vietnam. Permanently inundated lands and temporary flood zones are analyzed by combining sea level rise scenarios for 2050 with simulated storm surge levels for the 100-year event. Our analysis finds that sea level rise through 2050 could increase the effective frequency of the current 100-year storm surge, which is associated with a storm surge of roughly five meters, to once every 49 years. Approximately 10% of the Hanoi region’s GDP is vulnerable to permanent inundation due to sea level rise, and more than 40% is vulnerable to periodic storm surge damage consistent with the current 100-year storm. We conclude that coastal adaptation measures, such as a planned retreat from the sea, and construction of a more substantial seawall and dike system, are needed to respond to these threats.

  1. Coral reef growth in an era of rapidly rising sea level: predictions and suggestions for long-term research

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Buddemeier, R W; Smith, S V

    1988-01-01

    Coral reef growth is intimately linked to sea level. It has been postulated that over the next century, sea level will rise at a probable average rate of 15 mm/year, in response to fossil fuel emissions, heating, and melting of the Antarctic ice cap. This predicted rate of sea level rise is five times the present modal rate of vertical accretion on coral reef flats and 50% greater than the maximum vertical accretion rates apparently attained by coral reefs. We use these predictions and observations to offer the following hypothesis for reef growth over the next century. The vertical accretion rates of protected reef flats will accelerate from the present modal rate up to the maximum rate, in response to the more rapidly rising sea level. This more rapid vertical accretion rate will be insufficient to keep up with sea level rise, if present predictions prove to be correct. Less protected reef flats will slow their rate of growth as they become inundated and subjected to erosion by progressively larger waves. This projected sea level rise and postulated reef response will provide an opportunity for long- term studies of the response of coral reef systems to a predictable and measurable forcing function.

  2. Rapid Holocene thinning of outlet glaciers followed by readvance in the western Ross Embayment, Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, R. S.; Whitmore, R.; Mackintosh, A.; Norton, K. P.; Eaves, S.; Stutz, J.

    2017-12-01

    Investigating Antarctic deglaciation following the LGM provides an opportunity to better understand patterns, mechanisms and drivers of ice sheet retreat. In the Ross Sea sector, geomorphic features preserved on the seafloor indicate that streaming East Antarctic outlet glaciers once extended >100 km offshore of South Victoria Land prior to back-stepping towards their modern configurations. In order to adequately interpret the style and causes of this retreat, the timing and magnitude of corresponding ice thickness change is required. We present new constraints on ice surface lowering from Mawson Glacier, an outlet of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet that flows into the western Ross Sea. Surface-exposure (10Be) ages from samples collected in elevation transects above the modern ice surface reveal that rapid thinning occurred at 5-8 ka, broadly coeval with new ages of grounding-line retreat at 6 ka and rapid thinning recorded at nearby Mackay Glacier at 7 ka. Our data also show that a moraine formed near to the modern ice margin of Mawson Glacier at 0.8 ka, which, together with historical observations, indicates that glaciers in this region readvanced during the last thousand years. We argue that 1) the accelerated thinning of outlet glaciers was driven by local grounding-line retreat through overdeepened basins during the early-mid Holocene, and 2) the glaciers subsequently readvanced, possibly linked to late Holocene sea-ice expansion, before retreating to their current positions. Our work demonstrates that these outlet glaciers were closely coupled to environmental and topography-induced perturbations near their termini throughout the Holocene.

  3. Effects of sea-level rise and pumpage elimination on saltwater intrusion in the Hilton Head Island area, South Carolina, 2004-2104

    Science.gov (United States)

    Payne, Dorothy F.

    2010-01-01

    Saltwater intrusion of the Upper Floridan aquifer has been observed in the Hilton Head area, South Carolina since the late 1970s and currently affects freshwater supply. Rising sea level in the Hilton Head Island area may contribute to the occurrence of and affect the rate of saltwater intrusion into the Upper Floridan aquifer by increasing the hydraulic gradient and by inundating an increasing area with saltwater, which may then migrate downward into geologic units that presently contain freshwater. Rising sea level may offset any beneficial results from reductions in groundwater pumpage, and thus needs to be considered in groundwater-management decisions. A variable-density groundwater flow and transport model was modified from a previously existing model to simulate the effects of sea-level rise in the Hilton Head Island area. Specifically, the model was used to (1) simulate trends of saltwater intrusion from predevelopment to the present day (1885-2004) and evaluate the conceptual model, (2) project these trends from the present day into the future based on different potential rates of sea-level change, and (3) evaluate the relative influences of pumpage and sea-level rise on saltwater intrusion. Four scenarios were simulated for 2004-2104: (1) continuation of the estimated sea-level rise rate over the last century, (2) a doubling of the sea-level rise, (3) a cessation of sea-level rise, and (4) continuation of the rate over the last century coupled with an elimination of all pumpage. Results show that, if present-day (year 2004) pumping conditions are maintained, the extent of saltwater in the Upper Floridan aquifer will increase, whether or not sea level continues to rise. Furthermore, if all pumpage is eliminated and sea level continues to rise, the simulated saltwater extent in the Upper Floridan aquifer is reduced. These results indicate that pumpage is a strong driving force for simulated saltwater intrusion, more so than sea-level rise at current rates

  4. Characterization of meltwater 'ingredients' at the Haig Glacier, Canadian Rockies: the importance of glaciers to regional water resources

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, K.; Marshall, S.

    2017-12-01

    With rising temperatures, Alberta's glaciers are under stresses which change and alter the timing, amount, and composition of meltwater contributions to rivers that flow from the Rocky Mountains. Meltwater can be stored within a glacier or it can drain through the groundwater system, reducing and delaying meltwater delivery to glacier-fed streams. This study tests whether the glacier meltwater is chemically distinct from rain or snow melt, and thus whether meltwater contributions to higher-order streams that flow from the mountains can be determined through stream chemistry. Rivers like the Bow, North Saskatchewan, and Athabasca are vital waterways for much of Alberta's population. Assessing the extent of glacier meltwater is vital to future water resource planning. Glacier snow/ice and meltwater stream samples were collected during the 2017 summer melt season (May- September) and analyzed for isotope and ion chemistry. The results are being used to model water chemistry evolution in the melt stream through the summer season. A chemical mixing model will be constructed to determine the fractional contributions to the Haig meltwater stream from precipitation, surface melt, and subglacial meltwaters. Distinct chemical water signatures have not been used to partition water sources and understand glacier contributions to rivers in the Rockies. The goal of this work is to use chemical signatures of glacial meltwater to help assess the extent of glacier meltwater in Alberta rivers and how this varies through the summer season.

  5. Storm-induced water dynamics and thermohaline structure at the tidewater Flade Isblink Glacier outlet to the Wandel Sea (NE Greenland)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirillov, Sergei; Dmitrenko, Igor; Rysgaard, Søren; Babb, David; Toudal Pedersen, Leif; Ehn, Jens; Bendtsen, Jørgen; Barber, David

    2017-11-01

    In April 2015, an ice-tethered conductivity-temperature-depth (CTD) profiler and a down-looking acoustic Doppler current profiler (ADCP) were deployed from the landfast ice near the tidewater glacier terminus of the Flade Isblink Glacier in the Wandel Sea, NE Greenland. The 3-week time series showed that water dynamics and the thermohaline structure were modified considerably during a storm event on 22-24 April, when northerly winds exceeded 15 m s-1. The storm initiated downwelling-like water dynamics characterized by on-shore water transport in the surface (0-40 m) layer and compensating offshore flow at intermediate depths. After the storm, currents reversed in both layers, and the relaxation phase of downwelling lasted ˜ 4 days. Although current velocities did not exceed 5 cm s-1, the enhanced circulation during the storm caused cold turbid intrusions at 75-95 m depth, which are likely attributable to subglacial water from the Flade Isblink Ice Cap. It was also found that the semidiurnal periodicities in the temperature and salinity time series were associated with the lunar semidiurnal tidal flow. The vertical structure of tidal currents corresponded to the first baroclinic mode of the internal tide with a velocity minimum at ˜ 40 m. The tidal ellipses rotate in opposite directions above and below this depth and cause a divergence of tidal flow, which was observed to induce semidiurnal internal waves of about 3 m height at the front of the glacier terminus. Our findings provide evidence that shelf-basin interaction and tidal forcing can potentially modify coastal Wandel Sea waters even though they are isolated from the atmosphere by landfast sea ice almost year-round. The northerly storms over the continental slope cause an enhanced circulation facilitating a release of cold and turbid subglacial water to the shelf. The tidal flow may contribute to the removal of such water from the glacial terminus.

  6. Storm-induced water dynamics and thermohaline structure at the tidewater Flade Isblink Glacier outlet to the Wandel Sea (NE Greenland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Kirillov

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available In April 2015, an ice-tethered conductivity–temperature–depth (CTD profiler and a down-looking acoustic Doppler current profiler (ADCP were deployed from the landfast ice near the tidewater glacier terminus of the Flade Isblink Glacier in the Wandel Sea, NE Greenland. The 3-week time series showed that water dynamics and the thermohaline structure were modified considerably during a storm event on 22–24 April, when northerly winds exceeded 15 m s−1. The storm initiated downwelling-like water dynamics characterized by on-shore water transport in the surface (0–40 m layer and compensating offshore flow at intermediate depths. After the storm, currents reversed in both layers, and the relaxation phase of downwelling lasted ∼ 4 days. Although current velocities did not exceed 5 cm s−1, the enhanced circulation during the storm caused cold turbid intrusions at 75–95 m depth, which are likely attributable to subglacial water from the Flade Isblink Ice Cap. It was also found that the semidiurnal periodicities in the temperature and salinity time series were associated with the lunar semidiurnal tidal flow. The vertical structure of tidal currents corresponded to the first baroclinic mode of the internal tide with a velocity minimum at ∼ 40 m. The tidal ellipses rotate in opposite directions above and below this depth and cause a divergence of tidal flow, which was observed to induce semidiurnal internal waves of about 3 m height at the front of the glacier terminus. Our findings provide evidence that shelf–basin interaction and tidal forcing can potentially modify coastal Wandel Sea waters even though they are isolated from the atmosphere by landfast sea ice almost year-round. The northerly storms over the continental slope cause an enhanced circulation facilitating a release of cold and turbid subglacial water to the shelf. The tidal flow may contribute to the removal of such water from the glacial terminus.

  7. Resolving the Antarctic contribution to sea-level rise: a hierarchical modelling framework.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zammit-Mangion, Andrew; Rougier, Jonathan; Bamber, Jonathan; Schön, Nana

    2014-06-01

    Determining the Antarctic contribution to sea-level rise from observational data is a complex problem. The number of physical processes involved (such as ice dynamics and surface climate) exceeds the number of observables, some of which have very poor spatial definition. This has led, in general, to solutions that utilise strong prior assumptions or physically based deterministic models to simplify the problem. Here, we present a new approach for estimating the Antarctic contribution, which only incorporates descriptive aspects of the physically based models in the analysis and in a statistical manner. By combining physical insights with modern spatial statistical modelling techniques, we are able to provide probability distributions on all processes deemed to play a role in both the observed data and the contribution to sea-level rise. Specifically, we use stochastic partial differential equations and their relation to geostatistical fields to capture our physical understanding and employ a Gaussian Markov random field approach for efficient computation. The method, an instantiation of Bayesian hierarchical modelling, naturally incorporates uncertainty in order to reveal credible intervals on all estimated quantities. The estimated sea-level rise contribution using this approach corroborates those found using a statistically independent method. © 2013 The Authors. Environmetrics Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  8. Resolving the Antarctic contribution to sea-level rise: a hierarchical modelling framework†

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zammit-Mangion, Andrew; Rougier, Jonathan; Bamber, Jonathan; Schön, Nana

    2014-01-01

    Determining the Antarctic contribution to sea-level rise from observational data is a complex problem. The number of physical processes involved (such as ice dynamics and surface climate) exceeds the number of observables, some of which have very poor spatial definition. This has led, in general, to solutions that utilise strong prior assumptions or physically based deterministic models to simplify the problem. Here, we present a new approach for estimating the Antarctic contribution, which only incorporates descriptive aspects of the physically based models in the analysis and in a statistical manner. By combining physical insights with modern spatial statistical modelling techniques, we are able to provide probability distributions on all processes deemed to play a role in both the observed data and the contribution to sea-level rise. Specifically, we use stochastic partial differential equations and their relation to geostatistical fields to capture our physical understanding and employ a Gaussian Markov random field approach for efficient computation. The method, an instantiation of Bayesian hierarchical modelling, naturally incorporates uncertainty in order to reveal credible intervals on all estimated quantities. The estimated sea-level rise contribution using this approach corroborates those found using a statistically independent method. © 2013 The Authors. Environmetrics Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. PMID:25505370

  9. Recent Changes in Land Water Storage and Its Contribution to Sea Level Variations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wada, Yoshihide; Reager, John T.; Chao, Benjamin F.; Wang, Jida; Lo, Min-Hui; Song, Chunqiao; Li, Yuwen; Gardner, Alex S.

    2016-01-01

    Sea level rise is generally attributed to increased ocean heat content and increased rates glacier and ice melt. However, human transformations of Earth's surface have impacted water exchange between land, atmosphere, and ocean, ultimately affecting global sea level variations. Impoundment of water in reservoirs and artificial lakes has reduced the outflow of water to the sea, while river runoff has increased due to groundwater mining, wetland and endorheic lake storage losses, and deforestation. In addition, climate-driven changes in land water stores can have a large impact on global sea level variations over decadal timescales. Here, we review each component of negative and positive land water contribution separately in order to highlight and understand recent changes in land water contribution to sea level variations.

  10. Possible impacts of sea-level rise on the Diep river/Rietvlei system, Cape-Town

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Hughes, P

    1993-10-01

    Full Text Available Many of the Cape Province's estuaries and tidal inlets have sandy connections to the sea and are often intensively developed for industrial or residential purposes. The possible impacts of sea-level rise are of considerable interest...

  11. A model of water and sediment balance as determinants of relative sea level rise in contemporary and future deltas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tessler, Zachary D.; Vörösmarty, Charles J.; Overeem, Irina; Syvitski, James P. M.

    2018-03-01

    Modern deltas are dependent on human-mediated freshwater and sediment fluxes. Changes to these fluxes impact delta biogeophysical functioning and affect the long-term sustainability of these landscapes for human and for natural systems. Here we present contemporary estimates of long-term mean sediment balance and relative sea level rise across 46 global deltas. We model scenarios of contemporary and future water resource management schemes and hydropower infrastructure in upstream river basins to explore how changing sediment fluxes impact relative sea level rise in delta systems. Model results show that contemporary sediment fluxes, anthropogenic drivers of land subsidence, and sea level rise result in delta relative sea level rise rates that average 6.8 mm/y. Assessment of impacts of planned and under-construction dams on relative sea level rise rates suggests increases on the order of 1 mm/y in deltas with new upstream construction. Sediment fluxes are estimated to decrease by up to 60% in the Danube and 21% in the Ganges-Brahmaputra-Meghna if all currently planned dams are constructed. Reduced sediment retention on deltas caused by increased river channelization and management has a larger impact, increasing relative sea level rise on average by nearly 2 mm/y. Long-term delta sustainability requires a more complete understanding of how geophysical and anthropogenic change impact delta geomorphology. Local and regional strategies for sustainable delta management that focus on local and regional drivers of change, especially groundwater and hydrocarbon extraction and upstream dam construction, can be highly impactful even in the context of global climate-induced sea level rise.

  12. Modeling Anthropogenic Impact on Sediment Balance and Relative Sea-Level Rise in Contemporary and Future Deltas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tessler, Z. D.; Vorosmarty, C. J.; Overeem, I.; Syvitski, J. P.

    2017-12-01

    Modern deltas are dependent on human-mediated freshwater and sediment fluxes. Changes to these fluxes impact delta biogeophysical functioning, and affect the long-term sustainability of these landscapes for both human and natural systems. Here we present contemporary estimates of long-term mean sediment balance and relative sea-level rise across 46 global deltas. We model ongoing development and scenarios of future water resource management and hydropower infrastructure in upstream river basins to explore how changing sediment fluxes impact relative sea-level in coastal delta systems. Model results show that contemporary sediment fluxes, anthropogenic drivers of land subsidence, and sea-level rise result in relative sea-level rise rates in deltas that average 6.8 mm/year. Currently planned or under-construction dams can be expected to increase rates of relative sea-level rise on the order of 1 mm/year. Some deltas systems, including the Magdalena, Orinoco, and Indus, are highly sensitive to future impoundment of river basins, with RSLR rates increasing up to 4 mm/year in a high-hydropower-utilization scenario. Sediment fluxes may be reduced by up to 60% in the Danube and 21% in the Ganges-Brahmaputra-Megnha if all currently planned dams are constructed. Reduced sediment retention on deltas due to increased river channelization and local flood controls increases RSLR on average by nearly 2 mm/year. Long-term delta sustainability requires a more complete understanding of how geophysical and anthropogenic change impact delta geomorphology. Strategies for sustainable delta management that focus on local and regional drivers of change, especially groundwater and hydrocarbon extraction and upstream dam construction, can be highly impactful even in the context of global climate-induced sea-level rise.

  13. The contribution to future flood risk in the Severn Estuary from extreme sea level rise due to ice sheet mass loss

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quinn, N.; Bates, P. D.; Siddall, M.

    2013-12-01

    The rate at which sea levels will rise in the coming century is of great interest to decision makers tasked with developing mitigation policies to cope with the risk of coastal inundation. Accurate estimates of future sea levels are vital in the provision of effective policy. Recent reports from UK Climate Impacts Programme (UKCIP) suggest that mean sea levels in the UK may rise by as much as 80 cm by 2100; however, a great deal of uncertainty surrounds model predictions, particularly the contribution from ice sheets responding to climatic warming. For this reason, the application of semi-empirical modelling approaches for sea level rise predictions has increased of late, the results from which suggest that the rate of sea level rise may be greater than previously thought, exceeding 1 m by 2100. Furthermore, studies in the Red Sea indicate that rapid sea level rise beyond 1m per century has occurred in the past. In light of such research, the latest UKCIP assessment has included a H++ scenario for sea level rise in the UK of up to 1.9 m which is defined as improbable but, crucially, physically plausible. The significance of such low-probability sea level rise scenarios upon the estimation of future flood risk is assessed using the Somerset levels (UK) as a case study. A simple asymmetric probability distribution is constructed to include sea level rise scenarios of up to 1.9 m by 2100 which are added to a current 1:200 year event water level to force a two-dimensional hydrodynamic model of coastal inundation. From the resulting ensemble predictions an estimation of risk by 2100 is established. The results indicate that although the likelihood of extreme sea level rise due to rapid ice sheet mass loss is low, the resulting hazard can be large, resulting in a significant (27%) increase to the projected annual risk. Furthermore, current defence construction guidelines for the coming century in the UK are expected to account for 95% of the sea level rise distribution

  14. Global-scale hydrological response to future glacier mass loss

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huss, Matthias; Hock, Regine

    2018-01-01

    Worldwide glacier retreat and associated future runoff changes raise major concerns over the sustainability of global water resources1-4, but global-scale assessments of glacier decline and the resulting hydrological consequences are scarce5,6. Here we compute global glacier runoff changes for 56 large-scale glacierized drainage basins to 2100 and analyse the glacial impact on streamflow. In roughly half of the investigated basins, the modelled annual glacier runoff continues to rise until a maximum (`peak water') is reached, beyond which runoff steadily declines. In the remaining basins, this tipping point has already been passed. Peak water occurs later in basins with larger glaciers and higher ice-cover fractions. Typically, future glacier runoff increases in early summer but decreases in late summer. Although most of the 56 basins have less than 2% ice coverage, by 2100 one-third of them might experience runoff decreases greater than 10% due to glacier mass loss in at least one month of the melt season, with the largest reductions in central Asia and the Andes. We conclude that, even in large-scale basins with minimal ice-cover fraction, the downstream hydrological effects of continued glacier wastage can be substantial, but the magnitudes vary greatly among basins and throughout the melt season.

  15. Contrasting medial moraine development at adjacent temperate, maritime glaciers: Fox and Franz Josef Glaciers, South Westland, New Zealand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brook, Martin; Hagg, Wilfried; Winkler, Stefan

    2017-08-01

    Medial moraines form important pathways for sediment transportation in valley glaciers. Despite the existence of well-defined medial moraines on several glaciers in the New Zealand Southern Alps, medial moraines there have hitherto escaped attention. The evolving morphology and debris content of medial moraines on Franz Josef Glacier and Fox Glacier on the western flank of the Southern Alps is the focus of this study. These temperate maritime glaciers exhibit accumulation zones of multiple basins that feed narrow tongues flowing down steep valleys and terminate 400 m above sea level. The medial moraines at both glaciers become very prominent in the lower ablation zones, where the medial moraines widen, and develop steeper flanks coeval with an increase in relative relief. Medial moraine growth appears somewhat self-limiting in that relief and slope angle increase eventually lead to transport of debris away from the medial moraine by mass-movement-related processes. Despite similarities in overall morphologies, a key contrast in medial moraine formation exists between the two glaciers. At Fox Glacier, the medial moraine consists of angular rockfall-derived debris, folded to varying degrees along flow-parallel axes throughout the tongue. The debris originates above the ELA, coalesces at flow-unit boundaries, and takes a medium/high level transport pathway before subsequently emerging at point-sources aligned with gently dipping fold hinges near the snout. In contrast at Franz Josef Glacier, the medial moraine emerges farther down-glacier immediately below a prominent rock knob. Clasts show a mix of angular to rounded shapes representing high level transport and subglacially transported materials, the latter facies possibly also elevated by supraglacial routing of subglacial meltwater. Our observations confirm that a variety of different debris sources, transport pathways, and structural glaciological processes can interact to form medial moraines within New Zealand

  16. Effects of sea level rise on the formation and drowning of shoreface-connected sand ridges, a model study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nnafie, A.; de Swart, H. E.; Calvete, D.; Garnier, R.

    2014-06-01

    Shoreface-connected sand ridges occur on many storm-dominated inner shelves. These rhythmic features have an along-shelf spacing of 2-10 km, a height of 1-12 m, they evolve on timescales of centuries and they migrate several meters per year. An idealized model is used to study the impact of sea level rise on the characteristics of the sand ridges during their initial and long-term evolution. Different scenarios (rates of sea level rise, geometry of inner shelf) are examined. Results show that with increasing sea level the height of sand ridges increases and their migration decreases until they eventually drown. This latter occurs when the near-bed wave orbital velocity drops below the critical velocity for erosion of sediment. In contrast, in the absence of sea level rise, the model simulates shoreface-connected sand ridges with constant heights and migration rates. Model results furthermore indicate that sand ridges do not form if the rate of sea level rise is too high, or if the initial depth of the inner shelf is too small. A larger transverse bottom slope enhances growth and height of sand ridges and they drown quicker. When shoreface retreat due to sea level rise is considered, new ridges form in the landward part of the inner shelf, while ridges on the antecedent part of the shelf become less active and ultimately drown. Only if sea level rise is accounted for, merging of ridges is reduced such that multiple ridges occur in the end state, thereby yielding a better agreement with observations. The physical mechanisms responsible for these findings are also explained.

  17. Characterizing uncertain sea-level rise projections to support investment decisions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sriver, Ryan L; Lempert, Robert J; Wikman-Svahn, Per; Keller, Klaus

    2018-01-01

    Many institutions worldwide are considering how to include uncertainty about future changes in sea-levels and storm surges into their investment decisions regarding large capital infrastructures. Here we examine how to characterize deeply uncertain climate change projections to support such decisions using Robust Decision Making analysis. We address questions regarding how to confront the potential for future changes in low probability but large impact flooding events due to changes in sea-levels and storm surges. Such extreme events can affect investments in infrastructure but have proved difficult to consider in such decisions because of the deep uncertainty surrounding them. This study utilizes Robust Decision Making methods to address two questions applied to investment decisions at the Port of Los Angeles: (1) Under what future conditions would a Port of Los Angeles decision to harden its facilities against extreme flood scenarios at the next upgrade pass a cost-benefit test, and (2) Do sea-level rise projections and other information suggest such conditions are sufficiently likely to justify such an investment? We also compare and contrast the Robust Decision Making methods with a full probabilistic analysis. These two analysis frameworks result in similar investment recommendations for different idealized future sea-level projections, but provide different information to decision makers and envision different types of engagement with stakeholders. In particular, the full probabilistic analysis begins by aggregating the best scientific information into a single set of joint probability distributions, while the Robust Decision Making analysis identifies scenarios where a decision to invest in near-term response to extreme sea-level rise passes a cost-benefit test, and then assembles scientific information of differing levels of confidence to help decision makers judge whether or not these scenarios are sufficiently likely to justify making such investments

  18. The multi-millennial Antarctic commitment to future sea-level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Golledge, N R; Kowalewski, D E; Naish, T R; Levy, R H; Fogwill, C J; Gasson, E G W

    2015-10-15

    Atmospheric warming is projected to increase global mean surface temperatures by 0.3 to 4.8 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial values by the end of this century. If anthropogenic emissions continue unchecked, the warming increase may reach 8-10 degrees Celsius by 2300 (ref. 2). The contribution that large ice sheets will make to sea-level rise under such warming scenarios is difficult to quantify because the equilibrium-response timescale of ice sheets is longer than those of the atmosphere or ocean. Here we use a coupled ice-sheet/ice-shelf model to show that if atmospheric warming exceeds 1.5 to 2 degrees Celsius above present, collapse of the major Antarctic ice shelves triggers a centennial- to millennial-scale response of the Antarctic ice sheet in which enhanced viscous flow produces a long-term commitment (an unstoppable contribution) to sea-level rise. Our simulations represent the response of the present-day Antarctic ice-sheet system to the oceanic and climatic changes of four representative concentration pathways (RCPs) from the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. We find that substantial Antarctic ice loss can be prevented only by limiting greenhouse gas emissions to RCP 2.6 levels. Higher-emissions scenarios lead to ice loss from Antarctic that will raise sea level by 0.6-3 metres by the year 2300. Our results imply that greenhouse gas emissions in the next few decades will strongly influence the long-term contribution of the Antarctic ice sheet to global sea level.

  19. The economic impact of sea-level rise on nonmarket lands in Singapore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ng, Wei-Shiuen; Mendelsohn, Robert

    2006-09-01

    Sea-level rise, as a result of climate change, will likely inflict considerable economic consequences on coastal regions, particularly low-lying island states like Singapore. Although the literature has addressed the vulnerability of developed coastal lands, this is the first economic study to address nonmarket lands, such as beaches, marshes and mangrove estuaries. This travel cost and contingent valuation study reveals that consumers in Singapore attach considerable value to beaches. The contingent valuation study also attached high values to marshes and mangroves but this result was not supported by the travel cost study. Although protecting nonmarket land uses from sea-level rise is expensive, the study shows that at least highly valued resources, such as Singapore's popular beaches, should be protected.

  20. Morphological response of the saltmarsh habitats of the Guadiana estuary due to flow regulation and sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sampath, D. M. R.; Boski, T.

    2016-12-01

    In the context of rapid sea-level rise in the 21st century, the reduction of fluvial sediment supply due to the regulation of river discharge represents a major challenge for the management of estuarine ecosystems. Therefore, the present study aims to assess the cumulative impacts of the reduction of river discharge and projected sea-level rise on the morphological evolution of the Guadiana estuary during the 21st century. The assessment was based on a set of analytical solutions to simplified equations of tidal wave propagation in shallow waters and empirical knowledge of the system. As methods applied to estimate environmental flows do not take into consideration the fluvial discharge required to maintain saltmarsh habitats and the impact of sea-level rise, simulations were carried out for ten cases in terms of base river flow and sea-level rise so as to understand their sensitivity on the deepening of saltmarsh platforms. Results suggest saltmarsh habitats may not be affected severely in response to lower limit scenarios of sea-level rise and sedimentation. A similar behaviour can be expected even due to the upper limit scenarios until 2050, but with a significant submergence afterwards. In the case of the upper limit scenarios under scrutiny, there was a net erosion of sediment from the estuary. Multiplications of amplitudes of the base flow function by factors 1.5, 2, and 5 result in reduction of the estimated net eroded sediment volume by 25, 40, and 80%, respectively, with respect to the net eroded volume for observed river discharge. The results also indicate that defining the minimum environmental flow as a percentage of dry season flow (as done presently) should be updated to include the full spectrum of natural flows, incorporating temporal variability to better anticipate scenarios of sea-level rise during this century. As permanent submergence of intertidal habitats can be significant after 2050, due to the projected 79 cm rise of sea-level by the year

  1. Coastal wetland adaptation to sea level rise: Quantifying potential for landward migration and coastal squeeze

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borchert, Sinéad M.; Osland, Michael J.; Enwright, Nicholas M.; Griffith, Kereen

    2018-01-01

    Coastal wetland ecosystems are expected to migrate landwards in response to rising seas. However, due to differences in topography and coastal urbanization, estuaries vary in their ability to accommodate migration. Low‐lying urban areas can constrain migration and lead to wetland loss (i.e. coastal squeeze), especially where existing wetlands cannot keep pace with rising seas via vertical adjustments. In many estuaries, there is a pressing need to identify landward migration corridors and better quantify the potential for landward migration and coastal squeeze.We quantified and compared the area available for landward migration of tidal saline wetlands and the area where urban development is expected to prevent migration for 39 estuaries along the wetland‐rich USA Gulf of Mexico coast. We did so under three sea level rise scenarios (0.5, 1.0, and 1.5 m by 2100).Within the region, the potential for wetland migration is highest within certain estuaries in Louisiana and southern Florida (e.g. Atchafalaya/Vermilion Bays, Mermentau River, Barataria Bay, and the North and South Ten Thousand Islands estuaries).The potential for coastal squeeze is highest in estuaries containing major metropolitan areas that extend into low‐lying lands. The Charlotte Harbor, Tampa Bay, and Crystal‐Pithlachascotee estuaries (Florida) have the highest amounts of urban land expected to constrain wetland migration. Urban barriers to migration are also high in the Galveston Bay (Texas) and Atchafalaya/Vermilion Bays (Louisiana) estuaries.Synthesis and applications. Coastal wetlands provide many ecosystem services that benefit human health and well‐being, including shoreline protection and fish and wildlife habitat. As the rate of sea level rise accelerates in response to climate change, coastal wetland resources could be lost in areas that lack space for landward migration. Migration corridors are particularly important in highly urbanized estuaries where, due to low‐lying coastal

  2. Glacier shrinkage and water resources in the Andes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Francou, Bernard; Coudrain, Anne

    For more than a century glaciers around the world have been melting as air temperatures rise due to a combination of natural processes and human activity. The disappearance of these glaciers can have wide-ranging effects, such as the creation of new natural hazards or changes in stream flow that could threaten water suppliesSome of the most dramatic melting has occurred in the Andes mountain range in South America. To highlight the climatic and glacial change in the Andes and to encourage the scientific community to strengthen the glacier observation network that stretches from Colombia to the Patagonian ice fields, the Instituto Nacional de Recursos Naturales (INRENA), Perú, and the Institute of Research and Development (IRD), France, recently organized the second Symposium on Mass Balance of Andean Glaciers in Huaráz,Perú.

  3. Elevated CO2 stimulates marsh elevation gain, counterbalancing sea-level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langley, J Adam; McKee, Karen L; Cahoon, Donald R; Cherry, Julia A; Megonigal, J Patrick

    2009-04-14

    Tidal wetlands experiencing increased rates of sea-level rise (SLR) must increase rates of soil elevation gain to avoid permanent conversion to open water. The maximal rate of SLR that these ecosystems can tolerate depends partly on mineral sediment deposition, but the accumulation of organic matter is equally important for many wetlands. Plant productivity drives organic matter dynamics and is sensitive to global change factors, such as rising atmospheric CO(2) concentration. It remains unknown how global change will influence organic mechanisms that determine future tidal wetland viability. Here, we present experimental evidence that plant response to elevated atmospheric [CO(2)] stimulates biogenic mechanisms of elevation gain in a brackish marsh. Elevated CO(2) (ambient + 340 ppm) accelerated soil elevation gain by 3.9 mm yr(-1) in this 2-year field study, an effect mediated by stimulation of below-ground plant productivity. Further, a companion greenhouse experiment revealed that the CO(2) effect was enhanced under salinity and flooding conditions likely to accompany future SLR. Our results indicate that by stimulating biogenic contributions to marsh elevation, increases in the greenhouse gas, CO(2), may paradoxically aid some coastal wetlands in counterbalancing rising seas.

  4. Elevated CO2 stimulates marsh elevation gain, counterbalancing sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langley, J. Adam; McKee, Karen L.; Cahoon, Donald R.; Cherry, Julia A.; Megonigal, J. Patrick

    2009-01-01

    Tidal wetlands experiencing increased rates of sea-level rise (SLR) must increase rates of soil elevation gain to avoid permanent conversion to open water. The maximal rate of SLR that these ecosystems can tolerate depends partly on mineral sediment deposition, but the accumulation of organic matter is equally important for many wetlands. Plant productivity drives organic matter dynamics and is sensitive to global change factors, such as rising atmospheric CO2 concentration. It remains unknown how global change will influence organic mechanisms that determine future tidal wetland viability. Here, we present experimental evidence that plant response to elevated atmospheric [CO2] stimulates biogenic mechanisms of elevation gain in a brackish marsh. Elevated CO2 (ambient + 340 ppm) accelerated soil elevation gain by 3.9 mm yr−1 in this 2-year field study, an effect mediated by stimulation of below-ground plant productivity. Further, a companion greenhouse experiment revealed that the CO2 effect was enhanced under salinity and flooding conditions likely to accompany future SLR. Our results indicate that by stimulating biogenic contributions to marsh elevation, increases in the greenhouse gas, CO2, may paradoxically aid some coastal wetlands in counterbalancing rising seas. PMID:19325121

  5. A policy hackathon for analysing impacts and solutions up to 20 metres sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haasnoot, Marjolijn; Bouwer, Laurens; Kwadijk, Jaap

    2017-04-01

    We organised a policy hackathon in order to quantify the impacts accelerated and high-end sea-level rise up to 20 metres on the coast of the Netherlands, and develop possible solutions. This was done during one day, with 20 experts that had a wide variety of disciplines, including hydrology, geology, coastal engineering, economics, and public policy. During the process the problem was divided up into several sub-sets of issues that were analysed and solved within small teams of between 4 to 8 people. Both a top-down impact analysis and bottom-up vulnerability analysis was done by answering the questions: What is the impact of sea level rise of x meter?; and How much sea level rise can be accommodated with before transformative actions are needed? Next, adaptation tipping points were identified that describe conditions under which the coastal system starts to perform unacceptably. Reasons for an adaptation tipping point can be technical (technically not possible), economic (cost-benefits are negative), or resources (available space, sand, energy production, financial). The results are presented in a summary document, and through an infographic displaying different adaptation tipping points and milestones that occur when the sea level rises up to 20 m. No technical limitations were found for adaptation, but many important decisions need to be taken. Although accelerated sea level rise seems far away it can have important consequences for short-term decisions that are required for transformative actions. Such extensive actions require more time for implementation. Also, other action may become ineffective before their design life. This hackathon exercise shows that it is possible to map within a short time frame the issues at hand, as well as potentially effective solutions. This can be replicated for other problems, and can be useful for several decision-makers that require quick but in-depth analysis of their long-term planning problems.

  6. Tidal Marshes across a Chesapeake Bay Subestuary Are Not Keeping up with Sea-Level Rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beckett, Leah H; Baldwin, Andrew H; Kearney, Michael S

    2016-01-01

    Sea-level rise is a major factor in wetland loss worldwide, and in much of Chesapeake Bay (USA) the rate of sea-level rise is higher than the current global rate of 3.2 mm yr-1 due to regional subsidence. Marshes along estuarine salinity gradients differ in vegetation composition, productivity, decomposition pathways, and sediment dynamics, and may exhibit different responses to sea-level rise. Coastal marshes persist by building vertically at rates at or exceeding regional sea-level rise. In one of the first studies to examine elevation dynamics across an estuarine salinity gradient, we installed 15 surface elevation tables (SET) and accretion marker-horizon plots (MH) in tidal freshwater, oligohaline, and brackish marshes across a Chesapeake Bay subestuary. Over the course of four years, wetlands across the subestuary decreased 1.8 ± 2.7 mm yr-1 in elevation on average, at least 5 mm yr-1 below that needed to keep pace with global sea-level rise. Elevation change rates did not significantly differ among the marshes studied, and ranged from -9.8 ± 6.9 to 4.5 ± 4.3 mm yr-1. Surface accretion of deposited mineral and organic matter was uniformly high across the estuary (~9-15 mm yr-1), indicating that elevation loss was not due to lack of accretionary input. Position in the estuary and associated salinity regime were not related to elevation change or surface matter accretion. Previous studies have focused on surface elevation change in marshes of uniform salinity (e.g., salt marshes); however, our findings highlight the need for elevation studies in marshes of all salinity regimes and different geomorphic positions, and warn that brackish, oligohaline, and freshwater tidal wetlands may be at similarly high risk of submergence in some estuaries.

  7. Modelling the impacts of sea level rise on tidal basin ecomorphodynamics and mangrove habitat evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Maanen, Barend; Coco, Giovanni; Bryan, Karin

    2016-04-01

    The evolution of tidal basins and estuaries in tropical and subtropical regions is often influenced by the presence of mangrove forests. These forests are amongst the most productive environments in the world and provide important ecosystem services. However, these intertidal habitats are also extremely vulnerable and are threatened by climate change impacts such as sea level rise. It is therefore of key importance to improve our understanding of how tidal systems occupied by mangrove vegetation respond to rising water levels. An ecomorphodynamic model was developed that simulates morphological change and mangrove forest evolution as a result of mutual feedbacks between physical and biological processes. The model accounts for the effects of mangrove trees on tidal flow patterns and sediment dynamics. Mangrove growth is in turn controlled by hydrodynamic conditions. Under stable water levels, model results indicate that mangrove trees enhance the initiation and branching of tidal channels, partly because the extra flow resistance in mangrove forests favours flow concentration, and thus sediment erosion in between vegetated areas. The landward expansion of the channels, on the other hand, is reduced. Model simulations including sea level rise suggest that mangroves can potentially enhance the ability of the soil surface to maintain an elevation within the upper portion of the intertidal zone. While the sea level is rising, mangroves are migrating landward and the channel network tends to expand landward too. The presence of mangrove trees, however, was found to hinder both the branching and headward erosion of the landward expanding channels. Simulations are performed according to different sea level rise scenarios and with different tidal range conditions to assess which tidal environments are most vulnerable. Changes in the properties of the tidal channel networks are being examined as well. Overall, model results highlight the role of mangroves in driving the

  8. Cities and Sea Level Rise: A Roadmap for Flood Hazard Adaptation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horn, D. P.; Cousins, A.

    2015-12-01

    Coastal cities will face a range of increasingly severe challenges as sea level rises, and adaptation to future flood risk will require more than structural defences. Many cities will not be able to rely solely on engineering structures for protection and will need to develop a suite of policy responses to increase their resilience to impacts of rising sea level. Local governments generally maintain day-to-day responsibility and control over the use of the vast majority of property at risk of flooding, and the tools to promote flood risk adaptation are already within the capacity of most cities. Policy tools available to address other land-use problems can be refashioned and used to adapt to sea level rise. This study reviews approaches for urban adaptation through case studies of cities which have developed flood adaptation strategies that combine structural defences with innovative approaches to living with flood risk. The aim of the overall project is to produce a 'roadmap' to guide practitioners through the process of analysing coastal flood risk in urban areas. Technical knowledge of flood risk reduction measures is complemented with a consideration of the essential impact that local policy has on the treatment of coastal flooding and the constraints and opportunities that result from the specific country or locality characteristics in relation to economic, political, social and environmental priorities, which are likely to dictate the approach to coastal flooding and the actions proposed. Detailed analyses of the adaptation strategies used by Rotterdam (Netherlands), Bristol (UK), and Norfolk (Virginia) are used to draw out a range of good practice elements that promote effective adaptation to sea level rise. These can be grouped into risk reduction, governance issues, and insurance, and can be used to provide examples of how other cities could adopt and implement flood adaptation strategies from a relatively limited starting position. Most cities will

  9. Asynchronous behavior of the Antarctic Ice Sheet and local glaciers during and since Termination 1, Salmon Valley, Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Margaret S.; Hall, Brenda L.; Denton, George H.

    2018-01-01

    The stability of the Antarctic Ice Sheet under future warming remains an open question with broad implications for sea-level prediction and adaptation. In particular, knowledge of whether the ice sheet has the capacity for rapid drawdown or collapse, or whether it can remain stable during periods of warming, is essential for predicting its future behavior. Here we use 55 radiocarbon dates, coupled with geomorphologic mapping, to reconstruct the timing of changes in ice extent and elevation during the last ice-age termination in Salmon Valley, adjacent to McMurdo Sound in the western Ross Sea Embayment. Results indicate that a grounded ice sheet in the Ross Sea Embayment achieved its maximum elevation and extent along the headlands of Salmon Valley at ∼18,000 yr BP, during a period of increasing temperatures and accumulation over the Antarctic continent. This ice remained at or near its maximum on the headlands near the valley mouth until after ∼14,000 yr BP. Removal of grounded Ross Sea ice from Salmon Valley was complete shortly after ∼7900 yr BP, indicating that the grounding line had retreated through southern McMurdo Sound by that time. We suggest the primary driver of Ross Sea ice removal from McMurdo Sound was marine-based, either through basal melting or calving due to sea-level rise. When combined with regional data, the Salmon Valley record suggests that this sector of the Antarctic Ice Sheet did not contribute in a significant way to deglacial meltwater pulses, such as meltwater pulse 1a. In contrast to the Ross Sea ice, our work also shows that local, independent alpine glaciers in Salmon Valley have advanced through the Holocene. Land-terminating glaciers such as these elsewhere in the region show a similar pattern, and may reflect the continued influence of increased accumulation following the termination of the last ice age.

  10. A process for developing and revising a learning progression on sea level rise using learners' explanations

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDonald, Robert Christopher

    The purpose of this study was to explore the process of developing a learning progression (LP) on constructing explanations about sea level rise. I used a learning progressions theoretical framework informed by the situated cognition learning theory. During this exploration, I explicitly described my decision-making process as I developed and revised a hypothetical learning progression. Correspondingly, my research question was: What is a process by which a hypothetical learning progression on sea level rise is developed into an empirical learning progression using learners' explanations? To answer this question, I used a qualitative descriptive single case study with multiple embedded cases (Yin, 2014) that employed analytic induction (Denzin, 1970) to analyze data collected on middle school learners (grades 6-8). Data sources included written artifacts, classroom observations, and semi-structured interviews. Additionally, I kept a researcher journal to track my thinking about the learning progression throughout the research study. Using analytic induction to analyze collected data, I developed eight analytic concepts: participant explanation structures varied widely, global warming and ice melt cause sea level rise, participants held alternative conceptions about sea level rise, participants learned about thermal expansion as a fundamental aspect of sea level rise, participants learned to incorporate authentic scientific data, participants' mental models of the ocean varied widely, sea ice melt contributes to sea level rise, and participants held vague and alternative conceptions about how pollution impacts the ocean. I started with a hypothetical learning progression, gathered empirical data via various sources (especially semi-structured interviews), revised the hypothetical learning progression in response to those data, and ended with an empirical learning progression comprising six levels of learner thinking. As a result of developing an empirically based LP

  11. Modelling the increased frequency of extreme sea levels in the Ganges-Brahmaputra-Meghna delta due to sea level rise and other effects of climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kay, S; Caesar, J; Wolf, J; Bricheno, L; Nicholls, R J; Saiful Islam, A K M; Haque, A; Pardaens, A; Lowe, J A

    2015-07-01

    Coastal flooding due to storm surge and high tides is a serious risk for inhabitants of the Ganges-Brahmaputra-Meghna (GBM) delta, as much of the land is close to sea level. Climate change could lead to large areas of land being subject to increased flooding, salinization and ultimate abandonment in West Bengal, India, and Bangladesh. IPCC 5th assessment modelling of sea level rise and estimates of subsidence rates from the EU IMPACT2C project suggest that sea level in the GBM delta region may rise by 0.63 to 0.88 m by 2090, with some studies suggesting this could be up to 0.5 m higher if potential substantial melting of the West Antarctic ice sheet is included. These sea level rise scenarios lead to increased frequency of high water coastal events. Any effect of climate change on the frequency and severity of storms can also have an effect on extreme sea levels. A shelf-sea model of the Bay of Bengal has been used to investigate how the combined effect of sea level rise and changes in other environmental conditions under climate change may alter the frequency of extreme sea level events for the period 1971 to 2099. The model was forced using atmospheric and oceanic boundary conditions derived from climate model projections and the future scenario increase in sea level was applied at its ocean boundary. The model results show an increased likelihood of extreme sea level events through the 21st century, with the frequency of events increasing greatly in the second half of the century: water levels that occurred at decadal time intervals under present-day model conditions occurred in most years by the middle of the 21st century and 3-15 times per year by 2100. The heights of the most extreme events tend to increase more in the first half of the century than the second. The modelled scenarios provide a case study of how sea level rise and other effects of climate change may combine to produce a greatly increased threat to life and property in the GBM delta by the end

  12. Tidal extension and sea-level rise: recommendations for a research agenda

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ensign, Scott H.; Noe, Gregory

    2018-01-01

    Sea-level rise is pushing freshwater tides upstream into formerly non-tidal rivers. This tidal extension may increase the area of tidal freshwater ecosystems and offset loss of ecosystem functions due to salinization downstream. Without considering how gains in ecosystem functions could offset losses, landscape-scale assessments of ecosystem functions may be biased toward worst-case scenarios of loss. To stimulate research on this concept, we address three fundamental questions about tidal extension: Where will tidal extension be most evident, and can we measure it? What ecosystem functions are influenced by tidal extension, and how can we measure them? How do watershed processes, climate change, and tidal extension interact to affect ecosystem functions? Our preliminary answers lead to recommendations that will advance tidal extension research, enable better predictions of the impacts of sea-level rise, and help balance the landscape-scale benefits of ecosystem function with costs of response.

  13. Simulating the evolution of the Amundsen Sea Sector with a coupled ice-ocean model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seroussi, H. L.; Nakayama, Y.; Menemenlis, D.; Larour, E. Y.; Morlighem, M.; Rignot, E. J.

    2017-12-01

    Ice shelves and floating glacier termini play an important role in the stability of ice sheets and interact strongly with the ocean. They account for much of the buttressing against the flow of inland glaciers that drain the Antarctic ice sheet. Changes in their geometry due to ice-front retreat, thinning or even collapse profoundly affect the flow of their tributary glaciers, which in turn affects the volume of grounded ice carried by these tributary glaciers into the ocean, and the extent of resulting sea level rise. Recent simulations of glaciers in Antarctica show that the largest climatic impact on ice dynamics is the rate of ice shelf melting, which rapidly affects glaciers' speed over several hundreds of kilometers upstream of the grounding line. These melting rates, however, as well as their spatial and temporal evolution remain largely unknown. In the absence of direct long-term observations, coupled ice-ocean models are the best available approach to address this question. In a previous study, we simulated the coupled ice-ocean system near Thwaites Glacier using a new two-way coupled system between the Massachusetts Institute of Technology general circulation model (MITgcm) and the Ice Sheet System Model (ISSM). Our results highlighted the impact of ocean conditions on glacier evolution and demonstrated the importance of simulating the coupled ice-ocean system to produce accurate melting rates under the ice shelf and at the grounding line. In this study, we focus on the entire Amundsen Sea sector, a region that experienced glacier acceleration, thinning and grounding line retreat over the past three decades. We investigate the feedbacks between changes in the ice and ocean, and the dynamic response of the glacier to changes in the ocean circulation. The simulations suggest that this region is likely to undergo substantial changes in the coming decades. This work was performed at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, under a

  14. Quantifying the effect of sea level rise and flood defence - a point process perspective on coastal flood damage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boettle, M.; Rybski, D.; Kropp, J. P.

    2016-02-01

    In contrast to recent advances in projecting sea levels, estimations about the economic impact of sea level rise are vague. Nonetheless, they are of great importance for policy making with regard to adaptation and greenhouse-gas mitigation. Since the damage is mainly caused by extreme events, we propose a stochastic framework to estimate the monetary losses from coastal floods in a confined region. For this purpose, we follow a Peak-over-Threshold approach employing a Poisson point process and the Generalised Pareto Distribution. By considering the effect of sea level rise as well as potential adaptation scenarios on the involved parameters, we are able to study the development of the annual damage. An application to the city of Copenhagen shows that a doubling of losses can be expected from a mean sea level increase of only 11 cm. In general, we find that for varying parameters the expected losses can be well approximated by one of three analytical expressions depending on the extreme value parameters. These findings reveal the complex interplay of the involved parameters and allow conclusions of fundamental relevance. For instance, we show that the damage typically increases faster than the sea level rise itself. This in turn can be of great importance for the assessment of sea level rise impacts on the global scale. Our results are accompanied by an assessment of uncertainty, which reflects the stochastic nature of extreme events. While the absolute value of uncertainty about the flood damage increases with rising mean sea levels, we find that it decreases in relation to the expected damage.

  15. The retreat of the world's mountain glaciers during recent decades

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Francou, B.; Vincent, Ch.

    2009-01-01

    Glaciers have become essential tools for measuring changes in the global environment. Here, we analyze glacier evolution during the last few decades and we wonder whether the observed retreat remains in the range of glacier fluctuations since the mid-Holocene. The main fluctuations experienced by glaciers during the last millenniums, and particularly during the Little Ice Age (-1300 A.D. to ∼1860 A.D.), are presented succinctly. The recent 1960-2005 period, well documented both by ground and remote sensing observations, shows important disparities between different massifs concerning the timing and the magnitude of glacier fluctuations, which depend on regional climatic conditions. The links between glacier mass balance evolution and climate is clear when approached from an energy balance but the variables commonly considered are only temperature and precipitation. The strong correlation existing between these variables and the mass balance evolution makes it possible to simulate glaciers in the future in function of distinct climatic scenarios. Modeling glacier retreat for the 21. century is an important goal because it will allow the impacts on water resource and sea level to be assessed. (authors)

  16. Evaluating Coastal Landscape Response to Sea-Level Rise in the Northeastern United States - Approach and Methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lentz, Erika E.; Stippa, Sawyer R.; Thieler, E. Robert; Plant, Nathaniel G.; Gesch, Dean B.; Horton, Radley M.

    2015-01-01

    The U.S. Geological Survey is examining effects of future sea-level rise on the coastal landscape from Maine to Virginia by producing spatially explicit, probabilistic predictions using sea-level projections, vertical land movement rates (due to isostacy), elevation data, and land-cover data. Sea-level-rise scenarios used as model inputs are generated by using multiple sources of information, including Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 models following representative concentration pathways 4.5 and 8.5 in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Fifth Assessment Report. A Bayesian network is used to develop a predictive coastal response model that integrates the sea-level, elevation, and land-cover data with assigned probabilities that account for interactions with coastal geomorphology as well as the corresponding ecological and societal systems it supports. The effects of sea-level rise are presented as (1) level of landscape submergence and (2) coastal response type characterized as either static (that is, inundation) or dynamic (that is, landform or landscape change). Results are produced at a spatial scale of 30 meters for four decades (the 2020s, 2030s, 2050s, and 2080s). The probabilistic predictions can be applied to landscape management decisions based on sea-level-rise effects as well as on assessments of the prediction uncertainty and need for improved data or fundamental understanding. This report describes the methods used to produce predictions, including information on input datasets; the modeling approach; model outputs; data-quality-control procedures; and information on how to access the data and metadata online.

  17. Evaluating coastal landscape response to sea-level rise in the northeastern United States: approach and methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lentz, Erika E.; Stippa, Sawyer R.; Thieler, E. Robert; Plant, Nathaniel G.; Gesch, Dean B.; Horton, Radley M.

    2014-02-13

    The U.S. Geological Survey is examining effects of future sea-level rise on the coastal landscape from Maine to Virginia by producing spatially explicit, probabilistic predictions using sea-level projections, vertical land movement rates (due to isostacy), elevation data, and land-cover data. Sea-level-rise scenarios used as model inputs are generated by using multiple sources of information, including Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 models following representative concentration pathways 4.5 and 8.5 in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Fifth Assessment Report. A Bayesian network is used to develop a predictive coastal response model that integrates the sea-level, elevation, and land-cover data with assigned probabilities that account for interactions with coastal geomorphology as well as the corresponding ecological and societal systems it supports. The effects of sea-level rise are presented as (1) level of landscape submergence and (2) coastal response type characterized as either static (that is, inundation) or dynamic (that is, landform or landscape change). Results are produced at a spatial scale of 30 meters for four decades (the 2020s, 2030s, 2050s, and 2080s). The probabilistic predictions can be applied to landscape management decisions based on sea-level-rise effects as well as on assessments of the prediction uncertainty and need for improved data or fundamental understanding. This report describes the methods used to produce predictions, including information on input datasets; the modeling approach; model outputs; data-quality-control procedures; and information on how to access the data and metadata online.

  18. Determining the Current and Future Health of Low-Latitude Andean Glaciers Using an Equilibrium Line Altitude Model and Hypsometric Data from the Randolph Glacier Inventory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malone, A.; MacAyeal, D. R.

    2015-12-01

    Mountain glaciers have been described as the water towers of world, and for many populations in the low-latitude South American Andes, glacial runoff is vital for agricultural, industrial, and basic water needs. Previous studies of low-latitude Andean glaciers suggest a precarious future due to contemporary warming. These studies have looked at trends in freezing level heights or observations of contemporary retreat. However, regional-scale understanding of low-latitude glacial responses to present and future climate change is limited, in part due to incomplete information about the extent and elevation distribution of low-latitude glaciers. The recently published Randolph Glacier Inventory (RGI) (5.0) provides the necessary information about the size and elevation distribution of low-latitude glaciers to begin such studies. We determine the contemporary equilibrium line altitudes (ELAs) for low-latitude Andean glaciers in the RGI, using a numerical energy balance ablation model driven with reanalysis and gridded data products. Contemporary ELAs tend to fall around the peak of the elevation histogram, with an exception being the southern-most outer tropical glaciers whose modeled ELAs tend to be higher than the elevation histogram for that region (see below figure). Also, we use the linear tends in temperature and precipitation from the contemporary climatology to extrapolate 21stcentury climate forcings. Modeled ELAs by the middle on the century are universally predicted to rise, with outer tropical ELAs rising more than the inner tropical glaciers. These trends continue through the end of the century. Finally, we explore how climate variables and parameters in our numerical model may vary for different warming scenarios from United Nation's IPCC AR5 report. We quantify the impacts of these changes on ELAs for various climate change trajectories. These results support previous work on the precarious future of low latitude Andean glaciers, while providing a richer

  19. Influence of potential sea level rise on societal vulnerability to hurricane storm-surge hazards, Sarasota County, Florida

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frazier, Tim G.; Wood, Nathan; Yarnal, Brent; Bauer, Denise H.

    2010-01-01

    Although the potential for hurricanes under current climatic conditions continue to threaten coastal communities, there is concern that climate change, specifically potential increases in sea level, could influence the impacts of future hurricanes. To examine the potential effect of sea level rise on community vulnerability to future hurricanes, we assess variations in socioeconomic exposure in Sarasota County, FL, to contemporary hurricane storm-surge hazards and to storm-surge hazards enhanced by sea level rise scenarios. Analysis indicates that significant portions of the population, economic activity, and critical facilities are in contemporary and future hurricane storm-surge hazard zones. The addition of sea level rise to contemporary storm-surge hazard zones effectively causes population and asset (infrastructure, natural resources, etc) exposure to be equal to or greater than what is in the hazard zone of the next higher contemporary Saffir–Simpson hurricane category. There is variability among communities for this increased exposure, with greater increases in socioeconomic exposure due to the addition of sea level rise to storm-surge hazard zones as one progresses south along the shoreline. Analysis of the 2050 comprehensive land use plan suggests efforts to manage future growth in residential, economic and infrastructure development in Sarasota County may increase societal exposure to hurricane storm-surge hazards.

  20. Coastal Hazards Maps: Actionable Information for Communities Facing Sea-Level Rise (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibeaut, J. C.; Barraza, E.

    2010-12-01

    Barrier islands along the U.S. Gulf coast remain under increasing pressure from development. This development and redevelopment is occurring despite recent hurricanes, ongoing erosion, and sea-level rise. To lessen the impacts of these hazards, local governments need information in a form that is useful for informing the public, making policy, and enforcing development rules. We recently completed the Galveston Island Geohazards Map for the city of Galveston, Texas and are currently developing maps for the Mustang and South Padre Island communities. The maps show areas that vary in their susceptibility to, and function for, mitigating the effects of geological processes, including sea-level rise, land subsidence, erosion and storm-surge flooding and washover. The current wetlands, beaches and dunes are mapped as having the highest geohazard potential both in terms of their exposure to hazardous conditions and their mitigating effects of those hazards for the rest of the island. These existing “critical environments” are generally protected under existing regulations. Importantly, however, the mapping recognizes that sea-level rise and shoreline retreat are changing the island; therefore, 60-year model projections of the effects of these changes are incorporated into the map. The areas that we project will become wetlands, beaches and dunes in the next 60 years are not protected. These areas are the most difficult to deal with from a policy point of view, yet we must address what happens there if real progress is to be made in how we live with sea-level rise. The geohazards maps draw on decades of geological knowledge of how barrier islands behave and put it in a form that is intuitive to the public and directly useful to planners. Some of the “messages” in the map include: leave salt marshes alone and give them room to migrate inland as sea level rises; set back and move development away from the shoreline to provide space for beaches and protective dunes

  1. The effects of freshwater inflow, inlet conveyance and sea level rise on the salinity regime in the Loxahatchee Estuary

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hu, G.

    2002-01-01

    The upstream migration of salt water into the historic freshwater reaches of the Loxahatchee River is the likely cause of the altered floodplain cypress forest community along the Northwest Fork and some of its tributaries. Mangroves are replacing cypress forest and areas of mixed swamp hardwoods have reacted to different degrees to the saltwater stress. A hydrodynamic/salinity model was developed to study the influence of freshwater input, tidal inlet deepening and sea level rise on the salinity regime in the estuary. Field data analysis and model simulations indicate that the salinity condition in the estuary is sensitive to the amount of freshwater input from the watershed. During dry seasons the salt front advances into areas that were historically freshwater habitats. Historic evidence indicates that the Loxahatchee estuary was periodically closed and opened to the sea. Due to the active long shore sediment transport, the tidal inlet was probably characterized by shifting sandbars through which ran a narrow and unstable channel. Inlet dredging in the past several decades has increased the hydraulic conveyance of the inlet and the tidal influence into the estuary. The sea level record from a site in south Florida indicates that the sea level has been rising at a rate of approximately 2.3-mm per year. The rise of sea level in the past century has probably raised the mean tide level by about 23 centimeters. If the sea level rise continues as predicted, it is foreseeable that the salt front will move further upstream along with the sea level rise. Field data analysis and the preliminary model output led us to believe that the advance of seawater up the estuary is the combined effect of watershed hydrological changes, inlet deepening and sea level rise. (author)

  2. 2017 Rapid Retreat Of Thwaites Glacier

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milillo, P.; Rignot, E. J.; Mouginot, J.; Scheuchl, B.

    2017-12-01

    We employ data from the second generation of SAR systems e.g. the Italian COSMO- SkyMed (CSK) constellation and the German TanDEM-X (TDX) formation to monitor grounding line retreat using short repeat-time interferometry and accurate InSAR DEM on Thwaites glacier in the Amundsen Sea Embayment (ASE), West Antarctica. The ASE is a marine-based ice sheet with a retrograde bed containing enough ice to raise global sea level by 120 cm. Several studies have inferred the mechanical properties of portions of ASE using observationally constrained numerical models, but these studies offer only temporal snapshots of basal mechanics owing to a dearth of observational time series. Prior attempts of grounding lines mapping have been limited because few space-borne SAR missions offer the short-term repeat pass capability required to map the differential vertical displacement of floating ice at tidal frequencies with sufficient detail to resolve grounding line boundaries in areas of fast ice deformation. Using 1-day CSK repeat pass data and TDX DEMs, we collected frequent, high-resolution grounding line measurements of Thwaites glaciers spanning 2015-2017. We compare the results with ERS data spanning 1996-2011, and Sentinel-1a 2014-2015 data. Between 2011 and 2017 we observe a maximum retreat of 5-7 km across the main Thwaites glacier tongue and Thwaites Eastern ice shelf (TEIS) corresponding to an increased retreat rate of 0.5 km/yr. Grounding line retreat has been fueled by the enhanced intrusion of warm, salty, subsurface ocean water of circumpolar deep water origin onto the continental shelf, beneath the floating ice shelf, to reach the glacier grounding zone and melt it from below at rates varying from 50 to 150 m/yr. The retreat rate varies depending on the magnitude of ice melt by the ocean, the rate of ice thinning and the shape of the glacier surface and bed topography.

  3. Improving estimation of glacier volume change: a GLIMS case study of Bering Glacier System, Alaska

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. J. Beedle

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available The Global Land Ice Measurements from Space (GLIMS project has developed tools and methods that can be employed by analysts to create accurate glacier outlines. To illustrate the importance of accurate glacier outlines and the effectiveness of GLIMS standards we conducted a case study on Bering Glacier System (BGS, Alaska. BGS is a complex glacier system aggregated from multiple drainage basins, numerous tributaries, and many accumulation areas. Published measurements of BGS surface area vary from 1740 to 6200 km2, depending on how the boundaries of this system have been defined. Utilizing GLIMS tools and standards we have completed a new outline (3630 km2 and analysis of the area-altitude distribution (hypsometry of BGS using Landsat images from 2000 and 2001 and a US Geological Survey 15-min digital elevation model. We compared this new hypsometry with three different hypsometries to illustrate the errors that result from the widely varying estimates of BGS extent. The use of different BGS hypsometries results in highly variable measures of volume change and net balance (bn. Applying a simple hypsometry-dependent mass-balance model to different hypsometries results in a bn rate range of −1.0 to −3.1 m a−1 water equivalent (W.E., a volume change range of −3.8 to −6.7 km3 a−1 W.E., and a near doubling in contributions to sea level equivalent, 0.011 mm a−1 to 0.019 mm a−1. Current inaccuracies in glacier outlines hinder our ability to correctly quantify glacier change. Understanding of glacier extents can become comprehensive and accurate. Such accuracy is possible with the increasing volume of satellite imagery of glacierized regions, recent advances in tools and standards, and dedication to this important task.

  4. The Blackwater NWR inundation model. Rising sea level on a low-lying coast: land use planning for wetlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larsen, Curt; Clark, Inga; Guntenspergen, Glenn; Cahoon, Don; Caruso, Vincent; Hupp, Cliff; Yanosky, Tom

    2004-01-01

    The Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge (BNWR), on the Eastern Shore of Chesapeake Bay (figure 1), occupies an area less than 1 meter above sea level. The Refuge has been featured prominently in studies of the impact of sea level rise on coastal wetlands. Most notably, the refuge has been sited by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) as a key example of 'wetland loss' attributable to rising sea level due to global temperature increase. Comparative studies of aerial photos taken since 1938 show an expanding area of open water in the central area of the refuge. The expanding area of open water can be shown to parallel the record of sea level rise over the past 60 years. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) manages the refuge to support migratory waterfowl and to preserve endangered upland species. High marsh vegetation is critical to FWS waterfowl management strategies. A broad area once occupied by high marsh has decreased with rising sea level. The FWS needs a planning tool to help predict current and future areas of high marsh available for waterfowl. 'Wetland loss' is a relative term. It is dependant on the boundaries chosen for measurement. Wetland vegetation, zoned by elevation and salinity (figure 3), respond to rising sea level. Wetlands migrate inland and upslope and may vary in areas depending on the adjacent land slopes. Refuge managers need a geospatial tool that allows them to predict future areas that will be converted to high and intertidal marsh. Shifts in location and area of coverage must be anticipated. Viability of a current marsh area is also important. When will sea level rise make short-term management strategies to maintain an area impractical? The USGS has developed an inundation model for the BNWR centered on the refuge and surrounding areas. Such models are simple in concept, but they require a detailed topographic map upon which to superimpose future sea level positions. The new system of LIDAR mapping of land and

  5. How effective is albedo modification (solar radiation management geoengineering) in preventing sea-level rise from the Greenland Ice Sheet?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Applegate, Patrick J; Keller, Klaus

    2015-01-01

    Albedo modification (AM) is sometimes characterized as a potential means of avoiding climate threshold responses, including large-scale ice sheet mass loss. Previous work has investigated the effects of AM on total sea-level rise over the present century, as well as AM’s ability to reduce long-term (≫10 3 yr) contributions to sea-level rise from the Greenland Ice Sheet (GIS). These studies have broken new ground, but neglect important feedbacks in the GIS system, or are silent on AM’s effectiveness over the short time scales that may be most relevant for decision-making (<10 3 yr). Here, we assess AM’s ability to reduce GIS sea-level contributions over decades to centuries, using a simplified ice sheet model. We drive this model using a business-as-usual base temperature forcing scenario, as well as scenarios that reflect AM-induced temperature stabilization or temperature drawdown. Our model results suggest that (i) AM produces substantial near-term reductions in the rate of GIS-driven sea-level rise. However, (ii) sea-level rise contributions from the GIS continue after AM begins. These continued sea level rise contributions persist for decades to centuries after temperature stabilization and temperature drawdown begin, unless AM begins in the next few decades. Moreover, (iii) any regrowth of the GIS is delayed by decades or centuries after temperature drawdown begins, and is slow compared to pre-AM rates of mass loss. Combined with recent work that suggests AM would not prevent mass loss from the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, our results provide a nuanced picture of AM’s possible effects on future sea-level rise. (letter)

  6. Cities and Sea Level Rise: A Roadmap for Flood Hazard Adaptation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horn, Diane; Cousins, Ann

    2016-04-01

    Coastal cities will face a range of increasingly severe challenges as sea level rises, and adaptation to future flood risk will require more than structural defences. Many cities will not be able to rely solely on engineering structures for protection and will need to develop a suite of policy responses to increase their resilience to impacts of rising sea level. The tools to promote flood risk adaptation are already within the capacity of most cities, with an assortment of policy tools available to address other land-use problems which can be refashioned and used to adapt to sea level rise. This study reviews approaches for urban adaptation through detailed analyses of case studies of cities which have developed flood adaptation strategies that combine structural defences with innovative approaches to living with flood risk. The aim of the overall project is to produce a 'roadmap' to guide practitioners through the process of analysing coastal flood risk in urban areas. Methodologies and tools to estimate vulnerability to coastal flooding, damages suffered, and the assessment of flood defences and adaptation measures are complemented with a discussion on the essential impact that local policy has on the treatment of coastal flooding and the constraints and opportunities that result from the specific country or locality characteristics in relation to economic, political, social and environmental priorities, which are likely to dictate the approach to coastal flooding and the actions proposed. Case studies of adaptation strategies used by Rotterdam, Bristol, Ho Chi Minh City and Norfolk, Virginia, are used to draw out a range of good practice elements that promote effective adaptation to sea level rise. These can be grouped into risk reduction, governance issues, and insurance, and can be used to provide examples of how other cities could adopt and implement flood adaptation strategies from a relatively limited starting position. Most cities will neither be able to

  7. Identification of Transportation Infrastructure at Risk Due To Sea-Level Rise and Subsidence of Land In Coastal Louisiana

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tewari, S.; Palmer, W.; Manning, F.

    2017-12-01

    Climate change can affect coastal areas in a variety of ways. Coasts are sensitive to sea level rise, changes in the frequency/intensity of storms, increase in precipitation and storm surges. The resilience of transportation infrastructure located in Louisiana's coastal zone, against storm surges and climatic sea-level rise is critical. The net change in sea-level is affected by the increase in global sea level as well as land movement up or down. There are many places in coastal Louisiana that have a high subsidence rate. The subsidence could be related to excess extraction activities of oil and water, natural and/or human induced compaction, and tectonic movement. Where the land is sinking, the rate of relative sea level rise is larger than the global rate. Some of the fastest rates of relative sea level rise in the United States are occurring in areas where the land is sinking, including parts of the Gulf Coast. For example, coastal Louisiana has seen its relative sea level rise by eight inches or more in the last 50 years, which is about twice the global rate. Subsiding land in the Gulf area worsens the effects of relative sea level rise, increasing the risk of flooding in cities, inhabited islands, and tidal wetlands. The research team is investigating the trends for sea-level rise and land subsidence in coastal region of Louisiana. The variability in storm surges and its potential implication on the transportation infrastructure in the region is the focus of the study. The spatial maps will be created for spatial trends. This is extremely useful in being prepared for long-term natural hazards. The results of this study will be helpful to LADOTD and infrastructure managers and officials who are tasked with resiliency planning and management. Research results will also directly benefit university researchers in the state, Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority and LADOTD/LTRC through collaborative activity which will educate both professionals and the

  8. Created mangrove wetlands store belowground carbon and surface elevation change enables them to adjust to sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krauss, Ken W.; Cormier, Nicole; Osland, Michael J.; Kirwan, Matthew L.; Stagg, Camille L.; Nestlerode, Janet A.; Russell, Marc J.; From, Andrew; Spivak, Amanda C.; Dantin, Darrin D.; Harvey, James E.; Almario, Alejandro E.

    2017-01-01

    Mangrove wetlands provide ecosystem services for millions of people, most prominently by providing storm protection, food and fodder. Mangrove wetlands are also valuable ecosystems for promoting carbon (C) sequestration and storage. However, loss of mangrove wetlands and these ecosystem services are a global concern, prompting the restoration and creation of mangrove wetlands as a potential solution. Here, we investigate soil surface elevation change, and its components, in created mangrove wetlands over a 25 year developmental gradient. All created mangrove wetlands were exceeding current relative sea-level rise rates (2.6 mm yr−1), with surface elevation change of 4.2–11.0 mm yr−1 compared with 1.5–7.2 mm yr−1 for nearby reference mangroves. While mangrove wetlands store C persistently in roots/soils, storage capacity is most valuable if maintained with future sea-level rise. Through empirical modeling, we discovered that properly designed creation projects may not only yield enhanced C storage, but also can facilitate wetland persistence perennially under current rates of sea-level rise and, for most sites, for over a century with projected medium accelerations in sea-level rise (IPCC RCP 6.0). Only the fastest projected accelerations in sea-level rise (IPCC RCP 8.5) led to widespread submergence and potential loss of stored C for created mangrove wetlands before 2100.

  9. Created mangrove wetlands store belowground carbon and surface elevation change enables them to adjust to sea-level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krauss, Ken W; Cormier, Nicole; Osland, Michael J; Kirwan, Matthew L; Stagg, Camille L; Nestlerode, Janet A; Russell, Marc J; From, Andrew S; Spivak, Amanda C; Dantin, Darrin D; Harvey, James E; Almario, Alejandro E

    2017-04-21

    Mangrove wetlands provide ecosystem services for millions of people, most prominently by providing storm protection, food and fodder. Mangrove wetlands are also valuable ecosystems for promoting carbon (C) sequestration and storage. However, loss of mangrove wetlands and these ecosystem services are a global concern, prompting the restoration and creation of mangrove wetlands as a potential solution. Here, we investigate soil surface elevation change, and its components, in created mangrove wetlands over a 25 year developmental gradient. All created mangrove wetlands were exceeding current relative sea-level rise rates (2.6 mm yr -1 ), with surface elevation change of 4.2-11.0 mm yr -1 compared with 1.5-7.2 mm yr -1 for nearby reference mangroves. While mangrove wetlands store C persistently in roots/soils, storage capacity is most valuable if maintained with future sea-level rise. Through empirical modeling, we discovered that properly designed creation projects may not only yield enhanced C storage, but also can facilitate wetland persistence perennially under current rates of sea-level rise and, for most sites, for over a century with projected medium accelerations in sea-level rise (IPCC RCP 6.0). Only the fastest projected accelerations in sea-level rise (IPCC RCP 8.5) led to widespread submergence and potential loss of stored C for created mangrove wetlands before 2100.

  10. 8800 years of high-altitude vegetation and climate history at the Rutor Glacier forefield, Italian Alps. Evidence of middle Holocene timberline rise and glacier contraction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Badino, Federica; Ravazzi, Cesare; Vallè, Francesca; Pini, Roberta; Aceti, Amelia; Brunetti, Michele; Champvillair, Elena; Maggi, Valter; Maspero, Francesco; Perego, Renata; Orombelli, Giuseppe

    2018-04-01

    Sedimentary archives at or near the timberline ecotone in Alpine glaciated areas contain records to study Holocene climate change and the interplay between climate, ecosystems, and humans. We focused on records of timberline and glacier oscillations in the Rutor Glacier forefield (Western Italian Alps) in the last 8800 years. Human activity in this area was negligible for most of the Holocene. We adopted an integrative stratigraphic approach including proxies for glacier advance and timberline estimation, sedimentary events, and reconstructed temperatures. Changes in timberline ecotone correlate to climate until the Middle Ages. Pollen-stratigraphic evidence of a primary plant succession highlights a lag beween local deglaciation and the first reliable 14C age. The radiocarbon chronology points to a prolonged phase of glacier contraction between 8.8 and 3.7 ka cal BP. Even later the glacier remained within its LIA limits. Between 8.4 and 4 ka cal BP MAT-inferred TJuly fluctuated near 12.4 °C, ca. 3.1 °C higher than today. During this period, a Pinus cembra forest belt grew at 2600 m asl with an upper limit of tree groves placed 434 ± 310 m above the current open forest limit. This Holocene phase of thermal maximum ended between 3.98 and 3.51 ± 70 ka cal BP and with a substantial rearrangement of forest composition; temperature reconstruction shows a decrease of 1.8 °C. This climate deterioration concluded the Subboreal thermal optimum, mirroring glacial advances widely documented in the Alps. The Rutor Glacier advanced at ca. AD 1093 ± 65, and remained inside the LIA maximum extent. The LIA started since AD 1594, and culminated between AD 1751 and 1864.

  11. Assessing Sea Level Rise Impacts on the Surficial Aquifer in the Kennedy Space Center Region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiao, H.; Wang, D.; Hagen, S. C.; Medeiros, S. C.; Warnock, A. M.; Hall, C. R.

    2014-12-01

    Global sea level rise in the past century due to climate change has been seen at an average rate of approximately 1.7-2.2 mm per year, with an increasing rate over the next century. The increasing SLR rate poses a severe threat to the low-lying land surface and the shallow groundwater system in the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, resulting in saltwater intrusion and groundwater induced flooding. A three-dimensional groundwater flow and salinity transport model is implemented to investigate and evaluate the extent of floods due to rising water table as well as saltwater intrusion. The SEAWAT model is chosen to solve the variable-density groundwater flow and salinity transport governing equations and simulate the regional-scale spatial and temporal evolution of groundwater level and chloride concentration. The horizontal resolution of the model is 50 m, and the vertical domain includes both the Surficial Aquifer and the Floridan Aquifer. The numerical model is calibrated based on the observed hydraulic head and chloride concentration. The potential impacts of sea level rise on saltwater intrusion and groundwater induced flooding are assessed under various sea level rise scenarios. Based on the simulation results, the potential landward movement of saltwater and freshwater fringe is projected. The existing water supply wells are examined overlaid with the projected salinity distribution map. The projected Surficial Aquifer water tables are overlaid with data of high resolution land surface elevation, land use and land cover, and infrastructure to assess the potential impacts of sea level rise. This study provides useful tools for decision making on ecosystem management, water supply planning, and facility management.

  12. Potential impact of predicted sea level rise on carbon sink function of mangrove ecosystems with special reference to Negombo estuary, Sri Lanka

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perera, K. A. R. S.; De Silva, K. H. W. L.; Amarasinghe, M. D.

    2018-02-01

    Unique location in the land-sea interface makes mangrove ecosystems most vulnerable to the impacts of predicted sea level rise due to increasing anthropogenic CO2 emissions. Among others, carbon sink function of these tropical ecosystems that contribute to reduce rising atmospheric CO2 and temperature, could potentially be affected most. Present study was undertaken to explore the extent of impact of the predicted sea level rise for the region on total organic carbon (TOC) pools of the mangrove ecosystems in Negombo estuary located on the west coast of Sri Lanka. Extents of the coastal inundations under minimum (0.09 m) and maximum (0.88 m) sea level rise scenarios of IPCC for 2100 and an intermediate level of 0.48 m were determined with GIS tools. Estimated total capacity of organic carbon retention by these mangrove areas was 499.45 Mg C ha- 1 of which 84% (418.98 Mg C ha- 1) sequestered in the mangrove soil and 16% (80.56 Mg C ha- 1) in the vegetation. Total extent of land area potentially affected by inundation under lowest sea level rise scenario was 218.9 ha, while it was 476.2 ha under intermediate rise and 696.0 ha with the predicted maximum sea level rise. Estimated rate of loss of carbon sink function due to inundation by the sea level rise of 0.09 m is 6.30 Mg C ha- 1 y- 1 while the intermediate sea level rise indicated a loss of 9.92 Mg C ha- 1 y- 1 and under maximum sea level rise scenario, this loss further increases up to 11.32 Mg C ha- 1 y- 1. Adaptation of mangrove plants to withstand inundation and landward migration along with escalated photosynthetic rates, augmented by changing rainfall patterns and availability of nutrients may contribute to reduce the rate of loss of carbon sink function of these mangrove ecosystems. Predictions over change in carbon sequestration function of mangroves in Negombo estuary reveals that it is not only affected by oceanographic and hydrological alterations associated with sea level rise but also by anthropogenic

  13. Glacier dynamics over the last quarter of a century at Helheim, Kangerdlugssuaq and 14 other major Greenland outlet glaciers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. L. Bevan

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available The Greenland ice sheet is experiencing increasing rates of mass loss, the majority of which results from changes in discharge from tidewater glaciers. Both atmospheric and ocean drivers have been implicated in these dynamic changes, but understanding the nature of the response has been hampered by the lack of measurements of glacier flow rates predating the recent period of warming. Here, using Landsat-5 data from 1985 onwards, we extend back in time the record of surface velocities and ice-front position for 16 of Greenland's fastest-flowing tidewater glaciers, and compare these to more recent data from Landsat-7 and satellite-borne synthetic-aperture radar. Climate re-analysis data and sea surface temperatures from 1982 show that since 1995 most of Greenland and its surrounding oceans have experienced significant overall warming, and a switch to a warming trend. During the period from 1985 to 1995 when Greenland and the surrounding oceans were not warming, major tidewater outlet glaciers around Greenland, including Kangerdlugssuaq and Helheim, were dynamically stable. Since the mid-1990s, glacier discharge has consistently been both greater and more variable. Together, these observations support the hypothesis that recent dynamic change is a rapid response to climate forcing. Both air and ocean temperatures in this region are predicted to continue to warm, and will therefore likely drive further change in outlet glacier discharge.

  14. The retreat of the world's mountain glaciers during recent decades; Le retrait des glaciers de montagne dans le monde au cours des dernieres decennies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Francou, B. [Institut de Recherche pour le Developpement (IRD), Mission de Quito, Equateur - LTHE, 38 - Grenoble (France); Vincent, Ch. [Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS), UJF, LGGE, 38 - Grenoble (France)

    2009-08-15

    Glaciers have become essential tools for measuring changes in the global environment. Here, we analyze glacier evolution during the last few decades and we wonder whether the observed retreat remains in the range of glacier fluctuations since the mid-Holocene. The main fluctuations experienced by glaciers during the last millenniums, and particularly during the Little Ice Age (-1300 A.D. to {approx}1860 A.D.), are presented succinctly. The recent 1960-2005 period, well documented both by ground and remote sensing observations, shows important disparities between different massifs concerning the timing and the magnitude of glacier fluctuations, which depend on regional climatic conditions. The links between glacier mass balance evolution and climate is clear when approached from an energy balance but the variables commonly considered are only temperature and precipitation. The strong correlation existing between these variables and the mass balance evolution makes it possible to simulate glaciers in the future in function of distinct climatic scenarios. Modeling glacier retreat for the 21. century is an important goal because it will allow the impacts on water resource and sea level to be assessed. (authors)

  15. Glacier mass balance in high-arctic areas with anomalous gravity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharov, A.; Rieser, D.; Nikolskiy, D.

    2012-04-01

    All known glaciological models describing the evolution of Arctic land- and sea-ice masses in changing climate treat the Earth's gravity as horizontally constant, but it isn't. In the High Arctic, the strength of the gravitational field varies considerably across even short distances under the influence of a density gradient, and the magnitude of free air gravity anomalies attains 100 mGal and more. On long-term base, instantaneous deviations of gravity can have a noticeable effect on the regime and mass budget of glaciological objects. At best, the gravity-induced component of ice mass variations can be determined on topographically smooth, open and steady surfaces, like those of arctic planes, regular ice caps and landfast sea ice. The present research is devoted to studying gravity-driven impacts on glacier mass balance in the outer periphery of four Eurasian shelf seas with a very cold, dry climate and rather episodic character of winter precipitation. As main study objects we had chosen a dozen Russia's northernmost insular ice caps, tens to hundreds of square kilometres in extent, situated in a close vicinity of strong gravity anomalies and surrounded with extensive fields of fast and/or drift ice for most of the year. The supposition about gravitational forcing on glacioclimatic settings in the study region is based on the results of quantitative comparison and joint interpretation of existing glacier change maps and available data on the Arctic gravity field and solid precipitation. The overall mapping of medium-term (from decadal to half-centennial) changes in glacier volumes and quantification of mass balance characteristics in the study region was performed by comparing reference elevation models of study glaciers derived from Russian topographic maps 1:200,000 (CI = 20 or 40 m) representing the glacier state as in the 1950s-1980s with modern elevation data obtained from satellite radar interferometry and lidar altimetry. Free-air gravity anomalies were

  16. Possible impact of rising sea levels on vector-borne infectious diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Surendran Sinnathamby N

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Vector-borne infectious diseases are a significant cause of human and animal mortality and morbidity. Modeling studies predict that changes in climate that accompany global warming will alter the transmission risk of many vector-borne infectious diseases in different parts of the world. Global warming will also raise sea levels, which will lead to an increase in saline and brackish water bodies in coastal areas. The potential impact of rising sea levels, as opposed to climate change, on the prevalence of vector-borne infectious diseases has hitherto been unrecognised. Presentation of the hypothesis Mosquito species possessing salinity-tolerant larvae and pupae, and capable of transmitting arboviruses and parasites are found in many parts of the world. An expansion of brackish and saline water bodies in coastal areas, associated with rising sea levels, can increase densities of salinity-tolerant vector mosquitoes and lead to the adaptation of freshwater vectors to breed in brackish and saline waters. The breeding of non-mosquito vectors may also be influenced by salinity changes in coastal habitats. Higher vector densities can increase transmission of vector-borne infectious diseases in coastal localities, which can then spread to other areas. Testing the hypothesis The demonstration of increases in vector populations and disease prevalence that is related to an expansion of brackish/saline water bodies in coastal areas will provide the necessary supportive evidence. However the implementation of specific vector and disease control measures to counter the threat will confound the expected findings. Implications of the hypothesis Rising sea levels can act synergistically with climate change and then interact in a complex manner with other environmental and socio-economic factors to generate a greater potential for the transmission of vector-borne infectious diseases. The resulting health impacts are likely to be particularly

  17. Mapping Sea Level Rise Behavior in an Estuarine Delta System: A Case Study along the Shanghai Coast

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H.Q. Cheng

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Sea level rise (SLR is a major projected threat of climate change that is expected to affect developing coastal cities located in estuarine delta regions. Shanghai is one such city, being located in the Yangtze River Delta (YRD. It is difficult, however, for decision-makers to implement adaptation due to the uncertain causes, magnitudes, and timings of SLR behaviors. This paper attempts to map the causes and magnitudes of SLR behaviors on a decadal scale. We analyze the tidal level records from 11 tidal gauge stations and the corresponding bathymetry measurements around these stations since 1921. We identify three new SLR behaviors along the Shanghai coast due to anthropogenic geomorphologic changes (AGCs, besides the well-known eustatic sea level rise (ESLR, tectonic subsidence (TS, and urban land subsidence (ULS. The first new behavior is regional sea level rise (RSLR, which occurs as a result of land reclamation and deep waterway regulation. The second is regional sea level fall (RSLF, which occurs because the channel bed is eroded due to sediment supply decline in the river catchment. The last SLR behavior is local tidal datum rise (LTDR. Thus, we project that the magnitude of SLR for the Shanghai coast ranges from 10 cm to 16 cm from 2011 to 2030. Clarifying SLR behaviors is important to aid local decision-makers in planning structural and non-structural measures to combat escalating flood damage costs in an estuarine delta system; this field is full of future challenges. Keywords: Sea level rise behavior, Anthropogenic geomorphologic change, Local tidal datum, Flood management, Adaptation

  18. Digital outlines and topography of the glaciers of the American West

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fountain, Andrew G.; Hoffman, Matthew; Jackson, Keith; Basagic, Hassan; Nylen, Thomas; Percy, David

    2007-01-01

    Alpine glaciers have generally receded during the past century (post-“Little Ice Age”) because of climate warming (Oerlemans and others, 1998; Mann and others, 1999; Dyurgerov and Meier, 2000; Grove, 2001). This general retreat has accelerated since the mid 1970s, when a shift in atmospheric circulation occurred (McCabe and Fountain, 1995; Dyurgerov and Meier, 2000). The loss in glacier cover has had several profound effects. First, the shrinkage of glaciers results in a net increase in stream flow, typically in late summer when water supplies are at the lowest levels (Fountain and Tangborn, 1985). This additional water is important to ecosystems (Hall and Fagre, 2003) and to human water needs (Tangborn, 1980). However, if shrinkage continues, the net contribution to stream flow will diminish, and the effect upon these benefactors will be adverse. Glacier shrinkage is also a significant factor in current sea level rise (Meier, 1984; Dyurgerov and Meier, 2000). Second, many of the glaciers in the West Coast States are located on stratovolcanoes, and continued recession will leave oversteepened river valleys. These valleys, once buttressed by ice are now subject to failure, creating conditions for lahars (Walder and Driedger, 1994; O’Connor and others, 2001). Finally, reduction or loss of glaciers reduce or eliminate glacial activity as an important geomorphic process on landscape evolution and alters erosion rates in high alpine areas (Hallet and others, 1996). Because of the importance of glaciers to studies of climate change, hazards, and landscape modification, glacier inventories have been published for Alaska (Manley, in press), China (http://wdcdgg.westgis.ac.cn/DATABASE/Glacier/Glacier.asp), Nepal (Mool and others, 2001), Switzerland (Paul and others, 2002), and the Tyrolian Alps of Austria (Paul, 2002), among other locales. To provide the necessary data for assessing the magnitude and rate of glacier change in the American West, exclusive of Alaska

  19. Assessing coastal flood risk and sea level rise impacts at New York City area airports

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohman, K. A.; Kimball, N.; Osler, M.; Eberbach, S.

    2014-12-01

    Flood risk and sea level rise impacts were assessed for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) at four airports in the New York City area. These airports included John F. Kennedy International, LaGuardia, Newark International, and Teterboro Airports. Quantifying both present day and future flood risk due to climate change and developing flood mitigation alternatives is crucial for the continued operation of these airports. During Hurricane Sandy in October 2012 all four airports were forced to shut down, in part due to coastal flooding. Future climate change and sea level rise effects may result in more frequent shutdowns and disruptions in travel to and from these busy airports. The study examined the effects of the 1%-annual-chance coastal flooding event for present day existing conditions and six different sea level rise scenarios at each airport. Storm surge model outputs from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) provided the present day storm surge conditions. 50th and 90thpercentile sea level rise projections from the New York Panel on Climate Change (NPCC) 2013 report were incorporated into storm surge results using linear superposition methods. These projections were evaluated for future years 2025, 2035, and 2055. In addition to the linear superposition approach for storm surge at airports where waves are a potential hazard, one dimensional wave modeling was performed to get the total water level results. Flood hazard and flood depth maps were created based on these results. In addition to assessing overall flooding at each airport, major at-risk infrastructure critical to the continued operation of the airport was identified and a detailed flood vulnerability assessment was performed. This assessment quantified flood impacts in terms of potential critical infrastructure inundation and developed mitigation alternatives to adapt to coastal flooding and future sea level changes. Results from this project are advancing the PANYNJ

  20. Characterizing uncertain sea-level rise projections to support investment decisions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lempert, Robert J.; Wikman-Svahn, Per; Keller, Klaus

    2018-01-01

    Many institutions worldwide are considering how to include uncertainty about future changes in sea-levels and storm surges into their investment decisions regarding large capital infrastructures. Here we examine how to characterize deeply uncertain climate change projections to support such decisions using Robust Decision Making analysis. We address questions regarding how to confront the potential for future changes in low probability but large impact flooding events due to changes in sea-levels and storm surges. Such extreme events can affect investments in infrastructure but have proved difficult to consider in such decisions because of the deep uncertainty surrounding them. This study utilizes Robust Decision Making methods to address two questions applied to investment decisions at the Port of Los Angeles: (1) Under what future conditions would a Port of Los Angeles decision to harden its facilities against extreme flood scenarios at the next upgrade pass a cost-benefit test, and (2) Do sea-level rise projections and other information suggest such conditions are sufficiently likely to justify such an investment? We also compare and contrast the Robust Decision Making methods with a full probabilistic analysis. These two analysis frameworks result in similar investment recommendations for different idealized future sea-level projections, but provide different information to decision makers and envision different types of engagement with stakeholders. In particular, the full probabilistic analysis begins by aggregating the best scientific information into a single set of joint probability distributions, while the Robust Decision Making analysis identifies scenarios where a decision to invest in near-term response to extreme sea-level rise passes a cost-benefit test, and then assembles scientific information of differing levels of confidence to help decision makers judge whether or not these scenarios are sufficiently likely to justify making such investments

  1. Characterizing uncertain sea-level rise projections to support investment decisions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ryan L Sriver

    Full Text Available Many institutions worldwide are considering how to include uncertainty about future changes in sea-levels and storm surges into their investment decisions regarding large capital infrastructures. Here we examine how to characterize deeply uncertain climate change projections to support such decisions using Robust Decision Making analysis. We address questions regarding how to confront the potential for future changes in low probability but large impact flooding events due to changes in sea-levels and storm surges. Such extreme events can affect investments in infrastructure but have proved difficult to consider in such decisions because of the deep uncertainty surrounding them. This study utilizes Robust Decision Making methods to address two questions applied to investment decisions at the Port of Los Angeles: (1 Under what future conditions would a Port of Los Angeles decision to harden its facilities against extreme flood scenarios at the next upgrade pass a cost-benefit test, and (2 Do sea-level rise projections and other information suggest such conditions are sufficiently likely to justify such an investment? We also compare and contrast the Robust Decision Making methods with a full probabilistic analysis. These two analysis frameworks result in similar investment recommendations for different idealized future sea-level projections, but provide different information to decision makers and envision different types of engagement with stakeholders. In particular, the full probabilistic analysis begins by aggregating the best scientific information into a single set of joint probability distributions, while the Robust Decision Making analysis identifies scenarios where a decision to invest in near-term response to extreme sea-level rise passes a cost-benefit test, and then assembles scientific information of differing levels of confidence to help decision makers judge whether or not these scenarios are sufficiently likely to justify making

  2. Will fluctuations in salt marsh-mangrove dominance alter vulnerability of a subtropical wetland to sea-level rise?

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKee, Karen L; Vervaeke, William C

    2018-03-01

    To avoid submergence during sea-level rise, coastal wetlands build soil surfaces vertically through accumulation of inorganic sediment and organic matter. At climatic boundaries where mangroves are expanding and replacing salt marsh, wetland capacity to respond to sea-level rise may change. To compare how well mangroves and salt marshes accommodate sea-level rise, we conducted a manipulative field experiment in a subtropical plant community in the subsiding Mississippi River Delta. Experimental plots were established in spatially equivalent positions along creek banks in monospecific stands of Spartina alterniflora (smooth cordgrass) or Avicennia germinans (black mangrove) and in mixed stands containing both species. To examine the effect of disturbance on elevation dynamics, vegetation in half of the plots was subjected to freezing (mangrove) or wrack burial (salt marsh), which caused shoot mortality. Vertical soil development was monitored for 6 years with the surface elevation table-marker horizon system. Comparison of land movement with relative sea-level rise showed that this plant community was experiencing an elevation deficit (i.e., sea level was rising faster than the wetland was building vertically) and was relying on elevation capital (i.e., relative position in the tidal frame) to survive. Although Avicennia plots had more elevation capital, suggesting longer survival, than Spartina or mixed plots, vegetation type had no effect on rates of accretion, vertical movement in root and sub-root zones, or net elevation change. Thus, these salt marsh and mangrove assemblages were accreting sediment and building vertically at equivalent rates. Small-scale disturbance of the plant canopy also had no effect on elevation trajectories-contrary to work in peat-forming wetlands showing elevation responses to changes in plant productivity. The findings indicate that in this deltaic setting with strong physical influences controlling elevation (sediment accretion

  3. Statistical analysis of global surface air temperature and sea level using cointegration methods

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schmith, Torben; Johansen, Søren; Thejll, Peter

    Global sea levels are rising which is widely understood as a consequence of thermal expansion and melting of glaciers and land-based ice caps. Due to physically-based models being unable to simulate observed sea level trends, semi-empirical models have been applied as an alternative for projecting...... of future sea levels. There is in this, however, potential pitfalls due to the trending nature of the time series. We apply a statistical method called cointegration analysis to observed global sea level and surface air temperature, capable of handling such peculiarities. We find a relationship between sea...... level and temperature and find that temperature causally depends on the sea level, which can be understood as a consequence of the large heat capacity of the ocean. We further find that the warming episode in the 1940s is exceptional in the sense that sea level and warming deviates from the expected...

  4. Statistical analysis of global surface temperature and sea level using cointegration methods

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schmidt, Torben; Johansen, Søren; Thejll, Peter

    2012-01-01

    Global sea levels are rising which is widely understood as a consequence of thermal expansion and melting of glaciers and land-based ice caps. Due to the lack of representation of ice-sheet dynamics in present-day physically-based climate models being unable to simulate observed sea level trends......, semi-empirical models have been applied as an alternative for projecting of future sea levels. There is in this, however, potential pitfalls due to the trending nature of the time series. We apply a statistical method called cointegration analysis to observed global sea level and land-ocean surface air...... temperature, capable of handling such peculiarities. We find a relationship between sea level and temperature and find that temperature causally depends on the sea level, which can be understood as a consequence of the large heat capacity of the ocean. We further find that the warming episode in the 1940s...

  5. Allowances for evolving coastal flood risk under uncertain local sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buchanan, M. K.; Kopp, R. E.; Oppenheimer, M.; Tebaldi, C.

    2015-12-01

    Sea-level rise (SLR) causes estimates of flood risk made under the assumption of stationary mean sea level to be biased low. However, adjustments to flood return levels made assuming fixed increases of sea level are also inaccurate when applied to sea level that is rising over time at an uncertain rate. To accommodate both the temporal dynamics of SLR and their uncertainty, we develop an Average Annual Design Life Level (AADLL) metric and associated SLR allowances [1,2]. The AADLL is the flood level corresponding to a time-integrated annual expected probability of occurrence (AEP) under uncertainty over the lifetime of an asset; AADLL allowances are the adjustment from 2000 levels that maintain current risk. Given non-stationary and uncertain SLR, AADLL flood levels and allowances provide estimates of flood protection heights and offsets for different planning horizons and different levels of confidence in SLR projections in coastal areas. Allowances are a function primarily of local SLR and are nearly independent of AEP. Here we employ probabilistic SLR projections [3] to illustrate the calculation of AADLL flood levels and allowances with a representative set of long-duration tide gauges along U.S. coastlines. [1] Rootzen et al., 2014, Water Resources Research 49: 5964-5972. [2] Hunter, 2013, Ocean Engineering 71: 17-27. [3] Kopp et al., 2014, Earth's Future 2: 383-406.

  6. Changes in mountain glacier systems and the distribution of main climatic parameters on the territory of Russia (second part of the XX -beginning of the XXI century).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tatiana, K.; Nosenko, G.; Popova, V.; Muraviev, A.; Nikitin, S.; Chernova, L.

    2017-12-01

    Mountain glaciers are vital sources of water worldwide to many densely-populated regions. Most glaciers are now shrinking, resulting in variable water supplies and sustained sea level rise. Rapid glacier change threatens water, energy and food security. Further glacier mass loss is likely in response to recent climate change, driven by global increases in air temperatures and the production of atmospheric pollutants. However, high altitudes and rugged topography generate regional weather systems that complicate the investigation of the relationship between climate and glacier change. Predictive models need to move beyond the state-of-the-art to couple advanced climate models with accurate representations of glacier processes, and more detailed and reliable data describing the state of mountain glaciers are required to constrain these models, both from monitoring individual glaciers and regional remote-sensing observations. Glaciation exists on the territory of Russia for thousands of years. At present both mountain glaciers and continental ice sheets are present there. Continental ice sheets are located on islands and archipelagoes of Russian Arctic region and mountain glaciers are wide-spread on continental part of the country where it currently covers the area of about 3,480,000 km². Now there are 18 mountain glacier regions on the territory of Russia. We present recent data on glaciers state and changes in mountain regions of Russia based on remote sensing and in situ studies and distribution of main climatic parameters that affect the existence of glaciers: summer air temperature, winter precipitations and maximum value of snow thickness. Acknowledgements. This presentation includes the results of research project № 0148-2014-0007 of the Research Plan of the Institute of Geography, RAS and research project supported by the Russian Geographical Society (grant number 05/2017/RGS-RFBR).

  7. How Much Are Floridians Willing to Pay for Protecting Sea Turtles from Sea Level Rise?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamed, Ahmed; Madani, Kaveh; Von Holle, Betsy; Wright, James; Milon, J Walter; Bossick, Matthew

    2016-01-01

    Sea level rise (SLR) is posing a great inundation risk to coastal areas. Some coastal nesting species, including sea turtle species, have experienced diminished habitat from SLR. Contingent valuation method (CVM) was used in an effort to assess the economic loss impacts of SLR on sea turtle nesting habitats for Florida coasts; and to elicit values of willingness to pay (WTP) of Central Florida residents to implement certain mitigation strategies, which would protect Florida's east coast sea turtle nesting areas. Using the open-ended and dichotomous choice CVM, we sampled residents of two Florida communities: Cocoa Beach and Oviedo. We estimated the WTP of households from these two cities to protect sea turtle habitat to be between $42 and $57 per year for 5 years. Additionally, we attempted to assess the impact of the both the respondents' demographics and their perception toward various situations on their WTP value. Findings include a negative correlation between the age of a respondent and the probability of an individual willing to pay the hypothetical WTP amount. We found that WTP of an individual was not dependent on prior knowledge of the effects of SLR on sea turtle habitat. The greatest indicators of whether or not an individual was willing to pay to protect sea turtle habitat were the respondents' perception regarding the trustworthiness and efficiency of the party which will implement the conservation measures and their confidence in the conservation methods used. Respondents who perceive sea turtles having an effect on their life were also more likely to pay.

  8. The anticipated spatial loss of microtidal beaches in the next 100 years due to sea level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alexandrakis, G.; Poulos, S.

    2012-04-01

    The anticipated sea level rise is expected to influence on a global scale the earth coast in the near future and it is considered to be a main factor related to coastal retreat, with beach zones being among the most vulnerable coastal landforms. Records for the period 1890-1990 have shown that sea level has already risen by 18cm (min: +10cm, max: +25cm), while the projected to 2100 sea level rise has estimated to be 20 to 50cm (IPCC, 2007). It has to be highlighted that a small rise of few tens of meters would cause shoreline retreat of a few to tens meters in the case of low lying coasts, i.e. beach zones (e.g. Bruun 1962, Nichol and Letherman, 1995, Ciavola and Corbau, 2002). Within the concept of climate change, sea level rise could also being related, in regional scale, to changes of meteorological factors such as intensity, duration and direction of the onshore blowing winds, variation in atmospheric pressure. In the microtidal Greek waters temporary changes in sea level exceeds the 1 m (HHS, 2004) This work investigates the impact of sea level rise to sixteen beach zones along the Greek coast. More specifically, shoreline retreat has been estimated for time periods of 10, 20, 50 and 100 years for the corresponding sea level rise of 0,038, 0,076m, 0,19m and 0,38m, according to the A1B scenario of IPCC (2007) and utilizing Dean's (1991) equation; the latter includes in the calculations both the effects of the anticipated sea level rise and the associated storm surge The appropriate morphodynamic and sedimentological data used for the estimation of beach retreat has been deduced from field measurements. Finally, the percentage of the sub-aerial area lost for each beach zone, under investigation, has been estimated. The results show that coastline retreat follows a liner increase in the case of eleven out of the 16 beach zones, for a time period of 100 years. Santava beach zone (inner Messiniakos Gulf) undergoes most of erosion in the first period of 20 years

  9. Glaciers and ice caps outside Greenland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharp, Marin; Wolken, G.; Burgess, D.; Cogley, J.G.; Copland, L.; Thomson, L.; Arendt, A.; Wouters, B.; Kohler, J.; Andreassen, L.M.; O'Neel, Shad; Pelto, M.

    2015-01-01

    Mountain glaciers and ice caps cover an area of over 400 000 km2 in the Arctic, and are a major influence on global sea level (Gardner et al. 2011, 2013; Jacob et al. 2012). They gain mass by snow accumulation and lose mass by meltwater runoff. Where they terminate in water (ocean or lake), they also lose mass by iceberg calving. The climatic mass balance (Bclim, the difference between annual snow accumulation and annual meltwater runoff) is a widely used index of how glaciers respond to climate variability and change. The total mass balance (ΔM) is defined as the difference between annual snow accumulation and annual mass losses (by iceberg calving plus runoff).

  10. Studying the Effects of Amazonian Land Cover Change on Glacier Mass Balance in the Tropical Andes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mark, B. G.; Fernandez, A.; Gabrielli, P.; Montenegro, A.; Postigo, J.; Hellstrom, R. A.

    2017-12-01

    Recent research has highlighted several ongoing environmental changes occurring across Tropical South America, including Andean glacier retreat, drought, as well as changes in land-use and land-cover. As the regional climate of the area is mostly characterized by land-ocean interactions, the atmospheric convection in the Amazon, and the effect of the Andes on circulation patterns, it follows that changes in one of those regions may affect the other. Most scholars who have studied the causes of tropical glaciers' fluctuations have not analyzed the linkages with changes in the Amazon with the same attention paid to the influence of Pacific sea surface temperature. Here we study the response of glacier surface mass balance in the Cordillera Blanca, Peru (10°S), to a scenario where the Amazonian rainforest is replaced by savannas. We ran climatic simulations at 2-km spatial resolution utilizing the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model considering two scenarios: (a) control (CRTL), with today's rainforest extent; and (b) land cover change (LCC), where all the rainforest was replaced by savanna. WRF output was in turn ingested into a glacier energy and mass balance (GEMB) model that we validate by reconstructing both the accumulated mass balance from available observations, and the altitudinal distribution of mass balance in the region. Seasonal comparison between CRTL and LCC scenarios indicates that forest replacement by savanna results in more positive glacier mass balance. This shift to more positive mass balance contrasts with a (WRF) modeled rise in the elevation of the freezing line (0°C) between 30 to 120 m for the LCC scenario. Our results are surprising because most previous studies have shown that reducing Amazon forest cover diminishes rainfall and increases temperature, suggesting that glaciers should lose mass. We hypothesize and discuss implications of possible land-atmospheric processes that might drive this tropical glacier response to

  11. Coral reef structural complexity provides important coastal protection from waves under rising sea levels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, Daniel L.; Rovere, Alessio; Casella, Elisa; Power, Hannah; Canavesio, Remy; Collin, Antoine; Pomeroy, Andrew; Webster, Jody M.; Parravicini, Valeriano

    2018-01-01

    Coral reefs are diverse ecosystems that support millions of people worldwide by providing coastal protection from waves. Climate change and human impacts are leading to degraded coral reefs and to rising sea levels, posing concerns for the protection of tropical coastal regions in the near future. We use a wave dissipation model calibrated with empirical wave data to calculate the future increase of back-reef wave height. We show that, in the near future, the structural complexity of coral reefs is more important than sea-level rise in determining the coastal protection provided by coral reefs from average waves. We also show that a significant increase in average wave heights could occur at present sea level if there is sustained degradation of benthic structural complexity. Our results highlight that maintaining the structural complexity of coral reefs is key to ensure coastal protection on tropical coastlines in the future. PMID:29503866

  12. Sea-level rise along the Emilia-Romagna coast (Northern Italy) in 2100: scenarios and impacts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perini, Luisa; Calabrese, Lorenzo; Luciani, Paolo; Olivieri, Marco; Galassi, Gaia; Spada, Giorgio

    2017-12-01

    As a consequence of climate change and land subsidence, coastal zones are directly impacted by sea-level rise. In some particular areas, the effects on the ecosystem and urbanisation are particularly enhanced. We focus on the Emilia-Romagna (E-R) coastal plain in Northern Italy, bounded by the Po river mouth to the north and by the Apennines to the south. The plain is ˜ 130 km long and is characterised by wide areas below mean sea level, in part made up of reclaimed wetlands. In this context, several morphodynamic factors make the shore and back shore unstable. During next decades, the combined effects of land subsidence and of the sea-level rise as a result of climate change are expected to enhance the shoreline instability, leading to further retreat. The consequent loss of beaches would impact the economy of the region, which is tightly connected with tourism infrastructures. Furthermore, the loss of wetlands and dunes would threaten the ecosystem, which is crucial for the preservation of life and the environment. These specific conditions show the importance of a precise definition of the possible local impacts of the ongoing and future climate variations. The aim of this work is the characterisation of vulnerability in different sectors of the coastal plain and the recognition of the areas in which human intervention is urgently required. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) sea-level scenarios are merged with new high-resolution terrain models, current data for local subsidence and predictions of the flooding model in_CoastFlood in order to develop different scenarios for the impact of sea-level rise projected to year 2100. First, the potential land loss due to the combined effect of subsidence and sea-level rise is extrapolated. Second, the increase in floodable areas as a result of storm surges is quantitatively determined. The results are expected to support the regional mitigation and adaptation strategies

  13. Physical Limits on Hmax, the Maximum Height of Glaciers and Ice Sheets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lipovsky, B. P.

    2017-12-01

    The longest glaciers and ice sheets on Earth never achieve a topographic relief, or height, greater than about Hmax = 4 km. What laws govern this apparent maximum height to which a glacier or ice sheet may rise? Two types of answer appear possible: one relating to geological process and the other to ice dynamics. In the first type of answer, one might suppose that if Earth had 100 km tall mountains then there would be many 20 km tall glaciers. The counterpoint to this argument is that recent evidence suggests that glaciers themselves limit the maximum height of mountain ranges. We turn, then, to ice dynamical explanations for Hmax. The classical ice dynamical theory of Nye (1951), however, does not predict any break in scaling to give rise to a maximum height, Hmax. I present a simple model for the height of glaciers and ice sheets. The expression is derived from a simplified representation of a thermomechanically coupled ice sheet that experiences a basal shear stress governed by Coulomb friction (i.e., a stress proportional to the overburden pressure minus the water pressure). I compare this model to satellite-derived digital elevation map measurements of glacier surface height profiles for the 200,000 glaciers in the Randolph Glacier Inventory (Pfeffer et al., 2014) as well as flowlines from the Greenland and Antarctic Ice Sheets. The simplified model provides a surprisingly good fit to these global observations. Small glaciers less than 1 km in length are characterized by having negligible influence of basal melt water, cold ( -15C) beds, and high surface slopes ( 30 deg). Glaciers longer than a critical distance 30km are characterized by having an ice-bed interface that is weakened by the presence of meltwater and is therefore not capable of supporting steep surface slopes. The simplified model makes predictions of ice volume change as a function of surface temperature, accumulation rate, and geothermal heat flux. For this reason, it provides insights into

  14. Communicating uncertainties in assessments of future sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wikman-Svahn, P.

    2013-12-01

    How uncertainty should be managed and communicated in policy-relevant scientific assessments is directly connected to the role of science and the responsibility of scientists. These fundamentally philosophical issues influence how scientific assessments are made and how scientific findings are communicated to policymakers. It is therefore of high importance to discuss implicit assumptions and value judgments that are made in policy-relevant scientific assessments. The present paper examines these issues for the case of scientific assessments of future sea level rise. The magnitude of future sea level rise is very uncertain, mainly due to poor scientific understanding of all physical mechanisms affecting the great ice sheets of Greenland and Antarctica, which together hold enough land-based ice to raise sea levels more than 60 meters if completely melted. There has been much confusion from policymakers on how different assessments of future sea levels should be interpreted. Much of this confusion is probably due to how uncertainties are characterized and communicated in these assessments. The present paper draws on the recent philosophical debate on the so-called "value-free ideal of science" - the view that science should not be based on social and ethical values. Issues related to how uncertainty is handled in scientific assessments are central to this debate. This literature has much focused on how uncertainty in data, parameters or models implies that choices have to be made, which can have social consequences. However, less emphasis has been on how uncertainty is characterized when communicating the findings of a study, which is the focus of the present paper. The paper argues that there is a tension between on the one hand the value-free ideal of science and on the other hand usefulness for practical applications in society. This means that even if the value-free ideal could be upheld in theory, by carefully constructing and hedging statements characterizing

  15. Sea-Level Rise Implications for Coastal Protection from Southern Mediterranean to the U.S.A. Atlantic Coast

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ismail, Nabil; Williams, Jeffress

    2013-04-01

    This paper presents an assessment of global sea level rise and the need to incorporate projections of rise into management plans for coastal adaptation. It also discusses the performance of a shoreline revetment; M. Ali Seawall, placed to protect the land against flooding and overtopping at coastal site, within Abu Qir Bay, East of Alexandria, Egypt along the Nile Delta coast. The assessment is conducted to examine the adequacy of the seawall under the current and progressive effects of climate change demonstrated by the anticipated sea level rise during this century. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC, 2007) predicts that the Mediterranean will rise 30 cm to 1 meter this century. Coastal zone management of the bay coastline is of utmost significance to the protection of the low agricultural land and the industrial complex located in the rear side of the seawall. Moreover this joint research work highlights the similarity of the nature of current and anticipated coastal zone problems, at several locations around the world, and required adaptation and protection measures. For example many barrier islands in the world such as that in the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico coasts of the U.S., lowland and deltas such as in Italy and the Nile Delta, and many islands are also experiencing significant levels of erosion and flooding that are exacerbated by sea level rise. Global Climatic Changes: At a global scale, an example of the effects of accelerated climate changes was demonstrated. In recent years, the impacts of natural disasters are more and more severe on coastal lowland areas. With the threats of climate change, sea level rise storm surge, progressive storm and hurricane activities and potential subsidence, the reduction of natural disasters in coastal lowland areas receives increased attention. Yet many of their inhabitants are becoming increasingly vulnerable to flooding, and conversions of land to open ocean. These global changes were recently

  16. Rapid sea level rise in the aftermath of a Neoproterozoic snowball Earth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myrow, P M; Lamb, M P; Ewing, R C

    2018-04-19

    Earth's most severe climate changes occurred during global-scale snowball-Earth glaciations, which profoundly altered Earth's atmosphere, oceans, and biosphere. Extreme rates of glacio-eustatic sea-level rise are a fundamental prediction of the snowball Earth hypothesis, but supporting geologic evidence is lacking. We use paleohydraulic analysis of wave ripples and tidal laminae of the Elatina Formation, Australia - deposited following the Marinoan glaciation ca. 635Ma - to show that water depths of 9-16m remained nearly constant for ~100yrs throughout 27m of sediment accumulation. This accumulation rate was too great to have been accommodated by subsidence, and instead indicates an extraordinarily rapid rate of sea-level rise (0.2-0.27m/yr). Our results substantiate a fundamental prediction of snowball Earth models of rapid deglaciation during the early transition to a super-greenhouse climate. Copyright © 2018, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  17. Statistical analysis of the acceleration of Baltic mean sea-level rise, 1900-2012

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Birgit Hünicke

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available We analyse annual mean sea-level records from tide-gauges located in the Baltic and parts of the North Sea with the aim of detecting an acceleration of sea-level rise over the 20textsuperscript{th} and 21textsuperscript{st} centuries. The acceleration is estimated as a (1 fit to a polynomial of order two in time, (2 a long-term linear increase in the rates computed over gliding overlapping decadal time segments, and (3 a long-term increase of the annual increments of sea level.The estimation methods (1 and (2 prove to be more powerful in detecting acceleration when tested with sea-level records produced in global climate model simulations. These methods applied to the Baltic-Sea tide-gauges are, however, not powerful enough to detect a significant acceleration in most of individual records, although most estimated accelerations are positive. This lack of detection of statistically significant acceleration at the individual tide-gauge level can be due to the high-level of local noise and not necessarily to the absence of acceleration.The estimated accelerations tend to be stronger in the north and east of the Baltic Sea. Two hypothesis to explain this spatial pattern have been explored. One is that this pattern reflects the slow-down of the Glacial Isostatic Adjustment. However, a simple estimation of this effect suggests that this slow-down cannot explain the estimated acceleration. The second hypothesis is related to the diminishing sea-ice cover over the 20textsuperscript{th} century. The melting o of less saline and colder sea-ice can lead to changes in sea-level. Also, the melting of sea-ice can reduce the number of missing values in the tide-gauge records in winter, potentially influencing the estimated trends and acceleration of seasonal mean sea-level This hypothesis cannot be ascertained either since the spatial pattern of acceleration computed for winter and summer separately are very similar. The all-station-average-record displays an

  18. Modeling tidal marsh distribution with sea-level rise: evaluating the role of vegetation, sediment, and upland habitat in marsh resiliency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schile, Lisa M; Callaway, John C; Morris, James T; Stralberg, Diana; Parker, V Thomas; Kelly, Maggi

    2014-01-01

    Tidal marshes maintain elevation relative to sea level through accumulation of mineral and organic matter, yet this dynamic accumulation feedback mechanism has not been modeled widely in the context of accelerated sea-level rise. Uncertainties exist about tidal marsh resiliency to accelerated sea-level rise, reduced sediment supply, reduced plant productivity under increased inundation, and limited upland habitat for marsh migration. We examined marsh resiliency under these uncertainties using the Marsh Equilibrium Model, a mechanistic, elevation-based soil cohort model, using a rich data set of plant productivity and physical properties from sites across the estuarine salinity gradient. Four tidal marshes were chosen along this gradient: two islands and two with adjacent uplands. Varying century sea-level rise (52, 100, 165, 180 cm) and suspended sediment concentrations (100%, 50%, and 25% of current concentrations), we simulated marsh accretion across vegetated elevations for 100 years, applying the results to high spatial resolution digital elevation models to quantify potential changes in marsh distributions. At low rates of sea-level rise and mid-high sediment concentrations, all marshes maintained vegetated elevations indicative of mid/high marsh habitat. With century sea-level rise at 100 and 165 cm, marshes shifted to low marsh elevations; mid/high marsh elevations were found only in former uplands. At the highest century sea-level rise and lowest sediment concentrations, the island marshes became dominated by mudflat elevations. Under the same sediment concentrations, low salinity brackish marshes containing highly productive vegetation had slower elevation loss compared to more saline sites with lower productivity. A similar trend was documented when comparing against a marsh accretion model that did not model vegetation feedbacks. Elevation predictions using the Marsh Equilibrium Model highlight the importance of including vegetation responses to sea

  19. Project NOAH: Regulating modern sea-level rise. Phase II: Jerusalem Underground

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newman, Walter S.; Fairbridge, Rhodes W.

    This proposal builds a high-speed inter-urban express between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, generates 1500 megawatts of hydroelectric energy, curtails littoral erosion, builds a port along the Israeli Mediterranean coast and demands peaceful cooperation on both sides of the Jordan River. Phase II represents a pilot project demonstrating the feasibility of continuing to regulate world sea-level by a new series of water regulation schemes. Phase I previously described all those projects already completed or underway which have inadvertently and/or unintentionally served the purpose of sea-level regulation. These forms of Phase I sea-level regulation include large and small reservoirs, irrigation projects, water infiltration schemes, farm ponds, and swimming and reflecting pools. All these water storage projects have already exercised a very appreciable brake on 20th century sea-level rise. Phase II outlines a high-visibility proposal which will serve to illustrate the viability of “Project NOAH”.

  20. Glaciers et évolution climatique dans les Andes boliviennes. Glacier de Zongo et glacier de Chacaltaya Cordillère Royale, 16°S

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    1995-01-01

    Full Text Available SEDIMENTOLOGY OF THE HUANCANE FORMATION (NEOCOMIAN OF THE CUSCO REGION AND ITS RELATION TO SEA LEVEL VARIATIONS. The Huancane formation (Neocomian of the Cusco region is mainly composed of quartz sandstones which are deposited in fluvial environments. The facies recognized are organized in a vertical sequence: fluvial sheet sandstones, oxidized or eroded surface, the shale facies of alluvial plain and unusual limestone facies of possible marine origin. These vertical facies sequences show that eustatic sea level variations controlled the fluvial sedimentation. The rivers came from the NE and were fed by the erosion of the Brazilian Shield. The sedimentation developed above the boundary of the SW edge of the Eastern basin, and the Cusco-Puno Swell which had locale horst and grabens inherited from pre-neocomian relief. GLACIARES Y EVOLUCIÓN CLIMÁTICA EN LOS ANDES BOLIVIANOS GLACIAR DE ZONGO Y GLACIAR DE CHACALTAYA, CORDILLERA REAL, 16°S. Por su sensibilidad y su plazo de respuesta breve, el glaciar es de un gran interés para analizar la evolución y la variabilidad actuales del clima entre los trópicos. Se presentan los métodos de determinación del balance de masas y del balance hidrológico, con una frecuencia de mediciones mensual. Los resultados recogidos durante tres años (1991-1994 muestran una grande variabilidad. Ésta es controlada sobre todo por la extensión del periodo de precipitaciones en medio de la temporada cálida que dura más o menos 6 meses. Los eventos ENSO (El Niño Southern Oscillation son asociados a balances netamente negativos, lo que es demostrado por la respuesta del glaciar al episodio de 1991-1992 y por la reconstrucción de los balances efectuados en base a los datos hidrológicos durante los dos últimos decenios. El retroceso acelerado de los glaciares tropicales desde los años 1980 es vinculado a la vez a una sucesión de eventos ENSO y al recalentamiento atmosférico. GLACIERS AND CLIMATIC EVOLUTION IN

  1. Mental health issues from rising sea level in a remote coastal region of the Solomon Islands: current and future.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asugeni, James; MacLaren, David; Massey, Peter D; Speare, Rick

    2015-12-01

    There is little published research about mental health and climate change in the Pacific, including Solomon Islands. Solomon Islands has one of the highest rates of sea-level rise globally. The aim of this research was to document mental health issues related to sea-level rise for people in East Malaita, Solomon Islands. A cross-sectional study was carried out in six low-lying villages in East Malaita, Solomon Islands. The researcher travelled to villages by dugout canoe. In addition to quantitative, closed-ended questions, open-ended questions with villagers explored individual and community responses to rising sea level. Of 60 people asked, 57 completed the questionnaire. Of these, 90% reported having seen a change in the weather patterns. Nearly all participants reported that sea-level rise is affecting them and their family and is causing fear and worry on a personal and community level. Four themes emerged from the qualitative analysis: experience of physical impacts of climate change; worry about the future; adaptation to climate change; government response needed. Given predictions of ongoing sea-level rise in the Pacific it is essential that more research is conducted to further understand the human impact of climate change for small island states which will inform local, provincial and national-level mental health responses. © The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists 2015.

  2. Past and future contribution of global groundwater depletion to sea-level rise

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wada, Y.; Beek, L.P.H. van; Sperna Weiland, F.C.; Chao, B.; Wu, Y.-H.; Bierkens, M.F.P.

    2012-01-01

    Recent studies suggest the increasing contribution of groundwater depletion to global sea-level rise. Groundwater depletion has more than doubled during the last decades, primarily due to increase in water demand, while the increase in water impoundments behind dams has been tapering off since

  3. Glaciers along proposed routes extending the Copper River Highway, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glass, R.L.

    1996-01-01

    Three inland highway routes are being considered by the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities to connect the community of Cordova in southcentral Alaska to a statewide road system. The routes use part of a Copper River and Northwest Railway alignment along the Copper River through mountainous terrain having numerous glaciers. An advance of any of several glaciers could block and destroy the roadway, whereas retreating glaciers expose large quantities of unconsolidated, unvegetated, and commonly ice-rich sediments. The purpose of this study was to map historical locations of glacier termini near these routes and to describe hazards associated with glaciers and seasonal snow. Historical and recent locations of glacier termini along the proposed Copper River Highway routes were determined by reviewing reports and maps and by interpreting aerial photographs. The termini of Childs, Grinnell, Tasnuna, and Woodworth Glaciers were 1 mile or less from a proposed route in the most recently available aerial photography (1978-91); the termini of Allen, Heney, and Schwan Glaciers were 1.5 miles or less from a proposed route. In general, since 1911, most glaciers have slowly retreated, but many glaciers have had occasional advances. Deserted Glacier and one of its tributary glaciers have surge-type medial moraines, indicating potential rapid advances. The terminus of Deserted Glacier was about 2.1 miles from a proposed route in 1978, but showed no evidence of surging. Snow and rock avalanches and snowdrifts are common along the proposed routes and will periodically obstruct the roadway. Floods from ice-dammed lakes also pose a threat. For example, Van Cleve Lake, adjacent to Miles Glacier, is as large as 4.4 square miles and empties about every 6 years. Floods from drainages of Van Cleve Lake have caused the Copper River to rise on the order of 20 feet at Million Dollar Bridge.

  4. Preliminary investigation of the effects of sea-level rise on groundwater levels in New Haven, Connecticut

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bjerklie, David M.; Mullaney, John R.; Stone, Janet R.; Skinner, Brian J.; Ramlow, Matthew A.

    2012-01-01

    Global sea level rose about 0.56 feet (ft) (170 millimeters (mm)) during the 20th century. Since the 1960s, sea level has risen at Bridgeport, Connecticut, about 0.38 ft (115 mm), at a rate of 0.008 ft (2.56 mm + or - 0.58 mm) per year. With regional subsidence, and with predicted global climate change, sea level is expected to continue to rise along the northeast coast of the United States through the 21st century. Increasing sea levels will cause groundwater levels in coastal areas to rise in order to adjust to the new conditions. Some regional climate models predict wetter climate in the northeastern United States under some scenarios. Scenarios for the resulting higher groundwater levels have the potential to inundate underground infrastructure in lowlying coastal cities. New Haven is a coastal city in Connecticut surrounded and bisected by tidally affected waters. Monitoring of water levels in wells in New Haven from August 2009 to July 2010 indicates the complex effects of urban influence on groundwater levels. The response of groundwater levels to recharge and season varied considerably from well to well. Groundwater temperatures varied seasonally, but were warmer than what was typical for Connecticut, and they seem to reflect the influence of the urban setting, including the effects of conduits for underground utilities. Specific conductance was elevated in many of the wells, indicating the influence of urban activities or seawater in Long Island Sound. A preliminary steady-state model of groundwater flow for part of New Haven was constructed using MODFLOW to simulate current groundwater levels (2009-2010) and future groundwater levels based on scenarios with a rise of 3 ft (0.91 meters (m)) in sea level, which is predicted for the end of the 21st century. An additional simulation was run assuming a 3-ft rise in sea level combined with a 12-percent increase in groundwater recharge. The model was constructed from existing hydrogeologic information for the

  5. Plankton and other data from net casts in the Beaufort Sea from the USCGC GLACIER and other platforms from 04 August 1972 to 17 May 1979 (NODC Accession 8000587)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Plankton and other data were collected using net casts in the Beaufort Sea from the USCGC GLACIER and other platforms from 04 August 1972 to 17 May 1979. Data were...

  6. Projections of tsunami inundation area coupled with impacts of sea level rise in Banda Aceh, Indonesia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tursina, Syamsidik, Kato, Shigeru

    2017-10-01

    In a long term, sea level rise is anticipated to give devastating effects on Banda Aceh, as one of the coastal cities in the northern tip of Sumatra. The growth of the population and buildings in the city has come to the stage where the coastal area is vulnerable to any coastal hazard. Some public facilities and settlements have been constructed and keep expanding in the future. According to TOPEX/POSEIDON satellite images, 7 mm/year the sea level has been risen between 1992 and 2015 in this area. It is estimated that in the next 100 years, there will be 700 mm additional sea level rise which will give a setback more over to a rather flat area around the coast. This research is aim at investigating the influence of sea level rise toward the tsunami inundation on the land area particularly the impacts on Banda Aceh city. Cornell Multigrid Coupled Tsunami Model (COMCOT) simulation numerically generated tsunami propagation. Topography and bathymetry data were collected from GEBCO and updated with the available nautical chart (DISHIDROS, JICA, and field measurements). Geological movement of the underwater fault was generated using Piatanesi and Lorito of 9.15 Mw 2004 multi-fault scenario. The inundation area produced by COMCOT revealed that the inundation area was expanded to several hundred meters from the shoreline. To investigate the impacts of tsunami wave on Banda Aceh, the inundation area were digitized and analyzed with Quantum GIS spatial tools. The Quantum GIS analyzed inundations area affected by the projected tsunami. It will give a new tsunami-prone coastal area map induced by sea level rise in 100 years.

  7. VARIATION OF CHART DATUM TOWARDS MARITIME DELIMITATION DUE TO RISING SEA LEVEL

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. R. M. Faizuddin

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The importance of Chart Datum in hydrographic surveying is inarguable because its determination is part of the process to obtain the actual depth of bathymetry. The Chart Datum has a relationship with the determination of base points because any uncertainty of the base points would definitely cause uncertainty to the determination of the maritime baseline. If there is any doubt on the baselines, it will then cause doubt on the maritime zones as well which includes the equidistant line that forms the border between the two countries. However, due to the ongoing rising sea level, there has been some variations of the Chart Datum in some areas in Malaysia. This research discusses about the variation of Mean Sea Level and Chart Datum for the tide gauge stations at Geting, Cendering, Sedili and Tioman at East Coast and Kukup, Langkawi, Lumut and Penang at the West Coast of Peninsular Malaysia. The tidal analysis was carried out by using the 23 years of data beginning at 1993 to 2015. The observed tidal data for 23 years were processed and analysed by using GeoTide software. In this research, the Harmonic Analysis technique was used in order to calculate the values of Mean Sea Level and the Chart Datum while the slope of the shoreline is modelled by using Global Mapper. The linear trend of the Mean Sea Level and the Chart Datum was analysed to determine the increase of the annual sea level in millimetres accuracy and also to determine the variation of the Chart Datum for each tidal station and its impact towards maritime baseline. The result has shown that the linear trend of sea level rise varies from 24 millimetres per year up to 168 millimetres per year at the East Coast and 24 millimetres per year up to 96 millimetres per year at the West Coast of Peninsular Malaysia. As for the maritime baseline, results has indicated that there exist shifting in the horizontal which are varies from 1.564 metres per year to 3.299 metres per year at the East Coast

  8. Variation of Chart Datum Towards Maritime Delimitation due to Rising Sea Level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faizuddin, A. R. M.; Razali, M. M.

    2017-10-01

    The importance of Chart Datum in hydrographic surveying is inarguable because its determination is part of the process to obtain the actual depth of bathymetry. The Chart Datum has a relationship with the determination of base points because any uncertainty of the base points would definitely cause uncertainty to the determination of the maritime baseline. If there is any doubt on the baselines, it will then cause doubt on the maritime zones as well which includes the equidistant line that forms the border between the two countries. However, due to the ongoing rising sea level, there has been some variations of the Chart Datum in some areas in Malaysia. This research discusses about the variation of Mean Sea Level and Chart Datum for the tide gauge stations at Geting, Cendering, Sedili and Tioman at East Coast and Kukup, Langkawi, Lumut and Penang at the West Coast of Peninsular Malaysia. The tidal analysis was carried out by using the 23 years of data beginning at 1993 to 2015. The observed tidal data for 23 years were processed and analysed by using GeoTide software. In this research, the Harmonic Analysis technique was used in order to calculate the values of Mean Sea Level and the Chart Datum while the slope of the shoreline is modelled by using Global Mapper. The linear trend of the Mean Sea Level and the Chart Datum was analysed to determine the increase of the annual sea level in millimetres accuracy and also to determine the variation of the Chart Datum for each tidal station and its impact towards maritime baseline. The result has shown that the linear trend of sea level rise varies from 24 millimetres per year up to 168 millimetres per year at the East Coast and 24 millimetres per year up to 96 millimetres per year at the West Coast of Peninsular Malaysia. As for the maritime baseline, results has indicated that there exist shifting in the horizontal which are varies from 1.564 metres per year to 3.299 metres per year at the East Coast and from 1

  9. Contribution of climate-driven change in continental water storage to recent sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milly, P. C. D.; Cazenave, A.; Gennero, C.

    2003-01-01

    Using a global model of continental water balance, forced by interannual variations in precipitation and near-surface atmospheric temperature for the period 1981–1998, we estimate the sea-level changes associated with climate-driven changes in storage of water as snowpack, soil water, and ground water; storage in ice sheets and large lakes is not considered. The 1981–1998 trend is estimated to be 0.12 mm/yr, and substantial interannual fluctuations are inferred; for 1993–1998, the trend is 0.25 mm/yr. At the decadal time scale, the terrestrial contribution to eustatic (i.e., induced by mass exchange) sea-level rise is significantly smaller than the estimated steric (i.e., induced by density changes) trend for the same period, but is not negligibly small. In the model the sea-level rise is driven mainly by a downtrend in continental precipitation during the study period, which we believe was generated by natural variability in the climate system. PMID:14576277

  10. Evidence for coral island formation during rising sea level in the central Pacific Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kench, Paul S.; Owen, Susan D.; Ford, Murray R.

    2014-02-01

    The timing and evolution of Jabat Island, Marshall Islands, was investigated using morphostratigraphic analysis and radiometric dating. Results show the first evidence of island building in the Pacific during latter stages of Holocene sea level rise. A three-phase model of development of Jabat is presented. Initially, rapid accumulation of coarse sediments on Jabat occurred 4800-4000 years B.P. across a reef flat higher than present level, as sea level continued to rise. During the highstand, island margins and particularly the western margin accreted vertically to 2.5-3.0 m above contemporary ridge elevations. This accumulation phase was dominated by sand-size sediments. Phase three involved deposition of gravel ridges on the northern reef, as sea level fell to present position. Jabat has remained geomorphically stable for the past 2000 years. Findings suggest reef platforms may accommodate the oldest reef islands in atoll systems, which may have profound implications for questions of prehistoric migration through Pacific archipelagos.

  11. Using Direct Policy Search to Identify Robust Strategies in Adapting to Uncertain Sea Level Rise and Storm Surge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garner, G. G.; Keller, K.

    2017-12-01

    Sea-level rise poses considerable risks to coastal communities, ecosystems, and infrastructure. Decision makers are faced with deeply uncertain sea-level projections when designing a strategy for coastal adaptation. The traditional methods have provided tremendous insight into this decision problem, but are often silent on tradeoffs as well as the effects of tail-area events and of potential future learning. Here we reformulate a simple sea-level rise adaptation model to address these concerns. We show that Direct Policy Search yields improved solution quality, with respect to Pareto-dominance in the objectives, over the traditional approach under uncertain sea-level rise projections and storm surge. Additionally, the new formulation produces high quality solutions with less computational demands than the traditional approach. Our results illustrate the utility of multi-objective adaptive formulations for the example of coastal adaptation, the value of information provided by observations, and point to wider-ranging application in climate change adaptation decision problems.

  12. Sea level rise in the Severn Estuary and Bristol Channel and impacts of a Severn Barrage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmadian, Reza; Olbert, Agnieszka I.; Hartnett, Michael; Falconer, Roger A.

    2014-05-01

    Many research projects in recent years have focused on marine renewable energy devices and structures due to the growing interest in marine renewable energy. These devices and structures have very different life spans. Schemes such as the Severn Barrage in the UK, as originally proposed by the Severn Tidal Power Group (STPG), would be the largest tidal renewable energy generation project in the world and would be operational for well over a century if built. Due to the long working life of some of these marine renewable energy schemes, it is important to study the impacts of climate change on such schemes, and particularly sea level rise. This study focuses on investigating the impacts of sea level rise due to climate change on the largest macro-tidal estuary in the UK, namely the Severn Estuary and Bristol Channel, and the alterations of the impacts and the performance of the Severn Barrage as a result of climate change. A hierarchy of computer models was implemented to identify the more localised impacts of climate change in the region of the study. Moreover, the potential benefits of the barrage on reducing flood risk, as well as the impact of climate change and the barrage on intertidal mudflats were investigated. The model predictions showed that the barrage would reduce flood risk due to the sea level rise. Furthermore, annual power output and the initial reduction in flood risk of the barrage would not be affected by sea level rise.

  13. A new method to estimate global mass transport and its implication for sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yi, S.; Heki, K.

    2017-12-01

    Estimates of changes in global land mass by using GRACE observations can be achieved by two methods, a mascon method and a forward modeling method. However, results from these two methods show inconsistent secular trend. Sea level budget can be adopted to validate the consistency among observations of sea level rise by altimetry, steric change by the Argo project, and mass change by GRACE. Mascon products from JPL, GSFC and CSR are compared here, we find that all these three products cannot achieve a reconciled sea level budget, while this problem can be solved by a new forward modeling method. We further investigate the origin of this difference, and speculate that it is caused by the signal leakage from the ocean mass. Generally, it is well recognized that land signals leak into oceans, but it also happens the other way around. We stress the importance of correction of leakage from the ocean in the estimation of global land masses. Based on a reconciled sea level budget, we confirmed that global sea level rise has been accelerating significantly over 2005-2015, as a result of the ongoing global temperature increase.

  14. Utility of late summer transient snowline migration rate on Taku Glacier, Alaska

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Pelto

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available On Taku Glacier, Alaska a combination of field observations of snow water equivalent (SWE from snowpits and probing in the vicinity of the transient snowline (TSL are used to quantify the mass balance gradient. The balance gradient derived from the TSL and SWE measured in snowpits at 1000 m from 1998–2010 ranges from 2.6–3.8 mm m−1. Probing transects from 950 m–1100 m directly measure SWE and yield a slightly higher balance gradient of 3.3–3.8 mm m−1. The TSL on Taku Glacier is identified in MODIS and Landsat 4 and 7 Thematic Mapper images for 31 dates during the 2004–2010 period to assess the consistency of its rate of rise and reliability in assessing ablation for mass balance assessment. For example, in 2010, the TSL was 750 m on 28 July, 800 m on 5 August, 875 m on 14 August, 925 m on 30 August, and 975 m on 20 September. The mean observed probing balance gradient was 3.3 mm m−1, combined with the TSL rise of 3.7 m day−1 yields an ablation rate of 12.2 mm day−1 from mid-July to mid-Sept, 2010. The TSL rise in the region from 750–1100 m on Taku Glacier during eleven periods each covering more than 14 days during the ablation season indicates a mean TSL rise of 3.7 m day−1, the rate of rise is relatively consistent ranging from 3.1 to 4.4 m day−1. This rate is useful for ascertaining the final ELA if images or observations are not available near the end of the ablation season. The mean ablation from 750–1100 m during the July–September period determined from the TSL rise and the observed balance gradient is 11–13 mm day−1 on Taku Glacier during the 2004–2010 period. The potential for providing an estimate of bn from TSL observations late in the melt season from satellite images combined with the frequent availability of such images provides a means for efficient mass balance assessment in many years and on many

  15. Complexities in barrier island response to sea level rise: Insights from numerical model experiments, North Carolina Outer Banks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Laura J.; List, Jeffrey H.; Williams, S. Jeffress; Stolper, David

    2010-09-01

    Using a morphological-behavior model to conduct sensitivity experiments, we investigate the sea level rise response of a complex coastal environment to changes in a variety of factors. Experiments reveal that substrate composition, followed in rank order by substrate slope, sea level rise rate, and sediment supply rate, are the most important factors in determining barrier island response to sea level rise. We find that geomorphic threshold crossing, defined as a change in state (e.g., from landward migrating to drowning) that is irreversible over decadal to millennial time scales, is most likely to occur in muddy coastal systems where the combination of substrate composition, depth-dependent limitations on shoreface response rates, and substrate erodibility may prevent sand from being liberated rapidly enough, or in sufficient quantity, to maintain a subaerial barrier. Analyses indicate that factors affecting sediment availability such as low substrate sand proportions and high sediment loss rates cause a barrier to migrate landward along a trajectory having a lower slope than average barrier island slope, thereby defining an "effective" barrier island slope. Other factors being equal, such barriers will tend to be smaller and associated with a more deeply incised shoreface, thereby requiring less migration per sea level rise increment to liberate sufficient sand to maintain subaerial exposure than larger, less incised barriers. As a result, the evolution of larger/less incised barriers is more likely to be limited by shoreface erosion rates or substrate erodibility making them more prone to disintegration related to increasing sea level rise rates than smaller/more incised barriers. Thus, the small/deeply incised North Carolina barriers are likely to persist in the near term (although their long-term fate is less certain because of the low substrate slopes that will soon be encountered). In aggregate, results point to the importance of system history (e

  16. Complexities in barrier island response to sea level rise: Insights from numerical model experiments, North Carolina Outer Banks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Laura J.; List, Jeffrey H.; Williams, S. Jeffress; Stolper, David

    2010-01-01

    Using a morphological-behavior model to conduct sensitivity experiments, we investigate the sea level rise response of a complex coastal environment to changes in a variety of factors. Experiments reveal that substrate composition, followed in rank order by substrate slope, sea level rise rate, and sediment supply rate, are the most important factors in determining barrier island response to sea level rise. We find that geomorphic threshold crossing, defined as a change in state (e.g., from landward migrating to drowning) that is irreversible over decadal to millennial time scales, is most likely to occur in muddy coastal systems where the combination of substrate composition, depth-dependent limitations on shoreface response rates, and substrate erodibility may prevent sand from being liberated rapidly enough, or in sufficient quantity, to maintain a subaerial barrier. Analyses indicate that factors affecting sediment availability such as low substrate sand proportions and high sediment loss rates cause a barrier to migrate landward along a trajectory having a lower slope than average barrier island slope, thereby defining an “effective” barrier island slope. Other factors being equal, such barriers will tend to be smaller and associated with a more deeply incised shoreface, thereby requiring less migration per sea level rise increment to liberate sufficient sand to maintain subaerial exposure than larger, less incised barriers. As a result, the evolution of larger/less incised barriers is more likely to be limited by shoreface erosion rates or substrate erodibility making them more prone to disintegration related to increasing sea level rise rates than smaller/more incised barriers. Thus, the small/deeply incised North Carolina barriers are likely to persist in the near term (although their long-term fate is less certain because of the low substrate slopes that will soon be encountered). In aggregate, results point to the importance of system history (e

  17. The global coastline dataset: the observed relation between erosion and sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donchyts, G.; Baart, F.; Luijendijk, A.; Hagenaars, G.

    2017-12-01

    Erosion of sandy coasts is considered one of the key risks of sea-level rise. Because sandy coastlines of the world are often highly populated, erosive coastline trends result in risk to populations and infrastructure. Most of our understanding of the relation between sea-level rise and coastal erosion is based on local or regional observations and generalizations of numerical and physical experiments. Until recently there was no reliable global scale assessment of the location of sandy coasts and their rate of erosion and accretion. Here we present the global coastline dataset that covers erosion indicators on a local scale with global coverage. The dataset uses our global coastline transects grid defined with an alongshore spacing of 250 m and a cross shore length extending 1 km seaward and 1 km landward. This grid matches up with pre-existing local grids where available. We present the latest results on validation of coastal-erosion trends (based on optical satellites) and classification of sandy versus non-sandy coasts. We show the relation between sea-level rise (based both on tide-gauges and multi-mission satellite altimetry) and observed erosion trends over the last decades, taking into account broken-coastline trends (for example due to nourishments).An interactive web application presents the publicly-accessible results using a backend based on Google Earth Engine. It allows both researchers and stakeholders to use objective estimates of coastline trends, particularly when authoritative sources are not available.

  18. Sea-level-rise trends off the Indian coasts during the last two decades

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Unnikrishnan, A.S.; Nidheesh, A.G.; Lengaigne, M.

    The present communication discusses sea-level-rise trends in the north Indian Ocean, particularly off the Indian coasts, based on estimates derived from satellite altimeter and tide-gauge data. Altimeter data analysis over the 1993–2012 period...

  19. Late Post-glacial Sea Level Rise and Its Effects On Human Activity In Asia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oppenheimer, S. J.

    Three rapid post-glacial sea-level rises flooded coastlines with large continental shelves. The last of these, shortly before the interglacial optimum c.7,500BP, not only changed coastal Neolithic societies, but may also have stimulated maritime skills. Two Asian examples explore these aspects. First, during the Mid-Holocene, the Arabian Gulf transgressed as far inland as Ur probably laying down Woolley's famous Ur Flood silt layer between 7,000-5,500 BP. Stratigraphy and dating suggests the phase of rapid sea level rise immediately preceded the start of the 'Ubaid pottery period. Red-slipped Uruk pottery and copper items then appear from about 6,000BP, but above Woolley's silt layer. The Sumerian King Lists also record a major upheaval and dynastic change after 'the Flood'. Second, the final flooding of the Sunda shelf in Southeast Asia was followed by a maritime extension of human occupation from Northern Melanesia south into the Solomon Islands 6,000 years ago. Simultaneously, further west on the north coast of New Guinea, new archaeological assemblages ap- pear beneath a silt layer left by a pro-grading 6,000 year-old inland sea. The presence of arboriculture items such as betel nuts and the contemporary arrival of dogs and pigs in the same region suggests intrusion from Southeast Asia. This supports Solheim's suggestion that rapid sea-level rise on the eastern edge of the Sunda Shelf stimulated maritime skills and invention in Southeast Asia. This may have provided the initial stimulus to the first maritime expansion that was later to colonise the whole Pacific.

  20. Subsidence, Sea Level Rise, and Seismicity in the Sacramento–San Joaquin Delta

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeffrey Mount

    2005-03-01

    Full Text Available Anthropogenic accommodation space, or that space in the Delta that lies below sea level and is filled neither with sediment nor water, serves as a useful measure of the regional consequences of Delta subsidence and sea level rise. Microbial oxidation and compaction of organic-rich soils due to farming activity is the primary cause of Delta subsidence. During the period 1900-2000, subsidence created approximately 2.5 billion cubic meters of anthropogenic accommodation space in the Delta. From 2000-2050, subsidence rates will slow due to depletion of organic material and better land use practices. However, by 2050 the Delta will contain more than 3 billion cubic meters of anthropogenic accommodation space due to continued subsidence and sea level rise. An Accommodation Space Index, which relates subaqueous accommodation space to anthropogenic accommodation space, provides an indicator of past and projected Delta conditions. While subsidence and sea level rise create increasing anthropogenic accommodation space in the Delta, they also lead to a regional increase in the forces that can cause levee failure. Although these forces take many forms, a Levee Force Index can be calculated that is a proxy for the cumulative forces acting on levees. The Levee Force Index increases significantly over the next 50 years demonstrating regional increases in the potential for island flooding. Based on continuing increases in the Levee Force Index and the Accommodation Space Index, and limited support for Delta levee upgrades, there will be a tendency for increases in and impacts of island flooding, with escalating costs for repairs. Additionally, there is a two-in-three chance that 100-year recurrence interval floods or earthquakes will cause catastrophic flooding and significant change in the Delta by 2050. Currently, the California Bay-Delta Authority has no overarching policy that addresses the consequences of, and potential responses to, gradual or abrupt

  1. Assessing economic impact of storm surge under projected sea level rise scenarios

    Science.gov (United States)

    Del Angel, D. C.; Yoskowitz, D.

    2017-12-01

    Global sea level is expected to rise 0.2-2m by the year 2100. Rising sea level is expected to have a number of impacts such as erosion, saltwater intrusion, and decline in coastal wetlands; all which have direct and indirect socio-economic impact to coastal communities. By 2050, 25% of the world's population will reside within flood-prone areas. These statistics raise a concern for the economic cost that sea level and flooding has on the growing coastal communities. Economic cost of storm surge inundation and rising seas may include loss or damage to public facilities and infrastructure that may become temporarily inaccessible, as well as disruptions to business and services. This goal of this project is to assess economic impacts of storms under four SLR scenarios including low, intermediate-low, intermediate-high, and high (0.2m, 0.5m, 1.2m and 2m, respectively) in the Northern Gulf of Mexico region. To assess flooding impact on communities from storm surge, this project utilizes HAZUS-MH software - a Geographic Information System (GIS)-based modeling tool developed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency - to estimate physical, economic, and social impacts of natural disasters such as floods, earthquakes and hurricanes. The HAZUS database comes integrated with aggregate and site specific inventory which includes: demographic data, general building stock, agricultural statistics, vehicle inventory, essential facilities, transportation systems, utility systems (among other sensitive facilities). User-defined inundation scenarios will serve to identify assets at risk and damage estimates will be generated using the Depth Damage Function included in the HAZUS software. Results will focus on 3 communities in the Gulf and highlight changes in storm flood impact. This approach not only provides a method for economic impact assessment but also begins to create a link between ecosystem services and natural and nature-based features such as wetlands, beaches and dunes

  2. Caribbean mangroves adjust to rising sea level through biotic controls on change in soil elevation

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKee, K.L.; Cahoon, D.R.; Feller, Ilka C.

    2007-01-01

    Aim The long-term stability of coastal ecosystems such as mangroves and salt marshes depends upon the maintenance of soil elevations within the intertidal habitat as sea level changes. We examined the rates and processes of peat formation by mangroves of the Caribbean Region to better understand biological controls on habitat stability. Location Mangrove-dominated islands on the Caribbean coasts of Belize, Honduras and Panama were selected as study sites. Methods Biological processes controlling mangrove peat formation were manipulated (in Belize) by the addition of nutrients (nitrogen or phosphorus) to Rhizophora mangle (red mangrove), and the effects on the dynamics of soil elevation were determined over a 3-year period using rod surface elevation tables (RSET) and marker horizons. Peat composition and geological accretion rates were determined at all sites using radiocarbon-dated cores. Results The addition of nutrients to mangroves caused significant changes in rates of mangrove root accumulation, which influenced both the rate and direction of change in elevation. Areas with low root input lost elevation and those with high rates gained elevation. These findings were consistent with peat analyses at multiple Caribbean sites showing that deposits (up to 10 m in depth) were composed primarily of mangrove root matter. Comparison of radiocarbon-dated cores at the study sites with a sea-level curve for the western Atlantic indicated a tight coupling between peat building in Caribbean mangroves and sea-level rise over the Holocene. Main conclusions Mangroves common to the Caribbean region have adjusted to changing sea level mainly through subsurface accumulation of refractory mangrove roots. Without root and other organic inputs, submergence of these tidal forests is inevitable due to peat decomposition, physical compaction and eustatic sea-level rise. These findings have relevance for predicting the effects of sea-level rise and biophysical processes on tropical

  3. SEA LEVEL RISE AND ITS POTENTIAL IMPACTS ON COASTAL URBAN AREA: A CASE OF ETI-OSA, NIGERIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ayodele Michael AGBOOLA

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available This study examines the spatial extent of coastal urban development and its potential sensitivity to sea-level rise. The main aim of the study is to critically examine the extent of growth in Eti-Osa over time, and the potential impacts of sea leve rise. Landsat Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus (ETM+ imageries of years 2000 and 2015 were used to evaluate the different land use type identified. Post-classification change detection method was used to evaluate the output of the maximum likelihood supervised classification analysis done. This was also used to estimate the changes induces through urban development on the environment which accounts for the biodiversity loss. ASTER GDEM 2 imagery of 2011 was used to generate the elevation data used for the inundation analysis. Thus, both Land use map of Eti-Osa in 2015 and the down scaled Sea-level rise scenarios (at 0.5 to 15 meters were used for the inundation mapping. Results obtained from this research affirms that indeed EtiOsa has been subjected to gross urban expansion giving room for diverse forms of environmental degradation among which are huge replacement of natural land cover with built-up, reclamation of wetlands and sand filling of water bodies. This basically illustrates growth but also the risk that accompanies the advent of excessive alteration of natural ecosystem as Sea-level rise projections imply in this research.

  4. Validation and Comparison of a Model of the Effect of Sea-Level Rise on Coastal Wetlands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mogensen, Laura A; Rogers, Kerrylee

    2018-01-22

    Models are used to project coastal wetland distribution under future sea-level rise scenarios to assist decision-making. Model validation and comparison was used to investigate error and uncertainty in the Sea Level Affecting Marshes Model, a readily available model with minimal validation, particularly for wetlands beyond North America. Accurate parameterisation is required to improve the performance of the model, and indeed any spatial model. Consideration of tidal attenuation further enhances model performance, particularly for coastal wetlands located within estuaries along wave-dominated coastlines. The model does not simulate vegetation changes that are known to occur, particularly when sedimentation exceeds rates of sea-level rise resulting in shoreline progradation. Model performance was reasonable over decadal timescales, decreasing as the time-scale of retrospection increased due to compounding of errors. Comparison with other deterministic models showed reasonable agreement by 2100. However, given the uncertainty of the future and the unpredictable nature of coastal wetlands, it is difficult to ascertain which model could be realistic enough to meet its intended purpose. Model validation and comparison are useful for assessing model efficacy and parameterisation, and should be applied before application of any spatially explicit model of coastal wetland response to sea-level rise.

  5. Climate change, sea-level rise, and conservation: keeping island biodiversity afloat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Courchamp, Franck; Hoffmann, Benjamin D; Russell, James C; Leclerc, Camille; Bellard, Céline

    2014-03-01

    Island conservation programs have been spectacularly successful over the past five decades, yet they generally do not account for impacts of climate change. Here, we argue that the full spectrum of climate change, especially sea-level rise and loss of suitable climatic conditions, should be rapidly integrated into island biodiversity research and management. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Impacts of Global Warming and Sea Level Rise on Service Life of Chloride-Exposed Concrete Structures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiao-Jian Gao

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Global warming will increase the rate of chloride ingress and the rate of steel corrosion of concrete structures. Furthermore, in coastal (atmospheric marine zones, sea level rise will reduce the distance of concrete structures from the coast and increase the surface chloride content. This study proposes a probabilistic model for analyzing the effects of global warming and sea level rise on the service life of coastal concrete structures. First, in the corrosion initiation stage, an improved chloride diffusion model is proposed to determine chloride concentration. The Monte Carlo method is employed to calculate the service life in the corrosion initiation stage; Second, in the corrosion propagation stage, a numerical model is proposed to calculate the rate of corrosion, probability of corrosion cracking, and service life. Third, overall service life is determined as the sum of service life in the corrosion initiation and corrosion propagation stages. After considering the impacts of global warming and sea level rise, the analysis results show that for concrete structures having a service life of 50 years, the service life decreases by about 5%.

  7. Using simulations to forecast homeowner response to sea level rise in South Florida: Will they stay or will they go?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Treuer, G.

    2017-12-01

    Sea level rise threatens coastal communities around the world, including South Florida which may be the most financially vulnerable region in the world. Proactive investments in sea level rise adaptive flood protections could reduce South Florida's financial vulnerability. However, it is unclear if local governments and homeowners will be willing to make those investments before it is too late. Our research explores this issue by reporting the results of a novel online simulation that accelerates 348 South Florida homeowners thirty-five years into the future so that they can `live' the effects of sea level rise. The results contain a mix of optimism and caution for the prospects of future adaptation. On the positive side over 75% of participants indicated a willingness to support bond issues to pay for adaptation, even as the costs of the measures and effects of sea level rise increased over the years. Likewise, we find little evidence that politically conservative residents who normally have more skeptical views about climate change would be any less inclined to support adaptation, or only look to information sources that downplay the threat. On the negative side, homeowner interest in moving out of the region increases steadily over time as the sea level rises. This is driven by an increase in worry associated with viewing more information within the simulation.

  8. Global change and relative sea level rise at Venice: what impact in term of flooding

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Carbognin, Laura; Tosi, Luigi [Institute of Marine Sciences, National Research Council, Venice (Italy); Teatini, Pietro [Institute of Marine Sciences, National Research Council, Venice (Italy); University of Padova, Department of Mathematical Methods and Models for Scientific Applications, Padua (Italy); Tomasin, Alberto [Institute of Marine Sciences, National Research Council, Venice (Italy); University Ca' Foscari in Venice, Venice (Italy)

    2010-11-15

    Relative sea level rise (RSLR) due to climate change and geodynamics represents the main threat for the survival of Venice, emerging today only 90 cm above the Northern Adriatic mean sea level (msl). The 25 cm RSLR occurred over the 20th century, consisting of about 12 cm of land subsidence and 13 cm of sea level rise, has increased the flood frequency by more than seven times with severe damages to the urban heritage. Reasonable forecasts of the RSLR expected to the century end must be investigated to assess the suitability of the Mo.S.E. project planned for the city safeguarding, i.e., the closure of the lagoon inlets by mobile barriers. Here we consider three RSLR scenarios as resulting from the past sea level rise recorded in the Northern Adriatic Sea, the IPCC mid-range A1B scenario, and the expected land subsidence. Available sea level measurements show that more than 5 decades are required to compute a meaningful eustatic trend, due to pseudo-cyclic 7-8 year long fluctuations. The period from 1890 to 2007 is characterized by an average rate of 0.12 {+-} 0.01 cm/year. We demonstrate that linear regression is the most suitable model to represent the eustatic process over these 117 year. Concerning subsidence, at present Venice is sinking due to natural causes at 0.05 cm/year. The RSLR is expected to range between 17 and 53 cm by 2100, and its repercussions in terms of flooding frequency are associated here to each scenario. In particular, the frequency of tides higher than 110 cm, i.e., the value above which the gates would close the lagoon to the sea, will increase from the nowadays 4 times per year to a range between 20 and 250. These projections provide a large spread of possible conditions concerning the survival of Venice, from a moderate nuisance to an intolerable aggression. Hence, complementary solutions to Mo.S.E. may well be investigated. (orig.)

  9. Chance findings about early holocene tidal marshes of Grays Harbor, Washington, in relation to rapidly rising seas and great subduction earthquakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phipps, James B.; Hemphill-Haley, Eileen; Atwater, Brian F.

    2015-06-18

    Tidal marshes commonly build upward apace with gradual rise in the level of the sea. It is expected, however, that few tidal marshes will keep up with accelerated sea-level rise later in this century. Tidal marshes have been drowned, moreover, after subsiding during earthquakes.

  10. Sea level rise along Malaysian coasts due to the climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luu, Quang-Hung; Tkalich, Pavel; Tay, Tzewei

    2015-04-01

    Malaysia consists of two major parts, a mainland on the Peninsular Malaysia and the East Malaysia on the Borneo Island. Their surrounding waters connect the Andaman Sea located northeast of the Indian Ocean to the Celebes Sea in the western tropical Pacific Ocean through the southern East Sea of Vietnam/South China Sea. As a result, inter-annual sea level in the Malaysian waters is governed by various regional phenomena associated with the adjacent parts of the Indian and Pacific Oceans. We estimated sea level rise (SLR) rate in the domain using tide gauge records often being gappy. To reconstruct the missing data, two methods are used: (i) correlating sea level with climate indices El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD), and (ii) filling the gap using records of neighboring tide gauges. Latest vertical land movements have been acquired to derive geocentric SLR rates. Around the Peninsular Malaysia, geocentric SLR rates in waters of Malacca Strait and eastern Peninsular Malaysia during 1986-2011 are found to be 3.9±3.3 mm/year and 4.2 ± 2.5 mm/year, respectively; while in the East Malaysia waters the rate during 1988-2011 is 6.3 ± 4.0 mm/year. These rates are arguably higher than global tendency for the same periods. For the overlapping period 1993-2011, the rates are consistent with those obtained using satellite altimetry.

  11. Recent dynamic changes on Fleming Glacier after the disintegration of Wordie Ice Shelf, Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedl, Peter; Seehaus, Thorsten C.; Wendt, Anja; Braun, Matthias H.; Höppner, Kathrin

    2018-04-01

    former ice shelf anymore. Currently, the tongue of Fleming Glacier is grounded in a zone of bedrock elevation between ˜ -400 and -500 m. However, about 3-4 km upstream modelled bedrock topography indicates a retrograde bed which transitions into a deep trough of up to ˜ -1100 m at ˜ 10 km upstream. Hence, this endangers upstream ice masses, which can significantly increase the contribution of Fleming Glacier to sea level rise in the future.

  12. Glaciers of Asia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Richard S.; Ferrigno, Jane G.

    2010-01-01

    This chapter is the ninth to be released in U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1386, Satellite Image Atlas of Glaciers of the World, a series of 11 chapters. In each of the geographic area chapters, remotely sensed images, primarily from the Landsat 1, 2, and 3 series of spacecraft, are used to analyze the specific glacierized region of our planet under consideration and to monitor glacier changes. Landsat images, acquired primarily during the middle to late 1970s and early 1980s, were used by an international team of glaciologists and other scientists to study various geographic regions and (or) to discuss related glaciological topics. In each glacierized geographic region, the present areal distribution of glaciers is compared, wherever possible, with historical information about their past extent. The atlas provides an accurate regional inventory of the areal extent of glacier ice on our planet during the 1970s as part of a growing international scientific effort to measure global environmental change on the Earth?s surface. The chapter is divided into seven geographic parts and one topical part: Glaciers of the Former Soviet Union (F-1), Glaciers of China (F-2), Glaciers of Afghanistan (F?3), Glaciers of Pakistan (F-4), Glaciers of India (F-5), Glaciers of Nepal (F?6), Glaciers of Bhutan (F-7), and the Paleoenvironmental Record Preserved in Middle-Latitude, High-Mountain Glaciers (F-8). Each geographic section describes the glacier extent during the 1970s and 1980s, the benchmark time period (1972-1981) of this volume, but has been updated to include more recent information. Glaciers of the Former Soviet Union are located in the Russian Arctic and various mountain ranges of Russia and the Republics of Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Kazakstun. The Glacier Inventory of the USSR and the World Atlas of Ice and Snow Resources recorded a total of 28,881 glaciers covering an area of 78,938 square kilometers (km2). China includes many of the mountain-glacier

  13. Modeling the Effects of Sea-Level Rise on Groundwater Levels in Coastal New Hampshire

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobs, J. M.; Knott, J. F.; Daniel, J.; Kirshen, P. H.

    2017-12-01

    Coastal communities with high population density and low topography are vulnerable from sea-level rise (SLR) caused by climate change. Groundwater in coastal communities will rise with sea level impacting water quality, the structural integrity of infrastructure, and natural ecosystem health. SLR-induced groundwater rise has been studied in areas of high aquifer transmissivity and in low-lying areas immediately along the coast. In this regional study, we investigate SLR-induced groundwater rise in a coastal area characterized by shallow unconsolidated deposits overlying fractured bedrock, typical of the glaciated northeast United States. MODFLOW, a numerical groundwater-flow model, is used with groundwater observations, lidar topography, surface-water hydrology, and groundwater withdrawals to investigate SLR-induced changes in groundwater levels and vadose-zone thickness in New Hampshire's Seacoast. The SLR groundwater signal is detected up to 5 km from the coast, more than 3 times farther inland than projected surface-water flooding associated with SLR. Relative groundwater rise ranges from 38 to 98% of SLR within 1 km of the shoreline and drops below 4% between 4 and 5 km from the coast. The largest magnitude of SLR-induced groundwater rise occurs in the marine and estuarine deposits and land areas with tidal water bodies on three sides. In contrast, groundwater rise is dampened near streams. Groundwater inundation caused by 2 m of SLR is projected to contribute 48% of the total land inundation area in the City of Portsmouth with consequences for built and natural resources. Freshwater wetlands are projected to expand 3% by year 2030 increasing to 25% by year 2100 coupled with water-depth increases. These results imply that underground infrastructure and natural resources in coastal communities will be impacted by rising groundwater much farther inland than previously thought when considering only surface-water flooding from SLR.

  14. The Orinoco megadelta as a conservation target in the face of the ongoing and future sea level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vegas-Vilarrúbia, T; Hernández, E; Rull, Valentí; Rull Vegas, Elisa

    2015-05-15

    Currently, risk assessments related to rising sea levels and the adoption of defensive or adaptive measures to counter these sea level increases are underway for densely populated deltas where economic losses might be important, especially in the developed world. However, many underpopulated deltas harbouring high biological and cultural diversity are also at risk but will most likely continue to be ignored as conservation targets. In this study, we explore the potential effects of erosion, inundation and salinisation on one of the world's comparatively underpopulated megadeltas, the Orinoco Delta. With a 1 m sea level rise expected to occur by 2100, several models predict a moderate erosion of the delta's shorelines, migration or loss of mangroves, general inundation of the delta with an accompanying submersion of wetlands, and an increase in the distance to which sea water intrudes into streams, resulting in harm to the freshwater biota and resources. The Warao people are the indigenous inhabitants of the Orinoco Delta and currently are subject to various socioeconomic stressors. Changes due to sea level rise will occur extremely rapidly and cause abrupt shifts in the Warao's traditional environments and resources, resulting in migrations and abandonment of their ancestral territories. However, evidence indicates that deltaic aggradation/accretion processes at the Orinoco delta due to allochthonous sediment input and vegetation growth could be elevating the surface of the land, keeping pace with the local sea level rise. Other underpopulated and large deltas of the world also may risk immeasurable biodiversity and cultural losses and should not be forgotten as important conservation targets. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  15. Modeling vegetation community responses to sea-level rise on Barrier Island systems: A case study on the Cape Canaveral Barrier Island complex, Florida, USA.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tammy E Foster

    Full Text Available Society needs information about how vegetation communities in coastal regions will be impacted by hydrologic changes associated with climate change, particularly sea level rise. Due to anthropogenic influences which have significantly decreased natural coastal vegetation communities, it is important for us to understand how remaining natural communities will respond to sea level rise. The Cape Canaveral Barrier Island complex (CCBIC on the east central coast of Florida is within one of the most biologically diverse estuarine systems in North America and has the largest number of threatened and endangered species on federal property in the contiguous United States. The high level of biodiversity is susceptible to sea level rise. Our objective was to model how vegetation communities along a gradient ranging from hydric to upland xeric on CCBIC will respond to three sea level rise scenarios (0.2 m, 0.4 m, and 1.2 m. We used a probabilistic model of the current relationship between elevation and vegetation community to determine the impact sea level rise would have on these communities. Our model correctly predicted the current proportions of vegetation communities on CCBIC based on elevation. Under all sea level rise scenarios the model predicted decreases in mesic and xeric communities, with the greatest losses occurring in the most xeric communities. Increases in total area of salt marsh were predicted with a 0.2 and 0.4 m rise in sea level. With a 1.2 m rise in sea level approximately half of CCBIC's land area was predicted to transition to open water. On the remaining land, the proportions of most of the vegetation communities were predicted to remain similar to that of current proportions, but there was a decrease in proportion of the most xeric community (oak scrub and an increase in the most hydric community (salt marsh. Our approach provides a first approximation of the impacts of sea level rise on terrestrial vegetation communities

  16. Modeling vegetation community responses to sea-level rise on Barrier Island systems: A case study on the Cape Canaveral Barrier Island complex, Florida, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foster, Tammy E; Stolen, Eric D; Hall, Carlton R; Schaub, Ronald; Duncan, Brean W; Hunt, Danny K; Drese, John H

    2017-01-01

    Society needs information about how vegetation communities in coastal regions will be impacted by hydrologic changes associated with climate change, particularly sea level rise. Due to anthropogenic influences which have significantly decreased natural coastal vegetation communities, it is important for us to understand how remaining natural communities will respond to sea level rise. The Cape Canaveral Barrier Island complex (CCBIC) on the east central coast of Florida is within one of the most biologically diverse estuarine systems in North America and has the largest number of threatened and endangered species on federal property in the contiguous United States. The high level of biodiversity is susceptible to sea level rise. Our objective was to model how vegetation communities along a gradient ranging from hydric to upland xeric on CCBIC will respond to three sea level rise scenarios (0.2 m, 0.4 m, and 1.2 m). We used a probabilistic model of the current relationship between elevation and vegetation community to determine the impact sea level rise would have on these communities. Our model correctly predicted the current proportions of vegetation communities on CCBIC based on elevation. Under all sea level rise scenarios the model predicted decreases in mesic and xeric communities, with the greatest losses occurring in the most xeric communities. Increases in total area of salt marsh were predicted with a 0.2 and 0.4 m rise in sea level. With a 1.2 m rise in sea level approximately half of CCBIC's land area was predicted to transition to open water. On the remaining land, the proportions of most of the vegetation communities were predicted to remain similar to that of current proportions, but there was a decrease in proportion of the most xeric community (oak scrub) and an increase in the most hydric community (salt marsh). Our approach provides a first approximation of the impacts of sea level rise on terrestrial vegetation communities, including important

  17. Constraining the Antarctic contribution to interglacial sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naish, T.; Mckay, R. M.; Barrett, P. J.; Levy, R. H.; Golledge, N. R.; Deconto, R. M.; Horgan, H. J.; Dunbar, G. B.

    2015-12-01

    Observations, models and paleoclimate reconstructions suggest that Antarctica's marine-based ice sheets behave in an unstable manner with episodes of rapid retreat in response to warming climate. Understanding the processes involved in this "marine ice sheet instability" is key for improving estimates of Antarctic ice sheet contribution to future sea-level rise. Another motivating factor is that far-field sea-level reconstructions and ice sheet models imply global mean sea level (GMSL) was up to 20m and 10m higher, respectively, compared with present day, during the interglacials of the warm Pliocene (~4-3Ma) and Late Pleistocene (at ~400ka and 125ka). This was when atmospheric CO2 was between 280 and 400ppm and global average surface temperatures were 1- 3°C warmer, suggesting polar ice sheets are highly sensitive to relatively modest increases in climate forcing. Such magnitudes of GMSL rise not only require near complete melt of the Greenland Ice Sheet and the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, but a substantial retreat of marine-based sectors of East Antarctic Ice Sheet. Recent geological drilling initiatives on the continental margin of Antarctica from both ship- (e.g. IODP; International Ocean Discovery Program) and ice-based (e.g. ANDRILL/Antarctic Geological Drilling) platforms have provided evidence supporting retreat of marine-based ice. However, without direct access through the ice sheet to archives preserved within sub-glacial sedimentary basins, the volume and extent of ice sheet retreat during past interglacials cannot be directly constrained. Sediment cores have been successfully recovered from beneath ice shelves by the ANDRILL Program and ice streams by the WISSARD (Whillans Ice Stream Sub-glacial Access Research Drilling) Project. Together with the potential of the new RAID (Rapid Access Ice Drill) initiative, these demonstrate the technological feasibility of accessing the subglacial bed and deeper sedimentary archives. In this talk I will outline the

  18. Sea level rise under the Shared Socioeconomic Pathways (SSPs)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schleussner, C. F.; Nauels, A.; Rogelj, J.; Mengel, M.; Meinshausen, M.

    2017-12-01

    In order to assess future sea level rise and its impacts, we need to study climate change pathways combined with different scenarios of socioeconomic development. Here, we present Sea Level Rise (SLR) projections for the Shared Socioeconomic Pathway (SSP) storylines and different year-2100 radiative Forcing Targets (FTs). Future SLR is estimated with a comprehensive SLR emulator that accounts for latest research on additional Antarctic rapid discharge dynamics from hydrofracturing and ice cliff instability. Across all baseline scenario realizations (no dedicated climate mitigation), we find 2100 median SLR relative to 1986-2005 of 102 cm (likely range: 77 to 135 cm) for SSP1, 118 cm (90 to 151 cm) for SSP2, 118 cm (91 to 149 cm) for SSP3, 107 cm (81 to 137 cm) for SSP4, and 144 cm (112 to 184 cm) for SSP5. The 2100 sea level responses for combined SSP-FT scenarios is dominated by the mitigation targets and yield median estimates of 68 cm (56 to 87 cm) for FT 2.6 Wm-2, 76 cm (61 to 107 cm) for FT 3.4 Wm-2, 90 cm (68 to 120 cm) for FT 4.5 Wm-2, and 105 cm (79 to 136 cm) for FT 6.0 Wm-2. Average 2081-2100 annual rates of SLR are 6 mm/yr and 19 mm/yr for the FT 2.6 Wm-2 and the baseline scenarios, respectively. Our model setup allows linking scenario-specific emission and socioeconomic indicators to projected SLR. For limiting median 2100 SSP SLR projections to below 80 cm, we find that 2050 cumulative CO2 emissions since pre-industrial should not exceed around 860 GtC, with the global coal phase-out nearly completed. For SSP mitigation scenarios, the median 2050 carbon price of 90 US$2005 tCO2-1 would correspond to a median 2100 SLR of around 80 cm. Our results confirm that rapid and early emission reductions are essential for limiting 2100 SLR.

  19. Internationally coordinated glacier monitoring - a timeline since 1894

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nussbaumer, Samuel U.; Armstrong, Richard; Fetterer, Florence; Gärtner-Roer, Isabelle; Hoelzle, Martin; Machguth, Horst; Mölg, Nico; Paul, Frank; Raup, Bruce H.; Zemp, Michael

    2016-04-01

    Changes in glaciers and ice caps provide some of the clearest evidence of climate change, with impacts on sea-level variations, regional hydrological cycles, and natural hazard situations. Therefore, glaciers have been recognized as an Essential Climate Variable (ECV). Internationally coordinated collection and distribution of standardized information about the state and change of glaciers and ice caps was initiated in 1894 and is today organized within the Global Terrestrial Network for Glaciers (GTN-G). GTN-G ensures the continuous development and adaptation of the international strategies to the long-term needs of users in science and policy. A GTN-G Steering Committee coordinates, supports and advices the operational bodies responsible for the international glacier monitoring, which are the World Glacier Monitoring Service (WGMS), the US National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC), and the Global Land Ice Measurements from Space (GLIMS) initiative. In this presentation, we trace the development of the internationally coordinated glacier monitoring since its beginning in the 19th century. Today, several online databases containing a wealth of diverse data types with different levels of detail and global coverage provide fast access to continuously updated information on glacier fluctuation and inventory data. All glacier datasets are made freely available through the respective operational bodies within GTN-G, and can be accessed through the GTN-G Global Glacier Browser (http://www.gtn-g.org/data_browser.html). Glacier inventory data (e.g., digital outlines) are available for about 180,000 glaciers (GLIMS database, RGI - Randolph Glacier Inventory, WGI - World Glacier Inventory). Glacier front variations with about 45,000 entries since the 17th century and about 6,200 glaciological and geodetic mass (volume) change observations dating back to the 19th century are available in the Fluctuations of Glaciers (FoG) database. These datasets reveal clear evidence that

  20. Non-linear interactions determine the impact of sea-level rise on estuarine benthic biodiversity and ecosystem processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamanaka, Tsuyuko; Raffaelli, David; White, Piran C L

    2013-01-01

    Sea-level rise induced by climate change may have significant impacts on the ecosystem functions and ecosystem services provided by intertidal sediment ecosystems. Accelerated sea-level rise is expected to lead to steeper beach slopes, coarser particle sizes and increased wave exposure, with consequent impacts on intertidal ecosystems. We examined the relationships between abundance, biomass, and community metabolism of benthic fauna with beach slope, particle size and exposure, using samples across a range of conditions from three different locations in the UK, to determine the significance of sediment particle size beach slope and wave exposure in affecting benthic fauna and ecosystem function in different ecological contexts. Our results show that abundance, biomass and oxygen consumption of intertidal macrofauna and meiofauna are affected significantly by interactions among sediment particle size, beach slope and wave exposure. For macrofauna on less sloping beaches, the effect of these physical constraints is mediated by the local context, although for meiofauna and for macrofauna on intermediate and steeper beaches, the effects of physical constraints dominate. Steeper beach slopes, coarser particle sizes and increased wave exposure generally result in decreases in abundance, biomass and oxygen consumption, but these relationships are complex and non-linear. Sea-level rise is likely to lead to changes in ecosystem structure with generally negative impacts on ecosystem functions and ecosystem services. However, the impacts of sea-level rise will also be affected by local ecological context, especially for less sloping beaches.

  1. A geospatial dataset for U.S. hurricane storm surge and sea-level rise vulnerability: Development and case study applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Megan C. Maloney

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The consequences of future sea-level rise for coastal communities are a priority concern arising from anthropogenic climate change. Here, previously published methods are scaled up in order to undertake a first pass assessment of exposure to hurricane storm surge and sea-level rise for the U.S. Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic coasts. Sea-level rise scenarios ranging from +0.50 to +0.82 m by 2100 increased estimates of the area exposed to inundation by 4–13% and 7–20%, respectively, among different Saffir-Simpson hurricane intensity categories. Potential applications of these hazard layers for vulnerability assessment are demonstrated with two contrasting case studies: potential exposure of current energy infrastructure in the U.S. Southeast and exposure of current and future housing along both the Gulf and Atlantic Coasts. Estimates of the number of Southeast electricity generation facilities potentially exposed to hurricane storm surge ranged from 69 to 291 for category 1 and category 5 storms, respectively. Sea-level rise increased the number of exposed facilities by 6–60%, depending on the sea-level rise scenario and the intensity of the hurricane under consideration. Meanwhile, estimates of the number of housing units currently exposed to hurricane storm surge ranged from 4.1 to 9.4 million for category 1 and category 4 storms, respectively, while exposure for category 5 storms was estimated at 7.1 million due to the absence of landfalling category 5 hurricanes in the New England region. Housing exposure was projected to increase 83–230% by 2100 among different sea-level rise and housing scenarios, with the majority of this increase attributed to future housing development. These case studies highlight the utility of geospatial hazard information for national-scale coastal exposure or vulnerability assessment as well as the importance of future socioeconomic development in the assessment of coastal vulnerability.

  2. Assessment of salinity intrusion in the James and Chickahominy Rivers as a result of simulated sea-level rise in Chesapeake Bay, East Coast, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rice, Karen C; Hong, Bo; Shen, Jian

    2012-11-30

    Global sea level is rising, and the relative rate in the Chesapeake Bay region of the East Coast of the United States is greater than the worldwide rate. Sea-level rise can cause saline water to migrate upstream in estuaries and rivers, threatening freshwater habitat and drinking-water supplies. The effects of future sea-level rise on two tributaries of Chesapeake Bay, the James and Chickahominy (CHK) Rivers, were evaluated in order to quantify the salinity change with respect to the magnitude of sea-level rise. Such changes are critical to: 1) local floral and faunal habitats that have limited tolerance ranges to salinity; and 2) a drinking-water supply for the City of Newport News, Virginia. By using the three-dimensional Hydrodynamic-Eutrophication Model (HEM-3D), sea-level rise scenarios of 30, 50, and 100 cm, based on the U.S. Climate Change Science Program for the mid-Atlantic region for the 21st century, were evaluated. The model results indicate that salinity increases in the entire river as sea level rises and that the salinity increase in a dry year is greater than that in a typical year. In the James River, the salinity increase in the middle-to-upper river (from 25 to 50 km upstream of the mouth) is larger than that in the lower and upper parts of the river. The maximum mean salinity increase would be 2 and 4 ppt for a sea-level rise of 50 and 100 cm, respectively. The upstream movement of the 10 ppt isohaline is much larger than the 5 and 20 ppt isohalines. The volume of water with salinity between 10 and 20 ppt would increase greatly if sea level rises 100 cm. In the CHK River, with a sea-level rise of 100 cm, the mean salinity at the drinking-water intake 34 km upstream of the mouth would be about 3 ppt in a typical year and greater than 5 ppt in a dry year, both far in excess of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's secondary standard for total dissolved solids for drinking water. At the drinking-water intake, the number of days of salinity

  3. Adaptation to the Impacts of Sea Level Rise in the Nile Delta Coastal ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    Extrants. Articles de revue. Facing the Tide - REVOLVE Magazine: Water Around the Mediterranean. Téléchargez le PDF. Rapports. Adaptation to the impacts of sea level rise in the Nile Delta coastal zone, Egypt : final project report. Téléchargez le PDF ...

  4. Modelling the behavior of Jakobshavn glacier in the last century

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Muresan, Ioana Stefania; Khroulev, Constantine; Khan, Shfaqat Abbas

    2014-01-01

    overview and for the purpose of increasing the resolution to 2 km, our study focuses only on the Jakobshavn glacier. In order to determine the locations of the flow for the regional model, a drainage basin mask was extracted from the surface elevation data based on the gradient flow. While inside the basin......Current model estimates of the Greenland Ice Sheet (GrIS) are almost entirely based on coarse grids (>10km) and constrained by climate models that span from 60s to present. To improve the projection of future sea level rise, a long-term data record that reveals the mass balance beyond decadal...... mask the full PISM model is applied, outside the basin mask the boundary conditions are taken as captured by the whole Greenland initialization. Considering the surface mass balanced reconstruction where the monthly accumulation rates are assumed to be 1/12 of the annual accumulation, a yearly 1900...

  5. Perceptions of Climate Change, Sea Level Rise, and Possible Consequences Relate Mainly to Self-Valuation of Science Knowledge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burger, Joanna; Gochfeld, Michael; Pittfield, Taryn; Jeitner, Christian

    2016-05-01

    This study examines perceptions of climate change and sea level rise in New Jersey residents in 2012 and 2014. Different surveys have shown declines in interest and concern about climate change and sea level rise. Climate change and increasing temperatures have an anthropogenic cause, which relates to energy use, making it important to examine whether people believe that it is occurring. In late 2012 New Jersey experienced Super storm Sandy, one of the worst hurricanes in its history, followed by public discussion and media coverage of stronger more frequent storms due to climate change. Using structured interviews, we tested the null hypotheses that there were no differences in perceptions of 1260 interviewees as a function of year of the survey, age, gender, years of education, and self-evaluation of science knowledge (on a scale of 1 to 5). In 2012 460 of 639 (72%) rated "global warming occurring" as "certain" (#4) or "very certain" (#5) compared with 453 of 621 (73%) in 2014. For "due to human activities" the numbers of "certain" or "very certain" were 71% in 2012, and 67% in 2014 and for sea level rise the numbers were 64% and 70%. There were some inconsistent between-year differences with higher ratings in 2012 for 3 outcomes and higher ratings in 2014 for 5 outcomes. However, for 25 questions relative to climate change, sea level rise, and the personal and ecological effects of sea level rise, self-evaluation of science knowledge, independent of years of education, was the factor that entered 23 of the models, accounting for the most variability in ratings. People who believed they had a "high knowledge" (#4) or "very high knowledge" (#5) of science rated all issues as more important than did those people who rated their own scientific knowledge as average or below average.

  6. Glaciers of Europe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Richard S.; Ferrigno, Jane G.

    1993-01-01

    ALPS: AUSTRIAN: An overview is provided on the occurrence of the glaciers in the Eastern Alps of Austria and on the climatic conditions in this area, Historical documents on the glaciers have been available since the Middle Ages. Special glaciological observations and topographic surveys of individual glaciers were initiated as early as 1846. Recent data in an inventory based on aerial photographs taken in 1969 show 925 glaciers in the Austrian Alps with a total area of 542 square kilometers. Present research topics include studies of mass and energy balance, relations of glaciers and climate, physical glaciology, a complete inventory of the glaciers, and testing of remote sensing methods. The location of the glacier areas is shown on Landsat multispectral scanner images; the improved capabilities of the Landsat thematic mapper are illustrated with an example from the Oztaler Alpen group. ALPS: SWISS: According to a glacier inventory published in 1976, which is based on aerial photography of 1973, there are 1,828 glacier units in the Swiss Alps that cover a total area of 1fl42 square kilometers. The Rhonegletscher, currently the ninth largest in the country, was one of the first to be studied in detail. Its surface has been surveyed repeatedly; velocity profiles were measured, and the fluctuations of its terminus were mapped and recorded from 1874 to 1914. Recent research on the glacier has included climatological, hydrological, and massbalance studies. Glaciological research has been conducted on various other glaciers in Switzerland concerning glacier hydrology, glacier hazards, fluctuations of glacier termini, ice mechanics, ice cores, and mass balance. Good maps are available showing the extent of glaciers from the latter decades of the 19th century. More recently, the entire country has been mapped at scales of 1:25,000, 1:50,000, 1:100,000, 1:200,000, and 1:500,000. The 1:25,000-scale series very accurately represents the glaciers as well as locates

  7. Well Salinization Risk and Effects of Baltic Sea Level Rise on the Groundwater-Dependent Island of Öland, Sweden

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcus Eriksson

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available In this study, we estimate baseline conditions in terms of the current risk of well salinization on the Baltic Sea island of Öland, Sweden, and assess the effects of future sea level rise on the land area, infrastructure and cultural values. We use a multicriterion geographical information systems (GIS approach. Geomorphological and physical parameters affect the risk of saltwater intrusion into freshwater aquifers, including their hydrology, geomorphology, and climatology; the spatial distribution of the current risk of salinization is mapped in this study. In the event of a future 2 m sea level rise, a total land area of 67 km2 will be inundated on Öland, corresponding to approximately 5% of the island’s land surface. Inundation includes urban areas, nature reserves, and animal protection areas, implying the loss of environmental and socioeconomic values. A future 2 m sea level rise will also cause direct inundation of 3% of all wells on the island. Currently, 17.5% of all wells are at a high risk of becoming saltwater contaminated. More generally, the present results add evidence showing a relatively high vulnerability of major Baltic Sea islands and their infrastructure to future sea level rise. The approach used here and related results, including salinization risk maps, may prove useful for decision-makers in the planning of infrastructure. Drilling of new wells could for instance preferably be done in areas with identified lower risk-index values, which would facilitate an overall higher freshwater withdrawal in the interest of the entire island.

  8. A study on Sea Level Change for Coast of Korean Peninsular from Global Warming and Its Influences I

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cho, K.W.; Kim, J.H. [Korea Environment Institute, Seoul (Korea)

    2001-12-01

    The Third Assessment Report(2001) of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change(IPCC) concluded that the global warming will be accelerated during the 21st century due to the human activities. The projected warming will increase the steric sea level rise which have large adverse effects on the natural and human systems in the coastal zone. This study intends to assess the sea level change and potential impacts of the future sea level rise on the coastal zone of the Korean Peninsula in which much socioeconomic activities have been already occurred. The contents of the present study include reviews on climate change and its impact, assessments of the current and future sea level change in the global scale and seas ne,ar Korea, and impact assessment methodology. The second year study(2002) will be focused on the impact assessment on the coastal zone of the Korea, especially on the inundation problem on human dimension due to the steric sea level rise, storm surge, and tide. Based on the tide gauge data, IPCC(2001) assessed the global average sea level rise during the 20th century is in the range of 10{approx}20cm, which is higher than that of 19th century. The contributing elements to the sea level rise are in the order of ocean thermal expansion, melting of glacier, mass balance change of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets, and surface and ground water storage and permafrost change. The satellite altimeter data during l990s shows higher trend than the mean trend of tide gauge data during 20th century. The recent high trend of the sea level rise by the altimetry is not clear whether it represents the recent acceleration of the global sea level the differences of the two observation methods, or short observation period of altimetry. In the 21st century, the global mean sea level is projected to increase much due to the acceleration of the warming. Based on the 35 IPCC emission scenarios, the sea level rise in the 21st century will be in the range of 9{approx}88

  9. Glaciers in 21st Century Himalayan Geopolitics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kargel, J. S.; Wessels, R.; Kieffer, H. H.

    2002-05-01

    Maoist insurgency. (5) Glacier lakes are in many cases very fragile and their natural dams routinely rupture, causing devastating floods. A rising regional terrorist threat in several countries could target these dams and precipitate calamitous and terrifying results. (6) Over the next century, retreating glaciers may open new corridors for trade and human migration across the Himalaya and pave the way for possible new economic, military and political alliances in the region. (7) Glacier retreat might open new sanctuaries for terrorists and open new corridors for possible ground-based military offensive action across the HKH ranges. The documentation of glacier characteristics that may influence their trafficability, and projections of future glacier extent and behavior are relevant to wide ranging concerns of the region's inhabitants. Satellite remote sensing and mapping of glaciers is one approach to defining and monitoring the problems and opportunities presented by HKH glaciers. Global Land Ice Measurements from Space (GLIMS) is a joint USGS/NASA Pathfinder project that has formed a global consortium of glaciologists in several regional centers that are mapping and monitoring the HKH glaciers using repeat-pass ASTER and Landsat ETM+ data. We are currently building a comprehensive satellite multispectral image and GIS database that is providing detailed information on the state and rates of change of each glacier in the HKH region and other areas of the world. Merging these results with DEMs allows a predictive capability that could be useful in policy development and security planning.

  10. Greenland plays a large role in the gloomy picture painted of probable future sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanna, Edward

    2012-12-01

    Antarctica by 3000 AD is no more than 94 cm Antarctica remains relatively insensitive for future sea-level rise given a temperature increase of no more than 5-6 °C (quite a lot) above present levels. Oceanic thermal expansion and, especially, glacier melt seem very much second-order effects, compared with the Greenland sea-level contribution, for the next millennium. As expected, there are considerable differences between the outcomes of the model experiments depending on the time and level at which greenhouse gas emissions are stabilised. I am not quite sure why they 'prefer' the model version which reaches stabilisation at 2000 greenhouse gas levels since those levels have since been significantly exceeded and show no signs of tailing off yet—quite the reverse. According to the famous Keeling et al dataset from Mauna Loa in Hawaii, atmospheric CO2 levels at about 369 parts per million by volume of the global atmosphere in 2000 have since risen to about 392 ppmv in 2012, and this increase shows no signs of abating. Realistically, it's going to be at least another decade or two (or longer) before we can effectively even begin to stabilise atmospheric greenhouse gas levels, assuming the political will is there: which at the moment it is not. Of course this does not commit us to the other three more extreme experimental results (from greenhouse gas stabilization at 2100) reported in the study but we are heading dangerously in that direction. In effect the simulations are sensitivity studies, which may be largely unrealistic but are still useful as a kind of guide to what might happen under future climate change. Naturally, many uncertainties remain, especially concerning how ice-sheet motion ('dynamics') is represented in the models (e.g. the absence of so-called 'higher order physics' including longitudinal (push-pull) stresses which can rapidly transfer peripheral ice velocity perturbations inland (Price et al 2011)). Furthermore, the atmospheric model used in LOVECLIM is

  11. Adapting to rates versus amounts of climate change: a case of adaptation to sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shayegh, Soheil; Moreno-Cruz, Juan; Caldeira, Ken

    2016-10-01

    Adaptation is the process of adjusting to climate change in order to moderate harm or exploit beneficial opportunities associated with it. Most adaptation strategies are designed to adjust to a new climate state. However, despite our best efforts to curtail greenhouse gas emissions, climate is likely to continue changing far into the future. Here, we show how considering rates of change affects the projected optimal adaptation strategy. We ground our discussion with an example of optimal investment in the face of continued sea-level rise, presenting a quantitative model that illustrates the interplay among physical and economic factors governing coastal development decisions such as rate of sea-level rise, land slope, discount rate, and depreciation rate. This model shows that the determination of optimal investment strategies depends on taking into account future rates of sea-level rise, as well as social and political constraints. This general approach also applies to the development of improved strategies to adapt to ongoing trends in temperature, precipitation, and other climate variables. Adaptation to some amount of change instead of adaptation to ongoing rates of change may produce inaccurate estimates of damages to the social systems and their ability to respond to external pressures.

  12. Predicting the retreat and migration of tidal forests along the northern Gulf of Mexico under sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doyle, T.W.; Krauss, K.W.; Conner, W.H.; From, A.S.

    2010-01-01

    Tidal freshwater forests in coastal regions of the southeastern United States are undergoing dieback and retreat from increasing tidal inundation and saltwater intrusion attributed to climate variability and sea-level rise. In many areas, tidal saltwater forests (mangroves) contrastingly are expanding landward in subtropical coastal reaches succeeding freshwater marsh and forest zones. Hydrological characteristics of these low-relief coastal forests in intertidal settings are dictated by the influence of tidal and freshwater forcing. In this paper, we describe the application of the Sea Level Over Proportional Elevation (SLOPE) model to predict coastal forest retreat and migration from projected sea-level rise based on a proxy relationship of saltmarsh/mangrove area and tidal range. The SLOPE model assumes that the sum area of saltmarsh/mangrove habitat along any given coastal reach is determined by the slope of the landform and vertical tide forcing. Model results indicated that saltmarsh and mangrove migration from sea-level rise will vary by county and watershed but greater in western Gulf States than in the eastern Gulf States where millions of hectares of coastal forest will be displaced over the next century with a near meter rise in relative sea level alone. Substantial losses of coastal forests will also occur in the eastern Gulf but mangrove forests in subtropical zones of Florida are expected to replace retreating freshwater forest and affect regional biodiversity. Accelerated global eustacy from climate change will compound the degree of predicted retreat and migration of coastal forests with expected implications for ecosystem management of State and Federal lands in the absence of adaptive coastal management.

  13. Sensitivity of tidal motion in well-mixed estuaries to cross-sectional shape, deepening, and sea level rise

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ensing, Erik; de Swart, Huib E.; Schuttelaars, Henk M.

    For well-mixed estuaries, key physical mechanisms are identified and quantified that cause changes in characteristics of the semi-diurnal sea surface elevation and lateral velocity due to modifications of the lateral bottom profile, channel deepening, and sea level rise. This is done by decomposing

  14. Pattern of Glacier Recession in Indian Himalaya

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Ajay; Patwardhan, Anand

    All currently available climate models predict a near-surface warming trend under the influence of rising levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. In addition to the direct effects on climate — for example, on the frequency of heat waves — this increase in surface temperatures has important consequences for the cryosphere subsequently hydrological cycle, particularly in regions where water supply is currently dominated by melting snow or ice. The Indian Himalayan region occupies a special place in the mountain ecosystems of the world. These geodynamically young mountains are not only important from the standpoint of climate and as a provider of life, giving water to a large part of the Indian subcontinent, but they also harbor a rich variety of flora, fauna, human communities and cultural diversity. Glaciers in this region are changing in area as well as in volume like those in other parts of the world. Studies have been carried out for recession in some of these glaciers using remote sensing as well as field observation techniques. Spatiotemporal pattern in the recession rate of the studied glaciers has been presented in this paper. Plausible causes for the recession have been also discussed. Finally, future scopes for observation and analysis in glaciers recession have been suggested.

  15. A global standard for monitoring coastal wetland vulnerability to accelerated sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webb, Edward L.; Friess, Daniel A.; Krauss, Ken W.; Cahoon, Donald R.; Guntenspergen, Glenn R.; Phelps, Jacob

    2013-01-01

    Sea-level rise threatens coastal salt-marshes and mangrove forests around the world, and a key determinant of coastal wetland vulnerability is whether its surface elevation can keep pace with rising sea level. Globally, a large data gap exists because wetland surface and shallow subsurface processes remain unaccounted for by traditional vulnerability assessments using tide gauges. Moreover, those processes vary substantially across wetlands, so modelling platforms require relevant local data. The low-cost, simple, high-precision rod surface-elevation table–marker horizon (RSET-MH) method fills this critical data gap, can be paired with spatial data sets and modelling and is financially and technically accessible to every country with coastal wetlands. Yet, RSET deployment has been limited to a few regions and purposes. A coordinated expansion of monitoring efforts, including development of regional networks that could support data sharing and collaboration, is crucial to adequately inform coastal climate change adaptation policy at several scales.

  16. Global glacier and ice sheet surface velocities derived from 31 years of Landsat imagery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gardner, A. S.; Scambos, T. A.; Fahnestock, M. A.

    2016-12-01

    Glaciers and ice sheets are contributing substantial volumes of water to the world's oceans due to enhanced melt resulting from changes in ocean and atmospheric conditions and respective feedbacks. Improving understanding of the processes leading to accelerated rates of ice loss is necessary for reducing uncertainties sea level projections. One key to doing this is to assemble and analyze long records of glacier change that characterize grounded ice response to changes in driving stress, buttressing, and basal conditions. As part of the NASA funded GO_LIVE project we exploit 31 years of Landsat imagery to construct detailed time histories of global glacier velocities. Early exploration of the dataset reveals the diversity of information to be gleaned: sudden tidewater glacier speedups in the Antarctic Peninsula, rifting of Antarctic ice shelves, high variability in velocities near glacier grounding lines, frequent surge activity in the mountainous regions of Alaska and High Mountain Asia, and the slowdown of land-terminating valley glaciers in Arctic Canada and elsewhere.

  17. Can community structure track sea-level rise? Stress and competitive controls in tidal wetlands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schile, Lisa M; Callaway, John C; Suding, Katharine N; Kelly, N Maggi

    2017-02-01

    Climate change impacts, such as accelerated sea-level rise, will affect stress gradients, yet impacts on competition/stress tolerance trade-offs and shifts in distributions are unclear. Ecosystems with strong stress gradients, such as estuaries, allow for space-for-time substitutions of stress factors and can give insight into future climate-related shifts in both resource and nonresource stresses. We tested the stress gradient hypothesis and examined the effect of increased inundation stress and biotic interactions on growth and survival of two congeneric wetland sedges, Schoenoplectus acutus and Schoenoplectus americanus . We simulated sea-level rise across existing marsh elevations and those not currently found to reflect potential future sea-level rise conditions in two tidal wetlands differing in salinity. Plants were grown individually and together at five tidal elevations, the lowest simulating an 80-cm increase in sea level, and harvested to assess differences in biomass after one growing season. Inundation time, salinity, sulfides, and redox potential were measured concurrently. As predicted, increasing inundation reduced biomass of the species commonly found at higher marsh elevations, with little effect on the species found along channel margins. The presence of neighbors reduced total biomass of both species, particularly at the highest elevation; facilitation did not occur at any elevation. Contrary to predictions, we documented the competitive superiority of the stress tolerator under increased inundation, which was not predicted by the stress gradient hypothesis. Multifactor manipulation experiments addressing plant response to accelerated climate change are integral to creating a more realistic, valuable, and needed assessment of potential ecosystem response. Our results point to the important and unpredicted synergies between physical stressors, which are predicted to increase in intensity with climate change, and competitive forces on biomass as

  18. Tibetan Plateau glacier and hydrological change under stratospheric aerosol injection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ji, D.

    2017-12-01

    As an important inland freshwater resource, mountain glaciers are highly related to human life, they provide water for many large rivers and play a very important role in regional water cycles. The response of mountain glaciers to future climate change is a topic of concern especially to the many people who rely on glacier-fed rivers for purposes such as irrigation. Geoengineering by stratospheric aerosol injection is a method of offsetting the global temperature rise from greenhouse gases. How the geoengineering by stratospheric aerosol injection affects the mass balance of mountain glaciers and adjacent river discharge is little understood. In this study, we use regional climate model WRF and catchment-based river model CaMa-Flood to study the impacts of stratospheric aerosol injection to Tibetan Plateau glacier mass balance and adjacent river discharge. To facilitate mountain glacier mass balance study, we improve the description of mountain glacier in the land surface scheme of WRF. The improvements include: (1) a fine mesh nested in WRF horizontal grid to match the highly non-uniform spatial distribution of the mountain glaciers, (2) revising the radiation flux at the glacier surface considering the surrounding terrain. We use the projections of five Earth system models for CMIP5 rcp45 and GeoMIP G4 scenarios to drive the WRF and CaMa-Flood models. The G4 scenario, which uses stratospheric aerosols to reduce the incoming shortwave while applying the rcp4.5 greenhouse gas forcing, starts stratospheric sulfate aerosol injection at a rate of 5 Tg per year over the period 2020-2069. The ensemble projections suggest relatively slower glacier mass loss rates and reduced river discharge at Tibetan Plateau and adjacent regions under geoengineering scenario by stratospheric aerosol injection.

  19. Potential for shoreline changes due to sea-level rise along the U.S. mid-Atlantic region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gutierrez, Benjamin T.; Williams, S. Jeffress; Thieler, E. Robert

    2007-01-01

    Sea-level rise over the next century is expected to contribute significantly to physical changes along open-ocean shorelines. Predicting the form and magnitude of coastal changes is important for understanding the impacts to humans and the environment. Presently, the ability to predict coastal changes is limited by the scientific understanding of the many variables and processes involved in coastal change, and the lack of consensus regarding the validity of existing conceptual, analytical, or numerical models. In order to assess potential future coastal changes in the mid-Atlantic U.S. for the U.S. Climate Change Science Program (CCSP), a workshop was convened by the U.S. Geological Survey. Assessments of future coastal change were made by a committee of coastal scientists with extensive professional experience in the mid-Atlantic region. Thirteen scientists convened for a two-day meeting to exchange information and develop a consensus opinion on potential future coastal changes for the mid-Atlantic coast in response to sea-level rise. Using criteria defined in past work, the mid-Atlantic coast was divided into four geomorphic compartments: spits, headlands, wave-dominated barriers, and mixed-energy barriers. A range of potential coastal responses was identified for each compartment based on four sea-level rise scenarios. The four scenarios were based on the assumptions that: a) the long-term sea-level rise rate observed over the 20th century would persist over the 21st century, b) the 20th century rate would increase by 2 mm/yr, c) the 20th century rate would increase by 7 mm/yr, or d) sea-level would rise by 2 m over the next few hundred years. Potential responses to these sea-level rise scenarios depend on the landforms that occur within a region and include increased likelihood for erosion and shoreline retreat for all coastal types, increased likelihood for erosion, overwash and inlet breaching for barrier islands, as well as the possibility of a threshold

  20. Analysis of lidar elevation data for improved identification and delineation of lands vulnerable to sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gesch, Dean B.

    2009-01-01

    The importance of sea-level rise in shaping coastal landscapes is well recognized within the earth science community, but as with many natural hazards, communicating the risks associated with sea-level rise remains a challenge. Topography is a key parameter that influences many of the processes involved in coastal change, and thus, up-to-date, high-resolution, high-accuracy elevation data are required to model the coastal environment. Maps of areas subject to potential inundation have great utility to planners and managers concerned with the effects of sea-level rise. However, most of the maps produced to date are simplistic representations derived from older, coarse elevation data. In the last several years, vast amounts of high quality elevation data derived from lidar have become available. Because of their high vertical accuracy and spatial resolution, these lidar data are an excellent source of up-to-date information from which to improve identification and delineation of vulnerable lands. Four elevation datasets of varying resolution and accuracy were processed to demonstrate that the improved quality of lidar data leads to more precise delineation of coastal lands vulnerable to inundation. A key component of the comparison was to calculate and account for the vertical uncertainty of the elevation datasets. This comparison shows that lidar allows for a much more detailed delineation of the potential inundation zone when compared to other types of elevation models. It also shows how the certainty of the delineation of lands vulnerable to a given sea-level rise scenario is much improved when derived from higher resolution lidar data.

  1. Joint Projections of US East Coast Sea Level and Storm Surge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Little, Christopher M.; Horton, Radley M.; Kopp, Robert E.; Oppenheimer, Michael; Vecchi, Gabriel A.; Villarini, Gabriele

    2015-01-01

    Future coastal flood risk will be strongly influenced by sea-level rise (SLR) and changes in the frequency and intensity of tropical cyclones. These two factors are generally considered independently. Here, we assess twenty-first century changes in the coastal hazard for the US East Coast using a flood index (FI) that accounts for changes in flood duration and magnitude driven by SLR and changes in power dissipation index (PDI, an integrated measure of tropical cyclone intensity, frequency and duration). Sea-level rise and PDI are derived from representative concentration pathway (RCP) simulations of 15 atmosphere- ocean general circulation models (AOGCMs). By 2080-2099, projected changes in the FI relative to 1986-2005 are substantial and positively skewed: a 10th-90th percentile range 4-75 times higher for RCP 2.6 and 35-350 times higher for RCP 8.5. High-end Fl projections are driven by three AOGCMs that project the largest increases in SLR, PDI and upper ocean temperatures. Changes in PDI are particularly influential if their intra-model correlation with SLR is included, increasing the RCP 8.5 90th percentile FI by a further 25%. Sea-level rise from other, possibly correlated, climate processes (for example, ice sheet and glacier mass changes) will further increase coastal flood risk and should be accounted for in comprehensive assessments.

  2. Mountain glaciers vs Ice sheet in Greenland - learning from a new monitoring site in West Greenland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abermann, Jakob; van As, Dirk; Wacker, Stefan; Langley, Kirsty

    2017-04-01

    Only 5 out of the 20.000 peripheral glaciers and ice caps surrounding Greenland are currently monitored due to logistical challenges and despite their significance for sea level rise. Large spatial coast-to-icesheet mass and energy balance gradients limit simple upscaling methods from ice-sheet observations, which builds the motivation for this study. We present results from a new mass and energy balance time series at Qasigiannguit glacier (64°09'N; 51°21'W) in Southwest Greenland. Inter-annual variability is discussed and the surface energy balance over two summers is quantified and a ranking of the main drivers performed. We find that short-wave net radiation is by far the most dominant energy source during summer, followed by similar amounts of net longwave radiation and sensible heat, respectively. We then relate these observations to synchronous measurements at similar latitude on an outlet glacier of the ice sheet a mere 100 km away. We find very pronounced horizontal surface mass balance gradients, with generally more positive values closer to the coast. We conclude that despite minor differences of atmospheric parameters (i.e. humidity, radiation, and temperature) the main reason for the strongly different signal is a pronounced winter precipitation gradient that translates in a different duration of ice exposure and through that an albedo gradient. Modelled energy balance gradients converted into mass changes show good agreement to measured surface mass balance gradients and we explore a latitudinal signal of these findings.

  3. An Update of Sea Level Rise in the northwestern part of the Arabian Gulf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alothman, Abdulaziz; Bos, Machiel; Fernandes, Rui

    2017-04-01

    Relative sea level variations in the northwestern part of the Arabian Gulf have been estimated in the past using no more than 10 to 15 years of observations. In Alothman et al. (2014), we have almost doubled the period to 28.7 years by examining all available tide gauge data in the area and constructing a mean gauge time-series from seven coastal tide gauges. We found for the period 1979-2007 a relative sea level rise of about 2mm/yr, which correspond to an absolute sea level rise of about 1.5mm/yr based on the vertical displacement of GNSS stations in the region. By taking into account the temporal correlations we concluded that previous published results underestimate the true sea level rate error in this area by a factor of 5-10. In this work, we discuss and update the methodology and results from Alothman et al. (2014), particularly by checking and extending the GNSS solutions. Since 3 of the 6 GPS stations used only started observing in the end of 2011, the longer time series have now significantly lower uncertainties in the estimated vertical rate. In addition, we compare our results with GRACE derived ocean bottom pressure time series which are a good proxy of the changes in water mass in this area over time.

  4. Contributions of internal climate variability to mitigation of projected future regional sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, A.; Bates, S. C.

    2017-12-01

    Observations indicate that the global mean surface temperature is rising, so does the global mean sea level. Sea level rise (SLR) can impose significant impacts on island and coastal communities, especially when SLR is compounded with storm surges. Here, via analyzing results from two sets of ensemble simulations from the Community Earth System Model version 1, we investigate how the potential SLR benefits through mitigating the future emission scenarios from business as usual to a mild-mitigation over the 21st Century would be affected by internal climate variability. Results show that there is almost no SLR benefit in the near term due to the large SLR variability due to the internal ocean dynamics. However, toward the end of the 21st century, the SLR benefit can be as much as a 26±1% reduction of the global mean SLR due to seawater thermal expansion. Regionally, the benefits from this mitigation for both near and long terms are heterogeneous. They vary from just a 11±5% SLR reduction in Melbourne, Australia to a 35±6% reduction in London. The processes contributing to these regional differences are the coupling of the wind-driven ocean circulation with the decadal scale sea surface temperature mode in the Pacific and Southern Oceans, and the changes of the thermohaline circulation and the mid-latitude air-sea coupling in the Atlantic.

  5. Organic matter content and particle size modifications in mangrove sediments as responses to sea level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanders, Christian J; Smoak, Joseph M; Waters, Mathew N; Sanders, Luciana M; Brandini, Nilva; Patchineelam, Sambasiva R

    2012-06-01

    Mangroves sediments contain large reservoirs of organic material (OM) as mangrove ecosystems produce large quantities and rapidly burial OM. Sediment accumulation rates of approximately 2.0 mm year(-1), based on (210)Pb(ex) dating, were estimated at the margin of two well-developed mangrove forest in southern Brazil. Regional data point to a relative sea level (RSL) rise of up to ∼4.0 mm year(-1). This RSL rise in turn, may directly influence the origin and quantity of organic matter (OM) deposited along mangrove sediments. Lithostratigraphic changes show that sand deposition is replacing the mud (<63 μm) fraction and OM content is decreasing in successively younger sediments. Sediment accumulation in coastal areas that are not keeping pace with sea level rise is potentially conducive to the observed shifts in particle size and OM content. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Satellite altimetry in sea ice regions - detecting open water for estimating sea surface heights

    Science.gov (United States)

    Müller, Felix L.; Dettmering, Denise; Bosch, Wolfgang

    2017-04-01

    The Greenland Sea and the Farm Strait are transporting sea ice from the central Arctic ocean southwards. They are covered by a dynamic changing sea ice layer with significant influences on the Earth climate system. Between the sea ice there exist various sized open water areas known as leads, straight lined open water areas, and polynyas exhibiting a circular shape. Identifying these leads by satellite altimetry enables the extraction of sea surface height information. Analyzing the radar echoes, also called waveforms, provides information on the surface backscatter characteristics. For example waveforms reflected by calm water have a very narrow and single-peaked shape. Waveforms reflected by sea ice show more variability due to diffuse scattering. Here we analyze altimeter waveforms from different conventional pulse-limited satellite altimeters to separate open water and sea ice waveforms. An unsupervised classification approach employing partitional clustering algorithms such as K-medoids and memory-based classification methods such as K-nearest neighbor is used. The classification is based on six parameters derived from the waveform's shape, for example the maximum power or the peak's width. The open-water detection is quantitatively compared to SAR images processed while accounting for sea ice motion. The classification results are used to derive information about the temporal evolution of sea ice extent and sea surface heights. They allow to provide evidence on climate change relevant influences as for example Arctic sea level rise due to enhanced melting rates of Greenland's glaciers and an increasing fresh water influx into the Arctic ocean. Additionally, the sea ice cover extent analyzed over a long-time period provides an important indicator for a globally changing climate system.

  7. The role of surface and subsurface processes in keeping pace with sea level rise in intertidal wetlands of Moreton Bay, Queensland, Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lovelock, Catherine E.; Bennion, Vicki; Grinham, Alistair; Cahoon, Donald R.

    2011-01-01

    Increases in the elevation of the soil surfaces of mangroves and salt marshes are key to the maintenance of these habitats with accelerating sea level rise. Understanding the processes that give rise to increases in soil surface elevation provides science for management of landscapes for sustainable coastal wetlands. Here, we tested whether the soil surface elevation of mangroves and salt marshes in Moreton Bay is keeping up with local rates of sea level rise (2.358 mm y-1) and whether accretion on the soil surface was the most important process for keeping up with sea level rise. We found variability in surface elevation gains, with sandy areas in the eastern bay having the highest surface elevation gains in both mangrove and salt marsh (5.9 and 1.9 mm y-1) whereas in the muddier western bay rates of surface elevation gain were lower (1.4 and -0.3 mm y-1 in mangrove and salt marsh, respectively). Both sides of the bay had similar rates of surface accretion (~7–9 mm y-1 in the mangrove and 1–3 mm y-1 in the salt marsh), but mangrove soils in the western bay were subsiding at a rate of approximately 8 mm y-1, possibly due to compaction of organic sediments. Over the study surface elevation increments were sensitive to position in the intertidal zone (higher when lower in the intertidal) and also to variation in mean sea level (higher at high sea level). Although surface accretion was the most important process for keeping up with sea level rise in the eastern bay, subsidence largely negated gains made through surface accretion in the western bay indicating a high vulnerability to sea level rise in these forests.

  8. Sinking ships: conservation options for endemic taxa threatened by sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joyce Maschinski; Michael S. Ross; Hong Liu; Joe O' Brien; Erick J. von Wettberg; Kristin E. Haskins

    2011-01-01

    Low-elevation islands face threats from sea level rise (SLR) and increased storm intensity. Evidence of endangered species’ population declines and shifts in vegetation communities are already underway in the Florida Keys. SLR predictions indicate large areas of these habitats may be eliminated in the next century. Using the Florida Keys as a model system, we present a...

  9. Evolution of Pine Island Glacier subglacial conditions in response to 18 years of ice flow acceleration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brisbourne, A.; Bougamont, M. H.; Christoffersen, P.; Cornford, S. L.; Nias, I.; Vaughan, D.; Smith, A.

    2017-12-01

    Antarctica's main contribution to sea-level rise originates from the Amundsen Coast, when warm ocean water intrudes onto the continental shelf. As a result, strong melting beneath the ice shelves induces thinning near the grounding line of glaciers, which is ensued by large ice flow speed up diffusing rapidly inland. In particular, ice loss from Pine Island Glacier (PIG) accounts for 20% of the total ice loss in West Antarctica, amounting to 0.12 mm yr-1 of global sea-level rise. Forecasting the future flow of Amundsen Coast glaciers is however hindered by large uncertainties regarding how the thinning initiated at the grounding line is transmitted upstream, and how the grounded flow will ultimately respond. This work aims at elucidating the role of subglacial processes beneath PIG tributaries in modulating the ice flow response to frontal perturbations. We used the Community Ice Sheet Model (CISM 2.0) to perform numerical inversions of PIG surface velocity as observed in 1996 and 2014. Over that time period, ice flow acceleration has been widespread over PIG's basin, and the inversions provide insights into the related evolution of the basal thermal and stress conditions. We assume the latter to be directly related to changes in the properties of a soft sediment (till) layer known to exist beneath PIG. We find that the overall bed strength has weakened by 18% in the region of enhanced flow, and that the annual melt production for PIG catchment increased by 25% between 1996 and 2014. Specifically, regions of high melt production are located in the southern tributaries, where the overall stronger bed allows for more frictional melting. However, we find no significant and widespread change in the basal strength of that region, and we infer that the water produced is transported away in a concentrated hydrological system, without much interaction with the till layer. In contrast, we find that relatively less basal melting occurs elsewhere in the catchment, where the

  10. Grounding line processes on the Totten Glacier

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, S.; Watson, C. S.; Galton-Fenzi, B.; Peters, L. E.; Coleman, R.

    2017-12-01

    The Totten Glacier has been an area of recent interest due to its large drainage basin, much of which is grounded below sea level and has a history of large scale grounding line movement. Reports that warm water reaches the sub-ice shelf cavity have led to speculation that it could be vulnerable to future grounding line retreat. Over the Antarctic summer 2016/17 an array of 6 GPS and autonomous phase-sensitive radar (ApRES) units were deployed in the grounding zone of the Totten Glacier. These instruments measure changes in ice velocity and thickness which can be used to investigate both ice dynamics across the grounding line, and the interaction between ice and ocean in the subglacial cavity. Basal melt rates calculated from the ApRES units on floating ice range from 1 to 17 m/a. These values are significantly lower than previous estimates of basal melt rate produced by ocean modelling of the subglacial cavity. Meanwhile, GPS-derived velocity and elevation on the surface of the ice show a strong tidal signal, as does the vertical strain rate within the ice derived from internal layering from the ApRES instruments. These results demonstrate the significance of the complex grounding pattern of the Totten Glacier. The presence of re-grounding points has significant implications for the dynamics of the glacier and the ocean circulation within the subglacial cavity. We discuss what can be learned from our in situ measurements, and how they can be used to improve models of the glacier's future behaviour.

  11. Carbon burial and storage in tropical salt marshes under the influence of sea level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruiz-Fernández, A C; Carnero-Bravo, V; Sanchez-Cabeza, J A; Pérez-Bernal, L H; Amaya-Monterrosa, O A; Bojórquez-Sánchez, S; López-Mendoza, P G; Cardoso-Mohedano, J G; Dunbar, R B; Mucciarone, D A; Marmolejo-Rodríguez, A J

    2018-07-15

    Coastal vegetated habitats can be important sinks of organic carbon (C org ) and mitigate global warming by sequestering significant quantities of atmospheric CO 2 and storing sedimentary C org for long periods, although their C org burial and storage capacity may be affected by on-going sea level rise and human intervention. Geochemical data from published 210 Pb-dated sediment cores, collected from low-energy microtidal coastal wetlands in El Salvador (Jiquilisco Bay) and in Mexico (Salada Lagoon; Estero de Urias Lagoon; Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reserve) were revisited to assess temporal changes (within the last 100years) of C org concentrations, storage and burial rates in tropical salt marshes under the influence of sea level rise and contrasting anthropization degree. Grain size distribution was used to identify hydrodynamic changes, and δ 13 C to distinguish terrigenous sediments from those accumulated under the influence of marine transgression. Although the accretion rate ranges in all sediment records were comparable, C org concentrations (0.2-30%), stocks (30-465Mgha -1 , by extrapolation to 1m depth), and burial rates (3-378gm -2 year -1 ) varied widely within and among the study areas. However, in most sites sea level rise decreased C org concentrations and stocks in sediments, but increased C org burial rates. Lower C org concentrations were attributed to the input of reworked marine particles, which contribute with a lower amount of C org than terrigenous sediments; whereas higher C org burial rates were driven by higher mass accumulation rates, influenced by increased flooding and human interventions in the surroundings. C org accumulation and long-term preservation in tropical salt marshes can be as high as in mangrove or temperate salt marsh areas and, besides the reduction of C org stocks by ongoing sea level rise, the disturbance of the long-term buried C org inventories might cause high CO 2 releases, for which they must be protected as a part of

  12. Managing for No Net Loss of Ecological Services: An Approach for Quantifying Loss of Coastal Wetlands due to Sea Level Rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kassakian, Jennifer; Jones, Ann; Martinich, Jeremy; Hudgens, Daniel

    2017-05-01

    Sea level rise has the potential to substantially alter the extent and nature of coastal wetlands and the critical ecological services they provide. In making choices about how to respond to rising sea level, planners are challenged with weighing easily quantified risks (e.g., loss of property value due to inundation) against those that are more difficult to quantify (e.g., loss of primary production or carbon sequestration services provided by wetlands due to inundation). Our goal was to develop a cost-effective, appropriately-scaled, model-based approach that allows planners to predict, under various sea level rise and response scenarios, the economic cost of wetland loss-with the estimates proxied by the costs of future restoration required to maintain the existing level of wetland habitat services. Our approach applies the Sea Level Affecting Marshes Model to predict changes in wetland habitats over the next century, and then applies Habitat Equivalency Analysis to predict the cost of restoration projects required to maintain ecological services at their present, pre-sea level rise level. We demonstrate the application of this approach in the Delaware Bay estuary and in the Indian River Lagoon (Florida), and discuss how this approach can support future coastal decision-making.

  13. The influence of air temperature inversions on snowmelt and glacier mass-balance simulations, Ammassalik island, SE Greenland

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mernild, Sebastian Haugard [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Liston, Glen [COLORADO STATE UNIV.

    2009-01-01

    In many applications, a realistic description of air temperature inversions is essential for accurate snow and glacier ice melt, and glacier mass-balance simulations. A physically based snow-evolution modeling system (SnowModel) was used to simulate eight years (1998/99 to 2005/06) of snow accumulation and snow and glacier ice ablation from numerous small coastal marginal glaciers on the SW-part of Ammassalik Island in SE Greenland. These glaciers are regularly influenced by inversions and sea breezes associated with the adjacent relatively low temperature and frequently ice-choked fjords and ocean. To account for the influence of these inversions on the spatiotemporal variation of air temperature and snow and glacier melt rates, temperature inversion routines were added to MircoMet, the meteorological distribution sub-model used in SnowModel. The inversions were observed and modeled to occur during 84% of the simulation period. Modeled inversions were defined not to occur during days with strong winds and high precipitation rates due to the potential of inversion break-up. Field observations showed inversions to extend from sea level to approximately 300 m a.s.l., and this inversion level was prescribed in the model simulations. Simulations with and without the inversion routines were compared. The inversion model produced air temperature distributions with warmer lower elevation areas and cooler higher elevation areas than without inversion routines due to the use of cold sea-breeze base temperature data from underneath the inversion. This yielded an up to 2 weeks earlier snowmelt in the lower areas and up to 1 to 3 weeks later snowmelt in the higher elevation areas of the simulation domain. Averaged mean annual modeled surface mass-balance for all glaciers (mainly located above the inversion layer) was -720 {+-} 620 mm w.eq. y{sup -1} for inversion simulations, and -880 {+-} 620 mm w.eq. y{sup -1} without the inversion routines, a difference of 160 mm w.eq. y

  14. Implications of sea level rise scenarios on land use /land cover classes of the coastal zones of Cochin, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mani Murali, R; Dinesh Kumar, P K

    2015-01-15

    Physical responses of the coastal zones in the vicinity of Cochin, India due to sea level rise are investigated based on analysis of inundation scenarios. Quantification of potential habitat loss was made by merging the Land use/Land cover (LU/LC) prepared from the satellite imagery with the digital elevation model. Scenarios were generated for two different rates of sea level rise and responses of changes occurred were made to ascertain the vulnerability and loss in extent. LU/LC classes overlaid on 1 m and 2 m elevation showed that it was mostly covered by vegetation areas followed by water and urban zones. For the sea level rise scenarios of 1 m and 2 m, the total inundation zones were estimated to be 169.11 km(2) and 598.83 km(2) respectively using Geographic Information System (GIS). The losses of urban areas were estimated at 43 km(2) and 187 km(2) for the 1 m and 2 m sea level rise respectively which is alarming information for the most densely populated state of India. Quantitative comparison of other LU/LC classes showed significant changes under each of the inundation scenarios. The results obtained conclusively point that sea level rise scenarios will bring profound effects on the land use and land cover classes as well as on coastal landforms in the study region. Coastal inundation would leave ocean front and inland properties vulnerable. Increase in these water levels would alter the coastal drainage gradients. Reduction in these gradients would increase flooding attributable to rainstorms which could promote salt water intrusion into coastal aquifers and force water tables to rise. Changes in the coastal landforms associated with inundation generate concern in the background that the coastal region may continue to remain vulnerable in the coming decades due to population growth and development pressures. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Arctic Ocean outflow and glacier-ocean interactions modify water over the Wandel Sea shelf (northeastern Greenland)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dmitrenko, Igor A.; Kirillov, Sergey A.; Rudels, Bert

    2017-01-01

    The first-ever conductivity-temperature-depth (CTD) observations on the Wandel Sea shelf in northeastern Greenland were collected in April-May 2015. They were complemented by CTDs taken along the continental slope during the Norwegian FRAM 2014-2015 drift. The CTD profiles are used to reveal...... the origin of water masses and interactions with ambient water from the continental slope and the tidewater glacier outlet. The subsurface water is associated with the Pacific water outflow from the Arctic Ocean. The underlying halocline separates the Pacific water from a deeper layer of polar water that has...... interacted with the warm Atlantic water outflow through the Fram Strait, recorded below 140 m. Over the outer shelf, the halocline shows numerous cold density-compensated intrusions indicating lateral interaction with an ambient polar water mass across the continental slope. At the front of the tidewater...

  16. Salt marsh as a coastal filter for the oceans: changes in function with experimental increases in nitrogen loading and sea-level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Joanna L; Zavaleta, Erika S

    2012-01-01

    Coastal salt marshes are among Earth's most productive ecosystems and provide a number of ecosystem services, including interception of watershed-derived nitrogen (N) before it reaches nearshore oceans. Nitrogen pollution and climate change are two dominant drivers of global-change impacts on ecosystems, yet their interacting effects at the land-sea interface are poorly understood. We addressed how sea-level rise and anthropogenic N additions affect the salt marsh ecosystem process of nitrogen uptake using a field-based, manipulative experiment. We crossed simulated sea-level change and ammonium-nitrate (NH(4)NO(3))-addition treatments in a fully factorial design to examine their potentially interacting effects on emergent marsh plants in a central California estuary. We measured above- and belowground biomass and tissue nutrient concentrations seasonally and found that N-addition had a significant, positive effect on a) aboveground biomass, b) plant tissue N concentrations, c) N stock sequestered in plants, and d) shoot:root ratios in summer. Relative sea-level rise did not significantly affect biomass, with the exception of the most extreme sea-level-rise simulation, in which all plants died by the summer of the second year. Although there was a strong response to N-addition treatments, salt marsh responses varied by season. Our results suggest that in our site at Coyote Marsh, Elkhorn Slough, coastal salt marsh plants serve as a robust N trap and coastal filter; this function is not saturated by high background annual N inputs from upstream agriculture. However, if the marsh is drowned by rising seas, as in our most extreme sea-level rise treatment, marsh plants will no longer provide the ecosystem service of buffering the coastal ocean from eutrophication.

  17. Vulnerable areas and adapation measures for sea level rise along the coast of India

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Chauhan, O.S.; Unnikrishnan, A.S.; Menezes, A.A.A.; Jagtap, T.G.; Suneethi, J.; Furtado, R.

    India has a coastline of about 7500 km with contrasting geological setting. Based upon the available models, global sea level rise of 10-25 cm per 100 year has been predicted due to emission of green house gases. To separate out the influences due...

  18. The impact of selected sea level rise scenarios in the vicinity of Cochin harbour, India

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    DineshKumar, P.K.

    reconfiguration in response to different sea level rise scenarios, the method of empirical distribution of new shorelines using trend lines which accounts for the inherent variability in shoreline response based on differing coastal processes is employed...

  19. Closed-form analytical solutions for assessing the consequences of sea-level rise on unconfined sloping island aquifers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chesnaux, R.

    2016-04-01

    Closed-form analytical solutions for assessing the consequences of sea-level rise on fresh groundwater oceanic island lenses are provided for the cases of both strip and circular islands. Solutions are proposed