WorldWideScience

Sample records for relative sea-level rise

  1. Coastal subsidence and relative sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ingebritsen, Steven E.; Galloway, Devin L.

    2014-01-01

    Subsurface fluid-pressure declines caused by pumping of groundwater or hydrocarbons can lead to aquifer-system compaction and consequent land subsidence. This subsidence can be rapid, as much as 30 cm per year in some instances, and large, totaling more than 13 m in extreme examples. Thus anthropogenic subsidence may be the dominant contributor to relative sea-level rise in coastal environments where subsurface fluids are heavily exploited. Maximum observed rates of human-induced subsidence greatly exceed the rates of natural subsidence of unconsolidated sediments (~0.1–1 cm yr−1) and the estimated rates of ongoing global sea-level rise (~0.3 cm yr−1).

  2. 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. *

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. Salt marsh stability modelled in relation to sea level rise

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bartholdy, Jesper; Bartholdy, Anders; Kroon, Aart

    2010-01-01

    Accretion on a natural backbarrier salt marsh was modeled as a function of high tide level, initial salt marsh level and distance to the source. Calibration of the model was based on up to ca 80 year old marker horizons, supplemented by 210Pb/137Cs datings and subsequent measurements of clay...... rise, the marsh at the specific location will eventually drown, whereas - with a sea level rise below this level – it will grow towards the top of the rising tidal frame. The short term variation of salt marsh accretion was found to correlate well with variations in the North Atlantic Oscillation...... - relatively quickly grow above the level of the highest astronomical tide, whereas this - in practice - will never happen for the latter....

  6. Salt marsh stability modelled in relation to sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartholdy, Jesper; Bartholdy, Anders T.; Kroon, Aart

    2010-05-01

    Accretion on a natural backbarrier salt marsh was modeled as a function of high tide level, initial salt marsh level and distance to the source. Calibration of the model was based on up to ca 80 year old marker horizons, supplemented by 210Pb/137Cs datings and subsequent measurements of clay thickness. Autocompaction was incorporated in the model, and shown to play a major role for the translation of accretion rates measured as length per unit time to accumulation rates measured as mass per area per unit time. This is important, even for shallow salt marsh deposits for which it is demonstrated that mass depth down core can be directly related to the bulk dry density of the surface layer by means of a logarithmic function. The results allow for an evaluation of the use of marker horizons in the topmost layers and show that it is important to know the level of the marker in relation to the salt marsh base. In general, deeper located markers will indicate successively smaller accretion rates with the same sediment input. Thus, stability analysis made on the basis of newly established marker horizons will be biased and indicate salt marsh stabilities far above the correct level. Running the model with a constant sea level revealed that balance between the inner and the outer salt marsh deposition can not be achieved within a reasonable time scale. Likewise it is shown that only one specific sea level rise provides equilibrium for a given location on the salt marsh. With a higher sea level rise, the marsh at the specific location will eventually drown, whereas - with a sea level rise below this level - it will grow towards the top of the rising tidal frame. The short term variation of salt marsh accretion was found to correlate well with variations in the North Atlantic Oscillation - the NAO winter index. Comparisons between the geomorphological development of wind tide affected salt marshes, like those present on the Danish North Sea coasts, and primary astronomically

  7. 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.

  8. Salt marsh stability modelled in relation to sea level rise

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bartholdy, Jesper; Bartholdy, Anders; Kroon, Aart

    2010-01-01

    Accretion on a natural backbarrier salt marsh was modeled as a function of high tide level, initial salt marsh level and distance to the source. Calibration of the model was based on up to ca 80 year old marker horizons, supplemented by 210Pb/137Cs datings and subsequent measurements of clay...... thickness. Autocompaction was incorporated in the model, and shown to play a major role for the translation of accretion rates measured as length per unit time to accumulation rates measured as mass per area per unit time. This is important, even for shallow salt marsh deposits for which it is demonstrated...... that mass depth down core can be directly related to the bulk dry density of the surface layer by means of a logarithmic function. The results allow for an evaluation of the use of marker horizons in the topmost layers and show that it is important to know the level of the marker in relation to the salt...

  9. The Land Subsidence and Relative Sea Level Rise in Chinese Delta Areas

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    YeYincan; LiuDujuan

    2004-01-01

    Based on some experts' research effort, the problems of land subsidence and relative sea level rise in three Chinese delta areas(Huanghe, Changjiang and Zhujiang Delta) are analyzed and discussed in this paper. The authors' opinion is that the land subsidence is mainly induced by human activity and has made the greater contributions to the relative sea level rise and become one of the geological hazards in these areas. In Tianjin and Shanghai areas where had ever existed serious land subsidence problem, due to the positive and effective control methods, the ratio of man-induced land subsidence to relative sea level rise decreased from 80% - 90% in 1960s - 1970s to less than 60% at present. But it is estimated that in the next tens of years this ratio will still be considerable. So human being must keep its eyes on this phenomenon and take more positive countermeasures to control the land subsidenee.

  10. 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.

  11. Relative sea-level rise as indicated by gage data along the Mississippi and Alabama Gulf Coasts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Wilson, Jr.

    2004-01-01

    Global warming, or the increasing of earth's temperatures, leads to rising sea level as polar ice caps and mountain glaciers melt and ocean water undergoes thermal expansion. Tidal records collected by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (COE), Mobile District, at Gulfport, Biloxi, and Pascagoula, Mississippi, and at Mobile, Alabama, indicate trends of water-surface elevations increasing with time (relative sea-level rise). The trends indicated by the COE data were compared to relative sea-level trends indicated by the National Ocean Survey gages in the Gulf of Mexico. The average global rate of sea level rise has been suggested to approach about 2 mm/yr (0.007 ft/yr). Some leading scientists have suggested rates of sea level rise that are greater than 2 mm/yr, when accounting for effects of greenhouse gas emissions. As the sea level rises and inundates the coastal plain, structures along the existing coast and structures located in the back bays of estuaries will be even more adversely affected by future flooding. Also, if the land surface adjacent to the water also sinks due to soil compaction and other geologic processes (collectively call subsidence), additional land will be inundated. Copyright ASCE 2004.

  12. Decadal-scale sea level rise acceleration along the Florida Atlantic coast and its relations to sea level variability along the Florida Current

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wdowinski, S.; Thompson, P. R.; Mitchum, G. T.; Park, J.

    2015-12-01

    The US Atlantic coast is one of the most vulnerable areas to sea level rise (SLR) due to its low elevation, large population concentrations, and economic importance. Further vulnerability arises from accelerating rates of SLR, which began in the early 2000's and caused a significant increase in flooding frequency in several coastal communities. Several studies have suggested that the accelerating SLR rates are due to the slowing down of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation, in particular, a weakening of the Gulf Stream (GS). However, there are no direct observations that link the GS conditions and high sea levels along the coast. In this study we use satellite altimetry, tide gauge, and Florida Current (FC) cable data to explore possible relations between the recent SLR rate increase along the Florida Atlantic coast and various dynamical processes in the GS/FC system. Preliminary calculations indicate a good agreement between coastal sea level and nearshore altimetry series (R = 0.76-0.8) suggesting that SSH gradients from altimetry may be useful for assessing the dynamics associated with the coastal sea level change. Here we focus on spatio-temporal SSH changes along the two satellite passes located closest to the Florida Atlantic coast. Our results indicate an intriguing transition in SSH behavior around 2004-5. Prior to 2004, anomalous low coastal SSH events (strong FC) occurred every 3-5 years in correlation with warm ENSO events. After 2004, the strong relationship between ENSO and the gradient across the FC vanishes, while the mean sea level across the current increases. The observed SSH anomaly transition around 2004-5 correlates well with the initiation of accelerated rates of coastal SLR, suggesting that the decadal scale SLR acceleration has occurred during weak FC conditions. However, the forcing of this transition and the role of mean sea level variability, which is of comparable magnitude to variability in the gradient, remain unexplained.

  13. Global coastal wetland change under sea-level rise and related stresses: The DIVA Wetland Change Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spencer, Thomas; Schuerch, Mark; Nicholls, Robert J.; Hinkel, Jochen; Lincke, Daniel; Vafeidis, A. T.; Reef, Ruth; McFadden, Loraine; Brown, Sally

    2016-04-01

    The Dynamic Interactive Vulnerability Assessment Wetland Change Model (DIVA_WCM) comprises a dataset of contemporary global coastal wetland stocks (estimated at 756 × 103 km2 (in 2011)), mapped to a one-dimensional global database, and a model of the macro-scale controls on wetland response to sea-level rise. Three key drivers of wetland response to sea-level rise are considered: 1) rate of sea-level rise relative to tidal range; 2) lateral accommodation space; and 3) sediment supply. The model is tuned by expert knowledge, parameterised with quantitative data where possible, and validated against mapping associated with two large-scale mangrove and saltmarsh vulnerability studies. It is applied across 12,148 coastal segments (mean length 85 km) to the year 2100. The model provides better-informed macro-scale projections of likely patterns of future coastal wetland losses across a range of sea-level rise scenarios and varying assumptions about the construction of coastal dikes to prevent sea flooding (as dikes limit lateral accommodation space and cause coastal squeeze). With 50 cm of sea-level rise by 2100, the model predicts a loss of 46-59% of global coastal wetland stocks. A global coastal wetland loss of 78% is estimated under high sea-level rise (110 cm by 2100) accompanied by maximum dike construction. The primary driver for high vulnerability of coastal wetlands to sea-level rise is coastal squeeze, a consequence of long-term coastal protection strategies. Under low sea-level rise (29 cm by 2100) losses do not exceed ca. 50% of the total stock, even for the same adverse dike construction assumptions. The model results confirm that the widespread paradigm that wetlands subject to a micro-tidal regime are likely to be more vulnerable to loss than macro-tidal environments. Countering these potential losses will require both climate mitigation (a global response) to minimise sea-level rise and maximisation of accommodation space and sediment supply (a regional

  14. Vulnerability of Louisiana's coastal wetlands to present-day rates of relative sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jankowski, Krista L.; Törnqvist, Torbjörn E.; Fernandes, Anjali M.

    2017-03-01

    Coastal Louisiana has lost about 5,000 km2 of wetlands over the past century and concern exists whether remaining wetlands will persist while facing some of the world's highest rates of relative sea-level rise (RSLR). Here we analyse an unprecedented data set derived from 274 rod surface-elevation table-marker horizon stations, to determine present-day surface-elevation change, vertical accretion and shallow subsidence rates. Comparison of vertical accretion rates with RSLR rates at the land surface (present-day RSLR rates are 12+/-8 mm per year) shows that 65% of wetlands in the Mississippi Delta (SE Louisiana) may keep pace with RSLR, whereas 58% of the sites in the Chenier Plain (SW Louisiana) do not, rendering much of this area highly vulnerable to RLSR. At least 60% of the total subsidence rate occurs within the uppermost 5-10 m, which may account for the higher vulnerability of coastal Louisiana wetlands compared to their counterparts elsewhere.

  15. Are Tide Gauges Useful Recorders of Relative Sea-Level Rise in Large Deltaic Settings?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tornqvist, T. E.; Keogh, M.; Jankowski, K. L.; Fernandes, A. M.

    2016-12-01

    It has long been recognized that the world's largest deltas that often host major population centers are particularly vulnerable to accelerating rates of relative sea-level rise (RSLR). Traditionally, tide-gauge records are used to obtain quantitative data on rates of RSLR, given that they are perceived to capture the rise of the sea surface as well as land subsidence which is often substantial in deltaic settings. We argue here that tide gauges in such settings often provide ambiguous data because they ultimately measure RSLR with respect to a benchmark that is typically anchored tens of meters below the land surface. This is problematic because the prime target of interest is usually the rate of RSLR with respect to the delta top. We illustrate this problem with newly obtained rod surface elevation table - marker horizon (RSET-MH) data from the Mississippi Delta (n=185) that show that total subsidence is dominated by shallow subsidence in the uppermost 5-10 m. Since benchmarks in this region are anchored at 20 m depth on average, tide-gauge records by definition do not capture this important (and often even dominant) component of total subsidence, and thus underestimate RSLR by a considerable amount. We show how RSET-MH data, combined with GPS and satellite altimetry data, enable us to bypass this problem. Present-day rates of RSLR in the Mississippi Delta are 13±9 mm/yr, considerably higher than numbers reported in recent studies based on tide-gauge analysis. It seems unlikely that this problem is unique to the Mississippi Delta, so we argue that the approach to RSLR measurements in large deltas across the planet needs rethinking.

  16. Rates of subsidence and relative sea level rise in the Hawaii Islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parker, Albert

    2016-12-01

    The major cause of the Hawaiian Islands coastal erosion is shown to be not global warming, but the sinking of the volcanic islands. The geologic "circle-of-life" beyond the Hawaiian hot spot is the true explanation of the beach erosion. The sea levels are slow rising and not accelerating worldwide as well as in the United States. In the specific of the Hawaii Islands, they have been decelerating over the last 3 decades because of the phasing of the multi-decadal oscillations for this area of the Pacific. There is therefore no evidence coastal erosion will double in the Hawaii by 2050 because of global warming.

  17. Accelerated relative sea-level rise and rapid coastal erosion: Testing a causal relationship for the Louisiana barrier islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    List, J.H.; Sallenger, A.H.; Hansen, M.E.; Jaffe, B.E.

    1997-01-01

    The role of relative sea-level rise as a cause for the rapid erosion of Louisiana's barrier island coast is investigated through a numerical implementation of a modified Bruun rule that accounts for the low percentage of sand-sized sediment in the eroding Louisiana shoreface. Shore-normal profiles from 150 km of coastline west of the Mississippi delta are derived from bathymetric surveys conducted during the 1880s. 1930s and 1980s. An RMS difference criterion is employed to test whether an equilibrium profile form is maintained between survey years. Only about half the studied profiles meet the equilibrium Criterion this represents a significant limitation on the potential applicability of the Bruun rule. The profiles meeting the equilibrium criterion, along with measured rates of relative sea-level rise, are used to hindcast shoreline retreat rates at 37 locations within the study area. Modeled and observed shoreline retreat rates show no significant correlation. Thus in terms of the Bruun approach relative sea-level rise has no power for hindcasting (and presumably forecasting) rates of coastal erosion for the Louisiana barrier islands.

  18. 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.

  19. Relative sea-level rise and the conterminous United States : Consequences of potential land inundation in terms of population at risk and GDP loss

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Haer, Toon; Kalnay, Eugenia; Kearney, Michael; Moll, Henk

    2013-01-01

    Global sea-level rise poses a significant threat not only for coastal communities as development continues but also for national economies. This paper presents estimates of how future changes in relative sea-level rise puts coastal populations at risk, as well as affect overall GDP in the contermino

  20. Relative sea-level rise around East Antarctica during Oligocene glaciation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stocchi, P.; Escutia, C.; Houben, A.J.P.; Vermeersen, B.L.A.; Bijl, P.K.; Brinkhuis, H.; Deconto, R.M.; Galeotti, S.; Passchier, S.; Pollard, D.

    2013-01-01

    During the middle and late Eocene (∼ 48-34 Myr ago), the Earth's climate cooled and an ice sheet built up on Antarctica. The stepwise expansion of ice on Antarctica induced crustal deformation and gravitational perturbations around the continent. Close to the ice sheet, sea level rose despite an ove

  1. Relative sea-level rise around East Antarctica during Oligocene glaciation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stocchi, P.; Escutia, C.; Houben, A.J.P.; Vermeersen, B.L.A.; Bijl, P.K.; Brinkhuis, H.; DeConto , R.M.; Galeotti, S.; Passchier, S.; Pollard, D.; IODP Expedition 318 Scientists; Houben, A.J.P.

    2013-01-01

    During the middle and late Eocene (similar to 48-34 Myr ago), the Earth's climate cooled(1,2) and an ice sheet built up on Antarctica. The stepwise expansion of ice on Antarctica(3,4) induced crustal deformation and gravitational perturbations around the continent. Close to the ice sheet, sea level

  2. Relative sea-level rise around East Antarctica during Oligocene glaciation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stocchi, P.; Escutia, C.; Houben, A.J.P.; Vermeersen, B.L.A.; Bijl, P.K.; Brinkhuis, H.; Deconto, R.M.; Galeotti, S.; Passchier, S.; Pollard, D.

    2013-01-01

    During the middle and late Eocene (∼ 48-34 Myr ago), the Earth's climate cooled and an ice sheet built up on Antarctica. The stepwise expansion of ice on Antarctica induced crustal deformation and gravitational perturbations around the continent. Close to the ice sheet, sea level rose despite an ove

  3. Relative sea-level rise around East Antarctica during Oligocene glaciation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stocchi, P.; Escutia, C.; Houben, A.J.P.; Vermeersen, B.L.A.; Bijl, P.K.; Brinkhuis, H.; DeConto , R.M.; Galeotti, S.; Passchier, S.; Pollard, D.; IODP Expedition 318 Scientists; Houben, A.J.P.

    2013-01-01

    During the middle and late Eocene (similar to 48-34 Myr ago), the Earth's climate cooled(1,2) and an ice sheet built up on Antarctica. The stepwise expansion of ice on Antarctica(3,4) induced crustal deformation and gravitational perturbations around the continent. Close to the ice sheet, sea level

  4. 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.

  5. Sea level rise and its coastal impacts

    OpenAIRE

    Cazenave, Anny; Le Cozannet, Gonéri

    2014-01-01

    Link to the paper: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/2013EF000188/abstract; International audience; Global warming in response to accumulation of human-induced greenhouse gases inside the atmosphere has already caused several visible consequences, among them increase of the Earth's mean temperature and ocean heat content, melting of glaciers, and loss of ice from the Greenland and Antarctica ice sheets. Ocean warming and land ice melt in turn are causing sea level to rise. Sea level ...

  6. Visualizing Sea Level Rise with Augmented Reality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kintisch, E. S.

    2013-12-01

    Looking Glass is an application on the iPhone that visualizes in 3-D future scenarios of sea level rise, overlaid on live camera imagery in situ. Using a technology known as augmented reality, the app allows a layperson user to explore various scenarios of sea level rise using a visual interface. Then the user can see, in an immersive, dynamic way, how those scenarios would affect a real place. The first part of the experience activates users' cognitive, quantitative thinking process, teaching them how global sea level rise, tides and storm surge contribute to flooding; the second allows an emotional response to a striking visual depiction of possible future catastrophe. This project represents a partnership between a science journalist, MIT, and the Rhode Island School of Design, and the talk will touch on lessons this projects provides on structuring and executing such multidisciplinary efforts on future design projects.

  7. The Paris Agreement's imprint on 2300 sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-04-01

    The 2015 Paris Agreement aims at reducing climate-related risks by putting a limit to global mean temperature increase. Furthermore, global greenhouse gas emissions should peak as soon as possible and reach net-zero in the second half of the 21st century under the agreement. Sea level rise is one of the major impacts of climate change and will continue for long after emissions have ceased. Here we quantify the effect of near-term and long-term emissions constraints of the Paris Agreement on climate-driven sea level rise until 2300 using a contribution-based methodology that is consistent with the IPCC AR5 sea level estimates. We study median sea level rise for scenarios stabilizing global mean temperatures between 1.5° C and 2° C above pre-industrial levels and net-zero greenhouse gas emission scenarios that lead to declining temperatures. Once global mean temperatures pass 1.5 °C, sea level rise below one meter until 2300 is out of reach for temperature stabilization scenarios. Net-zero emissions can reduce sea level rise caused by temperature overshoot only within limits. By linking sea level rise to near-term mitigation action, we find that delayed near-term mitigation action leads to increased sea level rise far beyond 2100.

  8. Relative sea-level rising and its control strategy in coastal regions of China in the 21st century

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    武强; 郑铣鑫; 徐华; 应玉飞; 侯艳声; 谢晓程; 王世训

    2003-01-01

    The Chinese coastal regions are the high risk areas of natural disasters for their low land and weak and sensitive eco-evironment. The relative sea-level rising (RSLR), resulting from the piling of global sea-level rising and regional land subsidence, is to speed up in the 21st century. Certainly the RSLR will exacerbate the land submerging, the disaster from storm-tide and flood- waterlogging and the water shortage, and then affect urban withstanding function, construction safety and eco-resources. According to sustainable development theory, the sustainable utilization of resources and environment and sustainable development of economy and society can both be effectively achieved in coastal regions of China in the 21st century only by the implementation of controlling discharge of greenhouse gas, optimal exploitation of and artificial recharge of groundwater, systematic control of land subsidence, higher design standards for tide and flood control engineering, improving urban anti-disaster ability, a study on strategy and policy for RSLR and establishment of forecast and pre-warning institution.

  9. 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 du

  10. Relative impact of sea level rise, wave climate and anthropogenic actions on the recent shoreline changes of the Pacific Islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcin, M.; Baills, A.; Yates, M.; Le Cozannet, G.; Bulteau, T.; Salai, E.; Sauter, J.

    2012-04-01

    Sea level rise is nowadays one of a major concern for many low-lying and highly populated areas in the world. However, it is difficult to forecast the consequences of sea levels rise in terms of erosion, due to the interactions with many forcing factors of the evolution of coastline mobility. Indeed, climatic factors such as sea level rise are combined with internal and external geodynamic processes, biological factors, wave forcing and anthropogenic actions which can also play an important role in coastline mobility. Understanding the whole system and its past evolutions is necessary to anticipate future changes. Within the on-going CECILE project, our goal is to evaluate the impact of future sea level change on some emblematic coasts located in different part of the world in order to assess their sensitivity and the variability of their response to different change rise rates. This work presents the study conducted on coastlines of two regions of the Pacific: French Polynesia (SW Pacific) and New Caledonia. In order to evaluate the sensitivity of the coastlines to sea level rise, we firstly analysed the response of each coastline during the sea level rise of the past 50 years, using a diachronic analysis of ancient and recent remote sensing images. Then we also took into account the evolution of anthropogenic actions contributing to modifications of the sedimentary budget at the coast, and finally, sea level variations, using the sea level reconstruction of Becker et al. (2012) of the 2nd half of the XXth century. Two atolls of French Polynesia (Manihi and Scilly) and six coastal stretches of New Caledonia have been studied. Although Manihi and Scilly experienced a sea level rise rate twice as important as the global mean according to Becker et al. (2012), wave forcing was, during the last 50 years, the dominant factor controlling the shoreline evolution and aggradation/erosion processes on the atolls. On the contrary, on the main island of New Caledonia, the

  11. USGS Map service: Coastal Vulnerability to Sea-Level Rise

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior — The coastal vulnerability index (CVI)provides a preliminary overview, at a National scale, of the relative susceptibility of the Nation's coast to sea-level rise....

  12. USGS Map service: Coastal Vulnerability to Sea-Level Rise

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior — The coastal vulnerability index (CVI)provides a preliminary overview, at a National scale, of the relative susceptibility of the Nation's coast to sea-level rise....

  13. Quantifying the patterns and dynamics of river deltas under conditions of steady forcing and relative sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, Man; Van Dyk, Corey; Passalacqua, Paola

    2016-02-01

    Understanding deltaic channel dynamics is essential to acquiring knowledge on how deltas respond to environmental changes, as channels control the distribution of water, sediment, and nutrients. Channel-resolving morphodynamic models provide the basis for quantitative study of channel-scale dynamics, but they need to be properly assessed with a set of robust metrics able to quantitatively characterize delta patterns and dynamics before being used as predictive tools. In this work we use metrics developed in the context of delta formation, to assess the morphodynamic results of DeltaRCM, a parcel-based cellular model for delta formation and evolution. By comparing model results to theoretical predictions and field and experimental observations, we show that DeltaRCM captures the geometric growth characteristics of deltas such as fractality of channel network, spatial distribution of wet and dry surfaces, and temporal dynamics of channel-scale processes such as the decay of channel planform correlation. After evaluating the ability of DeltaRCM to produce delta patterns and dynamics at the scale of channel processes, we use the model to predict the deltaic response to relative sea level rise (RSLR). We show that uniform subsidence and absolute sea level rise have similar effects on delta evolution and cause intensified channel branching. Channel network fractality and channel mobility increase with higher-RSLR rates, while the spatial and temporal scales of avulsion events decrease, resulting in smaller sand bodies in the stratigraphy. Our modeling results provide the first set of quantitative predictions of the effects of RSLR on river deltas with a specific focus on the distributary channel network.

  14. Sea-Level Rise by 2100

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Church, J.A; Clark, P.A; Cazenave, A; Gregory, J.M.; Jevrejeva, S.; Levermann, A; Merrifield, M.A; Milne, G.A.; Nerem, R.S.; Nunn, P.D.; Payne, A.J.; Pfeffer, W.T.; Stammer, D.; Unnikrishnan, A.S.

    VOL 342 20 DECEMBER 2013 1445 LETTERS edited by Jennifer Sills 1462 COMMENTARY LETTERS I BOOKS I POLICY FORUM I EDUCATION FORUM I PERSPECTIVES 1452 Defending the nest IBI Prize Essay C R E D IT : A N D R E W M A N D E M A K E R /W IK IM E... D IA C O M M O N S Sea-Level Rise by 2100 IN HIS NEWS AND ANALYSIS PIECE REPORTING ON THE NEWLY RELEASED FIFTH ASSESSMENT report (AR5) by Working Group I (WGI) of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) (“A Stronger IPCC Report,” 4...

  15. Vulnerability of Turkish coasts to accelerated sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alpar, Bedri

    2009-06-01

    Accelerated rise in sea-level, and associated geological adjustment, may result in a high impact on shorelines. On the basis of hourly sea-level observations over a 20 year period, sea-level change along the Turkish coast has been investigated. In addition to relative sea-level rise, the high level of human activities in coastal areas puts a significant amount of stress on Turkish coastal zones, especially on coastal lowland plains. Coastal erosion and ground water salinization are the most important impacts and two case studies are discussed in this paper: the Kizilirmak river delta on the Black Sea; and the tourism center of Erdek on the Marmara Sea. Coastal retreat on the Kizilirmak river delta is mostly attributed to decreasing sediment supply to the coast. The shore barriers and the enclosed lagoons are likely to respond readily to future sea-level rise. At Erdek, the most important threat is intrusion of salt water into freshwater systems caused by a combination of accelerated sea-level rise, land reclamation and overexploitation of underground aquifers.

  16. 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...... show quite different responses to sea-level rise. The southernmost island Rømø has survived 17 m of sea-level rise at the same position illustrating the control from sediment supply; whereas the northernmost island Skallingen has shifted its position several times during the same period indicating...... 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....

  17. 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...

  18. Storminess helps coastal marshes withstand sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balcerak, Ernie

    2013-03-01

    Rising sea levels are predicted to threaten many coastal sea marshes around the world in the coming decades as the Earth's climate warms. In addition to accelerating sea level rise, global climate change is predicted to increase the frequency and severity of storms in many places around the world. However, few studies have taken into account how an increased storminess might affect the ability of coastal marshes to withstand sea level rise.

  19. Sea-level rise: towards understanding local vulnerability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rahmstorf, Stefan

    2012-06-01

    , experts are increasingly looking at its potential impacts on coasts to facilitate local adaptation planning. This is a more complex issue than one might think, because different stretches of coast can be affected in very different ways. First of all, the sea-level response to global warming will not be globally uniform, since factors like changes in ocean currents (Levermann et al 2005) and the changing gravitational pull of continental ice (Mitrovica et al 2001) affect the local rise. Secondly, superimposed on the climatic trend is natural variability in sea level, which regionally can be as large as the climatic signal on multi-decadal timescales. Over the past decades, sea level has dropped in sizable parts of the world ocean, although it has of course risen in global mean (IPCC 2007). Thirdly, local land uplift or subsidence affects the local sea-level change relative to the coast, both for natural reasons (post-glacial isostatic adjustment centred on regions that were covered by ice sheets during the last ice age) and artificial ones (e.g., extraction of water or oil as in the Gulf of Mexico). Finally, local vulnerability to sea-level rise depends on many factors. Two interesting new studies in this journal (Tebaldi et al 2012, Strauss et al 2012) make important steps towards understanding sea-level vulnerability along the coasts of the United States, with methods that could also be applied elsewhere. The first, by Strauss and colleagues, merges high-resolution topographic data and a newly available tidal model together with population and housing data in order to estimate what land area and population would be at risk given certain increments in sea level. The results are mapped and tabulated at county and city level. They reveal the 'hot spots' along the US coast where sea-level rise is of the highest concern because of large populations living near the high-tide line: New York City and Long Island; the New Jersey shore; the Norfolk, Virginia, area; near Charleston

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

    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.

  1. Estuaries May Face Increased Parasitism as Sea Levels Rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wendel, JoAnna

    2014-12-01

    Invertebrates in estuaries could be at a greater risk of parasitism as climate change causes sea levels to rise. A new paper published 8 December in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (doi:10.1073/pnas.1416747111) describes how rapid sea level rise in the Holocene affected the population of parasitic flatworms called trematodes.

  2. Drowning of a barrier coastline under rapid rates of relative sea-level rise during the 8.2 ka cooling event: Cause or coincidence?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mellett, C.; Hodgson, D. M.; Lang, A.; Mauz, B.; Plater, A. J.

    2012-12-01

    Examples where barrier landforms and deposits are preserved offshore of a highstand shoreline are rare on contemporary continental shelves, and in the rock record. Therefore, understanding of the conditions required for preservation and the sedimentary processes-response to such factors is limited and heavily dependent on simulation models. Here, an integrated dataset of multibeam bathymetry and 2D seismic reflection profiles has uncovered an exceptionally well preserved drowned barrier complex at Hastings Bank, on the English Channel continental shelf, offshore of southeast England. Mapping of nine seismic stratigraphic units calibrated with lithological information from multiple vibrocores has enabled the interpretation of fluvial, shoreface, barrier, washover fan, back-barrier and tidal environments of deposition. Stratigraphic architecture is used as the basis for landscape evolution reconstructions that reveal phases of barrier progradation, degradation and retreat. Optical Stimulated Luminescence (OSL) dating of shoreface and beach deposits revealed ages in the range of 8.4 ± 0.2 ka and 7.8 ± 0.2 ka. These ages indicate the barrier developed under rapid rates of early Holocene sea-level rise and more specifically, correlate to the time period surrounding the 8.2 ka cooling event and associated sea-level 'jump'. To preserve a barrier beach including the barrier foreshore under such rapid rates of relative sea-level rise, sediment supply would have to be sufficient to keep pace to prevent the shoreline responding through continuous reworking, i.e. rollover. Further, the rate of transgression is conditioned by inherited topography with higher rates of retreat, and hence greater potential for drowning, expected across the shallowly dipping substrate. Using Hastings Bank as an example, it has also been demonstrated that the morphodynamic state of the barrier complex in terms of its ability to respond dynamically to relative sea-level rise, conditions its

  3. PERSPECTIVE: The tripping points of sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hecht, Alan D.

    2009-12-01

    , according to Titus et al, is for communities to develop a common vision about which lands will be protected and which lands will yield to the rising sea, similar to the way land use plans identify commercial, residential, agricultural, and conservation lands. The supplementary material in their paper (as well as a related web site suggested by the peer review process of this journal) provides maps that depict the likelihood of shore protection based on existing land use data and the assessment of the local governments. Such maps, they suggest, might be used as a starting point to promote dialogue within communities about which lands should be protected and which lands are allowed to become submerged. A second tripping point relates to conflict between existing environmental laws and their collective ability to respond to the impacts of global warming. For example, property owners are automatically issued permits for construction of hard shore-protection structures (e.g. bulkheads and revetments) without an assessment of their environmental impact. Normally, under the Clean Water Act, the impact of each permit is assessed separately, but there is a special expedited process for activities with no cumulative impact. The Corps of Engineers concluded that shore protection does not have a cumulative impact, and that might be true if shore erosion was rare and stable shores the general rule. But once we recognize that the sea level is rising, then shore erosion becomes the general rule and a cumulative impact is likely. Under the National Environmental Protection Act (NEPA), cumulative impacts have been defined as `the impacts of an activity ``added to other past present and reasonably future actions'' regardless of who takes the other actions'. If the NEPA were actually evoked, it would considerably delay permit approvals and substantially impact the Corps of Engineers' process for issuing permits. The potential impact of sea level rise clearly requires a holistic approach to

  4. Sea-Level Rise Impacts on Hudson River Marshes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hooks, A.; Nitsche, F. O.

    2015-12-01

    The response of tidal marshes to increasing sea-level rise is uncertain. Tidal marshes can adapt to rising sea levels through vertical accretion and inland migration. Yet tidal marshes are vulnerable to submergence if the rate of sea-level rise exceeds the rate of accretion and if inland migration is limited by natural features or development. We studied how Piermont and Iona Island Marsh, two tidal marshes on the Hudson River, New York, would be affected by sea-level rise of 0.5m, 1m, and 1.5m by 2100. This study was based on the 2011-2012 Coastal New York LiDAR survey. Using GIS we mapped sea-level rise projections accounting for accretion rates and calculated the submerged area of the marsh. Based on the Hudson River National Estuarine Research Reserve Vegetation 2005 dataset, we studied how elevation zones based on vegetation distributions would change. To evaluate the potential for inland migration, we assessed land cover around each marsh using the National Land Cover Database 2011 Land Cover dataset and examined the slope beyond the marsh boundaries. With an accretion rate of 0.29cm/year and 0.5m of sea-level rise by 2100, Piermont Marsh would be mostly unchanged. With 1.5m of sea-level rise, 86% of Piermont Marsh would be flooded. For Iona Island Marsh with an accretion rate of 0.78cm/year, sea-level rise of 0.5m by 2100 would result in a 4% expansion while 1.5m sea-level rise would cause inundation of 17% of the marsh. The results indicate that Piermont and Iona Island Marsh may be able to survive rates of sea-level rise such as 0.5m by 2100 through vertical accretion. At rates of sea-level rise like 1.5m by 2100, vertical accretion cannot match sea-level rise, submerging parts of the marshes. High elevations and steep slopes limit Piermont and Iona Island Marsh's ability to migrate inland. Understanding the impacts of sea-level rise on Piermont and Iona Island Marsh allows for long-term planning and could motivate marsh conservation programs.

  5. Sea level rise with warming above 2 degree

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jevrejeva, Svetlana; Jackson, Luke; Riva, Riccardo; Grinsted, Aslak; Moore, John

    2017-04-01

    Holding the increase in the global average temperature to below 2 °C above pre-industrial levels, and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 °C, has been agreed by the representatives of the 196 parties of United Nations, as an appropriate threshold beyond which climate change risks become unacceptably high. Sea level rise is one of the most damaging aspects of warming climate for the more than 600 million people living in low-elevation coastal areas less than 10 meters above sea level. Fragile coastal ecosystems and increasing concentrations of population and economic activity in coastal areas, are reasons why future sea level rise is one of the most damaging aspects of the warming climate. Furthermore, sea level is set to continue to rise for centuries after greenhouse gas emissions concentrations are stabilised due to system inertia and feedback time scales. Impact, risk, adaptation policies and long-term decision making in coastal areas depend on regional and local sea level rise projections and local projections can differ substantially from the global one. Here we provide probabilistic sea level rise projections for the global coastline with warming above the 2 degree goal. A warming of 2°C makes global ocean rise on average by 20 cm, but more than 90% of coastal areas will experience greater rises, 40 cm along the Atlantic coast of North America and Norway, due to ocean dynamics. If warming continues above 2°C, then by 2100 sea level will rise with speeds unprecedented throughout human civilization, reaching 0.9 m (median), and 80% of the global coastline will exceed the global ocean sea level rise upper 95% confidence limit of 1.8 m. Coastal communities of rapidly expanding cities in the developing world, small island states, and vulnerable tropical coastal ecosystems will have a very limited time after mid-century to adapt to sea level rises.

  6. GIS analysis of effects of future Baltic sea level rise on the island of Gotland, Sweden

    OpenAIRE

    Ebert, K.; K. Ekstedt; J. Jarsjö

    2016-01-01

    Future sea level rise as a consequence of global warming will affect the world's coastal regions. Even though the pace of sea level rise is not clear, the consequences will be severe and global. Commonly the effects of future sea level rise are investigated for relatively vulnerable development countries; however, a whole range of varying regions needs to be considered in order to improve the understanding of global consequences. In this paper we investigate consequences of ...

  7. Sea-level-rise impacts: Questioning inevitable migration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kniveton, Dominic

    2017-08-01

    It is assumed that sea-level rise due to climate change will be so severe that those living near sea level will be forced to relocate. However, new research around a series of islands that have suffered subsidence due to a recent earthquake suggests that instead, island residents remain and use a range of strategies to adapt to regular flooding.

  8. Potential impact of sea level rise on French islands worldwide

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Celine Bellard

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Although sea level rise is one of the most certain consequences of global warming, yet it remains one of the least studied. Several studies strongly suggested that sea level rise will accelerate in the future with a potentially rise from 0.5 to 2 m at the end of the century. However, currently island conservation programs do not take into account the potential effects of sea level rise. Therefore, we investigated the potential consequences of sea level rise for 1,269 French islands worldwide, by assessing the total number of island that will be totally submerged for three different scenarios (1, 2 and 3 m. Under the worst scenario, up to 12% of all islands could be entirely submerged. Two regions displayed the most significant loss of island: New Caledonia and French Polynesia. Focusing on New Caledonia, we highlighted that endemic plant species that are already classified as critically endangered by the IUCN will be the most vulnerable to sea level rise. Losses of insular habitats will thus be important in the next decades for the French islands. Given that French islands covers all latitudes in the Pacific, Indian and Atlantic oceans and in the Mediterranean, our results suggested that the implications for the 180 000 islands around the world should be considerable. Therefore, decision makers are required to define island conservation priorities that will suffer of the future sea level rise.

  9. [Book review] Sea level rise: history and consequences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grossman, Eric E.

    2004-01-01

    Review of: Sea level Rise: history and consequences. Bruce Douglas, Michael S. Kearney and Stephen P. Leatherman (eds), Sand Diego: Academic Press, 2001, 232 pp. plus CD-RIM, US$64.95, hardback. ISBN 0-12-221345-9.

  10. Humboldt Nay NWR Sea-level rise modeling

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — Baseline information required to assess sea-level rise impacts to marsh habitats will be compiled. The project will provide relevant information to local managers...

  11. Overestimation of marsh vulnerability to sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirwan, Matthew L.; Temmerman, Stijn; Skeehan, Emily E.; Guntenspergen, Glenn R.; Fagherazzi, Sergio

    2016-01-01

    Coastal marshes are considered to be among the most valuable and vulnerable ecosystems on Earth, where the imminent loss of ecosystem services is a feared consequence of sea level rise. However, we show with a meta-analysis that global measurements of marsh elevation change indicate that marshes are generally building at rates similar to or exceeding historical sea level rise, and that process-based models predict survival under a wide range of future sea level scenarios. We argue that marsh vulnerability tends to be overstated because assessment methods often fail to consider biophysical feedback processes known to accelerate soil building with sea level rise, and the potential for marshes to migrate inland.

  12. Mangrove Retreat with Rising Sea-level, Bermuda

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellison, Joanna C.

    1993-07-01

    Low island mangroves keep up with slow sea-level rise by peat accumulation. Holocene stratigraphic records show that they maintain the same pace as sea-level rise at rates up to 9 cm/100 years. Tide gauge records from Bermuda since 1932 show sea-level rise at a rate of 28 cm/100 years. The largest mangrove area (6·26 acres) at Hungry Bay has for the last 2000 years been building peat at a rate of 8·5 to 10·6 cm/100 years. Retreat of the seaward edge has caused loss of 2·24 acres of mangroves, commencing in the last few hundred years, with a second dieback between 1900 and 1947, and a third dieback in the last decade. The substrate elevation of the seaward margin of mangroves is below mean sea-level, the normal lower limit for mangroves. Present dieback shows problems of erosion indicating that the Bruun Rule of beach erosion with sea-level rise is also appropriate for mangrove swamps. Stratigraphy shows that before 4000 BP sea-level rose at a rate of 25 cm/100 years, from 4000 to 1000 years BP the rate of sea-level rise declined to 6 cm/100 years during which time mangroves established, and in the last 1000 years there was an increase to 14·3 cm/100 years, during which time the mangroves died back. This study indicates that low island mangroves will experience problems with the rates of sea-level rise predicted for the next 50 years.

  13. 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

  14. Coastal flooding by tropical cyclones and sea-level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodruff, Jonathan D; Irish, Jennifer L; Camargo, Suzana J

    2013-12-05

    The future impacts of climate change on landfalling tropical cyclones are unclear. Regardless of this uncertainty, flooding by tropical cyclones will increase as a result of accelerated sea-level rise. Under similar rates of rapid sea-level rise during the early Holocene epoch most low-lying sedimentary coastlines were generally much less resilient to storm impacts. Society must learn to live with a rapidly evolving shoreline that is increasingly prone to flooding from tropical cyclones. These impacts can be mitigated partly with adaptive strategies, which include careful stewardship of sediments and reductions in human-induced land subsidence.

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. Sea Level Rise and Subsidence in the Gulf of Thailand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niemnil, Sommart

    In the Thailand -EC GEO2TECDI-SONG Project we investigate the sea level change and vertical land motion in Thailand. First, Bangkok is situated in river delta and average height is closed to sea level. Second, it is subsiding due to ground water extraction. Third, it is experiencing post-seismic motion due to nearby mega thrust earthquakes and fourth, it suffers from rising of sea levels due to global climate change. This poses a serious threat on Thai society and economy. Before mitigation methods can be devised we aim at charting, qualifying and quantifying all contributing effects by the use of satellite altimetry, GNSS, InSAR techniques and combining results with the in situ observations like tide gauge and with geophysical modeling. Adding GPS based vertical land motion to the tide gauge sea level registration reveals the absolute sea level change, which is nicely confirmed by altimetry. We find an average absolute rise of 3.5 mm/yr + 0.7, but nears mouth of Chao Praya River (Bangkok) and the Mekong delta (Ho Chi Min City), this mounts to 4 to 5 mm/yr, faster than global average. This is reinforced when accounting for the tectonic subsidence that resulted from 2004 9.1Mw Sumatra/Andaman earthquake; from 2005 onwards we find downfall in the order of 10 mm/yr. RADARSAT InSAR analyses show subsidence rates up to 25 mm/yr at many places along coastal Bangkok.

  18. Preparing Coastal Parks for Future Sea Level Rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, R.; Peek, K.

    2012-04-01

    The United States National Park Service (NPS) manages significant stretches of shoreline along the U.S. Atlantic, Pacific, and Gulf Coasts that are vulnerable to long-term sea level rise, shoreline erosion, and storm impacts. These parks have a wide variety of missions— protecting some of the nation's most important natural and cultural resources. The parks must also provide visitor access and education requiring infrastructure such as roads, visitor centers, trails, and buildings for facilities management. Planning for the likely impacts from sea level rise to both resources and infrastructure is a complex balancing act. Using coastal engineering to protect cultural resources or infrastructure may harm natural resources. At the same time, there are clearly some cultural and historical resources that are so critical that they must be protected. In an attempt to begin to attack this dilemma, the NPS Climate Change Response Program has initiated a sea level rise adaptation study that will provide a first-order tally of the park assets at risk to sea level rise and to begin to develop a plan for prioritizing those assets that must be protected, those that can be moved or abandoned, and an examination of how best to approach this without harming critical natural resources. This presentation will discuss the preliminary results of this effort along with several relevant case studies.

  19. 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.

  20. Age of overwash and rate of relative sea-level rise inferred from detrital heads and microatolls of medieval corals at Anegada, British Virgin Islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jennifer, W.; Feuillet, N.; Robert, H.; Brian, A.; Ten Brink, U. S.; Deschamps, P.; Tuttle, M. P.; Wei, Y.; Fuentes, Z.

    2012-12-01

    , four form an older group with ages between 1150±35 and 1240±20 14C yr BP, and one is an outlier at 1960±40 14C yr BP. In three of the areas, including those farthest from the reef, all the dated heads are in the young group. The other two areas show a mix of young and older ages. The outlier age was measured on an eroded fragment of the small brain coral Manicina areolata. The ages of the young group correspond to AD 1200-1450 if the local shift in marine-reservoir age (ΔR) was between 0 and -200 14C yr. The mix of ages and degrees of preservation can thus be explained by a single overwash event in AD 1200-1450 that dislodged and brought ashore both live and dead corals. Of the fifty coral boulders observed, at least five have a microatoll shape indicative of outward and upward growth limited by lowest tide level. All five are D. strigosa. Their cup-shaped morphology suggests that relative sea level (RSL) was rising before they died. X-radiography of one of them shows a growth rate of 8 mm/yr and a RSL rise averaging 3-4 mm/yr during the last 70 years before death. This submergence was interrupted by a few centimeter-scale steps of emergence. [Companion abstracts: Atwater, Wei

  1. Coastal Wetland Dynamics and Wildlife Populations: Modeling the Effects of Sea Level Rise and Landscape Change

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — Assess the potential impacts of sea level rise on coastal ecosystems and related wildlife resources. Develop a Bayesian Belief network that projects the impact of...

  2. PACIFIC - Coastal Vulnerability to Sea-Level Rise: U.S. Pacific Coast

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior — The goal of this project is to quantify, at the National scale, the relative susceptibility of the Nation's coast to sea-level rise through the use of a coastal...

  3. PACIFIC - Coastal Vulnerability to Sea-Level Rise: U.S. Pacific Coast

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior — The goal of this project is to quantify, at the National scale, the relative susceptibility of the Nation's coast to sea-level rise through the use of a coastal...

  4. GULF - Coastal Vulnerability to Sea-Level Rise: U.S. Gulf Coast

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior — The goal of this project is to quantify, at the National scale, the relative susceptibility of the Nation's coast to sea-level rise through the use of a coastal...

  5. Implications of accelerated sea-level rise on Louisiana coastal environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramsey, Karen E.; Penland, Shea; Roberts, Harry H.

    1991-01-01

    Natural and human-induced processes have combined to produce high rates of relative sea-level rise and coastal land loss in Louisiana. This paper presents historical trends in sea-level rise and the implication of predicted accelerated rise scenarios on Louisiana's coastal environments. Mean eustatic sea-level in the Gulf of Mexico is 0.23 cm/yr. In Louisiana, relative sea-level rise, which combines eustacy and subsidence, averages from 0.50 cm/yr in the chenier plain to 1.0 cm/yr in the delta plain. Subsidence due to the compaction of Holocene sediments is believed to be the major component influencing these high rates of rise. Subsidence contributes up to 80% of the observed relative sea-level rise in coastal Louisiana. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) predicts the rate of sea-level rise to increase over the next century due to global climate change. If these predictions are accurate, a dramatic increase in the coastal land loss conditions in Louisiana can be expected.

  6. Assessment of Hammocks (Petenes) Resilience to Sea Level Rise Due to Climate Change in Mexico

    OpenAIRE

    Hernández-Montilla, Mariana C.; Martínez-Morales, Miguel Angel; Posada Vanegas, Gregorio; De Jong, Bernardus H. J.

    2016-01-01

    There is a pressing need to assess resilience of coastal ecosystems against sea level rise. To develop appropriate response strategies against future climate disturbances, it is important to estimate the magnitude of disturbances that these ecosystems can absorb and to better understand their underlying processes. Hammocks (petenes) coastal ecosystems are highly vulnerable to sea level rise linked to climate change; their vulnerability is mainly due to its close relation with the sea through ...

  7. Coastal Vulnerability Assessment of Padre Island National Seashore (PAIS) to Sea-Level Rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pendleton, Elizabeth A.; Thieler, E. Robert; Williams, S. Jeffress; Beavers, Rebecca S.

    2004-01-01

    A coastal vulnerability index (CVI) was used to map the relative vulnerability of the coast to future sea-level rise within Padre Island National Seashore in Texas. The CVI ranks the following in terms of their physical contribution to sea-level rise-related coastal change: geomorphology, regional coastal slope, rate of relative sea-level rise, shoreline change rates, mean tidal range and mean significant wave height. The rankings for each variable were combined and an index value calculated for 1-minute grid cells covering the park. The CVI highlights those regions where the physical effects of sea-level rise might be the greatest. This approach combines the coastal system's susceptibility to change with its natural ability to adapt to changing environmental conditions, yielding a quantitative, although relative, measure of the park's natural vulnerability to the effects of sea-level rise. The CVI provides an objective technique for evaluation and long-term planning by scientists and park managers. Padre Island National Seashore consists of stable to washover dominated portions of barrier beach backed by wetland, marsh, tidal flat, or grassland. The areas within Padre that are likely to be most vulnerable to sea-level rise are those with the highest occurrence of overwash and the highest rates of shoreline change.

  8. Is the detection of accelerated sea level rise imminent?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fasullo, J. T.; Nerem, R. S.; Hamlington, B.

    2016-08-01

    Global mean sea level rise estimated from satellite altimetry provides a strong constraint on climate variability and change and is expected to accelerate as the rates of both ocean warming and cryospheric mass loss increase over time. In stark contrast to this expectation however, current altimeter products show the rate of sea level rise to have decreased from the first to second decades of the altimeter era. Here, a combined analysis of altimeter data and specially designed climate model simulations shows the 1991 eruption of Mt Pinatubo to likely have masked the acceleration that would have otherwise occurred. This masking arose largely from a recovery in ocean heat content through the mid to late 1990 s subsequent to major heat content reductions in the years following the eruption. A consequence of this finding is that barring another major volcanic eruption, a detectable acceleration is likely to emerge from the noise of internal climate variability in the coming decade.

  9. Processes contributing to resilience of coastal wetlands to sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stagg, Camille L.; Krauss, Ken W.; Cahoon, Donald R.; Cormier, Nicole; Conner, William H.; Swarzenski, Christopher M.

    2016-01-01

    The objectives of this study were to identify processes that contribute to resilience of coastal wetlands subject to rising sea levels and to determine whether the relative contribution of these processes varies across different wetland community types. We assessed the resilience of wetlands to sea-level rise along a transitional gradient from tidal freshwater forested wetland (TFFW) to marsh by measuring processes controlling wetland elevation. We found that, over 5 years of measurement, TFFWs were resilient, although some marginally, and oligohaline marshes exhibited robust resilience to sea-level rise. We identified fundamental differences in how resilience is maintained across wetland community types, which have important implications for management activities that aim to restore or conserve resilient systems. We showed that the relative importance of surface and subsurface processes in controlling wetland surface elevation change differed between TFFWs and oligohaline marshes. The marshes had significantly higher rates of surface accretion than the TFFWs, and in the marshes, surface accretion was the primary contributor to elevation change. In contrast, elevation change in TFFWs was more heavily influenced by subsurface processes, such as root zone expansion or compaction, which played an important role in determining resilience of TFFWs to rising sea level. When root zone contributions were removed statistically from comparisons between relative sea-level rise and surface elevation change, sites that previously had elevation rate deficits showed a surplus. Therefore, assessments of wetland resilience that do not include subsurface processes will likely misjudge vulnerability to sea-level rise.

  10. Adaptive Planning for Transportation Corridors Threatened by Sea Level Rise

    OpenAIRE

    Shilling, Fraser M; Vandever, Justin; May, Kris; Gerhard, Ina; Bregoff, Robert

    2016-01-01

    This paper describes a generalizable planning and assessment process for transportation planning adaptive to sea level rise (SLR). State Route 37 (SR-37) is the California highway most vulnerable to temporary flooding and permanent inundation as a result of SLR. Like many other coastal highways in the United States, SR-37 is adjacent to protected coastal systems (e.g., beaches, tidal wetlands), meaning that any activity on the highway is s...

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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

    2014-04-01

    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.

  14. Effects of Sea Level-Rise on Carbon Accretion in Coastal Wetlands (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morris, J. T.

    2010-12-01

    Long-term storage of organic carbon in sediment is one of the key functions of coastal wetlands. Owing to the rise of sea level, a fraction of their primary production is buried annually. However, the productivity of tidelands and, hence, carbon accretion depend on their relative elevation within the tidal frame. It has been shown empirically that there is an optimum relative elevation for maximum primary production. The equilibrium elevation is a function of the rate of sea-level rise. Hence, productivity and carbon accretion are also affected by the rate of sea-level rise. Mathematically it can be shown that tidelands maintain their elevation relative to the ocean through feedbacks among primary production, flooding, and sedimentation. At the low end of the sea-level-rise spectrum, a rising sea increases the flooding of marshes, decreasing sediment salinity, stimulating primary production and increasing sedimentation. At the high end, marshes cannot keep pace with sea level and convert to tidal mud flats or open water. Consequently, the long-term storage of carbon by tidelands will depend on the future trajectory of sea-level. In general, cumulative carbon accretion of existing marshes decreases as the forecasted rise in sea level increases. Other important variables include tide range and concentration of suspended sediments. Carbon accretion will be lower in microtidal than macrotidal estuaries, particularly at high rates of sea-level rise. Sensitivity of carbon accretion to tide range decreases as the concentration of suspended sediments increases. These results indicate that future carbon accretion by coastal wetlands will not be uniform in space or time.

  15. Cenozoic sea level and the rise of modern rimmed atolls

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toomey, Michael; Ashton, Andrew; Raymo, Maureen E.; Perron, J. Taylor

    2016-01-01

    Sea-level records from atolls, potentially spanning the Cenozoic, have been largely overlooked, in part because the processes that control atoll form (reef accretion, carbonate dissolution, sediment transport, vertical motion) are complex and, for many islands, unconstrained on million-year timescales. Here we combine existing observations of atoll morphology and corelog stratigraphy from Enewetak Atoll with a numerical model to (1) constrain the relative rates of subsidence, dissolution and sedimentation that have shaped modern Pacific atolls and (2) construct a record of sea level over the past 8.5 million years. Both the stratigraphy from Enewetak Atoll (constrained by a subsidence rate of ~ 20 m/Myr) and our numerical modeling results suggest that low sea levels (50–125 m below present), and presumably bi-polar glaciations, occurred throughout much of the late Miocene, preceding the warmer climate of the Pliocene, when sea level was higher than present. Carbonate dissolution through the subsequent sea-level fall that accompanied the onset of large glacial cycles in the late Pliocene, along with rapid highstand constructional reef growth, likely drove development of the rimmed atoll morphology we see today.

  16. Sediment accretion and organic carbon burial relative to sea-level rise and storm events in two mangrove forests in Everglades National Park

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smoak, Joseph M.; Breithaupt, Joshua L.; Smith, Thomas J.; Sanders, Christian J.

    2013-01-01

    The goal of this investigation was to examine how sediment accretion and organic carbon (OC) burial rates in mangrove forests respond to climate change. Specifically, will the accretion rates keep pace with sea-level rise, and what is the source and fate of OC in the system? Mass accumulation, accretion and OC burial rates were determined via 210Pb dating (i.e. 100 year time scale) on sediment cores collected from two mangrove forest sites within Everglades National Park, Florida (USA). Enhanced mass accumulation, accretion and OC burial rates were found in an upper layer that corresponded to a well-documented storm surge deposit. Accretion rates were 5.9 and 6.5 mm yr−1 within the storm deposit compared to overall rates of 2.5 and 3.6 mm yr−1. These rates were found to be matching or exceeding average sea-level rise reported for Key West, Florida. Organic carbon burial rates were 260 and 393 g m−2 yr−1 within the storm deposit compared to 151 and 168 g m−2 yr−1 overall burial rates. The overall rates are similar to global estimates for OC burial in marine wetlands. With tropical storms being a frequent occurrence in this region the resulting storm surge deposits are an important mechanism for maintaining both overall accretion and OC burial rates. Enhanced OC burial rates within the storm deposit could be due to an increase in productivity created from higher concentrations of phosphorus within storm-delivered sediments and/or from the deposition of allochthonous OC. Climate change-amplified storms and sea-level rise could damage mangrove forests, exposing previously buried OC to oxidation and contribute to increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations. However, the processes described here provide a mechanism whereby oxidation of OC would be limited and the overall OC reservoir maintained within the mangrove forest sediments.

  17. Global Projection of Coastal Exposure Associated with Sea-level Rise beyond Tipping Points

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tawatari, R.; Miyazaki, C.; Iseri, Y.; Kiguchi, M.; Kanae, S.

    2015-12-01

    Sea-level rise due to global warming becomes a great matter of concern for global coastal area. Additionally, it has reported in fifth report of IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) that deglaciation of Greenland ice sheet and Antarctic ice sheet would occur rapidly and enhance sea-level rise if temperature passes certain "Tipping point". In terms of projecting damage induced by sea-level rise globally, some previous studies focused on duration until mainly 2100. Furthermore long-term estimations on centuries to millennial climatic response of the ice sheets which are supposed to be triggered within this or next century would be also important to think about future climate and lifestyle in coastal . In this study, I estimated the long term sea-level which take into account the tipping points of Greenland ice sheet (1.4℃) as sum of 4 factors (thermal expansion, glacier and ice cap, Greenland ice sheet, Antarctic ice sheet). The sea-level follows 4 representative concentration pathways up to 3000 obtained through literature reviewing since there were limited available sea-level projections up to 3000. I also estimated a number of affected population lives in coastal area up to 3000 with using the estimated sea-level. The cost for damage, adaptation and mitigation would be also discussed. These estimations would be useful when decision-makers propose policies for construction of dikes and proposing mitigation plans for sustainable future. The result indicates there would be large and relatively rapid increases in both sea-level rise and coastal exposure if global mean temperature passes the tipping point of Greenland ice sheet. However the tipping points, melting rate and timescale of response are highly uncertain and still discussed among experts. Thus more precise and credible information is required for further accurate estimation of long-term sea-level rise and population exposure in the future.

  18. 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.

  19. Accelerated sea level rise and Florida Current transport

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Park

    2015-04-01

    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 suggests a 3 Sv decline in mean transport. This decline is consistent with observed tide gauge records in Florida Bay and the Straits, all exhibiting an acceleration of mean sea level 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, 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. 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.

  1. Determination and characterization of 20th century global sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuo, Chung-Yen

    In this study, we provide a determination of the 20th Century (1900--2002) global sea level rise, the associated error budgets, and the quantifications of the various geophysical sources of the observed sea level rise, using data and geophysical models. We analyzed significant geographical variations of the global sea level including those caused by the steric component (heat and salinity) in the ocean, and the self-gravitational signal as a result of ice sheets melting, including the effects of glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA) since the Pleistocene. In particular, relative sea level data from long-term (longest is 150 year records) and over 600 tide gauge sites globally from PSMSL and other sources, and geocentric sea level data from multiple satellite altimetry (1985--2005) have been used to determine and characterize 20th century global sea level rise. Altimeter and selected tide gauge sea level data have been used for the 20th century sea level determination, accounting for relative biases between the altimeters, effects of sea level corresponding to oceanic thermal expansion, vertical motions affecting tide gauge measurements, self gravitations, and barotropic ocean response. This study is also characterized by the roles of the polar ocean in the global sea level study and addressing the question whether there is a detectable sea level rise acceleration during the last decade. Vertical motions have been estimated by combining geocentric sea level measurements from satellite altimetry (TOPEX/POSEIDON) and long-term relative (crust-fixed) sea level records from global tide gauges using the Gauss-Markov (GM) model with stochastic constraints. The study provided a demonstration of improved vertical motion solutions in semi-enclosed seas and lakes, including Fennoscandia and the Great Lakes region, showing excellent agreement with independent GPS observed radial velocities, or with predictions from GIA models. In general, the estimated uncertainty of the observed

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Sea level rise projections for northern Europe under RCP8.5

    OpenAIRE

    Grinsted, A.; Jevrejeva, S.; R. E. M. Riva; D. Dahl-Jensen

    2015-01-01

    Sea level rise poses a significant threat to coastal communities, infrastructure, and ecosystems. Sea level rise is not uniform globally but is affected by a range of regional factors. In this study, we calculate regional projections of 21st century sea level rise in northern Europe, focusing on the British Isles, the Baltic Sea, and the North Sea. The input to the regional sea level projection is a probabilistic projection of the major components of the global sea level budget. Local sea lev...

  5. GGOS Focus Area 3: Understanding and Forecasting Sea-Level Rise and Variability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schöne, Tilo; Shum, Ck; Tamisiea, Mark; Woodworth, Philip

    2017-04-01

    Sea level and its change have been measured for more than a century. Especially for coastal nations, deltaic regions, and coastal-oriented industries, observations of tides, tidal extremes, storm surges, and sea level rise at the interannual or longer scales have substantial impacts on coastal vulnerability towards resilience and sustainability of world's coastal regions. To date, the observed global sea level rise is largely associated with climate related changes. To find the patterns and fingerprints of those changes, and to e.g., separate the land motion from sea level signals, different monitoring techniques have been developed. Some of them are local, e.g., tide gauges, while others are global, e.g., satellite altimetry. It is well known that sea level change and land vertical motion varies regionally, and both signals need to be measured in order to quantify relative sea level at the local scale. The Global Geodetic Observing System (GGOS) and its services contribute in many ways to the monitoring of the sea level. These includes tide gauge observations, estimation of gravity changes, satellite altimetry, InSAR/Lidar, GNSS-control of tide gauges, providing ground truth sites for satellite altimetry, and importantly the maintenance of the International Reference Frame. Focus Area 3 (Understanding and Forecasting Sea-Level Rise and Variability) of GGOS establishes a platform and a forum for researchers and authorities dealing with estimating global and local sea level changes in a 10- to 30-year time span, and its project to the next century or beyond. It presents an excellent opportunity to emphasize the global, through to regional and local, importance of GGOS to a wide range of sea-level related science and practical applications. Focus Area 3 works trough demonstration projects to highlight the value of geodetic techniques to sea level science and applications. Contributions under a call for participation (http://www.ggos.org/Applications/theme3_SL

  6. A Bayesian network to predict coastal vulnerability to sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gutierrez, B.T.; Plant, N.G.; Thieler, E.R.

    2011-01-01

    Sea level rise during the 21st century will have a wide range of effects on coastal environments, human development, and infrastructure in coastal areas. The broad range of complex factors influencing coastal systems contributes to large uncertainties in predicting long-term sea level rise impacts. Here we explore and demonstrate the capabilities of a Bayesian network (BN) to predict long-term shoreline change associated with sea level rise and make quantitative assessments of prediction uncertainty. A BN is used to define relationships between driving forces, geologic constraints, and coastal response for the U.S. Atlantic coast that include observations of local rates of relative sea level rise, wave height, tide range, geomorphic classification, coastal slope, and shoreline change rate. The BN is used to make probabilistic predictions of shoreline retreat in response to different future sea level rise rates. Results demonstrate that the probability of shoreline retreat increases with higher rates of sea level rise. Where more specific information is included, the probability of shoreline change increases in a number of cases, indicating more confident predictions. A hindcast evaluation of the BN indicates that the network correctly predicts 71% of the cases. Evaluation of the results using Brier skill and log likelihood ratio scores indicates that the network provides shoreline change predictions that are better than the prior probability. Shoreline change outcomes indicating stability (-1 1 m/yr) was not well predicted. We find that BNs can assimilate important factors contributing to coastal change in response to sea level rise and can make quantitative, probabilistic predictions that can be applied to coastal management decisions. Copyright ?? 2011 by the American Geophysical Union.

  7. As the sea level rises the Earth does not stand still

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagen, S. C.; Alizad, K.; Bilskie, M. V.; Hovenga, P. A.; Medeiros, S. C.; Passeri, D. L.; Wang, D.

    2015-12-01

    Global mean sea level rise was largely linear over the 20th century; however, according to global satellite altimetry, the rate of rise has increased from approximately 1.6 to 3.4 mm/year. It is clear that this eustatic sea level rise has been predominantly caused by thermal expansion of ocean water (i.e., it is a manifestation of an increase in the average annual global temperature). Future projections of increased global temperatures, among others, introduce additional contributions (e.g., land ice loss and changes in land water storage) resulting in higher sea level rise that can only be accommodated by accelerations in the rate of the rise. Increased temperatures lead to changes in evapotranspiration rates, precipitation rates and patterns, etc. As the sea level changes the Earth experiences many other directly or indirectly related processes (e.g., population growth and migration, local variation in subsidence, etc.). Proper assessment of the local, regional and global impacts of relative sea level rise should include as many of these linear and nonlinear processes as possible. This presentation will explain our approach to understanding the relationships between these processes and their impacts to better equip adaptation strategies and enhance coastal resiliency. References Bilskie, M. V., et al. "Dynamics of sea level rise and coastal flooding on a changing landscape." Geophys. Res. Lett., 41(3), 2014, 927-934, doi:10.1002/2013GL058759 Church, J. A. and N. J. White, "A 20th century acceleration in global sea-level rise." Geophys. Res. Lett., 33(1), 2006, L01602 Passeri, D.L., et al. "The dynamic effects of sea level rise on low-gradient coastal landscapes: a review." Earth's Future, Online, 2015. doi:10.1002/2015EF000298 Passeri, D.L., et al. "On the significance of incorporating shoreline changes for evaluating coastal hydrodynamics under sea level rise scenarios." Nat. Haz., 75 (2), 2015, 1599-1617. doi:10.1007/s11069-014-1386-y Wang, D., et al. "Climate

  8. Eco-technological management of Tuvalu against sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kayanne, H.

    2012-12-01

    Atoll island is formed and maintained by sand production, transportation and sedimentation process. Major component of sand in the Pacific atolls is foraminifera, which is produced on the ocean-side reef flat, and then transported from the ocean-side to the lagoon-side coast through channels between the islands. Sand is then transported along the lagoon-side coast by longshore current, and finally deposited to nourish sandy beach. At present, however, this natural process has been deteriorated by local human stresses. High production of foraminifera and corals are degraded by human waste. Transportation of sand from the ocean to the lagoon is blocked by a causeway, and longshore transportation and sedimentation along the lagoon coast is prevented by jetties, dredges and upright seawalls. All these local factors severely reduce natural resilience and increase vulnerability against the projected future sea level rise and the global changes. Countermeasure plans must be based on and must not conflict with the natural island formation process. We launched "Eco-technological management of Tuvalu against sea level rise" under Science and Technology Research Partnership for Sustainable Development funded by JICA and JST. The goal of this project is to regenerate sandy beach along Fongafale Island, Funrafuti Atoll Tuvalu by rehabilitation of production, transportation and sedimentation process including establishing foraminifera culture system.; Fig. 1 Aerial view of Fongafale Is., Funafuti Atoll, Tuvalu.

  9. Responding to rising sea levels in the Mekong Delta

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smajgl, A.; Toan, T. Q.; Nhan, D. K.; Ward, J.; Trung, N. H.; Tri, L. Q.; Tri, V. P. D.; Vu, P. T.

    2015-02-01

    Vietnamese communities in the Mekong Delta are faced with the substantial impacts of rising sea levels and salinity intrusion. The construction of embankments and dykes has historically been the principal strategy of the Vietnamese government to mitigate the effects of salinity intrusion on agricultural production. A predicted sea-level rise of 30 cm by the year 2050 is expected to accelerate salinity intrusion. This study combines hydrologic, agronomic and behavioural assessments to identify effective adaptation strategies reliant on land-use change (soft options) and investments in water infrastructure (hard options). As these strategies are managed within different policy portfolios, the political discussion has polarized between choices of either soft or hard options. This paper argues that an ensemble of hard and soft policies is likely to provide the most effective results for people's livelihoods in the Mekong Delta. The consequences of policy deliberations are likely to be felt beyond the Mekong Delta as levels of rice cultivation there also affect national and global food security.

  10. 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.

  11. 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...

  12. Sea Level Enigmatic Rising - New Perspectives from an Expanding Globe

    CERN Document Server

    Scalera, Giancarlo

    2015-01-01

    In the expanding Earth framework it is possible to find additional phenomena that could contribute in a proper way to the water balance and general tectonic eustatism involved in the sea lever rising. Recent compilations seems to leave unexplained up to 12 cm/century of sea rising, and possible solutions invoking a polar ice shells melting near to the upper limit of the error bars reveal in conflict with the consequent expected decreasing of the Earth angular velocity. It is shown that taking into account possible effects of an expanding Earth, the problem can be initiated towards an appropriate solution, at least as regards the just orders of magnitude. Major effects on sea-level could come from ongoing relaxation of curvature variations that are peculiar for an expanding globe.

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

    OpenAIRE

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

    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...

  14. Sea level rise projections for Northern Europe under RCP8.5

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Grinsted, A.; Jevrejeva, S.; Riva, R.E.M.; Dahl-Jensen, D.

    2015-01-01

    Sea level rise poses a significant threat to coastal communities, infrastructure, and ecosystems. Sea level rise is not uniform globally but is affected by a range of regional factors. In this study, we calculate regional projections of 21st century sea level rise in northern Europe, focusing on the

  15. Sea level rise projections for Northern Europe under RCP8.5

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Grinsted, A.; Jevrejeva, S.; Riva, R.E.M.; Dahl-Jensen, D.

    2015-01-01

    Sea level rise poses a significant threat to coastal communities, infrastructure, and ecosystems. Sea level rise is not uniform globally but is affected by a range of regional factors. In this study, we calculate regional projections of 21st century sea level rise in northern Europe, focusing on the

  16. Danish attitudes and reactions to the threat of sea-level rise

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fenger, Jes; Buch, Erik; Jakobsen, Per Roed

    2008-01-01

    movements and projected global accelerated sea-level rise (ASLR) it is estimated that relative sea level will increase by 33-46 cm within the next 100 years-notably in the southwestern part of Denmark. Increased storm intensity may enhance the impacts of this change in water level. Dikes protect about 1100...... km of the coastline and hard structures about 700 km. Soft solutions, especially beach nourishment, are increasingly used. So far direct planning for sea-level rise above the current secular rise has been modest and purely qualitative. The same applies to most new and upgraded coastal infrastructure...... of economic, sociological, and biological interests and options. The general strategy appears to be toward the preservation of a natural coastline, if necessary at the cost of land loss....

  17. Scientific Reticence and Sea Level Rise (Invited Talk)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansen, J. E.

    2015-12-01

    Caution is an essential ingredient in scientific investigations, as success in science depends on objective skepticism. In some cases a cultural resistance to scientific discovery has seemed to exist and there are other factors that can contribute to scientific reticence. In a case such as ice sheet instability and sea level rise there is a danger that excessive caution might serve to lock in future disasters. I discussed these issues almost a decade ago (in Environ. Res. Lett., 2, 024002, 2007, doi:10.1088/1748-9326/2/2/024002), but given all that has transpired since then, this topic has become even more relevant and urgent. I will discuss the status of this dilemma as I see it.

  18. Bayesian methods for model uncertainty analysis with application to future sea level rise

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Patwardhan, A.; Small, M.J.

    1992-01-01

    In no other area is the need for effective analysis of uncertainty more evident than in the problem of evaluating the consequences of increasing atmospheric concentrations of radiatively active gases. The major consequences of concern is global warming, with related environmental effects that include changes in local patterns of precipitation, soil moisture, forest and agricultural productivity, and a potential increase in global mean sea level. In order to identify an optimum set of responses to sea level change, a full characterization of the uncertainties associated with the predictions of future sea level rise is essential. The paper addresses the use of data for identifying and characterizing uncertainties in model parameters and predictions. The Bayesian Monte Carlo method is formally presented and elaborated, and applied to the analysis of the uncertainty in a predictive model for global mean sea level change.

  19. 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.

  20. Sea level rise projection in the South China Sea from CMIP5 models

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    HUANG Chuanjiang; QIAO Fangli

    2015-01-01

    Future potential sea level change in the South China Sea (SCS) is estimated by using 24 CMIP5 models under different representative concentration pathway (RCP) scenarios. By the end of the 21st century (2081–2100 relative to 1986–2005), the multimodel ensemble mean dynamic sea level (DSL) is projected to rise 0.9, 1.6, and 1.1 cm under RCP2.6, RCP4.5, and RCP8.5 scenarios, respectively, resulting in a total sea level rise (SLR) of 40.9, 48.6, and 64.1 cm in the SCS. It indicates that the SCS will experience a substantial SLR over the 21st century, and the rise is only marginal larger than the global mean SLR. During the same period, the steric sea level (SSL) rise is estimated to be 6.7, 10.0, and 15.3 cm under the three scenarios, respectively, which accounts only for 16%, 21% and 24% of the total SLR in this region. The changes of the SSL in the SCS are almost out of phase with those of the DSL for the three scenarios. The central deep basin has a slightly weak DSL rise, but a strong SSL rise during the 21st century, compared with the north and southwest shelves.

  1. Geologic effects and coastal vulnerability to sea-level rise, erosion, and storms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, S.J.; Gutierrez, B.T.; Thieler, E.R.; Pendleton, E.

    2008-01-01

    A combination of natural and human factors are driving coastal change and making coastal regions and populations increasingly vulnerable. Sea level, a major agent of coastal erosion, has varied greatly from -120 m below present during glacial period low-stands to + 4 to 6 m above present during interglacial warm periods. Geologic and tide gauge data show that global sea level has risen about 12 to 15 cm during the past century with satellite measurements indicating an acceleration since the early 1990s due to thermal expansion and ice-sheet melting. Land subsidence due to tectonic forces and sediment compaction in regions like the mid-Atlantic and Louisiana increase the rate of relative sea-level rise to 40 cm to 100 cm per century. Sea- level rise is predicted to accelerate significantly in the near future due to climate change, resulting in pervasive impacts to coastal regions and putting populations increasingly at risk. The full implications of climate change for coastal systems need to be understood better and long-term plans are needed to manage coasts in order to protect natural resources and mitigate the effects of sea-level rise and increased storms on human infrastructure. Copyright ASCE 2008.

  2. 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 evolut

  3. Impact of sea-level rise in a Mediteranean delta: The Ebro delta cast

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sánchez-Arcilla, A.; Stive, M.D.F.; Jiménez, J.A.; García, M.A.

    1993-01-01

    In anticipation of a comprehensive, multidisciplinary study on the impact of climatic change on the Ebro Delta preliminary results are here presented of the response of the outer delta coast to present and future relative sea-level rise. Due to the absence of observations and predictions of regional

  4. Vulnerability of coastal areas to sea-level rise: some global results

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hoozemans, F.M.J.; Marchand, M.; Pennekamp, H.; Misdorp, R.; Bijlsma, L.; Stive, M.J.F.

    1992-01-01

    Assessment of the vulnerability of the various resources of the world's coastal zones to an acceleration of sea-level rise (ASLR) and related climate change effects requires detailed global information on the distribution, density and state of the resources and on the impacting hazardous events. For

  5. Impact of sea-level rise in a Mediteranean delta: The Ebro delta cast

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sánchez-Arcilla, A.; Stive, M.D.F.; Jiménez, J.A.; García, M.A.

    1993-01-01

    In anticipation of a comprehensive, multidisciplinary study on the impact of climatic change on the Ebro Delta preliminary results are here presented of the response of the outer delta coast to present and future relative sea-level rise. Due to the absence of observations and predictions of regional

  6. 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.

  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. 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

  9. Building Stories about Sea Level Rise through Interactive Visualizations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephens, S. H.; DeLorme, D. E.; Hagen, S. C.

    2013-12-01

    Digital media provide storytellers with dynamic new tools for communicating about scientific issues via interactive narrative visualizations. While traditional storytelling uses plot, characterization, and point of view to engage audiences with underlying themes and messages, interactive visualizations can be described as 'narrative builders' that promote insight through the process of discovery (Dove, G. & Jones, S. 2012, Proc. IHCI 2012). Narrative visualizations are used in online journalism to tell complex stories that allow readers to select aspects of datasets to explore and construct alternative interpretations of information (Segel, E. & Heer, J. 2010, IEEE Trans. Vis. Comp. Graph.16, 1139), thus enabling them to participate in the story-building process. Nevertheless, narrative visualizations also incorporate author-selected narrative elements that help guide and constrain the overall themes and messaging of the visualization (Hullman, J. & Diakopoulos, N. 2011, IEEE Trans. Vis. Comp. Graph. 17, 2231). One specific type of interactive narrative visualization that is used for science communication is the sea level rise (SLR) viewer. SLR viewers generally consist of a base map, upon which projections of sea level rise scenarios can be layered, and various controls for changing the viewpoint and scenario parameters. They are used to communicate the results of scientific modeling and help readers visualize the potential impacts of SLR on the coastal zone. Readers can use SLR viewers to construct personal narratives of the effects of SLR under different scenarios in locations that are important to them, thus extending the potential reach and impact of scientific research. With careful selection of narrative elements that guide reader interpretation, the communicative aspects of these visualizations may be made more effective. This presentation reports the results of a content analysis of a subset of existing SLR viewers selected in order to comprehensively

  10. Modeling storm and sea level rise impacts on marsh transgression

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carr, J. A.; Guntenspergen, G. R.; Kirwan, M. L.

    2016-12-01

    Coastal salt marsh systems provide critical ecosystem services, including key habitat and coastal protection. Both lateral extent, and vertical stability of salt marshes to sea level rise have been shown to be functions of both biotic, and abiotic drivers and feedbacks. As a result, the ecogeomorphic evolution of the system can exhibit strong non-linearities, discontinuities and thresholds. We developed a two-dimensional transect model to explore controls on marsh lateral extent, vertical stability and the potential for marsh transgression inland and upland. Salt marsh and upland regions in the model are discretized in 1 m increments with inundation frequency determined by the elevation of the individual cells, organogenic soil formation and mineral deposition rates, and the history of stochastic water levels. The transect extends from an idealized back barrier bay across the salt marsh platform and into the upland forest and is forced with auto and cross correlated synthetic stochastic wind speed, wind direction and water levels. The model incorporates key feedbacks between fetch, wave growth and subsequent lateral erosion rates and sediment supply to the marsh platform. Deposition of mineral sediment from the bay and/or internal ponds onto the marsh platform cells is dependent both on the inundation frequency and distance from a marsh edge. For each element along the transect, a Markov chain successional model was implemented that considers six distinct states, grass/saltmarsh, seedling, sapling, tree, dead standing tree, and bare. A non-static transition probability matrix, dependent on both inundation of the element and the prior vegetation state, was used in order to allow for feedbacks, both positive and negative, among different vegetation states and environmental drivers. The model was used to examine the qualitative behavior of the coupled systems under varied rates of sea level rise, external sediment supply, wind and storm statistics, tidal range, upland

  11. Glacial Isostatic Adjustment and Contemporary Sea Level Rise: An Overview

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spada, Giorgio

    2017-01-01

    Glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA) encompasses a suite of geophysical phenomena accompanying the waxing and waning of continental-scale ice sheets. These involve the solid Earth, the oceans and the cryosphere both on short (decade to century) and on long (millennia) timescales. In the framework of contemporary sea-level change, the role of GIA is particular. In fact, among the processes significantly contributing to contemporary sea-level change, GIA is the only one for which deformational, gravitational and rotational effects are simultaneously operating, and for which the rheology of the solid Earth is essential. Here, I review the basic elements of the GIA theory, emphasizing the connections with current sea-level changes observed by tide gauges and altimetry. This purpose is met discussing the nature of the "sea-level equation" (SLE), which represents the basis for modeling the sea-level variations of glacial isostatic origin, also giving access to a full set of geodetic variations associated with GIA. Here, the SLE is employed to characterize the remarkable geographical variability of the GIA-induced sea-level variations, which are often expressed in terms of "fingerprints". Using harmonic analysis, the spatial variability of the GIA fingerprints is compared to that of other components of contemporary sea-level change. In closing, some attention is devoted to the importance of the "GIA corrections" in the context of modern sea-level observations, based on tide gauges or satellite altimeters.

  12. Glacial Isostatic Adjustment and Contemporary Sea Level Rise: An Overview

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spada, Giorgio

    2016-08-01

    Glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA) encompasses a suite of geophysical phenomena accompanying the waxing and waning of continental-scale ice sheets. These involve the solid Earth, the oceans and the cryosphere both on short (decade to century) and on long (millennia) timescales. In the framework of contemporary sea-level change, the role of GIA is particular. In fact, among the processes significantly contributing to contemporary sea-level change, GIA is the only one for which deformational, gravitational and rotational effects are simultaneously operating, and for which the rheology of the solid Earth is essential. Here, I review the basic elements of the GIA theory, emphasizing the connections with current sea-level changes observed by tide gauges and altimetry. This purpose is met discussing the nature of the "sea-level equation" (SLE), which represents the basis for modeling the sea-level variations of glacial isostatic origin, also giving access to a full set of geodetic variations associated with GIA. Here, the SLE is employed to characterize the remarkable geographical variability of the GIA-induced sea-level variations, which are often expressed in terms of "fingerprints". Using harmonic analysis, the spatial variability of the GIA fingerprints is compared to that of other components of contemporary sea-level change. In closing, some attention is devoted to the importance of the "GIA corrections" in the context of modern sea-level observations, based on tide gauges or satellite altimeters.

  13. Compounding effects of sea level rise and fluvial flooding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moftakhari, Hamed R; Salvadori, Gianfausto; AghaKouchak, Amir; Sanders, Brett F; Matthew, Richard A

    2017-09-12

    Sea level rise (SLR), a well-documented and urgent aspect of anthropogenic global warming, threatens population and assets located in low-lying coastal regions all around the world. Common flood hazard assessment practices typically account for one driver at a time (e.g., either fluvial flooding only or ocean flooding only), whereas coastal cities vulnerable to SLR are at risk for flooding from multiple drivers (e.g., extreme coastal high tide, storm surge, and river flow). Here, we propose a bivariate flood hazard assessment approach that accounts for compound flooding from river flow and coastal water level, and we show that a univariate approach may not appropriately characterize the flood hazard if there are compounding effects. Using copulas and bivariate dependence analysis, we also quantify the increases in failure probabilities for 2030 and 2050 caused by SLR under representative concentration pathways 4.5 and 8.5. Additionally, the increase in failure probability is shown to be strongly affected by compounding effects. The proposed failure probability method offers an innovative tool for assessing compounding flood hazards in a warming climate.

  14. Synthesizing long-term sea level rise projections - the MAGICC sea level model v2.0

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nauels, Alexander; Meinshausen, Malte; Mengel, Matthias; Lorbacher, Katja; Wigley, Tom M. L.

    2017-06-01

    Sea level rise (SLR) is one of the major impacts of global warming; it will threaten coastal populations, infrastructure, and ecosystems around the globe in coming centuries. Well-constrained sea level projections are needed to estimate future losses from SLR and benefits of climate protection and adaptation. Process-based models that are designed to resolve the underlying physics of individual sea level drivers form the basis for state-of-the-art sea level projections. However, associated computational costs allow for only a small number of simulations based on selected scenarios that often vary for different sea level components. This approach does not sufficiently support sea level impact science and climate policy analysis, which require a sea level projection methodology that is flexible with regard to the climate scenario yet comprehensive and bound by the physical constraints provided by process-based models. To fill this gap, we present a sea level model that emulates global-mean long-term process-based model projections for all major sea level components. Thermal expansion estimates are calculated with the hemispheric upwelling-diffusion ocean component of the simple carbon-cycle climate model MAGICC, which has been updated and calibrated against CMIP5 ocean temperature profiles and thermal expansion data. Global glacier contributions are estimated based on a parameterization constrained by transient and equilibrium process-based projections. Sea level contribution estimates for Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets are derived from surface mass balance and solid ice discharge parameterizations reproducing current output from ice-sheet models. The land water storage component replicates recent hydrological modeling results. For 2100, we project 0.35 to 0.56 m (66 % range) total SLR based on the RCP2.6 scenario, 0.45 to 0.67 m for RCP4.5, 0.46 to 0.71 m for RCP6.0, and 0.65 to 0.97 m for RCP8.5. These projections lie within the range of the latest IPCC SLR

  15. A Bayesian network to predict vulnerability to sea-level rise: data report

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gutierrez, Benjamin T.; Plant, Nathaniel G.; Thieler, E. Robert

    2011-01-01

    During the 21st century, sea-level rise is projected to have a wide range of effects on coastal environments, development, and infrastructure. Consequently, there has been an increased focus on developing modeling or other analytical approaches to evaluate potential impacts to inform coastal management. This report provides the data that were used to develop and evaluate the performance of a Bayesian network designed to predict long-term shoreline change due to sea-level rise. The data include local rates of relative sea-level rise, wave height, tide range, geomorphic classification, coastal slope, and shoreline-change rate compiled as part of the U.S. Geological Survey Coastal Vulnerability Index for the U.S. Atlantic coast. In this project, the Bayesian network is used to define relationships among driving forces, geologic constraints, and coastal responses. Using this information, the Bayesian network is used to make probabilistic predictions of shoreline change in response to different future sea-level-rise scenarios.

  16. GIS analysis of effects of future Baltic sea level rise on the island of Gotland, Sweden

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ebert, Karin; Ekstedt, Karin; Jarsjö, Jerker

    2016-07-01

    Future sea level rise as a consequence of global warming will affect the world's coastal regions. Even though the pace of sea level rise is not clear, the consequences will be severe and global. Commonly the effects of future sea level rise are investigated for relatively vulnerable development countries; however, a whole range of varying regions needs to be considered in order to improve the understanding of global consequences. In this paper we investigate consequences of future sea level rise along the coast of the Baltic Sea island of Gotland, Sweden, with the aim to fill knowledge gaps regarding comparatively well-suited areas in developed countries. We study both the quantity of the loss of features of infrastructure, cultural, and natural value in the case of a 2 m sea level rise of the Baltic Sea and the effects of climate change on seawater intrusion in coastal aquifers, which indirectly cause saltwater intrusion in wells. We conduct a multi-criteria risk analysis by using lidar data on land elevation and GIS-vulnerability mapping, which gives the application of distance and elevation parameters formerly unimaginable precision. We find that in case of a 2 m sea level rise, 3 % of the land area of Gotland, corresponding to 99 km2, will be inundated. The features most strongly affected are items of touristic or nature value, including camping places, shore meadows, sea stack areas, and endangered plants and species habitats. In total, 231 out of 7354 wells will be directly inundated, and the number of wells in the high-risk zone for saltwater intrusion in wells will increase considerably. Some valuable features will be irreversibly lost due to, for example, inundation of sea stacks and the passing of tipping points for seawater intrusion into coastal aquifers; others might simply be moved further inland, but this requires considerable economic means and prioritization. With nature tourism being one of the main income sources of Gotland, monitoring and

  17. Simulating reef response to sea-level rise at Lizard Island: A geospatial approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamylton, S. M.; Leon, J. X.; Saunders, M. I.; Woodroffe, C. D.

    2014-10-01

    at a rate commensurate with the rate of rise, thereby maintaining their original profile and position relative to the sea surface and the leeward and lagoonal sites with a low accretion rate maintain a similar profile but slowly gain depth relative to sea-level. The result of this variable response is that elevated features of the reef platform, such as reef patches and crests tend to become more pronounced.

  18. Vulnerability assessment of southern coastal areas of Iran to sea level rise: evaluation of climate change impact

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hamid Goharnejad

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Recent investigations have demonstrated global sea level rise as being due to climate change impact. Probable changes in sea level rise need to be evaluated so that appropriate adaptive strategies can be implemented. This study evaluates the impact of climate change on sea level rise along the Iranian south coast. Climatic data simulated by a GCM (General Circulation Model named CGCM3 under two-climate change scenarios A1b and A2 are used to investigate the impact of climate change. Among the different variables simulated by this model, those of maximum correlation with sea level changes in the study region and least redundancy among themselves are selected for predicting sea level rise by using stepwise regression. Two Discrete Wavelet artificial Neural Network (DWNN models and a Discrete Wavelet Adaptive Neuro-Fuzzy Inference system (DWANFIS are developed to explore the relationship between selected climatic variables and sea level changes. In these models, wavelets are used to disaggregate the time series of input and output data into different components. ANFIS/ANN are then used to relate the disaggregated components of predictors and predictand (sea level to each other. The results show a significant rise in sea level in the study region under climate change impact, which should be incorporated into coastal area management.

  19. Island abandonment and sea-level rise: an historical analog from the Chesapeake Bay, USA

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gibbons, S.J.A. [Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo (Canada). Dept. of Geography and Enivronmental Studies; Nicholls, R.J. [University of Southampton (United Kingdom). School of Civil Engineering

    2006-02-15

    Small islands are widely agreed to be vulnerable to human-induced sea-level rise during the 21st century and beyond, with forced abandonment of some low-lying oceanic islands being a real possibility. A regional abandonment of islands in the Chesapeake Bay, USA provides an historical analog of such vulnerability as this has been linked to a mid 19th Century acceleration in relative sea-level rise. Using a case study approach for Holland Island, Maryland, this hypothesis was tested using a range of physical and human historical data. While sea-level rise was the underlying driver, this analysis shows that the abandonment was more complex than a direct response to sea-level rise. Between 1850 and 1900, Holland Island was a booming community and population increased from 37 to 253, with immigration causing the majority of the increase. At the same time, the upland area where people made their homes was steadily diminishing, losing about 15 ha or 38% of the total. After 1900, the island experienced a decrease in population to 169 in 1916, with final abandonment in 1918, with the exception of one family who left by 1920. Final abandonment was triggered by this depopulation as the population fell below a level that could support critical community services, and the community lost faith in their future on Holland Island. It is likely that similar social processes determined the abandonment of the other Chesapeake Bay islands. Looking to the future, it shows that many small low-lying islands could be abandoned due to sea-level rise long before they become physically uninhabitable. (author)

  20. Conceptual framework for assessing the response of delta channel networks to Holocene sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jerolmack, Douglas J.

    2009-08-01

    Recent research has identified two fundamental unit processes that build delta distributary channels. The first is mouth-bar deposition at the shoreline and subsequent channel bifurcation, which is driven by progradation of the shoreline; the second is avulsion to a new channel, a result of aggradation of the delta topset. The former creates relatively small, branching networks such as Wax Lake Delta; the latter generates relatively few, long distributaries such as the Mississippi and Atchafalaya channels on the Mississippi Delta. The relative rate of progradation to aggradation, and hence the creation of accommodation space, emerges as a controlling parameter on channel network form. Field and experimental research has identified sea level as the dominant control on Holocene delta growth worldwide, and has empirically linked channel network changes to changes in the rate of sea level rise. Here I outline a simple modeling framework for distributary network evolution, and use this to explore large-scale changes in Holocene channel pattern that have been observed in deltas such as the Rhine-Meuse and Mississippi. Rapid early- to mid-Holocene sea level rise forced many deltas into an aggradational mode, where I hypothesize that avulsion and the generation of large-scale branches should dominate. Slowing of sea level rise in the last ˜6000 yr allowed partitioning of sediment into progradation, facilitating the growth of smaller-scale distributary trees at the shorelines of some deltas, and a reduction in the number of large-scale branches. Significant antecedent topography modulates delta response; the filling of large incised valleys, for example, caused many deltas to bypass the aggradational phase. Human effects on deltas can be cast in terms of geologic controls affecting accommodation: constriction of channels forces rapid local progradation and mouth-bar bifurcation, while accelerated sea level rise increases aggradation and induces more frequent channel

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

    OpenAIRE

    Perrette, M.; F. Landerer; Riva, R.; Frieler, K.; Meinshausen, M.

    2013-01-01

    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 region...

  2. Sea Level Rise Projections for DSL-SAMBI

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior — This dataset is output from the Sea Level Affecting Marshes Model (SLAMM) for the South Atlantic Migratory Bird Initiative (SAMBI) geographic planning region. It...

  3. Thermosteric Sea Level Rise Projections with Parametric Uncertainty

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior — These files contain spatial fields of simulated yearly thermosteric sea-level anomalies between 1951-2100 (referenced to year 1800) from a perturbed physics ensemble...

  4. A prediction of sea level rising amplitude in 2030 and defen-sive countermeasures in the Zhujiang delta

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2001-01-01

    By analysing comprehensively the factors such as theoretical sealevel, abnormal fluctuation of sea level, rising amplitude of floodtide water level and land deformation, a rising amplitude of 22-33 cm of relative sea level by the year of 2030 is forecasted in the Zhujiang Delta. From the forecasted amplitude of 30 cm, using hydraulic and hydrometric models the scope influenced by sea level rise is delimited and the reappearing periods of floodtide water level, protecting ability of embankments, design parameters of water conservancy project, drain waterlogging, saline intrusion, resource of mud beach and comprehensive prevention measures are discussed.

  5. 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

  6. Using environmental heterogeneity to plan for sea-level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunter, Elizabeth A; Nibbelink, Nathan P

    2017-02-27

    Environmental heterogeneity is increasingly being used to select conservation areas that will provide for future biodiversity under a variety of climate scenarios. This approach, termed conserving nature's stage (CNS), assumes environmental features respond to climate change more slowly than biological communities, but will CNS be effective if the stage were to change as rapidly as the climate? We tested the effectiveness of using CNS to select sites in salt marshes for conservation in coastal Georgia (U.S.A.), where environmental features will change rapidly as sea level rises. We calculated species diversity based on distributions of 7 bird species with a variety of niches in Georgia salt marshes. Environmental heterogeneity was assessed across six landscape gradients (e.g., elevation, salinity, and patch area). We used 2 approaches to select sites with high environmental heterogeneity: site complementarity (environmental diversity [ED]) and local environmental heterogeneity (environmental richness [ER]). Sites selected based on ER predicted present-day species diversity better than randomly selected sites (up to an 8.1% improvement), were resilient to areal loss from SLR (1.0% average areal loss by 2050 compared with 0.9% loss of randomly selected sites), and provided habitat to a threatened species (0.63 average occupancy compared with 0.6 average occupancy of randomly selected sites). Sites selected based on ED predicted species diversity no better or worse than random and were not resilient to SLR (2.9% average areal loss by 2050). Despite the discrepancy between the 2 approaches, CNS is a viable strategy for conservation site selection in salt marshes because the ER approach was successful. It has potential for application in other coastal areas where SLR will affect environmental features, but its performance may depend on the magnitude of geological changes caused by SLR. Our results indicate that conservation planners that had heretofore excluded low

  7. Reassessment of 20th century global mean sea level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dangendorf, Sönke; Marcos, Marta; Wöppelmann, Guy; Conrad, Clinton P; Frederikse, Thomas; Riva, Riccardo

    2017-06-06

    The rate at which global mean sea level (GMSL) rose during the 20th century is uncertain, with little consensus between various reconstructions that indicate rates of rise ranging from 1.3 to 2 mm⋅y(-1) Here we present a 20th-century GMSL reconstruction computed using an area-weighting technique for averaging tide gauge records that both incorporates up-to-date observations of vertical land motion (VLM) and corrections for local geoid changes resulting from ice melting and terrestrial freshwater storage and allows for the identification of possible differences compared with earlier attempts. Our reconstructed GMSL trend of 1.1 ± 0.3 mm⋅y(-1) (1σ) before 1990 falls below previous estimates, whereas our estimate of 3.1 ± 1.4 mm⋅y(-1) from 1993 to 2012 is consistent with independent estimates from satellite altimetry, leading to overall acceleration larger than previously suggested. This feature is geographically dominated by the Indian Ocean-Southern Pacific region, marking a transition from lower-than-average rates before 1990 toward unprecedented high rates in recent decades. We demonstrate that VLM corrections, area weighting, and our use of a common reference datum for tide gauges may explain the lower rates compared with earlier GMSL estimates in approximately equal proportion. The trends and multidecadal variability of our GMSL curve also compare well to the sum of individual contributions obtained from historical outputs of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5. This, in turn, increases our confidence in process-based projections presented in the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

  8. Spatial variations of sea-level rise and impacts: an application of DIVA

    OpenAIRE

    Brown, S; Nicholls, R.J.; Lowe, J A; Hinkel, J.

    2013-01-01

    Due to complexities of creating sea-level rise scenarios, impacts of climate-induced sea-level rise are often produced from a limited number of models assuming a global uniform rise in sea level. A greater number of models, including those with a pattern reflecting regional variations would help to assure reliability and a range of projections, indicating where models agree and disagree. This paper determines how nine new patterned-scaled sea-level rise scenarios (plus the uniform and pattern...

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

    OpenAIRE

    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...

  10. ATLANTIC - Coastal Vulnerability to Sea-Level Rise: A Preliminary Database for the U.S. Atlantic Coast

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior — The goal of this project is to provide a preliminary overview, at a National scale, the relative susceptibility of the Nation's coast to sea-level rise through the...

  11. ATLANTIC - Coastal Vulnerability to Sea-Level Rise: A Preliminary Database for the U.S. Atlantic Coast

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior — The goal of this project is to provide a preliminary overview, at a National scale, the relative susceptibility of the Nation's coast to sea-level rise through the...

  12. Sea Level Rise Impacts on Precipitation-Induced Flooding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buzzanga, B. A.

    2016-12-01

    Global sea level rise (SLR) is one of the most immediate impacts of climate change, and poses a significant threat to low-lying coastal communities worldwide. The metropolitan region of Hampton Roads in Southeastern Virginia is one such community, and one where knowledge surrounding SLR is rapidly accumulating. However, most of the research is focused exclusively on surface water processes despite the presence of a shallow groundwater table closely connected to them. SLR will continue to cause the groundwater table to increase in tidally influenced areas of Hampton Road, and thereby decrease storage capacity of the unsaturated zone (UZ). This study investigates how reduced unsaturated storage changes the rainfall-runoff relationship and the resulting areal-flood hazard spectrum. We choose a tidal watershed in Hampton Roads to conduct a conceptual yet realistic simulation of the hydrologic cycle using ten years of historical precipitation data with SLR scenarios from 0 m (current) to 2 m in 0.3048 m intervals. Groundwater infiltration from the land surface, recharge, and evapotranspiration are simulated using the Unsaturated-Zone Flow package with MODFLOW-NWT.Groundwater rise is simulated by increasing the stage of the tidal stream that drains the watershed. Precipitation and overland runoff are simulated using the surface water model SWMM. The two models are coupled to permit the exchange of boundary condition values at each time step. An ensemble approach is taken to test model sensitivity to parameters configurations and determine the contribution of SLR to runoff generation. The primary result of this study quantifies the relationship between SLR and runoff which enables decision makers to more effectively plan for, minimize risk of, and adapt to flooding hazards. This investigation also assesses how water content in the UZ changes in response to precipitation for different SLR scenarios. This result has widespread importance, such as decisions in crop choice or

  13. Sea-level rise induced amplification of coastal protection design heights

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arns, Arne; Dangendorf, Sönke; Jensen, Jürgen; Bender, Jens; Talke, Stefan; Pattiaratchi, Charitha

    2017-04-01

    Coastal protection design heights typically consider the superimposed effects of tides, surges, waves, and relative sea-level rise (SLR), neglecting non-linear feedbacks between these forcing factors. Here, we use hydrodynamic modelling and multivariate statistics to show that shallow coastal areas are extremely sensitive to changing non-linear interactions between individual components caused by SLR. As sea-level increases, the depth-limitation of waves relaxes, resulting in waves with larger periods, greater amplitudes, and higher run-up; moreover, depth and frictional changes affect tide, surge, and wave characteristics, altering the relative importance of other risk factors. Consequently, sea-level driven changes in wave characteristics, and to a lesser extent, tides, amplify the resulting design heights by an average of 48-56%, relative to design changes caused by SLR alone. Since many of the world's most vulnerable coastlines are impacted by depth-limited waves, our results suggest that the overall influence of SLR may be greatly underestimated in many regions. Reference: Arns, A.; Dangendorf, S., Jensen, J., Talke, S., Bender, J., Pattiaratchi, C.: Sea-level rise induced amplification of coastal protection design heights. Sci. Rep. 6, 40171; doi: 10.1038/srep40171 (2016).

  14. Sea-level Rise Impacts on Hudson River Marshes and their Vegetation Zonation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hooks, A.; Nitsche, F. O.

    2016-12-01

    Rising sea levels may cause tidal marshes to be vulnerable to submergence and affect their ability to perform ecosystem services. However, tidal marshes are dynamic ecosystems that can adapt to sea-level rise through inland migration and vertical growth. This study examines how four tidal marshes on the Hudson River (Piermont Marsh, Iona Island Marsh, Tivoli Bays, and Stockport Flats) would be affected by 0.5m, 1m, and 1.5m of sea-level rise by 2100. Using high-resolution LiDAR elevation data and vegetation data, we mapped sea-level rise projections in GIS, accounting for current accretion rates unique to each marsh. We calculated the submerged area of each marsh and analyzed how vegetation zonation in each marsh is expected to change due to rising sea levels. We found that the steep topography of the Hudson River banks limits the marshes' ability to migrate inland, emphasizing the role of elevation-building processes in adaptation. The marshes studied would experience minimal to no inundation under lower rates of sea-level rise such as 0.5m by 2100. At higher projected rates of sea-level rise (1.5m by 2100), Piermont Marsh and Tivoli Bays would experience significant inundation while Iona Island marsh and Stockport Flats would be less affected. Overall, Stockport Flats is projected to be the marsh most resilient to sea-level rise due to its higher accretion rate and its topography. Rising sea levels are also expected to change the areas of vegetation zones, with upland, high marsh, and mid marsh zones generally declining in area and with subtidal and low marsh vegetation zones generally expanding under high rates of sea-level rise. Understanding the impacts of sea-level rise on Hudson River marshes enables long-term planning to adapt to potential changes in marsh ecosystem services and could motivate and inform conservation efforts.

  15. Sea Level Rise and Land Subsidence Contributions to the Signals from the Tide Gauges of China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parker, Albert

    2016-06-01

    The tide gauges measure the local oscillations of the sea level vs. the tide gauge instrument. The tide gauge instrument is generally subjected to the general subsidence or uplift of the nearby inland, plus some additional subsidence for land compaction and other localised phenomena. The paper proposes a non-linear model of the relative sea level oscillations including a long term trend for the absolute sea level rise, another term for the subsidence of the instrument, and finally a sinusoidal approximation for the cyclic oscillations of periodicities up to decades. This non-linear model is applied to the tide gauges of China. The paper shows that the limited information available for China does not permit to infer any proper trend for the relative rates of rise, as the tide gauge records are all short or incomplete and the vertical movement of the tide gauge instruments is unassessed. The only tide gauge record of sufficient length that may be assembled for China is obtained by combining the North Point and Quarry Bay tide gauges in Hong Kong (NPQB). This NQPB composite tide gauge record is shown to have similarities with the tide gauge records of Sydney, equally in the West pacific, and San Diego, in the east Pacific, oscillating about the longer term trend mostly determined by the local subsidence. As it is very well known that China generally suffers of land subsidence, and the tide gauge installations may suffer of additional subsidence vs. the inland, it may be concluded from the analysis of the other worldwide tide gauges that the sea levels of China are very likely rising about the same amount of the subsidence of the tide gauges, with the sea level acceleration component still negligible.

  16. Coastal vulnerability assessment of the Northern Gulf of Mexico to sea-level rise and coastal change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pendleton, E.A.; Barras, J.A.; Williams, S.J.; Twichell, D.C.

    2010-01-01

    A coastal vulnerability index (CVI) was used to map the relative vulnerability of the coast to future sea-level rise along the Northern Gulf of Mexico from Galveston, TX, to Panama City, FL. The CVI ranks the following in terms of their physical contribution to sea-level rise-related coastal change: geomorphology, regional coastal slope, rate of relative sea-level rise, historical shoreline change rate, mean tidal range, and mean significant wave height. The rankings for each variable are combined and an index value is calculated for 1-kilometer grid cells along the coast. The CVI highlights those regions where the physical effects of sea-level rise might be the greatest. The CVI assessment presented here builds on an earlier assessment conducted for the Gulf of Mexico. Recent higher resolution shoreline change, land loss, elevation, and subsidence data provide the foundation for a better assessment for the Northern Gulf of Mexico. The areas along the Northern Gulf of Mexico that are likely to be most vulnerable to sea-level rise are parts of the Louisiana Chenier Plain, Teche-Vermillion Basin, and the Mississippi barrier islands, as well as most of the Terrebonne and Barataria Bay region and the Chandeleur Islands. These very high vulnerability areas have the highest rates of relative sea-level rise and the highest rates of shoreline change or land area loss. The information provided by coastal vulnerability assessments can be used in long-term coastal management and policy decision making.

  17. 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

  18. Tidal regime deformation by sea level rise along the coast of the Mekong Delta

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nhan, Nguyen Huu

    2016-12-01

    The future of river deltas is believed to depend mainly on sea level rise (SLR) and on the processes controlling the adaptation of the substrate to human impacts. The deltas are increasingly deprived of riverine sediment by river diversion, dams, dykes and the destruction of wetlands, and they are often sinking due to mining for groundwater, gas and petroleum. The relative sea level rise is causing severe negative impacts in many river deltas worldwide. With continuously rising sea levels, this impact is expected to increase over time. The increased risk of delta flooding caused by tidal deformation associated with SLR in shallow coastal waters has received less attention. In this study, we demonstrate this effect for the case of the Mekong Delta where this study suggests that the maximum tidal water level and the tidal amplitude are increasing while the tidal phase at the coast is decreasing. In addition, the maximum water levels is rising faster than SLR because the tides themselves are modified by SLR. This effect is particularly pronounced for semi-diurnal tides and less so for diurnal tides. Similar effects may prevail for river deltas with extensive shallow coastal waters elsewhere in the world and deserve further investigation.

  19. Evaluating uncertainties of future marine flooding occurrence as sea-level rises

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Le Cozannet, Gonéri; Rohmer, Jeremy; Cazenave, Anny; Idier, Déborah; van de Wal, Roderik|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/101899556; de Winter, Renske|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/341476935; Pedreros, Rodrigo; Balouin, Yann; Vinchon, Charlotte; Oliveros, Carlos

    2015-01-01

    As sea-level rises, the frequency of coastal marine flooding events is changing. For accurate assessments, several other factors must be considered as well, such as the variability of sea-level rise and storm surge patterns. Here, a global sensitivity analysis is used to provide quantitative insight

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

    . Increases in shoreline recession and associated coastal flooding that would occur are predicted which indicated that a future sea level rise will bring about extensive land use changes in the region and in the coming decades sea level rise may become one...

  2. Investigating the environmental and socioeconomic impacts of sea level rise in the Galveston Bay, Texas region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Subedee, M.; Dotson, M.; Gibeaut, J. C.

    2016-02-01

    Anthropogenic effects throughout the twenty-first century, particularly greenhouse gas emissions, have contributed to global climatic and environmental changes. Sea level rise (SLR) is one of these changes which is occurring along the Texas Coast and is amplified by land subsidence. SLR along the northern Texas coast is impacting sensitive coastal environments as well as human populations, and industries and infrastructure supporting those populations. Sea level data from the NOAA gauge at Galveston Pier 21 has shown an increase of 2.08 feet in relative sea level in 100 years. Given an expected increase in the rate of sea level rise in the next decades, the purpose of this study is to provide an in-depth assessment on the effects of relative sea level rise on the habitat distribution of highly valuable coastal wetlands in the Galveston Bay region. This study also focuses on projecting the potential socioeconomic losses due to coastal flooding that is amplified by SLR in the region. In this study, three SLR scenarios are modeled: a scenario based on a linear extrapolation of satellite altimetry data (0.21 m by 2100); the IPCC's RCP8.5 mean scenario (0.74 m by 2100); and a high-end scenario (1.8 m by 2100) as proposed by Jevrejeva et al. (2014). A land subsidence rate calculated by developing a subsidence grid using GPS-measured subsidence monitoring and releveling data is added to all these scenarios. The Sea Level Affecting Marshes Model (SLAMM) is used to predict wetland conversion due to long-term SLR incorporating the processes of inundation, erosion, accretion, overwash, and saturation. Similarly, HAZUS-MH is used to evaluate the property damage to building stocks and the direct business interruption losses due to flooding caused by 100-year flood event scenario with three SLR scenarios. This coordinated research effort to assess the physical, environmental and policy impacts due to SLR is intended to enable policy-makers, managers, and the general public to

  3. Tidal Level Response to Sea-Level Rise in the Yangtze Estuary

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    GONG Zheng; ZHANG Chang-kuan; WAN Li-ming; ZUO Jun-cheng

    2012-01-01

    The rise of tidal level in tidal reaches induced by sea-level rise has a large impact on flood control and water supply for the regions around the estuary.This paper focuses on the variations of tidal level response along the tidal reaches in the Yangtze Estuary,as well as the impacts of upstream discharge on tidal level response,due to the sea-level rise of the East China Sea.Based on the Topex/Poseidon altimeter data obtained during the period 1993~2005,a stochastic dynamic analysis was performed and a forecast model was run to predict the sea-level rise of the East China Sea.Two-dimensional hydrodynamic numerical models downscaling from the East China Sea to estuarine areas were implemented to analyze the rise of tidal level along the tidal reaches.In response to the sea-level rise,the tidal wave characteristics change slightly in nearshore areas outside the estuaries,involving the tidal range and the duration of flood and ebb tide.The results show that the rise of tidal level in the tidal reaches due to the sea-level rise has upstream decreasing trends.The step between the stations of Zhangjiagang and Shiyiwei divides the tidal reaches into two parts,in which the tidal level response declines slightly.The rise of tidal level is 1~2.5 mm/a in the upper part,and 4~6 mm/a in the lower part.The stations of Jiangyin and Yanglin,as an example of the upper part and the lower part respectively,are extracted to analyze the impacts of upstream discharge on tidal level response to the sea-level rise.The relation between the rise of tidal level and the upstream discharge can be fitted well with a quadratic function in the upper part.However,the relation is too complicated to be fitted in the lower part because of the tide dominance.For comparison purposes,hourly tidal level observations at the stations of Xuliujing and Yanglin during the period 1993~2009 are adopted.In order to uniform the influence of upstream discharge on tidal level for a certain day each year

  4. An increase in the rate of global mean sea level rise since 2010

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yi, Shuang; Sun, Wenke; Heki, Kosuke; Qian, An

    2015-05-01

    The global mean sea level (GMSL) was reported to have dropped 5 mm due to the 2010/2011 La Niña and have recovered in 1 year. With longer observations, it is shown that the GMSL went further up to a total amount of 11.6 mm by the end of 2012, excluding the 3.0 mm/yr background trend. A reconciled sea level budget, based on observations by Argo project, altimeter, and gravity satellites, reveals that the true GMSL rise has been masked by El Niño-Southern Oscillation-related fluctuations and its rate has increased since 2010. After extracting the influence of land water storage, it is shown that the GMSL has been rising at a rate of 4.4 ± 0.5 mm/yr for more than 3 years, due to an increase in the rate of both land ice loss and steric change.

  5. Development of a Bayesian Network to Evaluate Sea-Level Rise Impacts for Decision Making

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gutierrez, B. T.; Plant, N.; Thieler, E. R.; Williams, S. J.; Cahoon, D. R.; Gesch, D.; Guntenspergen, G.; Masterson, J.

    2008-12-01

    Improving the ability to predict future sea-level rise effects on coasts is a major challenge. For example, predicting changes in shoreline position and land loss resulting from erosion and wetland losses, or the effects of seawater intrusion into coastal groundwater systems is difficult due to the complexity of coastal systems. This complexity arises from the wide range of variables and related feedbacks that influence responses to rising sea level. In addition to sea-level rise, there are large uncertainties in predictions of future climate conditions (e.g., storms, temperature, rainfall) that drive the relevant physical and biological processes. Applying a probabilistic approach to evaluate coastal environments seems promising. Here a Bayesian statistical framework that incorporates a wide range of geologic, biologic and hydrologic information about coastal systems, and related uncertainties in physical and process characterizations is developed and used to make probabilistic predictions of the future state of coastal environments. Inputs to the prediction include datasets that provide information regarding the initial states of coastal systems, relevant forcing factors, historical observations, and idealized model simulations. Competing hypotheses for the forcing are used to drive the model and resulting response scenarios and their uncertainties are compared. Initial results from the U.S. mid-Atlantic coastal region are presented and can be used to highlight relationships between forcing factors and response scenarios. The results from this analysis can also be used to prioritize the research needed to reduce uncertainty. In addition, the Bayesian approach also provides a framework to engage decision makers and helps users define and address specific management questions about alternatives for adapting to sea-level rise.

  6. Stepped Holocene sea-level rise and its influence on sedimentation in a large marine embayment: Maputo Bay, Mozambique

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Lecea, A. M.; Green, A. N.; Strachan, K. L.; Cooper, J. A. G.; Wiles, E. A.

    2017-07-01

    The sedimentary record in large marine embayments holds important information on Holocene environmental and sea-level changes. This paper investigates the evolution of a large subtropical marine embayment, Maputo Bay, in southern Mozambique. Using a combination of sediment cores, stable isotope data, seismic reflection profiling and 14C dating, we show complex back-barrier changes during the Holocene and link these to stepped rises in sea level. Our data reveal a sea-level ;slowstand; followed by an abrupt rise that we correlate with the 8.2 ka global rise in sea level. Sedimentological, isotope and seismic evidence point to a subsequent slowstand interspersed by two punctuated rises in sea level that formed clear tidal ravinement surfaces. Sedimentary changes in the embayment are primarily forced by sea-level change, whereby tidal ravinement surfaces sandwich normal regressive packages formed via marginal progradation and shallowing of the system during ;slow-; or still-stands. Large marine embayment systems hold great potential in unravelling relative sea-level change. Axiomatically, this reduces their utility as archives of climate-change.

  7. Glacier calving, dynamics, and sea-level rise. Final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Meier, M.F.; Pfeffer, W.T.; Amadei, B.

    1998-08-01

    The present-day calving flux from Greenland and Antarctica is poorly known, and this accounts for a significant portion of the uncertainty in the current mass balance of these ice sheets. Similarly, the lack of knowledge about the role of calving in glacier dynamics constitutes a major uncertainty in predicting the response of glaciers and ice sheets to changes in climate and thus sea level. Another fundamental problem has to do with incomplete knowledge of glacier areas and volumes, needed for analyses of sea-level change due to changing climate. The authors proposed to develop an improved ability to predict the future contributions of glaciers to sea level by combining work from four research areas: remote sensing observations of calving activity and iceberg flux, numerical modeling of glacier dynamics, theoretical analysis of the calving process, and numerical techniques for modeling flow with large deformations and fracture. These four areas have never been combined into a single research effort on this subject; in particular, calving dynamics have never before been included explicitly in a model of glacier dynamics. A crucial issue that they proposed to address was the general question of how calving dynamics and glacier flow dynamics interact.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

    2016-01-01

    The contributions from terrestrial water sources to sea-level rise, other than ice caps and glaciers, are highly uncertain and heavily debated1-5. Recent assessments indicate that groundwater depletion (GWD) may become the most important positive terrestrial contribution6-10 over the next 50 years, probably equal in magnitude to the current contributions from glaciers and ice caps6. 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 model11,12 simulation, we show that only 80% of GWDends up in the ocean. An increase in runo 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(sup-1) in 1900 and increased to 0.27 (+/- 0.04)mm yr(sup-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(sup-1), suggesting that the net terrestrialwater contribution reported in the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report report is probably overestimated by a factor of three.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. Assessing tidal marsh vulnerability to sea-level rise in the Skagit Delta

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hood, W. Gregory; Grossman, Eric E.; Curt Veldhuisen,

    2016-01-01

    Historical aerial photographs, from 1937 to the present, show Skagit Delta tidal marshes prograding into Skagit Bay for most of the record, but the progradation rates have been steadily declining and the marshes have begun to erode in recent decades despite the large suspended sediment load provided by the Skagit River. In an area of the delta isolated from direct riverine sediment supply by anthropogenic blockage of historical distributaries, 0.5-m tall marsh cliffs along with concave marsh profiles indicate wave erosion is contributing to marsh retreat. This is further supported by a “natural experiment” provided by rocky outcrops that shelter high marsh in their lee, while being bounded by 0.5-m lower eroded marsh to windward and on either side. Coastal wetlands with high sediment supply are thought to be resilient to sea level rise, but the case of the Skagit Delta shows this is not necessarily true. A combination of sea level rise and wave-generated erosion may overwhelm sediment supply. Additionally, anthropogenic obstruction of historical distributaries and levee construction along the remaining distributaries likely increase the jet momentum of river discharge, forcing much suspended sediment to bypass the tidal marshes and be exported from Skagit Bay. Adaptive response to the threat of climate change related sea level rise and increased wave frequency or intensity should consider the efficacy of restoring historical distributaries and managed retreat of constrictive river levees to maximize sediment delivery to delta marshes.

  13. The complex reality of sea-level rise in an atoll nation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donner, S. D.

    2012-12-01

    Sea-level rise famously poses an existential threat to island nations like Kiribati, Tuvalu and the Maldives. Yet as the global mean sea-level rises, the response of any one location at any given time will depend on the natural variability in regional sea-level and other impact of local human activities on coastal processes. As with climate warming, the state of an individual shoreline or the extent of flooding on a given day is not proof of a sea-level trend, nor is a global sea-level trend a good predictor of individual flooding or erosion events. Failure to consider the effect of natural variability and local human activity on coastal processes often leads to misattribution of flooding events and even some long-term shoreline changes to global sea level rise. Moreover, unverified attribution of individual events or changes to specific islets to sea level rise can inflame or invite scepticism of the strong scientific evidence for an accelerating increase in the global sea level due to the impacts of human activity on the climate system. This is particularly important in developing nations like Kiribati, which are depending on international financial support to adapt to rising sea levels. In this presentation, I use gauge data and examples from seven years of field work in Tarawa Atoll, the densely populated capital of Kiribati, to examine the complexity of local sea level and shoreline change in one of the world's most vulnerable countries. First, I discuss how the combination of El Nino-driven variability in sea-level and the astronomical tidal cycle leads to flooding and erosion events which can be mistaken for evidence of sea-level rise. Second, I show that human modification to shorelines has redirected sediment supply, leading, in some cases, to expansion of islets despite rising sea levels. Taken together, the analysis demonstrates the challenge of attributing particular coastal events to global mean sea-level rise and the impact on decision-making. The

  14. 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

  15. Accelerated sea-level rise from West Antarctica.

    OpenAIRE

    Thomas, R; Rignot, E.; Casassa, G; Kanagaratnam, P; Acuña, C; Akins, T; Brecher, H; E Frederick; Gogineni, P.; Krabill, W.; Manizade, S.; Ramamoorthy, H; Rivera, A.; Russell, R.; Sonntag, J

    2004-01-01

    Recent aircraft and satellite laser altimeter surveys of the Amundsen Sea sector of West Antarctica show that local glaciers are discharging about 250 cubic kilometers of ice per year to the ocean, almost 60% more than is accumulated within their catchment basins. This discharge is sufficient to raise sea level by more than 0.2 millimeters per year. Glacier thinning rates near the coast during 2002-2003 are much larger than those observed during the 1990s. Most of these glaciers flow into flo...

  16. Numerical simulation of saltwater intrusion in response to sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langevin, C.D.; Dausman, A.M.

    2005-01-01

    A two dimensional numerical model of variable-density groundwater flow and dispersive solute transport was used to predict the extent, rate, and lag time of saltwater intrusion in response to various sea-level rise scenarios. Three simulations were performed with varying rates of sea-level rise. For the first simulation, sea-level rise was specified at a rate of 0.9 mm/yr, which is the slowest rate of sea-level rise estimated by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). After 100 years, the 250 mg/L chloride isochlor moved inland by about 40 m, and required an additional 8 years for the system to reach equilibrium. For the next simulation, sea-level rise was specified at 4.8 mm/yr, which is the central value of the IPCC estimate. For this moderate rate of sea-level rise, the 250 mg/L isochlor moved inland by about 740 m after 100 years, and required an additional 10 years for the system to reach equilibrium. For the fastest rate of sea level rise estimated by IPCC (8.8 mm/yr), the 250 mg/L isochlor moved inland by about 1800 m after 100 years, and required more than 50 years to reach equilibrium. Copyright ASCE 2005.

  17. An Earth's Future Special Collection: Impacts of the coastal dynamics of sea level rise on low-gradient coastal landscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kidwell, David M.; Dietrich, J. Casey; Hagen, Scott C.; Medeiros, Stephen C.

    2017-01-01

    Rising sea level represents a significant threat to coastal communities and ecosystems, including altered habitats and increased vulnerability to coastal storms and recurrent inundation. This threat is exemplified in the northern Gulf of Mexico, where low topography, marshes, and a prevalence of tropical storms have resulted in extensive coastal impacts. The ability to facilitate adaptation and mitigation measures relies, in part, on the development of robust predictive capabilities that incorporate complex biological processes with physical dynamics. Initiated in 2010, the 6-year Ecological Effects of Sea Level Rise—Northern Gulf of Mexico project applied a transdisciplinary science approach to develop a suite of integrated modeling platforms informed by empirical data that are capable of evaluating a range of climate change scenarios. This special issue highlights resultant integrated models focused on tidal hydrodynamics, shoreline morphology, oyster ecology, coastal wetland vulnerability, and storm surges that demonstrate the need for dynamic models to incorporate feedbacks among physical and biological processes in assessments of sea level rise effects on coastal systems. Effects are projected to be significant, spatially variable and nonlinear relative to sea level rise rates. Scenarios of higher sea level rise rates are projected to exceed thresholds of wetland sustainability, and many regions will experience enhanced storm surges. Influenced by an extensive collaborative stakeholder engagement process, these assessments on the coastal dynamics of sea level rise provide a strong foundation for resilience measures in the northern Gulf of Mexico and a transferable approach for application to other coastal regions throughout the world.

  18. 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

  19. Surface elevation change and susceptibility of coastal wetlands to sea level rise in Liaohe Delta, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Guo-dong; Wang, Ming; Lu, Xian-guo; Jiang, Ming

    2016-10-01

    The Liaohe Delta in China is an ecologically and commercially important wetland system under threat from sea level rise and marsh subsidence. Sediments deposited in coastal marshes could offer wetlands a potentially important means for adjusting surface elevation with rising sea level, yet coastal wetland stability in Liaohe Delta is not well understood due to limited data from long-term experiments. In this study, wetland surface elevation and vertical accretion were measured from 2011 to 2015 using a surface elevation table (SET) and feldspar marker horizons in two Phragmites and two Suaeda marshes receiving Liaohe River water. The analysis shows that the Phragmites marshes exhibited higher rates of marsh accretion and elevation change than the Suaeda marshes. The two Phragmites marsh sites had average surface elevation change rates at 8.8 and 9.3 mm yr-1, vertical accretion at 17.4 and 17.6 mm yr-1, and shallow subsidence at 8.6 and 8.3 mm yr-1. The average rates of elevation change, vertical accretion, and shallow subsidence at two Suaeda marsh sites were 5.8 and 6.3 mm yr-1, 13.6 and 14.8 mm yr-1, and 7.8 and 8.5 mm yr-1, respectively. The trends suggest that coastal marshes in Liaohe Delta are experiencing changes in average soil elevation that range from a net increase of 0.3 mm y-1 to 6.9 mm y-1 relative to averaged sea level rise in Bohai Sea reported by the 2016 State Oceanic Administration People's Republic of China projection (2.4-5.5 mm y-1), which indicated that the four wetland sites would adjust to the sea level rise and even continue to gain elevation, especially for the Phragmites sites. Nevertheless, the vulnerability of coastal wetlands in Liaohe Delta need further assessment considering the accelerated sea level rise, the high rate of subsidence, and the declining sediment delivery owing to anthropogenic activities such as dam constructions in the river basin.

  20. New estimates of potential impacts of sea level rise and coastal floods in Poland (discussion paper)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Paprotny, D.; Terefenko, P.

    2015-01-01

    Polish coastal zone is thought to be of the most exposed to sea level rise in Europe. With climate change expected to raise mean sea levels between 26 and 200 cm by the end of the century, and storms increasing in severity, accurate estimates of those phenomena are needed. Recent advances in quality

  1. Rising sea levels will reduce extreme temperature variations in tide-dominated reef habitats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lowe, Ryan Joseph; Pivan, Xavier; Falter, James; Symonds, Graham; Gruber, Renee

    2016-01-01

    Temperatures within shallow reefs often differ substantially from those in the surrounding ocean; therefore, predicting future patterns of thermal stresses and bleaching at the scale of reefs depends on accurately predicting reef heat budgets. We present a new framework for quantifying how tidal and solar heating cycles interact with reef morphology to control diurnal temperature extremes within shallow, tidally forced reefs. Using data from northwestern Australia, we construct a heat budget model to investigate how frequency differences between the dominant lunar semidiurnal tide and diurnal solar cycle drive ~15-day modulations in diurnal temperature extremes. The model is extended to show how reefs with tidal amplitudes comparable to their depth, relative to mean sea level, tend to experience the largest temperature extremes globally. As a consequence, we reveal how even a modest sea level rise can substantially reduce temperature extremes within tide-dominated reefs, thereby partially offsetting the local effects of future ocean warming. PMID:27540589

  2. Drivers of Holocene sea-level change - using a global database of relative sea-level records from the Northern and Southern Hemisphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horton, Benjamin; Khan, Nicole; Ashe, Erica; Kopp, Robert

    2016-04-01

    Many factors give rise to relative sea-level (RSL) changes that are far from globally uniform. For example, spatially variable sea-level responses arise because of the exchange of mass between ice sheets and oceans. Gravitational, flexural, and rotational processes generate a distinct spatial pattern - or "fingerprint" - of sea-level change associated with each shrinking land ice mass. As a land ice mass shrinks, sea-level rise is greater in areas geographically distal to the ice mass than in areas proximal to it, in large part because the gravitational attraction between the ice mass and the ocean is reduced. Thus, the U.S. mid-Atlantic coastline experiences about 50% of the global average sea-level-rise due to Greenland Ice Sheet melt, but about 120% of the global average due to West Antarctic Ice Sheet melt. Separating the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheet contributions during the past 7,000 years requires analysis of sea-level changes from sites in the northern and southern hemisphere. Accordingly we present a global sea-level database for the Holocene to which we apply a hierarchical statistical model to: (1) estimate the Global Mean Sea Level Signal; (2) quantify rates of change; (3) compare rates of change among sites, including full quantification of the uncertainty in their differences; and (4) test hypotheses about the sources of meltwater through their sea-level fingerprints.

  3. Impact of sea level rise on tidal range in Chesapeake and Delaware Bays

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Serena Blyth; Li, Ming; Zhang, Fan

    2017-05-01

    Coastal inundation is affected not only by rising mean sea level but also by changing tides. A numerical model is developed to investigate how sea level rise and coastline changes may impact tides in two coastal-plain estuaries, Chesapeake Bay and Delaware Bay. Despite their different tidal characteristics, the two estuaries display similar responses to the sea level rise and shoreline management scenarios. When hypothetic sea walls are erected at the present coastline to prevent low-lying land from flooding, tidal range increases, with greater amplification in the upper part of the two estuaries. When low-lying land is allowed to become permanently inundated by higher sea level, however, tidal range in both estuaries decreases. Analyses of the tidal energy budget show that the increased dissipation over the shallow water and newly inundated areas compensates for the reduced dissipation in deep water, leading to smaller tidal range. The changes in the tidal range are not proportional to the changes in the mean sea level, indicating a nonlinear tidal response to sea level rise. The ratio of tidal range change to sea level rise varies between -0.05 and 0.1 in Chesapeake Bay and between -0.2 and 0.25 in Delaware Bay. The model results suggest a potential adaptation strategy that uses inundation over low-lying areas to reduce tidal range at up-estuary locations.

  4. Current Land Subsidence and Sea Level Rise along the North American Coastal Region: Observations from 10-Year (2005-2014) Closely-Spaced GPS and Tide Gauge Stations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, L.; Yu, J.; Kearns, T.; Wang, G.

    2014-12-01

    Strong evidence has proved that the global sea-level is now rising at an increased rate and it is projected to continue to rise. However the rise of the sea-level is not uniform around the world. The local or relative sea-level rise will be of great concern to the coastal regions. The combination of the land subsidence and global sea-level rise causes the relative sea-level to rise. Relative sea-level rise increases the risk of flooding and wetland loss problems in near coastal areas, which in turn have important economic, environmental, and human health consequences for the heavily populated and ecologically important coastal region. However the role played by the coastal land subsidence is commonly absent during the discussion of sea-level rise problems. The sea-level can be measured in two ways: satellite altimetry and tide gauges. The sea-level measured by satellite is called the geocentric sea-level that is relative to earth center and the one measured by tide gauges is called local sea-level that is relative to the land. The tide gauge measurements of the local sea-level do not distinguish between whether the water is rising or the land is subsiding. In some coastal areas, land subsidence is occurring at a higher rate than the geocentric sea-level is rising. This can have a great local effect. GPS technology has proven to be efficient and accurate for measuring and tracking absolute land elevation change. There are about 300 publically available Continuously Operating Reference GPS Stations (CORS) within 15 km from the coastal line along North America. In this study, we use publicly available long-history (> 5 years) CORS data to derive current (2005-2014) coastal subsidence in North America. Absolute coastal sea-level rise will be determined by combing the land subsidence and relative sea-level measurements. This study shows that the relative sea-level of the Alaska area appears to be falling because the land is uplifting; this study also shows that the

  5. Prediction and prevention of the impacts of sea level rise on the Yangtze River Delta and its adjacent areas

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    施雅风; 朱季文; 谢志仁; 季子修; 蒋自巽; 杨桂山

    2000-01-01

    The Yangtze River Delta region is characterized by high density of population and rapidly developing economy. There are low lying coastal plain and deltaic plain in this region. Thus, the study area could be highly vulnerable to accelerated sea level rise caused by global warming. This paper deals with the scenarios of the relative sea level rise in the early half period of the 21st century in the study area. The authors suggested that relative sea level would rise 25-50 cm by the year 2050 in the study area, of which the magnitude of relative sea level rise in the Yangtze River Delta would double the perspective worldwide average. The impacts of sea level rise include: (i) exacerbation of coastline recession in several sections and vertical erosion of tidal flat, and increase in length of eroding coastline; (ii) decrease in area of tidal flat and coastal wetland due to erosion and inundation; (iii) increase in frequency and intensity of storm surge, which would threaten the coastal protection works; (i

  6. Dynamics of sea level rise and coastal flooding on a changing landscape

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Bilskie, M. V; Hagen, S. C; Medeiros, S. C; Passeri, D. L

    2014-01-01

    Standard approaches to determining the impacts of sea level rise (SLR) on storm surge flooding employ numerical models reflecting present conditions with modified sea states for a given SLR scenario...

  7. Sea-level-rise trends off the Indian coasts during the last two decades

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Unnikrishnan, A; Nidheesh, A; Lengaigne, M.

    century. This communication calls for an improved understanding of the mechanisms behind this accelerated sea-level-rise recorded over the past two decades, that could either be a direct response to global warming or a result from an aliasing...

  8. Examining effects of sea level rise and marsh crabs on Spartina patens using mesocosms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coastal salt marshes provide essential ecosystem services but face increasing threats from habitat loss, eutrophication, changing precipitation patterns, and accelerating rates of sea level rise (SLR). Recent studies have suggested that herbivory and burrowing by native salt mars...

  9. Sea level rise, drought and the decline of Spartina patens in New England marshes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Already heavily impacted by coastal development, estuarine vegetated habitats (seagrasses, salt marshes, and mangroves) are increasingly affected by climate change via accelerated sea level rise, changes in the frequency and intensity of precipitation and storms, and warmer ocean...

  10. Sea-level rise induced amplification of coastal protection design heights

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arns, Arne; Dangendorf, Sönke; Jensen, Jürgen; Talke, Stefan; Bender, Jens; Pattiaratchi, Charitha

    2017-01-01

    Coastal protection design heights typically consider the superimposed effects of tides, surges, waves, and relative sea-level rise (SLR), neglecting non-linear feedbacks between these forcing factors. Here, we use hydrodynamic modelling and multivariate statistics to show that shallow coastal areas are extremely sensitive to changing non-linear interactions between individual components caused by SLR. As sea-level increases, the depth-limitation of waves relaxes, resulting in waves with larger periods, greater amplitudes, and higher run-up; moreover, depth and frictional changes affect tide, surge, and wave characteristics, altering the relative importance of other risk factors. Consequently, sea-level driven changes in wave characteristics, and to a lesser extent, tides, amplify the resulting design heights by an average of 48–56%, relative to design changes caused by SLR alone. Since many of the world’s most vulnerable coastlines are impacted by depth-limited waves, our results suggest that the overall influence of SLR may be greatly underestimated in many regions.

  11. Past and future sea-level rise along the coast of North Carolina, United States

    CERN Document Server

    Kopp, Robert E; Kemp, Andrew C; Tebaldi, Claudia

    2014-01-01

    Focusing on factors that cause relative sea-level (RSL) rise to differ from the global mean, we evaluate RSL trajectories for North Carolina, United States, in the context of tide gauge and geological sea-level proxy records spanning the last $\\mathord{\\sim}$11,000 years. RSL rise was fastest ($\\mathord{\\sim}$7 mm/yr) during the early Holocene and decreased over time. During the Common Era before the 19th century, RSL rise ($\\mathord{\\sim}$0.7 to 1.1 mm/yr) was driven primarily by glacio-isostatic adjustment, dampened by tectonic uplift along the Cape Fear Arch. Ocean/atmosphere dynamics caused centennial variability of up to $\\mathord{\\sim}$0.6 mm/yr around the long-term rate. It is extremely likely (probability $P = 0.95$) that 20th century RSL rise at Sand Point, NC, (2.8 $\\pm$ 0.5 mm/yr) was faster than during any other century in $\\geq2,900$ years. Projections based on a fusion of process models, statistical models, expert elicitation and expert assessment indicate that RSL at Wilmington, NC, is very lik...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hallegatte, Stéphane

    2012-03-01

    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.

  13. 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.

  14. Sea Level Rise Scenarios and Predicted Impacts on New Hampshire's Hampton-Seabrook Estuary

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haile, R.; Hale, S. R.; Rock, B. N.

    2008-12-01

    According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Environmental Protection Agency, and the Union of Concerned Scientist, coastal areas could experience a rise in sea level from 0.3m (conservative) to 6m (extreme). Due in part to global warming, over the last 100 years mid-Atlantic and Gulf Coast sea level has risen approximately 0.1m more than the average global rise. GIS models illustrating future sea level rise (SLR) projections were generated to assess the potential impact on beaches and estuaries of Hampton and Seabrook, New Hampshire (NH). Limited, but important, tidal wetlands are particularly at risk from rising sea levels. A raster unsupervised landcover classification and a Digital Elevation Model of the southeastern NH coastal region were overlain in ARC/GIS v. 9.0. Sea level rise predictions greater than 1.2m will result in the inundation of greater than 50 percent of the emergent area of the Hampton/Seabrook estuary and urban development fringing the estuary will be prone to greater flooding from storm surges and high tides. An approximate 6m rise in sea level will inundate greater than 95 percent of the Hampton-Seabrook tidal marsh and greater than 95 percent of New Hampshire's existing sand dunes.

  15. Effects of ocean acidification and sea-level rise on coral reefs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yates, K.K.; Moyer, R.P.

    2010-01-01

    U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists are developing comprehensive records of historical and modern coral reef growth and calcification rates relative to changing seawater chemistry resulting from increasing atmospheric CO2 from the pre-industrial period to the present. These records will provide the scientific foundation for predicting future impacts of ocean acidification and sea-level rise on coral reef growth. Changes in coral growth rates in response to past changes in seawater pH are being examined by using cores from coral colonies.

  16. 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.

  17. 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 <100 km from the coast. The results suggest that the occurrence of continental slope 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.

  18. Barriers to and opportunities for landward migration of coastal wetlands with sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Enwright, Nicholas M.; Griffith, Kereen T.; Osland, Michael J.

    2016-01-01

    In the 21st century, accelerated sea-level rise and continued coastal development are expected to greatly alter coastal landscapes across the globe. Historically, many coastal ecosystems have responded to sea-level fluctuations via horizontal and vertical movement on the landscape. However, anthropogenic activities, including urbanization and the construction of flood-prevention infrastructure, can produce barriers that impede ecosystem migration. Here we show where tidal saline wetlands have the potential to migrate landward along the northern Gulf of Mexico coast, one of the most sea-level rise sensitive and wetland-rich regions of the world. Our findings can be used to identify migration corridors and develop sea-level rise adaptation strategies to help ensure the continued availability of wetland-associated ecosystem goods and services.

  19. The effects of sea-level rise on water quality in coastal floodplain sediments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wong, Vanessa; Johnston, Scott; Burton, Edward; Bush, Richard; Sullivan, Leigh; Slavich, Peter

    2013-04-01

    Sea level has risen approximately 1.2 mm/year over the last 100 years (Hennessy et al. 2004) and is predicted to rise up to 80 cm by 2100 relative to 1990 sea levels (IPCC 2007). The number of extreme events related to sea level such as higher sea levels and increased inter-annual variability have also increased in frequency in the same time period (Hennessy et al. 2004). Globally, large areas of coastal and estuarine floodplains are underlain by sulfidic sediments and acid sulfate soils (ASS). These sediments frequently contain high concentrations of acidity and trace metals. A significant portion of the stored acidity occurs in the form of exchangeable and hydrolysable acidic metal cations such as Al and Fe. Watertables in these environments are often close to the surface and intercepted by relatively shallow drains. Due to their low elevation and locations, these floodplains are highly susceptible to pulses of saline water caused by saltwater intrusion, storm surge and rising sea levels. Construction of extensive drainage systems has further increased the susceptibility of the floodplain to seawater inundation by increasing connectivity to the estuarine channel. This risk is likely to increase in the future with predicted increases in sea level and extreme events due to climate change. This study uses both batch experiments to determine the effects of increasing ionic strength on exchange processes and trace metal desorption in oxidised floodplain sediments and sulfidic drain sediments, and intact soil cores to determine the surface water-porewater interactions over the short term following seawater inundation in coastal floodplain sediments. We found that that saline inundation of oxidised ASS floodplain sediments, even by relatively brackish water may cause rapid, shorter-term water quality changes and a pulse release of acidity due to desorption of acidic metal cations (Wong et al. 2010). We also found that trace metals can be mobilised from sulfidic

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. Potential effects of sea-level rise on coastal wetlands in southeastern Louisiana

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glick, Patty; Clough, Jonathan; Polaczyk, Amy; Couvillion, Brady R.; Nunley, Brad

    2013-01-01

    Coastal Louisiana wetlands contain about 37% of the estuarine herbaceous marshes in the conterminous United States. The long-term stability of coastal wetlands is often a function of a wetland's ability to maintain elevation equilibrium with mean sea level through processes such as primary production and sediment accretion. However, Louisiana has sustained more coastal wetland loss than all other states in the continental United States combined due to a combination of natural and anthropogenic factors, including sea-level rise. This study investigates the potential impact of current and accelerating sea-level rise rates on key coastal wetland habitats in southeastern Louisiana using the Sea Level Affecting Marshes Model (SLAMM). Model calibration was conducted using a 1956–2007 observation period and hindcasting results predicted 35% versus observed 39% total marsh loss. Multiple sea-level-rise scenarios were then simulated for the period of 2007–2100. Results indicate a range of potential wetland losses by 2100, from an additional 2,188.97 km2 (218,897 ha, 9% of the 2007 wetland area) under the lowest sea-level-rise scenario (0.34 m), to a potential loss of 5,875.27 km2 (587,527 ha, 24% of the 2007 wetland area) in the highest sea-level-rise scenario (1.9 m). Model results suggest that one area of particular concern is the potential vulnerability of the region's baldcypress-water tupelo (Taxodium distichum-Nyssa aquatica) swamp habitat, much of which is projected to become permanently flooded (affecting regeneration) under all modeled scenarios for sea-level rise. These findings will aid in the development of ecosystem management plans that support the processes and conditions that result in sustainable coastal ecosystems.

  3. Global Coastal Exposure due to Sea-level Rise beyond Tipping Points with Multiple Warming Pathways

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tawatari, R.; Iseri, Y.; Kiguchi, M.; Kanae, S.

    2016-12-01

    Sea-level is observed and estimated to continue rising. In the future, the rise could be abrupt and irreversible in century to millennial timescale even if we conduct strong reduction of greenhouse gas emission. Greenland ice sheet and West Antarctic ice sheet are considered as attributable climate systems which would significantly enhance presently-projected sea-level rise by several meters if global mean temperature passes certain "Tipping points" which would exist around +1-5 degree Celsius above present temperature (1980-1999 average). Therefore, vulnerable coastal low-lying area, especially small islands, deltas or poor developing countries, would suffer from semi-permanent inundation and forced to counteract due to the enhanced sea-level rise. This study estimate range of sea-level rise until the year 2300 and 3000 considering excess of tipping points with using multiple levels of temperature scenarios which consist of excess tipping points and non-excess tipping points pathways. We extract state-of-the-art knowledge of tipping elements from paper reviewing to express reasonable relationship between temperature and abruptly-changing sea-level transition across the ages. This study also calculate coastal exposure globally as affected population, area and asset below the estimated sea-level for each countries with overlaying 30 arc-second gridded topography, population distribution and the sea-level. The result indicates which country would be critically affected if we follow overshooting pathways. Furthermore, this study visualize uncertain coastal exposure due to sea-level rise in the future from the multiple warming pathways. This estimation of possible future beyond tipping point would be useful information for decision-makers to establish new planning of defense, migration or mitigation for the future societies.

  4. Assessment of Hammocks (Petenes) Resilience to Sea Level Rise Due to Climate Change in Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Posada Vanegas, Gregorio; de Jong, Bernardus H. J.

    2016-01-01

    There is a pressing need to assess resilience of coastal ecosystems against sea level rise. To develop appropriate response strategies against future climate disturbances, it is important to estimate the magnitude of disturbances that these ecosystems can absorb and to better understand their underlying processes. Hammocks (petenes) coastal ecosystems are highly vulnerable to sea level rise linked to climate change; their vulnerability is mainly due to its close relation with the sea through underground drainage in predominantly karstic soils. Hammocks are biologically important because of their high diversity and restricted distribution. This study proposes a strategy to assess resilience of this coastal ecosystem when high-precision data are scarce. Approaches and methods used to derive ecological resilience maps of hammocks are described and assessed. Resilience models were built by incorporating and weighting appropriate indicators of persistence to assess hammocks resilience against flooding due to climate change at “Los Petenes Biosphere Reserve”, in the Yucatán Peninsula, Mexico. According to the analysis, 25% of the study area is highly resilient (hot spots), whereas 51% has low resilience (cold spots). The most significant hot spot clusters of resilience were located in areas distant to the coastal zone, with indirect tidal influence, and consisted mostly of hammocks surrounded by basin mangrove and floodplain forest. This study revealed that multi-criteria analysis and the use of GIS for qualitative, semi-quantitative and statistical spatial analyses constitute a powerful tool to develop ecological resilience maps of coastal ecosystems that are highly vulnerable to sea level rise, even when high-precision data are not available. This method can be applied in other sites to help develop resilience analyses and decision-making processes for management and conservation of coastal areas worldwide. PMID:27611802

  5. Assessment of Hammocks (Petenes) Resilience to Sea Level Rise Due to Climate Change in Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernández-Montilla, Mariana C; Martínez-Morales, Miguel Angel; Posada Vanegas, Gregorio; de Jong, Bernardus H J

    2016-01-01

    There is a pressing need to assess resilience of coastal ecosystems against sea level rise. To develop appropriate response strategies against future climate disturbances, it is important to estimate the magnitude of disturbances that these ecosystems can absorb and to better understand their underlying processes. Hammocks (petenes) coastal ecosystems are highly vulnerable to sea level rise linked to climate change; their vulnerability is mainly due to its close relation with the sea through underground drainage in predominantly karstic soils. Hammocks are biologically important because of their high diversity and restricted distribution. This study proposes a strategy to assess resilience of this coastal ecosystem when high-precision data are scarce. Approaches and methods used to derive ecological resilience maps of hammocks are described and assessed. Resilience models were built by incorporating and weighting appropriate indicators of persistence to assess hammocks resilience against flooding due to climate change at "Los Petenes Biosphere Reserve", in the Yucatán Peninsula, Mexico. According to the analysis, 25% of the study area is highly resilient (hot spots), whereas 51% has low resilience (cold spots). The most significant hot spot clusters of resilience were located in areas distant to the coastal zone, with indirect tidal influence, and consisted mostly of hammocks surrounded by basin mangrove and floodplain forest. This study revealed that multi-criteria analysis and the use of GIS for qualitative, semi-quantitative and statistical spatial analyses constitute a powerful tool to develop ecological resilience maps of coastal ecosystems that are highly vulnerable to sea level rise, even when high-precision data are not available. This method can be applied in other sites to help develop resilience analyses and decision-making processes for management and conservation of coastal areas worldwide.

  6. Mangroves facing climate change: landward migration potential in response to projected scenarios of sea level rise

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Di Nitto

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Mangrove forests prominently occupy an intertidal boundary position where the effects of sea level rise will be fast and well visible. This study in East Africa (Gazi Bay, Kenya addresses the question whether mangroves can be resilient to a rise in sea level by focusing on their potential to migrate towards landwards areas. The combinatory analysis between remote sensing, DGPS-based ground truth and digital terrain models (DTM unveils how real vegetation assemblages can shift under different projected (minimum (+9 cm, relative (+20 cm, average (+48 cm and maximum (+88 cm scenarios of sea level rise (SLR. Under SLR scenarios up to 48 cm by the year 2100, the landward extension remarkably implies an area increase for each of the dominant mangrove assemblages, except for Avicennia marina and Ceriops tagal, both on the landward side. On one hand, the increase of most species in the first 3 scenarios, including the socio-economically most important species in this area, Rhizophora mucronata and C. tagal on the seaward side, strongly depends on the colonisation rate of these species. On the other hand, a SLR scenario of +88 cm by the year 2100 indicates that the area flooded only by equinoctial tides strongly decreases due to the topographical settings at the edge of the inhabited area. Consequently, the landward Avicennia-dominated assemblages will further decrease as a formation if they fail to adapt to a more frequent inundation. The topography is site-specific; however non-invadable areas can be typical for many mangrove settings.

  7. 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

  8. Is sea level rise accelerating in the Chesapeake Bay? A demonstration of a novel new approach for analyzing sea level data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ezer, Tal; Corlett, William Bryce

    2012-10-01

    Sea level data from the Chesapeake Bay are used to test a novel new analysis method for studies of sea level rise (SLR). The method, based on Empirical Mode Decomposition and Hilbert-Huang Transformation, separates the sea level trend from other oscillating modes and reveals how the mean sea level changes over time. Bootstrap calculations test the robustness of the method and provide confidence levels. The analysis shows that rates of SLR have increased from ˜1-3 mm y-1 in the 1930s to ˜4-10 mm y-1 in 2011, an acceleration of ˜0.05-0.10 mm y-2 that is larger than most previous studies, but comparable to recent findings by Sallenger and collaborators. While land subsidence increases SLR rates in the bay relative to global SLR, the acceleration results support Sallenger et al.'s proposition that an additional contribution to SLR from climatic changes in ocean circulation is affecting the region.

  9. 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.

  10. Prediction and prevention of the impacts of sea level rise on the Yangtze River Delta and its adjacent areas

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2000-01-01

    The Yangtze River Delta region is characterized by high density of population and rapidly developing economy. There are low lying coastal plain and deltaic plain in this region. Thus, the study area could be highly vulnerable to accelerated sea level rise caused by global warming. This paper deals with the scenarios of the relative sea level rise in the early half period of the 21st century in the study area. The authors suggested that relative sea level would rise 25 50 cm by the year 2050 in the study area, of which the magnitude of relative sea level rise in the Yangtze River Delta would double the perspective worldwide average. The impacts of sea level rise include: (i) exacerbation of coastline recession in several sections and vertical erosion of tidal flat, and increase in length of eroding coastline; (ii) decrease in area of tidal flat and coastal wetland due to erosion and inundation; (iii) increase in frequency and intensity of storm surge, which would threaten the coastal protection works; (iv) reduction of drainage capacity due to backwater effect in the Lixiahe lowland and the eastern lowland of Taihu Lake region, and exacerbation of flood and waterlogging disasters; and (v) increase in salt water intrusion into the Yangtze Estuary. Comprehensive evaluation of sea level rise impacts shows that the Yangtze River Delta and eastern lowland of Taihu Lake region, especially Shanghai Municipality, belong in the district in the extreme risk category and the next is the northern bank of Hangzhou Bay, the third is the abandoned Yellow River delta, and the district at low risk includes the central part of north Jiangsu coastal plain and Lixiahe lowland.

  11. Tension between reducing sea-level rise and global warming through solar-radiation management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Irvine, P. J.; Sriver, R. L.; Keller, K.

    2012-02-01

    Geoengineering using solar-radiation management (SRM) is gaining interest as a potential strategy to reduce future climate change impacts. Basic physics and past observations suggest that reducing insolation will, on average, cool the Earth. It is uncertain, however, whether SRM can reduce climate change stressors such as sea-level rise or rates of surface air temperature change. Here we use an Earth system model of intermediate complexity to quantify the possible response of sea levels and surface air temperatures to projected climate forcings and SRM strategies. We find that SRM strategies introduce a potentially strong tension between the objectives to reduce (1) the rate of temperature change and (2) sea-level rise. This tension arises primarily because surface air temperatures respond faster to radiative forcings than sea levels. Our results show that the forcing required to stop sea-level rise could cause a rapid cooling with a rate similar to the peak business-as-usual warming rate. Furthermore, termination of SRM was found to produce warming rates up to five times greater than the maximum rates under the business-as-usual CO2 scenario, whereas sea-level rise rates were only 30% higher. Reducing these risks requires a slow phase-out of many decades and thus commits future generations.

  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. 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. Drivers of sea-level change - using relative sea level records from the North and South Atlantic to fingerprint sources of mid-Holocene ice melt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horton, B.; Khan, N.; Ashe, E.; Kopp, R. E.; Long, A. J.; Gehrels, W. R.

    2015-12-01

    Many factors give rise to relative sea-level (RSL) changes that are far from globally uniform. For example, spatially variable sea-level responses arise because of the exchange of mass between ice sheets and oceans. Gravitational, flexural, and rotational processes generate a distinct spatial pattern - or "fingerprint" - of sea-level change associated with each shrinking land ice mass. As a land ice mass shrinks, sea-level rise is greater in areas geographically distal to the ice mass than in areas proximal to it, in large part because the gravitational attraction between the ice mass and the ocean is reduced. Thus, the U.S. mid-Atlantic coastline experiences about 50% of the global average sea-level-rise due to Greenland Ice Sheet melt, but about 120% of the global average due to West Antarctic Ice Sheet melt. Separating the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheet contributions during the past 7,000 years requires analysis of sea-level changes from sites in the northern and southern hemisphere. Accordingly we present sea-level records within a hierarchical statistical modeling to: (1) quantify rates of change; (2) compare rates of change among sites, including full quantification of the uncertainty in their differences; and (3) test hypotheses about the sources of meltwater through their sea-level fingerprints. Preliminary analysis of three sites within our North and South Atlantic sea-level database indicates sea-level gradient in the rate of RSL rise during the mid Holocene between 6000 and 4000 years BP; a greater change in rate is found in Brazil than St Croix than New Jersey, consistent with an increase and then decrease in Greenland Ice Sheet mass.

  15. A National Assessment of Sea Level Rise Exposure Using Lidar Elevation Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strauss, B.; Kulp, S. A.; Tebaldi, C.

    2014-12-01

    The Third National Climate Assessment addressed sea level rise and aggravated coastal flood exposure in all regions, but was completed before high quality lidar-based elevation data became available throughout the entire coastal United States (excluding Alaska). Here we present what we believe to be the first full national assessment incorporating these data. The assessment includes tabulation of land less than 1-6 m above the local high tide line, and of a wide range of features sitting on that land, including total population, socially vulnerable population, housing, property value, road miles, power plants, schools, hospitals, and a wide range of other infrastructure and critical facilities, as well as EPA-listed facilities that are potential sources of contamination during floods or permanent inundation. Tabulations span from zip code to national levels. Notable patterns include the strong concentration of exposure across multiple scales, with a small number of states accounting for most of the total national exposure; and a small number of zip codes accounting for a large proportion of the exposure within many states. Additionally, different features show different exposure patterns; in one example, land and road miles have relatively high exposure but population and property have relatively low exposure in North Carolina. The assessment further places this exposure analysis in the context of localized sea level rise projections integrated with coastal flood risk.

  16. 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.

    2016-02-01

    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.

  17. 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.

  18. River discharge contribution to sea-level rise in the Yangtze River Estuary, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuang, Cuiping; Chen, Wei; Gu, Jie; Su, Tsung-Chow; Song, Hongling; Ma, Yue; Dong, Zhichao

    2017-02-01

    Sea level changes in the Yangtze River Estuary (YRE) as a result of river discharge are investigated based on the monthly averaged river discharge from 1950 to 2011 at the Datong station. Quantification of the sea level contribution is made by model computed results and the sea level rates reported by the China Sea Level Bulletin (CSLB). The coastal modeling tool, MIKE21, is used to establish a depth-averaged hydrodynamic model covering the YRE and Hangzhou Bay. The model is validated with the measured data. Multi-year monthly river discharges are statistically calculated based on the monthly river discharges at Datong station from 1950 to 2011. The four characteristic discharges (frequency of 75%, 50% and 25%, and multi-year monthly) and month-averaged river discharge from 1950 to 2011 are used to study the seasonal and long-term changes of sea level. The computed sea level at the Dajishan and Lvsi stations are used to study the multi-time scale structure of periodic variation in different time scale of river discharge series. The results reveal that (1) the sea level rises as the river discharge increases, and its amplification decreases from upstream to the offshore. (2) The sea level amplification on the south coast is greater than that on the north coast. When river discharge increases by 20,000 m3/s, the sea level will increase by 0.005-0.010 m in most of Hangzhou Bay. (3) The sea level at the Dajishan station, influenced by river discharge, increased 0.178 mm/y from 1980 to 2011. Correspondingly, the sea level rose at a rate of 2.6-3.0 mm/y during the same period. These values were provided by the CSLB. The increase in sea level (1980-2011) at the Dajishan station caused by river discharge is 6.8-8.9% of the total increase in sea level. (4) The 19-20 year dominant nodal cycle of sea level at the Dajishan and Lvsi stations is in accord with 18.6 year nodal cycle of main tidal constituents on Chinese coasts. It implies that the sea-level change period on the

  19. Impact of sea level rise in coastal systems - Ria de Aveiro case study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Picado, A.; Mendes, R.; Vaz, N.; Dias, J. M.

    2012-04-01

    The mean sea level rising is an important consequence of climate change because of its impact on society and coastal ecosystems. Tide gauge information evidences that global mean sea level has increased in the 20th century, and it is expected that its rise will continue during the 21th century. However, the sea levels are not changing uniformly around the world, as both tide gauge and satellite data confirm. Sea level rise can have a wide variety of impacts on worldwide coastal areas, causing flooding, land loss, the salinization of groundwater and the destruction of built property and infrastructures. In Portugal, the region's most affected by the sea level rise are probably the Aveiro and Formosa coastal lagoons as well as the Tagus and Sado estuaries. A good understanding of the sea level rise influence in the estuarine tidal dynamics is crucial to mitigate these problems. However, the response of each coastal region to sea level rise depends on the physical features of the coastal system, and therefore their effects should be locally assessed. Thus, this work aims to investigate the potential impacts of the mean sea level rise in coastal regions, analysing the particular case of Ria de Aveiro, which is in risk of flooding. To assess these changes the numerical model Mohid was implemented in Ria de Aveiro. Mohid is a finite volume model, designed for coastal and estuarine shallow water applications. Although Mohid is a 3D baroclinic model, it was used herein in baratropic mode with a single vertical layer, considering that due to its shallow depths, Ria de Aveiro circulation can be simulated with a depth integrated model. The model was used initially to characterize the lagoons hydrodynamic under the actual sea level, through the determination of the amplitude and phase of the main tidal constituents, maximum levels and velocities, tidal asymmetry, as well as the tidal prism in the main sections of the lagoon. After, a realistic regional sea level rise scenario

  20. Bounding probabilistic sea-level rise projections under the IPCC constraints

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Cozannet, G.; Manceau, J. C.; Rohmer, J.

    2016-12-01

    Despite large progresses in climate change science, projections of future sea-level rise remain highly uncertain, especially due to large unknowns in the melting processes affecting the ice-sheets in Greenland and Antarctica. Based on climate-models outcomes and the expertise of scientists concerned with these issues, the IPCC provided constraints to the quantiles of sea-level projections. In addition, some physical limits to future sea-level rise by 2100 have been established, although approximately. These constraints to future sea-level change projections are essentially associated to epistemic uncertainties, so that the theory of probabilities appears too constraining in terms of quality and quantity of necessary data to account for this type of uncertainty. In this contribution, we propose to go beyond the classical use of probabilities by relying on extra-probabilistic theories (namely the possibility theory): this prevents from selecting a single cumulative probability distribution, which is hardly achievable given the level of imprecision and lack of knowledge, but rather enables to identify all the possible cumulative probability distributions that are consistent with the available objective pieces of information, namely the constraints provided by the IPCC as well as by recent publications regarding the future melting of ice sheets. We focus on the case of sea-level rise by 2100 under the RCP 8.5 scenario. Importantly, we make no assumptions regarding the actual shape of the distributions. Today, coastal impact studies are increasingly moving away from deterministic sea-level projections. However, we show that the cumulative probability distributions used so-far have only explored a subset of rather conservative sea-level probabilistic projections. Hence, coastal impacts studies of sea-level rise could be larger than previously estimated while complying with the constraints provided by the IPCC.

  1. Extreme floods in the Mekong River Delta under climate change: combined impacts of upstream hydrological changes and sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoang, Long; Nguyen Viet, Dung; Kummu, Matti; Lauri, Hannu; Koponen, Jorma; van Vliet, Michelle T. H.; Supit, Iwan; Leemans, Rik; Kabat, Pavel; Ludwig, Fulco

    2016-04-01

    Extreme floods cause huge damages to human lives and infrastructure, and hamper socio-economic development in the Mekong River Delta in Vietnam. Induced by climate change, upstream hydrological changes and sea level rise are expected to further exacerbate future flood hazard and thereby posing critical challenges for securing safety and sustainability. This paper provides a probabilistic quantification of future flood hazard for the Mekong Delta, focusing on extreme events under climate change. We developed a model chain to simulate separate and combined impacts of two drivers, namely upstream hydrological changes and sea level rise on flood magnitude and frequency. Simulation results show that upstream changes and sea level rise substantially increase flood hazard throughout the whole Mekong Delta. Due to differences in their nature, two drivers show different features in their impacts on floods. Impacts of upstream changes are more dominant in floodplains in the upper delta, causing an increase of up to +0.80 m in flood depth. Sea level rise introduces flood hazard to currently safe areas in the middle and coastal delta zones. A 0.6 m rise in relative sea level causes an increase in flood depth between 0.10 and 0.70 m, depending on location by 2050s. Upstream hydrological changes and sea level rise tend to intensify each other's impacts on floods, resulting in stronger combined impacts than linearly summed impacts of each individual driver. Substantial increase of future flood hazard strongly requires better flood protection and more flood resilient development for the Mekong Delta. Findings from this study can be used as quantified physical boundary conditions to develop flood management strategies and strategic delta management plans.

  2. Tagus estuary and Ria de Aveiro salt marsh dynamics and the impact of sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valentim, J. M.; Vaz, N.; Silva, H.; Duarte, B.; Caçador, I.; Dias, J. M.

    2013-09-01

    Different characteristics of Spartina maritima found in two distinct salt marshes located in different estuaries were analysed through interpretation of their local hydrodynamic patterns, as well as the impact of sea level rise on physical processes and consequently on plant dynamics and salt marshes stability. These salt marshes are situated in two of the most important Portuguese coastal systems, Tagus estuary (Rosário salt marsh) and Ria de Aveiro lagoon (Barra salt marsh), which are dominated by physical processes that induce strong tidal currents. They were monitored during one year and plant and sediment samples of S. maritima were collected quarterly in order to determine the vegetation coverage, above and belowground biomass, organic matter and sediment moisture. Residual circulation, tidal asymmetry and tidal dissipation were determined from numerical modelling results of the MOHID 2D model that was applied to each coastal system, considering the actual sea level and a sea level rise (SLR) scenario. Results suggest that the different characteristics found for Spartina maritima in the Rosário and the Barra salt marshes may be related with the diverse hydrodynamic conditions identified for each salt marsh. Consequently, the exploration of SLR scenario predictions indicates how these salt marshes could evolve in the future, showing that the important changes in these hydrodynamic parameters under climate change context might induce significant modifications in the salt marshes dynamics and stability. SLR scenario could lead to changes in nutrients and sediments patterns around the salt marshes and thus vegetation coverage percentage would be affected. Additionally, as a consequence of flood duration increase, sediment moisture will increase causing a stress condition to plants. Hence, the ratio below/aboveground biomass might increase, becoming critical to plants survival under conditions of accelerated sea level rise. Accordingly, both SLR and expected

  3. Assessment on the Vulnerability of Mangrove Ecosystems in the Guangxi Coastal Zone under Sea Level Rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, S.; Ge, Z.; Zhang, L.

    2013-12-01

    Sea level rise caused by global climate change will have significant impacts on coastal zone. The mangrove ecosystems occur at the intertidal zone in tropical and subtropical coasts and are particularly sensitive to sea level rise. To study the responses of mangrove ecosystems to sea level rise, assess the impacts of sea level rise on mangrove ecosystem and formulate the feasible and practical mitigation strategies are the important prerequisites for securing the coastal ecosystems. In this research, taking the mangrove ecosystems in the coastal zone of Guangxi province, China as a case study, the potential impacts of sea level rise on the mangrove ecosystems were analyzed by adopting the SPRC (Source-Pathway- Receptor- Consequence) model. An index system for vulnerability assessment on coastal mangrove ecosystems under sea level rise was worked out, in which rate of sea level rise, subsidence/uplift rate, habitat elevation, daily inundation duration, intertidal slope and sedimentation rate were selected as the key indicators according to the IPCC definition of vulnerability, i.e. the aspects of exposure, sensitivity and adaptation. A quantitatively spatial assessment method based on the GIS platform was established by quantifying each indicator, calculating the vulnerability index and grading the vulnerability. The vulnerability assessment based on the sea-level rise rates 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 at the present trend of sea level rise rate of 0.27 cm/a, the mangrove ecosystems in the coastal zone of Guangxi was within the EVI score of 0 in the projections of 2030s, 2050s and 2100s, respectively. As the sedimentation and land uplift could offset the rate of sea level rise and the impact of sea level rise on habitats/species of mangrove ecosystems was negligible. While at the A1F1 scenario with a sea level rise rate of 0

  4. 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

  5. How sea level rise affects sedimentation, plant growth, and carbon accumulation on coastal salt marshes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mudd, S. M.; Howell, S. M.; Morris, J. T.

    2009-12-01

    The rate of accretion on coastal salt marshes depends on feedbacks between flow, macrophyte growth, and sedimentation. Under favourable conditions, marsh accretion rates will keep pace with the local rate of sea level rise. Marsh accretion is driven by both organic and inorganic sedimentation; mineral rich marshes will need less organic sedimentation to keep pace with sea level rise. Here we use a numerical model of marsh accretion, calibrated by sediment cores, to explore the relationship between sea level rise and carbon sequestration on salt marshes in the face of differing supplies of inorganic sediment. The model predicts that changes in carbon storage resulting from changing sediment supply or sea-level rise are strongly dependant on the background sediment supply: if inorganic sediment supply is reduced in an already sediment poor marsh the storage of organic carbon will increase to a far greater extent than in a sediment-rich marsh, provided that the rate of sea-level rise does not exceed a threshold. These results imply that altering sediment supply to estuaries (e.g., by damming upstream rivers or altering littoral sediment transport) could lead to significant changes in the carbon budgets of coastal salt marshes.

  6. 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

    2015-10-01

    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.

  7. 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.

  8. Comment [on “Sea level rise shown to drive coastal erosion”

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pilkey, Orrin H.; Young, Robert S.; Bush, David M.

    2000-01-01

    Leatherman et al. [2000] (Eos, Trans., AGU, February 8, 2000, p.55) affirm that global eustatic sea-level rise is driving coastal erosion. Furthermore, they argue that the long-term average rate of shoreline retreat is 150 times the rate of sea-level rise. This rate, they say, is more than a magnitude greater than would be expected from a simple response to sea-level rise through inundation of the shoreline. We agree that sea-level rise is the primary factor causing shoreline retreat in stable coastal areas.This is intuitive. We also believe, however, that the Leatherman et al. [2000] study has greatly underestimated the rate of coastal recession along most low slope shorelines. Slopes along the North Carolina continental shelf/coastal plain approach 10,000:1. To us, this suggests that we should expect rates of shoreline recession 10,000 times the rate of sea-level rise through simple inundation of the shoreline.

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. Influence of Sea Level Rise and Marsh Hypsometry on the Equilibrium Morphology of Tidal Inlets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lovering, J. L.; Adams, P. N.

    2011-12-01

    As global sea level is predicted to rise between 0.18 and 1.9 meters by the end of the 21st century, it is critical to understand how the geomorphology and ecology of coastal regions worldwide will be affected for a range of sea level rise rate scenarios. Tidal inlets along sandy, passive margin coasts are sensitive to water levels, nearshore currents, and wave fields, so changes in environmental conditions in the vicinity of inlets should drive a morphologic response. Due to their importance in commercial shipping, military navigation, and recreation, an improved understanding of tidal inlet response to sea level rise will assist in future planning efforts. The widely accepted conceptual model of tidal inlet evolution predicts that, as sea level rises, salt marshes in the lagoon become drowned and converted to subtidal environments, increasing accommodation space in the back barrier basin. This conversion increases the tidal prism, inlet cross-sectional area, and ebb shoal volume. The purpose of this study is to quantify the relationship between sea level rise, the ecomorphodynamic environment of the back barrier basin, and the resulting changes in equilibrium tidal inlet morphology. Threshold values of sea level rise rate for which marsh habitats convert to subtidal environments, determined by the tidal range and suspended sediment concentration found in the back barrier basin, were developed using previously published numerical simulations and field-based observations. We paired the threshold values with Escoffier equilibrium curve calculations, in order to predict changes in tidal inlet equilibrium cross-sectional area. Halophytic vegetation that is supplied with high suspended sediment concentrations and lives in an area with a high tidal range is able to trap sediment and drive vertical accretion at a faster pace than vegetation in areas of low sediment availability and low tidal range; therefore marshes with high sediment availability and tidal range are

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. Efficacy of geoengineering to limit 21st century sea-level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, J C; Jevrejeva, S; Grinsted, A

    2010-09-07

    Geoengineering has been proposed as a feasible way of mitigating anthropogenic climate change, especially increasing global temperatures in the 21st century. The two main geoengineering options are limiting incoming solar radiation, or modifying the carbon cycle. Here we examine the impact of five geoengineering approaches on sea level; SO(2) aerosol injection into the stratosphere, mirrors in space, afforestation, biochar, and bioenergy with carbon sequestration. Sea level responds mainly at centennial time scales to temperature change, and has been largely driven by anthropogenic forcing since 1850. Making use a model of sea-level rise as a function of time-varying climate forcing factors (solar radiation, volcanism, and greenhouse gas emissions) we find that sea-level rise by 2100 will likely be 30 cm higher than 2000 levels despite all but the most aggressive geoengineering under all except the most stringent greenhouse gas emissions scenarios. The least risky and most desirable way of limiting sea-level rise is bioenergy with carbon sequestration. However aerosol injection or a space mirror system reducing insolation at an accelerating rate of 1 W m(-2) per decade from now to 2100 could limit or reduce sea levels. Aerosol injection delivering a constant 4 W m(-2) reduction in radiative forcing (similar to a 1991 Pinatubo eruption every 18 months) could delay sea-level rise by 40-80 years. Aerosol injection appears to fail cost-benefit analysis unless it can be maintained continuously, and damage caused by the climate response to the aerosols is less than about 0.6% Global World Product.

  15. Analysis of the sea levels in Kiribati A Rising Sea of Misrepresentation Sinks Kiribati

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parker, Albert

    2016-03-01

    The sea levels of Kiribati have been stable over the last few decades, as elsewhere in the world. The Australian government funded Pacific Sea Level Monitoring (PSLM) project has adjusted sea level records to produce an unrealistic rising trend. Some information has been hidden or neglected, especially from sources of different management. The measured monthly average mean sea levels suffer from subsidence or manipulation resulting in a tilting from the about 0 (zero) mm/year of nearby tide gauges to 4 (four) mm/year over the same short time window. Real environmental problems are driven by the increasing local population leading to troubles including scarcity of water, localized sinking and localised erosion.

  16. Recent contributions of glaciers and ice caps to sea level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacob, Thomas; Wahr, John; Pfeffer, W Tad; Swenson, Sean

    2012-02-08

    Glaciers and ice caps (GICs) are important contributors to present-day global mean sea level rise. Most previous global mass balance estimates for GICs rely on extrapolation of sparse mass balance measurements representing only a small fraction of the GIC area, leaving their overall contribution to sea level rise unclear. Here we show that GICs, excluding the Greenland and Antarctic peripheral GICs, lost mass at a rate of 148 ± 30 Gt yr(-1) from January 2003 to December 2010, contributing 0.41 ± 0.08 mm yr(-1) to sea level rise. Our results are based on a global, simultaneous inversion of monthly GRACE-derived satellite gravity fields, from which we calculate the mass change over all ice-covered regions greater in area than 100 km(2). The GIC rate for 2003-2010 is about 30 per cent smaller than the previous mass balance estimate that most closely matches our study period. The high mountains of Asia, in particular, show a mass loss of only 4 ± 20 Gt yr(-1) for 2003-2010, compared with 47-55 Gt yr(-1) in previously published estimates. For completeness, we also estimate that the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets, including their peripheral GICs, contributed 1.06 ± 0.19 mm yr(-1) to sea level rise over the same time period. The total contribution to sea level rise from all ice-covered regions is thus 1.48 ± 0.26 mm (-1), which agrees well with independent estimates of sea level rise originating from land ice loss and other terrestrial sources.

  17. Glaciers dominate eustatic sea-level rise in the 21st century

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meier, Mark Frederick; Dyurgerov, M.B.; Rick, Ursula K.; Pfeffer, William Tad; Anderson, Suzanne P.; Glazovsky, Andrey F.

    2007-01-01

    Ice loss to the sea currently accounts for virtually all of the sea-level rise that is not attributable to ocean warming, and about 60% of the ice loss is from glaciers and ice caps rather than from the two ice sheets. The contribution of these smaller glaciers has accelerated over the past decade, in part due to marked thinning and retreat of marine-terminating glaciers associated with a dynamic instability that is generally not considered in mass-balance and climate modeling. This acceleration of glacier melt may cause 0.1 to 0.25 meter of additional sea-level rise by 2100.

  18. Sea-level rise risks to coastal cities: what are the limits to adaptation?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicholls, R. J.; Reeder, T.; Brown, S.; Haigh, I. D.

    2015-12-01

    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 raising important challenges for the future. In 2005 there were 136 coastal cities with a population exceeding one million people and a collective population of 400 million people. All these 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). City abandonment due to sea-level rise is widely discussed in the media, but most of the discussion is speculative. The limits to adaptation and abandonment of cities 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 or a defence upgrade. Several types of potential adaptation limits can be recognised: (1) physical/engineering limits; (2) economic/financial limits; and (3) socio-political limits. The latter two types of limits are much less understood, and yet issues such as loss of confidence rather than a simple engineering failure may be instrumental in the future of a coastal city. There are few studies which quantify the sea-level rise threshold at which cities will be challenged, especially for large rises exceeding a metre or more. Exceptions include London and the Thames Estuary and the Amsterdam and Rotterdam (the Netherlands) where adaptation to a rise of sea level of up to 4 m or more appears feasible. This lack of knowledge on sea-level rise thresholds for coastal cities is of concern, and similar

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. Effects of sea level rise on economy of the United States

    OpenAIRE

    Novackova, Monika; Tol, Richard,

    2017-01-01

    We report the first ex post study of the economic impact of sea level rise. We apply two econometric approaches to estimate the past effects of sea level rise on the economy of the USA, viz. Barro type growth regressions adjusted for spatial patterns and a matching estimator. Unit of analysis is 3063 counties of the USA. We fit growth regressions for 13 time periods and we estimated numerous varieties and robustness tests for both growth regressions and matching estimator. Although there is s...

  2. Sediment and vegetation spatial dynamics facing sea-level rise in microtidal salt marshes: Insights from an ecogeomorphic model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belliard, J.-P.; Di Marco, N.; Carniello, L.; Toffolon, M.

    2016-07-01

    Modeling efforts have considerably improved our understanding on the chief processes that govern the evolution of salt marshes under climate change. Yet the spatial dynamic response of salt marshes to sea-level rise that results from the interactions between the tidal landforms of interest and the presence of bio-geomorphic features has not been addressed explicitly. Accordingly, we use a modeling framework that integrates the co-evolution of the marsh platform and the embedded tidal networks to study sea-level rise effects on spatial sediment and vegetation dynamics in microtidal salt marshes considering different ecological scenarios. The analysis unveils mechanisms that drive spatial variations in sedimentation rates in ways that increase marsh resilience to rising sea-levels. In particular, marsh survival is related to the effectiveness of transport of sediments toward the interior marshland. This study hints at additional dynamics related to the modulation of channel cross-sections affecting sediment advection in the channels and subsequent delivery in the inner marsh, which should be definitely considered in the study of marsh adaptability to sea-level rise and posterior management.

  3. Remote Sensing of Vegetation Parameters for Modeling Coastal Marsh Response to Sea Level Rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Byrd, K. B.; Windham-Myers, L.; Warzecha, B.; Crowe, R.; Vasey, M. C.; Ferner, M.

    2014-12-01

    Coastal planners are seeking ways to prepare for the potential impacts of future climate change, particularly sea level rise though management of future risks is complicated by uncertainty in the timing, distribution and extent of these impacts. Sea level rise impacts will be most evident at the regional level where decisions related to climate change adaptation including those related to land use planning and habitat management typically occur. To aid coastal managers with decision-making we are integrating remote sensing data with the marsh equilibrium model (MEM3) to project coastal marsh habitat response to future sea level rise. MEM3 is a 1-dimentional, calibrated Excel-based model that incorporates both physical and biological feedbacks to changing relative elevations. Modeled future elevations are then distributed at the regional scale with LiDAR DEMs to project changes to coastal habitats and dependent wildlife. Because plant biomass and structure influence both organic and inorganic accretion, MEM3 includes multiple vegetation input variables. Deriving these variables, including maximum and minimum elevations of marsh vegetation, peak aboveground biomass, and elevation at peak biomass from remote sensing will enable the model to have spatially variable inputs across sites. We are evaluating 30m Landsat 8 and 2m World View-2 (WV2) satellite data for mapping peak biomass at Rush Ranch, a highly diverse brackish marsh in the San Francisco Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve. The high spatial resolution of WV2 produces greater variability in plant reflectance at the pixel scale than Landsat 8. Initial results show the need for plant community-specific biomass models with WV2 to account for differences in plant structure and canopy architecture. When removing plots dominated by Salicornia pacifica and Lepidium latifolium, peak biomass is best estimated with an NDVI-type vegetation index based on WV2 near infrared bands 7 and 8 (R2 = 0.21, RMSE = 318 g/m2

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bierkandt, R.; Auffhammer, M.; Levermann, A.

    2015-12-01

    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.

  5. Allowances for evolving coastal flood risk under uncertain local sea-level rise

    CERN Document Server

    Buchanan, Maya K; Oppenheimer, Michael; Tebaldi, Claudia

    2015-01-01

    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 Design Life SLR (DL-SLR) allowances. The AADLL is the flood level corresponding to a time-integrated annual expected probability of occurrence (AEP) under uncertainty over the design life of an asset; DL-SLR allowances are the adjustment from 2000 levels that maintain current average probability over the design life. Given non-stationary and uncertain sea-level rise, AADLL flood levels and DL-SLR allowances provide estimates of flood protection heights and offsets for different planning horizons and different levels of confidence in SLR projections in coastal area...

  6. Effects of future sea-level rise on tidal processes on the Patagonian Shelf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carless, Stacey J.; Green, J. A. Mattias; Pelling, Holly E.; Wilmes, Sophie-Berenice

    2016-11-01

    The response of tidally driven processes on the Patagonian Shelf to sea-level rise (SLR) is revisited using large but realistic levels of change in a numerical tidal model. The results relate to previous studies through significant differences in the impact, depending on how SLR is implemented. This is true for how the boundary at the coastline is treated, i.e., if we allow for inundation of land or assume flood defences along the coast, but also for how the sea-level change itself is implemented. Simulations with uniform SLR provide a different, and slightly larger, response than do runs where SLR is based on observed trends. In all cases, the effect on the tidal amplitudes is patchy, with alternating increases and decreases in amplitude along the shelf. Furthermore, simulations with a realistic future change in vertical stratification, thus affecting tidal conversion rates, imply that there may be a small but significant decrease in the amplitudes along the coast. Associated processes, e.g., the location of mixing fronts and potential impacts on biogeochemical cycles on the shelf are also discussed.

  7. Prediction of China's Submerged Coastal Areas by Sea Level Rise due to Climate Change

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZUO Juncheng; YANG Yiqiu; ZHANG Jianli; CHEN Meixiang; XU Qing

    2013-01-01

    Based on the simulation with the Ocean-Atmosphere Coupled Model CCSM and Ocean Model POP under the greenhouse gas emission scenario of the IPCC SRES A2 (IPCC,2001),and on the earth crust subsidence and glacier melting data,the relative sea level change is obtained along the coast of China in the 21 st century.Using the SRTM elevation data the submergence of coastal low land is calculated under the extreme water level with a 100-year return period.The total flooding areas are 98.3× 103 and 104.9× 103 km2 for 2050 and 2080,respectively.For the three regions most vulnerable to extreme sea level rise,i.e.,the coast of Bohai Bay,the Yangtze River Delta together with neighboring Jiangsu Province and northern Zhejiang Province,and the Pearl River Delta,the flooded areas are 5.0 × 103,64.1 × 103 and 15.3 × 103 km2 in 2050 and 5.2 × 103,67.8 × 103 and 17.2 × 103 km2 in 2080,respectively.

  8. Coastal vertebrate exposure to predicted habitat changes due to sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunter, Elizabeth A.; Nibbelink, Nathan P.; Alexander, Clark R.; Barrett, Kyle; Mengak, Lara F.; Guy, Rachel; Moore, Clinton; Cooper, Robert J.

    2015-01-01

    Sea level rise (SLR) may degrade habitat for coastal vertebrates in the Southeastern United States, but it is unclear which groups or species will be most exposed to habitat changes. We assessed 28 coastal Georgia vertebrate species for their exposure to potential habitat changes due to SLR using output from the Sea Level Affecting Marshes Model and information on the species’ fundamental niches. We assessed forecasted habitat change up to the year 2100 using three structural habitat metrics: total area, patch size, and habitat permanence. Almost all of the species (n = 24) experienced negative habitat changes due to SLR as measured by at least one of the metrics. Salt marsh and ocean beach habitats experienced the most change (out of 16 categorical land cover types) across the three metrics and species that used salt marsh extensively (rails and marsh sparrows) were ranked highest for exposure to habitat changes. Species that nested on ocean beaches (Diamondback Terrapins, shorebirds, and terns) were also ranked highly, but their use of other foraging habitats reduced their overall exposure. Future studies on potential effects of SLR on vertebrates in southeastern coastal ecosystems should focus on the relative importance of different habitat types to these species’ foraging and nesting requirements. Our straightforward prioritization approach is applicable to other coastal systems and can provide insight to managers on which species to focus resources, what components of their habitats need to be protected, and which locations in the study area will provide habitat refuges in the face of SLR.

  9. Coastal Vertebrate Exposure to Predicted Habitat Changes Due to Sea Level Rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunter, Elizabeth A.; Nibbelink, Nathan P.; Alexander, Clark R.; Barrett, Kyle; Mengak, Lara F.; Guy, Rachel K.; Moore, Clinton T.; Cooper, Robert J.

    2015-12-01

    Sea level rise (SLR) may degrade habitat for coastal vertebrates in the Southeastern United States, but it is unclear which groups or species will be most exposed to habitat changes. We assessed 28 coastal Georgia vertebrate species for their exposure to potential habitat changes due to SLR using output from the Sea Level Affecting Marshes Model and information on the species' fundamental niches. We assessed forecasted habitat change up to the year 2100 using three structural habitat metrics: total area, patch size, and habitat permanence. Almost all of the species ( n = 24) experienced negative habitat changes due to SLR as measured by at least one of the metrics. Salt marsh and ocean beach habitats experienced the most change (out of 16 categorical land cover types) across the three metrics and species that used salt marsh extensively (rails and marsh sparrows) were ranked highest for exposure to habitat changes. Species that nested on ocean beaches (Diamondback Terrapins, shorebirds, and terns) were also ranked highly, but their use of other foraging habitats reduced their overall exposure. Future studies on potential effects of SLR on vertebrates in southeastern coastal ecosystems should focus on the relative importance of different habitat types to these species' foraging and nesting requirements. Our straightforward prioritization approach is applicable to other coastal systems and can provide insight to managers on which species to focus resources, what components of their habitats need to be protected, and which locations in the study area will provide habitat refuges in the face of SLR.

  10. Reconsidering Melt-water Pulses 1A and 1B:Global Impacts of Rapid Sea-level Rise

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    J.Paul Liu; John D.Milliman

    2004-01-01

    Re-evaluation of the post-glacial sea level derived from the Barbados coral-reef borings suggests slightly revised depth ranges and timing of melt-water pulses MWP-1A(96-76 m, 14.3-14.0 ka cal BP)and 1B(58-45 m, 11.5-11.2 ka cal BP), respectively. Ages of non-reef sea-level indicators from the Sunda Shelf, the East China Sea and Yellow Sea for these two intervals are unreliable because of the well-documented radiocarbon(14C)plateau, but their vertical clustering corresponds closely with MWP-1A and 1B depth ranges. Close correlation of the revised sea-level curve with Greenland ice-core data suggests that the 14C plateau may be related to oceanographic-atmospheric changes due to rapid sea-level rise, fresh-water input, and impaired ocean circulation. MWP-1A appears to have occurred at the end of Blling Warm Transition, suggesting that the rapid sea-level rise may have resulted from lateral heat transport from low to high-latitude regions and subsequent abrupt ice-sheet collapses in both North America-Europe and Antarctica. An around 70 mm a-1 transgression during MWP-1A may have increased freshwater discharge to the North Atlantic by as much as an order of magnitude, thereby disturbing thermohaline circulation and initiating the Older Dryas global cooling.

  11. Sea-Level Rise and Land Subsidence in Deltas: Estimating Future Flood Risk Through Integrated Natural and Human System Modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tessler, Z. D.; Vorosmarty, C. J.

    2016-12-01

    Deltas are highly sensitive to local human activities, land subsidence, regional water management, global sea-level rise, and climate extremes. We present a new delta flood exposure and risk framework for estimating the sensitivity of deltas to relative sea-level rise. We have applied this framework to a set of global environmental, geophysical, and social indicators over 48 major river deltas to quantify how contemporary risks vary across delta systems. The risk modeling framework incorporates upstream sediment flux and coastal land subsidence models, global empirical estimates of contemporary storm surge exposure, and population distribution and growth. Future scenarios are used to test the impacts on coastal flood risk of upstream dam construction, coastal population growth, accelerated sea-level rise, and enhanced storm surge. Results suggest a wide range of outcomes across different delta systems within each scenario. Deltas in highly engineered watersheds (Mississippi, Rhine) exhibit less sensitivity to increased dams due to saturation of sediment retention effects, though planned or under-construction dams are expected to have a substantial impact in the Yangtze, Irrawaddy, and Magdalena deltas. Population growth and sea-level rise are expected to be the dominant drivers of increased human risk in most deltas, with important exceptions in several countries, particularly China, where population are forecast to contract over the next several decades.

  12. Substantial contribution to sea-level rise during the last interglacial from the Greenland ice sheet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuffey; Marshall

    2000-04-06

    During the last interglacial period (the Eemian), global sea level was at least three metres, and probably more than five metres, higher than at present. Complete melting of either the West Antarctic ice sheet or the Greenland ice sheet would today raise sea levels by 6-7 metres. But the high sea levels during the last interglacial period have been proposed to result mainly from disintegration of the West Antarctic ice sheet, with model studies attributing only 1-2 m of sea-level rise to meltwater from Greenland. This result was considered consistent with ice core evidence, although earlier work had suggested a much reduced Greenland ice sheet during the last interglacial period. Here we reconsider the Eemian evolution of the Greenland ice sheet by combining numerical modelling with insights obtained from recent central Greenland ice-core analyses. Our results suggest that the Greenland ice sheet was considerably smaller and steeper during the Eemian, and plausibly contributed 4-5.5 m to the sea-level highstand during that period. We conclude that the high sea level during the last interglacial period most probably included a large contribution from Greenland meltwater and therefore should not be interpreted as evidence for a significant reduction of the West Antarctic ice sheet.

  13. Geodesy for Evaluating the Impact of Sea Level Rise on NASA Centers and Facilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bell, L. J.; Nerem, R.; Masters, D. S.; Meertens, C. M.

    2012-12-01

    Sea level is rising in response to climate change. Currently the global mean rate is a little over 3 mm/year, but it is expected to accelerate significantly over this century. This will have a profound impact on coastal populations and infrastructure, including NASA centers and facilities. A detailed study proposed by the University of Colorado's Center for Astrodynamics Research on the impact of sea level rise on a few of NASA's most vulnerable facilities was recently funded by NASA. Individual surveys at several high-risk NASA centers will be conducted and used as case studies for a broader investigation that needs to be done for coastal infrastructure around the country. The first year of the study will include implementing and conducting a terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) and GPS survey at Kennedy Space Center, Cape Canaveral, Florida, and potentially at Wallops Flight Facility, Wallops Island, Virginia, and Langley Research Center, Hampton, Virginia. We will use a broad array of geodetic tools to perform this study - much of which has been developed over the last few decades by NASA and its investigators. We will use airborne lidar data and terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) data to construct detailed digital elevation models (DEMs) of the facilities that we assess. We will use GPS data to assess the rate of vertical land movement at the facilities and to tie the DEM to tide gauges and other reference points. We will use satellite altimeter data from TOPEX, Jason-1, and Jason-2 to assess the sea level changes observed near these NASA facilities over the last 20 years to see if it offers clues for the future. We will also use GRACE satellite gravity observations to predict the regional changes in sea level caused by the melting of ice complexes around the world. We will use these datasets along with sea level projections from global climate models (GCMs) and semi-empirical projections to make detailed maps of sea level inundation for the years 2050 and 2100 for

  14. Spatial Management on Mangrove response to Sea Level Rise (SLR) in Kukup Island

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zulkifli, Mohd.; Yunus, Mohd.; Shafinaz Ahmad, Fatimah; Maslinda Omar, Chik

    2017-08-01

    Mangroves are known for their global environmental and socioeconomic value. It lives in two worlds at once which growing in the intertidal areas and estuary mouths between land and sea. Despite their importance, mangrove like other ecosystems is now being threatened by natural and human-induced processes that damage them at alarming rates, thereby diminishing the limited number of existing mangrove vegetation. If sea level is rising relative to the mangrove surface, the mangrove’s seaward and landward margins retreat landward where unobstructed, as mangrove species zones migrate inland in order to maintain their preferred environmental conditions, such as period, frequency and depth of inundation and salinity. The capability of storing data using GIS will reduce vulnerability coastal risk and evacuation models, raising the issues of integration, visualization, and proliferation of mapping applications, and the ease of use and intended audience of these products. Monitoring and predicting mangrove forest became easier using GIS tools.

  15. Explaining trends and variability in coastal relative sea level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frederikse, Thomas; Riva, Riccardo

    2016-04-01

    Comprehensive understanding of trends and variability in coastal mean sea level is vital for protecting shores under a changing climate. To understand the behavior of coastal relative sea level (RSL), it is crucial to identify all relevant processes. We combine data from various geophysical models and observations to determine whether the trends and decadal variability observed in relative sea level at tide gauges can be explained by the sum of all known contributors. A key contributor to RSL is vertical land motion, which is caused by glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA), solid earth response to surface loading, tectonics, and local effects. We explicitly model low-frequency loading effects to correct GPS records, which leads to a more consistent trend than only using GIA models. Secondly, we create sea level fingerprints based on estimates of ice melt and changes in land hydrology, which provide the RSL contribution due to large-scale mass transport. Since coastal areas are often located on shallow continental shelves, steric effects will generally be small, and a large fraction of the decadal sea level variability will have a remote steric origin. Therefore, we determine a relation between coastal sea level and deep sea steric variability. For the period 1950-2012, we find that for many locations, including the European coast, the observed and modeled RSL time series agree well on decadal and secular scales.

  16. An inflection in the rate of early mid-Holocene eustatic sea-level rise: A new sea-level curve from Singapore

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bird, M. I.; Fifield, L. K.; Teh, T. S.; Chang, C. H.; Shirlaw, N.; Lambeck, K.

    2007-02-01

    This study presents a sea-level curve from ˜9500 to ˜6500 cal BP for the farfield location of Singapore, on the Sunda Shelf in southeast Asia. The curve is based on more than 50 radiocarbon dates from elevations of +1.43 m to -15.09 m representing sea-level index points in intertidal mangrove and shallow marine sediments deposited by sea-level rise accompanying deglaciation. The results indicate that mean sea level rose rapidly from around -17 m at 9500 cal BP to around -3 m by 8000 cal BP. After this time, the data suggest (but do not unequivocally prove) that the rate of sea-rise slowed for a period of 300-500 years centred on ˜7700 cal BP, shortly after the cessation of meltwater input to the oceans from the northern hemisphere. Renewed sea-level rise amounting to 3-5 m began around 7400 cal BP and was complete by 7000 cal BP. The existence of an inflection in the rate of sea-level rise, with a slow-down centred on ˜7700 cal BP, is broadly consistent with other available sea-level curves over this interval and is supported by evidence of stable shorelines and delta initiation elsewhere at this time, as well as evidence of comparatively rapid retreat of the West Antarctic ice sheet beginning around 7500 cal BP. 'Stepped' sea-level rise occurring shortly after 7500 cal BP and also earlier during deglaciation may have served to focus significant post-glacial episodes of human maritime/coastal dispersal, into comparatively narrow time intervals.

  17. 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

  18. Niger's Delta vulnerability to river floods due to sea level rise

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Z. N. Musa

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available An evaluation of vulnerability to sea level rise is undertaken for the Niger delta based on 17 physical, social and human influence indicators of exposure, susceptibility and resilience. The assessment used GIS techniques to evaluate and analyse the indicators and the index of coastal vulnerability to floods, if sea level rise conditions are occurring. Each indicator value is based on data extracted from various sources including remote sensing, measured historical data series and literature search. Further indicators are ranked on a scale from 1 to 5 representing "very low" to "very high" vulnerability, based on their values. These ranks are used to determine a similar rank for the defined coastal vulnerability index (CVSLRI. Results indicate that 42.2% of the Niger delta is highly vulnerable to sea level rise; such areas been characterized by low slopes, low topography, high mean wave heights, and unconfined aquifers. Moreover the analysis of social and human influences on the environment indicate high vulnerability to sea level rise due to its ranking for type of aquifer, aquifer hydraulic conductivity, population growth, sediment supply and groundwater consumption. Such results may help decision makers during planning, to take proper adaptive measures for reducing Niger Delta's vulnerability, as well as increasing the resilience to potential future floods.

  19. Sea defence and flood protection in the Netherlands anticipating increased sea-level rise

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verhagen, H.J.

    1990-01-01

    The 1400 km Dutch coastline is affected by sea-level rise. At this moment a legal framework is made to guarantee safety of the dikes also in future. Also a national policy is developed for compensation of all coastal erosion. Both measures should make it possible for the Netherlands to survive an

  20. Global and regional sea level rise scenarios for the United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sweet, W.; Kopp, R.E.; Weaver, C.P.; Obeysekera, J; Horton, Radley M.; Thieler, E. Robert; Zervas, C.

    2017-01-01

    The Sea Level Rise and Coastal Flood Hazard Scenarios and Tools Interagency Task Force, jointly convened by the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) and the National Ocean Council (NOC), began its work in August 2015. The Task Force has focused its efforts on three primary tasks:

  1. Optimal hurricane overwash thickness for maximizing marsh resilience to sea level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walters, David C; Kirwan, Matthew L

    2016-05-01

    The interplay between storms and sea level rise, and between ecology and sediment transport governs the behavior of rapidly evolving coastal ecosystems such as marshes and barrier islands. Sediment deposition during hurricanes is thought to increase the resilience of salt marshes to sea level rise by increasing soil elevation and vegetation productivity. We use mesocosms to simulate burial of Spartina alterniflora during hurricane-induced overwash events of various thickness (0-60 cm), and find that adventitious root growth within the overwash sediment layer increases total biomass by up to 120%. In contrast to most previous work illustrating a simple positive relationship between burial depth and vegetation productivity, our work reveals an optimum burial depth (5-10 cm) beyond which burial leads to plant mortality. The optimum burial depth increases with flooding frequency, indicating that storm deposition ameliorates flooding stress, and that its impact on productivity will become more important under accelerated sea level rise. Our results suggest that frequent, low magnitude storm events associated with naturally migrating islands may increase the resilience of marshes to sea level rise, and in turn, slow island migration rates. We find that burial deeper than the optimum results in reduced growth or mortality of marsh vegetation, which suggests that future increases in overwash thickness associated with more intense storms and artificial heightening of dunes could lead to less resilient marshes.

  2. Predicting Dynamic Coastal Delta Change in Response to Sea-Level Rise

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van De Lageweg, W.I.; Slangen, A.B.A.

    2017-01-01

    The world’s largest deltas are densely populated, of significant economic importance and among the most valuable coastal ecosystems. Projected twenty-first century sea-level rise (SLR) poses a threat to these low-lying coastal environments with inhabitants, resources and ecology becoming

  3. Sea defence and flood protection in the Netherlands anticipating increased sea-level rise

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verhagen, H.J.

    1990-01-01

    The 1400 km Dutch coastline is affected by sea-level rise. At this moment a legal framework is made to guarantee safety of the dikes also in future. Also a national policy is developed for compensation of all coastal erosion. Both measures should make it possible for the Netherlands to survive an

  4. Harnessing the biosphere to mitigate global climate change and sea level rise

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Smetacek, V.

    these developments will affect humans in different ways whereby substantial sea-level rise and resultant large-scale population displacement is certainly going to happen; the question is only when and how much time can we buy. In view of the dangers looming...

  5. 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; 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...

  6. Living with sea-level rise and climate change: a case study of the Netherlands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Koningsveld, van M.; Mulder, J.P.M.; Stive, M.J.F.; Valk, van der L.; Weck, van der A.W.

    2008-01-01

    Based on historical hindsight, this paper shows that sea-level rise has played a fundamental role in the development of the low-lying environment of the Netherlands. It was beneficial in morphological terms during the mid-Holocene, but from Roman times, it has been a threat to the coastal zone evolu

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  8. Estimating the glacier contribution to sea-level rise for the period 1800-2005

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leclercq, P.W.; Oerlemans, J.; Cogley, J.G.

    2011-01-01

    In this study, a new estimate of the contribution of glaciers and ice caps to the sea-level rise over the period 1800-2005 is presented. We exploit the available information on changes in glacier length. Length records form the only direct evidence of glacier change that has potential global coverag

  9. Potential Inundation due to Rising Sea Levels in the San Francisco Bay Region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knowles, Noah

    2009-01-01

    An increase in the rate of sea level rise is one of the primary impacts of projected global climate change. To assess potential inundation associated with a continued acceleration of sea level rise, the highest resolution elevation data available were assembled from various sources and mosaicked to cover the land surfaces of the San Francisco Bay region. Next, to quantify high water levels throughout the bay, a hydrodynamic model of the San Francisco Estuary was driven by a projection of hourly water levels at the Presidio. This projection was based on a combination of climate model outputs and empirical models and incorporates astronomical, storm surge, El Niño, and long-term sea level rise influences. Based on the resulting data, maps of areas vulnerable to inundation were produced, corresponding to specific amounts of sea level rise and recurrence intervals. These maps portray areas where inundation will likely be an increasing concern. In the North Bay, wetland survival and developed fill areas are at risk. In Central and South bays, a key feature is the bay-ward periphery of developed areas that would be newly vulnerable to inundation. Nearly all municipalities adjacent to South Bay face this risk to some degree. For the Bay as a whole, as early as 2050 under this scenario, the one-year peak event nearly equals the 100-year peak event in 2000. Maps of vulnerable areas are presented and some implications discussed.

  10. 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

  11. Emulating Atlantic overturning strength for low emission scenarios: consequences for sea-level rise along the North American east coast

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. F. Schleussner

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available In order to provide probabilistic projections of the future evolution of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC, we calibrated a simple Stommel-type box model to emulate the output of fully coupled three-dimensional atmosphere-ocean general circulation models (AOGCMs of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP. Based on this calibration to idealised global warming scenarios with and without interactive atmosphere-ocean fluxes and freshwater perturbation simulations, we project the future evolution of the AMOC mean strength within the covered calibration range for the lower two Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs until 2100 obtained from the reduced complexity carbon cycle-climate model MAGICC 6. For RCP3-PD with a global mean temperature median below 1.0 °C warming relative to the year 2000, we project an ensemble median weakening of up to 11% compared to 22% under RCP4.5 with a warming median up to 1.9 °C over the 21st century. Additional Greenland meltwater of 10 and 20 cm of global sea-level rise equivalent further weakens the AMOC by about 4.5 and 10%, respectively. By combining our outcome with a multi-model sea-level rise study we project a dynamic sea-level rise along the New York City coastline of 4 cm for the RCP3-PD and of 8 cm for the RCP4.5 scenario over the 21st century. We estimate the total steric and dynamic sea-level rise for New York City to be about 24 cm until 2100 for the RCP3-PD scenario, which can hold as a lower bound for sea-level rise projections in this region, as it does not include ice sheet and mountain glacier contributions.

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. Winners and losers as mangrove, coral and seagrass ecosystems respond to sea-level rise in Solomon Islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albert, Simon; Saunders, Megan I.; Roelfsema, Chris M.; Leon, Javier X.; Johnstone, Elizabeth; Mackenzie, Jock R.; Hoegh-Guldberg, Ove; Grinham, Alistair R.; Phinn, Stuart R.; Duke, Norman C.; Mumby, Peter J.; Kovacs, Eva; Woodroffe, Colin D.

    2017-09-01

    A 2007 earthquake in the western Solomon Islands resulted in a localised subsidence event in which sea level (relative to the previous coastal settings) rose approximately 30–70 cm, providing insight into impacts of future rapid changes to sea level on coastal ecosystems. Here, we show that increasing sea level by 30–70 cm can have contrasting impacts on mangrove, seagrass and coral reef ecosystems. Coral reef habitats were the clear winners with a steady lateral growth from 2006–2014, yielding a 157% increase in areal coverage over seven years. Mangrove ecosystems, on the other hand, suffered the largest impact through a rapid dieback of 35% (130 ha) of mangrove forest in the study area after subsidence. These forests, however, had partially recovered seven years after the earthquake albeit with a different community structure. The shallow seagrass ecosystems demonstrated the most dynamic response to relative shifts in sea level with both losses and gains in areal extent at small scales of 10–100 m. The results of this study emphasize the importance of considering the impacts of sea-level rise within a complex landscape in which winners and losers may vary over time and space.

  15. Salt marsh equilibrium states and transient dynamics in response to changing rates of sea level rise and sediment supply

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Alpaos, A.; Mudd, S. M.; Carniello, L.

    2012-12-01

    Understanding and predicting the response of salt-marsh bio-geomorphic systems to changes in the rate of sea level rise and sediment supply is an issue of paramount importance due to the crucial role exerted by salt marshes within the tidal landscape. Salt-marsh platforms, in fact, buffer coastlines against storms, filter nutrients and pollutants from tidal waters, provide nursery areas for coastal biota, and serve as a sink for organic carbon. Observations of marsh degradation worldwide and the acceleration in the rate of global sea level rise highlight the importance of improving our understanding of the chief processes which control salt-marsh response to current natural climate changes and to the effects of variations in sediment supply. The results of our analytical model of salt-marsh bio-morphodynamic evolution in the vertical plane, accounting for two-way interactions between ecological and geomorphological processes, show that marshes are more resilient to a step decrease in the rate of relative sea level rise rather than to a step increase of the same magnitude. Interestingly, marshes respond more rapidly to an increase in sediment load or vegetation productivity, rather than to a decrease (of the same amount) in sediment load or vegetation productivity. Model results also suggest that marsh stability is positively correlated with tidal range: marshes with high tidal ranges respond more slowly to changes in the environmental forcings and therefore are less likely to be affected by perturbations than their counterparts in low tidal ranges. Finally, the model suggests that, in the case of a oscillating rate of sea level rise, marsh stratigraphy will be unable to fully record short term fluctuations in relative mean sea level, whereas it will be able to capture long term fluctuations particularly in sediment rich, microtidal settings.

  16. Relative sea-level variability during the late Middle Pleistocene: New evidence from eastern England

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barlow, N. L. M.; Long, A. J.; Gehrels, W. R.; Saher, M. H.; Scaife, R. G.; Davies, H. J.; Penkman, K. E. H.; Bridgland, D. R.; Sparkes, A.; Smart, C. W.; Taylor, S.

    2017-10-01

    Unravelling patterns of relative sea-level change during previous interglacials enhances our understanding of ice sheet response to changing climate. Temperate-latitude estuarine environments have the potential to preserve continuous records of relative sea level from previous interglacial (warm) periods. This is important because, currently, we typically only have snapshots of sea-level highstands from low-latitude corals and raised palaeoshoreline indicators while the (continuous) deep-sea oxygen isotope record only provides indirect evidence of sea-level changes. Here, we focus on the Nar Valley in eastern England, in which is preserved evidence of a late middle-Pleistocene marine transgression more than 20 vertical metres in extent. By applying a model of coastal succession and sea-level tendencies, as used in Holocene sea-level studies, we assess the mode (abrupt versus gradual) of sea-level change recorded by the interglacial Nar Valley sequences. Compiled palaeo-stratigraphic evidence comprising foraminifera, pollen and amino acid racemization dating, suggests that the mode of sea-level change in the Nar Valley interglacial sequence was gradual, with potentially two phases of regional transgression and relative sea-level rise occurring at two separate times. The first phase occurred during the latter part of marine Oxygen Isotope Stage (MIS) 11 from ∼8 to 18 m OD; and, the second phase potentially occurred during early MIS 9 from ∼-3 to 3 m OD (with long-term tectonic uplift included in these estimates). We cannot conclusively preclude an alternative MIS 11 age for these lower sediments. The lack of indicators for rapid sea-level oscillations in the Nar Valley adds weight to an argument for steady melt of the ice sheets during both MIS 11 and 9.

  17. Modeling barrier island response to sea-level rise in the outer Banks, North Carolina

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Laura J.; List, Jeffrey H.; Williams, S. Jeffress; Stolper, David

    2007-01-01

    An 8500-year Holocene simulation developed in GEOMBEST provides a possible scenario to explain the evolution of barrier coast between Rodanthe and Cape Hatteras, NC. Sensitivity analyses suggest that in the Outer Banks, the rate of sea-level rise is the most important factor in determining how barrier islands evolve. The Holocene simulation provides a basis for future simulations, which suggest that if sea level rises up to 0.88 m by AD 2100, as predicted by the highest estimates of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the barrier in the study area may migrate on the order of 2.5 times more rapidly than at present. If sea level rises beyond IPCC predictions to reach 1.4–1.9 m above modern sea level by AD 2100, model results suggest that barrier islands in the Outer Banks may become vulnerable to threshold collapse, disintegrating during storm events, by the end of the next century. Consistent with sensitivity analyses, additional simulations indicate that anthropogenic activities, such as increasing the rate of sediment supply through beach nourishment, will only slightly affect barrier island migration rates and barrier island vulnerability to collapse.

  18. Predicting Land-Ice Retreat and Sea-Level Rise with the Community Earth System Model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lipscomb, William [Los Alamos National Laboratory

    2012-06-19

    Coastal stakeholders need defensible predictions of 21st century sea-level rise (SLR). IPCC assessments suggest 21st century SLR of {approx}0.5 m under aggressive emission scenarios. Semi-empirical models project SLR of {approx}1 m or more by 2100. Although some sea-level contributions are fairly well constrained by models, others are highly uncertain. Recent studies suggest a potential large contribution ({approx}0.5 m/century) from the marine-based West Antarctic Ice Sheet, linked to changes in Southern Ocean wind stress. To assess the likelihood of fast retreat of marine ice sheets, we need coupled ice-sheet/ocean models that do not yet exist (but are well under way). CESM is uniquely positioned to provide integrated, physics based sea-level predictions.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Climate change and Sea level rise: Potential impact on the coast of the Edremit Plain, NW Turkey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curebal, Isa; Efe, Recep; Soykan, Abdullah; Sonmez, Suleyman

    2015-04-01

    Over the past century, most of the world's mountain glaciers and the ice sheets have lost mass due to global warming. When the temperature exceeds a particular level, glaciers and polar ice caps will continue to lose mass. Recent studies report that low-lying coastal areas will be seriously affected by sea level rise. Changes in the amount of natural and anthropogenic greenhouse gases and aerosols had a warming effect on the global climate during last century. Thus, the pace of melting of ice sheets increased, and, accordingly, sea level began to rise faster. Rise in sea level between 1961 and 2003 was equal to 1.8 mm/year while it was 3.1 mm/year between 1993 and 2003. The total rise in the 20th century is estimated to be between 17 and 19 cm. The models based on the sea level change indicate that the average global temperature at the end of the 21st century will increase by 0.3°C - 6.4°C. Global sea level is projected to rise 8-25 cm by 2030, relative to 2000 levels, 18-48 cm by 2050, and 50-140 cm by 20110. The Edremit Plain lies between Mount Madra and the Kaz Mountains on the coast of Aegean Sea in NW Turkey. It is lowland with an area of 141 km2. The widest part of the plain is 16 km along the E - W direction. The N - S direction amounts to a width of 15 km. The plain is covered with alluvial deposits that settled in the Quaternary Period. The elevation ranges from 0 to 50 m a.s.l. in the plain. This study aims to determine how the low-lying coastal land areas of the Edremit Plain may be affected by possible changes in sea level. Elevation dataset is based on the digital elevation model (DEM) of Landsat ETM + satellite images. To that end, satellite images were used to draw the current coastline. Curves of 2.5, 5, and 10 m were drawn through the use of maps with a scale of 1/25.000. Later on, the areas of the fields between these points were calculated. Current estimates show that 2.5 m rise in sea level will cause sea water to cover an area of 8.6 km2 (%14

  2. Global Sea Surface Temperature and Sea Level Rise Estimation with Optimal Historical Time Lag Data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mustafa M. Aral

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Prediction of global temperatures and sea level rise (SLR is important for sustainable development planning of coastal regions of the world and the health and safety of communities living in these regions. In this study, climate change effects on sea level rise is investigated using a dynamic system model (DSM with time lag on historical input data. A time-invariant (TI-DSM and time-variant dynamic system model (TV-DSM with time lag is developed to predict global temperatures and SLR in the 21st century. The proposed model is an extension of the DSM developed by the authors. The proposed model includes the effect of temperature and sea level states of several previous years on the current temperature and sea level over stationary and also moving scale time periods. The optimal time lag period used in the model is determined by minimizing a synthetic performance index comprised of the root mean square error and coefficient of determination which is a measure for the reliability of the predictions. Historical records of global temperature and sea level from 1880 to 2001 are used to calibrate the model. The optimal time lag is determined to be eight years, based on the performance measures. The calibrated model was then used to predict the global temperature and sea levels in the 21st century using a fixed time lag period and moving scale time lag periods. To evaluate the adverse effect of greenhouse gas emissions on SLR, the proposed model was also uncoupled to project the SLR based on global temperatures that are obtained from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC emission scenarios. The projected SLR estimates for the 21st century are presented comparatively with the predictions made in previous studies.

  3. Economy-Wide Estimates of the Implications of Climate Change. Sea Level Rise

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bosello, F.; Lazzarin, M. [Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei FEEM, Milan (Italy); Roson, R. [The Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics, Trieste (Italy); Tol, R.S.J. [Centre for Marine and Climate Research, Hamburg University, Hamburg (Germany)

    2004-06-01

    The economy-wide implications of sea level rise in 2050 are estimated using a static computable general equilibrium model. Overall, general equilibrium effects increase the costs of sea level rise, but not necessarily in every sector or region. In the absence of coastal protection, economies that rely most on agriculture are hit hardest. Although energy is substituted for land, overall energy consumption falls with the shrinking economy, hurting energy exporters. With full coastal protection, GDP increases, particularly in regions that do a lot of dike building, but utility falls, least in regions that build a lot of dikes and export energy. Energy prices rise and energy consumption falls. The costs of full protection exceed the costs of losing land.

  4. 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

  5. Impact of accelerated future global mean sea level rise on hypoxia in the Baltic Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meier, H. E. M.; Höglund, A.; Eilola, K.; Almroth-Rosell, E.

    2017-07-01

    Expanding hypoxia is today a major threat for many coastal seas around the world and disentangling its drivers is a large challenge for interdisciplinary research. Using a coupled physical-biogeochemical model we estimate the impact of past and accelerated future global mean sea level rise (GSLR) upon water exchange and oxygen conditions in a semi-enclosed, shallow sea. As a study site, the Baltic Sea was chosen that suffers today from eutrophication and from dead bottom zones due to (1) excessive nutrient loads from land, (2) limited water exchange with the world ocean and (3) perhaps other drivers like global warming. We show from model simulations for the period 1850-2008 that the impacts of past GSLR on the marine ecosystem were relatively small. If we assume for the end of the twenty-first century a GSLR of +0.5 m relative to today's mean sea level, the impact on the marine ecosystem may still be small. Such a GSLR corresponds approximately to the projected ensemble-mean value reported by the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. However, we conclude that GSLR should be considered in future high-end projections (>+1 m) for the Baltic Sea and other coastal seas with similar hydrographical conditions as in the Baltic because GSLR may lead to reinforced saltwater inflows causing higher salinity and increased vertical stratification compared to present-day conditions. Contrary to intuition, reinforced ventilation of the deep water does not lead to overall improved oxygen conditions but causes instead expanded dead bottom areas accompanied with increased internal phosphorus loads from the sediments and increased risk for cyanobacteria blooms.

  6. Impact of accelerated future global mean sea level rise on hypoxia in the Baltic Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meier, H. E. M.; Höglund, A.; Eilola, K.; Almroth-Rosell, E.

    2016-08-01

    Expanding hypoxia is today a major threat for many coastal seas around the world and disentangling its drivers is a large challenge for interdisciplinary research. Using a coupled physical-biogeochemical model we estimate the impact of past and accelerated future global mean sea level rise (GSLR) upon water exchange and oxygen conditions in a semi-enclosed, shallow sea. As a study site, the Baltic Sea was chosen that suffers today from eutrophication and from dead bottom zones due to (1) excessive nutrient loads from land, (2) limited water exchange with the world ocean and (3) perhaps other drivers like global warming. We show from model simulations for the period 1850-2008 that the impacts of past GSLR on the marine ecosystem were relatively small. If we assume for the end of the twenty-first century a GSLR of +0.5 m relative to today's mean sea level, the impact on the marine ecosystem may still be small. Such a GSLR corresponds approximately to the projected ensemble-mean value reported by the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. However, we conclude that GSLR should be considered in future high-end projections (>+1 m) for the Baltic Sea and other coastal seas with similar hydrographical conditions as in the Baltic because GSLR may lead to reinforced saltwater inflows causing higher salinity and increased vertical stratification compared to present-day conditions. Contrary to intuition, reinforced ventilation of the deep water does not lead to overall improved oxygen conditions but causes instead expanded dead bottom areas accompanied with increased internal phosphorus loads from the sediments and increased risk for cyanobacteria blooms.

  7. 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.

  8. Consistent estimate of ocean warming, land ice melt and sea level rise from Observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blazquez, Alejandro; Meyssignac, Benoît; Lemoine, Jean Michel

    2016-04-01

    Based on the sea level budget closure approach, this study investigates the consistency of observed Global Mean Sea Level (GMSL) estimates from satellite altimetry, observed Ocean Thermal Expansion (OTE) estimates from in-situ hydrographic data (based on Argo for depth above 2000m and oceanic cruises below) and GRACE observations of land water storage and land ice melt for the period January 2004 to December 2014. The consistency between these datasets is a key issue if we want to constrain missing contributions to sea level rise such as the deep ocean contribution. Numerous previous studies have addressed this question by summing up the different contributions to sea level rise and comparing it to satellite altimetry observations (see for example Llovel et al. 2015, Dieng et al. 2015). Here we propose a novel approach which consists in correcting GRACE solutions over the ocean (essentially corrections of stripes and leakage from ice caps) with mass observations deduced from the difference between satellite altimetry GMSL and in-situ hydrographic data OTE estimates. We check that the resulting GRACE corrected solutions are consistent with original GRACE estimates of the geoid spherical harmonic coefficients within error bars and we compare the resulting GRACE estimates of land water storage and land ice melt with independent results from the literature. This method provides a new mass redistribution from GRACE consistent with observations from Altimetry and OTE. We test the sensibility of this method to the deep ocean contribution and the GIA models and propose best estimates.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. Amplification of flood frequencies with local sea level rise and emerging flood regimes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buchanan, Maya K.; Oppenheimer, Michael; Kopp, Robert E.

    2017-06-01

    The amplification of flood frequencies by sea level rise (SLR) is expected to become one of the most economically damaging impacts of climate change for many coastal locations. Understanding the magnitude and pattern by which the frequency of current flood levels increase is important for developing more resilient coastal settlements, particularly since flood risk management (e.g. infrastructure, insurance, communications) is often tied to estimates of flood return periods. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fifth Assessment Report characterized the multiplication factor by which the frequency of flooding of a given height increases (referred to here as an amplification factor; AF). However, this characterization neither rigorously considered uncertainty in SLR nor distinguished between the amplification of different flooding levels (such as the 10% versus 0.2% annual chance floods); therefore, it may be seriously misleading. Because both historical flood frequency and projected SLR are uncertain, we combine joint probability distributions of the two to calculate AFs and their uncertainties over time. Under probabilistic relative sea level projections, while maintaining storm frequency fixed, we estimate a median 40-fold increase (ranging from 1- to 1314-fold) in the expected annual number of local 100-year floods for tide-gauge locations along the contiguous US coastline by 2050. While some places can expect disproportionate amplification of higher frequency events and thus primarily a greater number of historically precedented floods, others face amplification of lower frequency events and thus a particularly fast growing risk of historically unprecedented flooding. For example, with 50 cm of SLR, the 10%, 1%, and 0.2% annual chance floods are expected respectively to recur 108, 335, and 814 times as often in Seattle, but 148, 16, and 4 times as often in Charleston, SC.

  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. Sea-level rise in Hawaii: Implications for future shoreline locations and Hawaii coastal management

    OpenAIRE

    Bohlander, Andrew; Conger, Chris; Eversole, Dolan

    2010-01-01

    Management of coastal development in Hawaii is based on the location of the certified shoreline, which is representative of the upper limit of marine inundation within the last several years. Though the certified shoreline location is significantly more variable than long-term erosion indicators, its migration will still follow the coastline's general trend. The long-term migration of Hawaii’s coasts will be significantly controlled by rising sea level. However, land use decisions adjacent to...

  14. Uncertainty Assessment for Numerical Modeling of Dune and Backshore Evolution Under Sea-Level Rise Scenarios

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dai, H.; Ye, M.; Niedoroda, A. W.; Kish, S.; Donoghue, J. F.; Saha, B.

    2010-12-01

    The beach dunes play an essential role in the evolution of barrier island shapes and coastlines. The dunes protect the beaches and beach ecology by absorbing energy from the storms and provide sediment to the beaches or backshores when erosion occurs. While a number of models have been developed to simulate the evolution of dunes and backshores, few of the models have comprehensively addressed dune growth, dune erosion, and backshore changes. Based on the assumption that dune shapes are stationary, we develop a new model that can estimate the dune and backshore evolution (including both growth and erosion) under the influence of storms with different sea-level rise scenarios. The modeling results are inherently uncertain due to unknown storm variability and sea-level rise scenarios. The storm uncertainty, characterized as parametric uncertainty, and its propagation to the modeling results are assessed using the Monte Carlo (MC) method. A total of 1500 realizations of storm magnitude, frequency, and track through a barrier island are generated and used for the MC simulation. The numerical modeling and uncertainty analysis is conducted for a synthetic barrier island with physical features and hurrucane exposure similar to Santa Rosa Island, in northwest Florida. Uncertainty in the simulated beach dune heights, dune width, and the backshore positions is assessed for five sea-level rise scenarios. The parametric uncertainty is different for different sea-level rise scenarios. For a given scenario, uncertainty of dune height is the largest and it is mainly caused by uncertainty in storm magnitude. This uncertainty analysis provides guidelines for coastal management and protection of coastal ecology.

  15. Can a city combat sea level rise alone: the impact of higher seawalls on the neighbors?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, R. Q.; Stacey, M. T.; Herdman, L.; Hummel, M.; Erikson, L. H.; Barnard, P.

    2016-12-01

    Global mean sea level has been rising by an average of 2 mm every year since 1993. This trend is observed to be accelerating in recent years, and the mean sea level rise is projected to be 1 m by 2100. Coastal communities are beginning to plan for protections against this threat, often requiring alterations to the structure of protective shorelines. As each community takes action, it is not clear how much an individual project (i.e., construction of a seawall, restoration of a marsh, etc. ) changes the regional hydrodynamics and how much the aggregated effects of other communities' projects influence a particular city. Because tidal forcing interacts with the geometry of a coastal embayment, alterations to the shoreline may increase (or decrease) flood risk regionally. There may be even more direct influences between neighboring communities, if the risk of inundation of one increases the risk for the other. This spatial interdependence has been largely neglected in coastal community planning, due in large part to a lack of quantitative information on the interdependence of communities. We have developed a suite of numerical methodologies to address this issue. A Bay-scale model has been established to reproduce the tidal and inundation dynamics under various scenarios for sea level rise. By considering different shoreline configurations, we can evaluate the impact of both local and regional actions on water level and inundation risk. For example, a complete hardening of embayment shores (i.e., a seawall ringing the entire embayment) increases water levels moderately for all communities, increasing the necessary investment in shoreline protections. To complement the forward model calculations, we have developed an adjoint sensitivity analysis tool that can efficiently analyze the importance of all the other coastal projects on a particular city. The quantification of these interdependencies demonstrate the value of coordinated action by communities, and the role

  16. The potential for sea-level-rise-induced barrier island loss: Insights from the Chandeleur Islands, Louisiana, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Laura J.; Patsch, Kiki; List, Jeffrey H.; Williams, S. Jeffress

    2014-01-01

    As sea level rises and hurricanes become more intense, barrier islands around the world become increasingly vulnerable to conversion from self-sustaining migrating landforms to submerging or subaqueous sand bodies. To explore the mechanism by which such state changes occur and to assess the factors leading to island disintegration, we develop a suite of numerical simulations for the Chandeleur Islands in Louisiana, U.S.A., which appear to be on the verge of this transition. Our results suggest that the Chandeleurs are likely poised to change state, leading to their demise, within decades depending on future storm history. Contributing factors include high rates of relative sea level rise, limited sediment supply, muddy substrate, current island position relative to former Mississippi River distributary channels, and the effects of changes in island morphology on sediment transport pathways. Although deltaic barrier islands are most sensitive to disintegration because of their muddy substrate, the importance of relative sea level rise rate in determining the timing of threshold crossing suggests that the conceptual models for deltaic barrier island formation and disintegration may apply more broadly in the future.

  17. Postglacial sea-level rise and its impact on the circum-arctic Holocene climate evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauch, Henning; Abramova, Ekaterina; Alenius, Teija; Saarnisto, Matti

    2016-04-01

    The global sea-level rise after the last glaciation not only affected the surface properties (circulation, T-S, sea ice seasonality) of the Arctic Ocean and nearby seas it also had a strong impact on the Holocene development of the shallow North Siberian shelf systems and the environmental evolution of the adjacent hinterland areas. In this region sea level reconstructions indicate the postglacial highstand occurred some time in the middle Holocene, between 6 to 5 ka (Klemann et al., 2015). After that time the sedimentary regime of the shelf seas stabilized as noted in a drastic decrease in sedimentation rates observed in all sediment cores taken from middle to outer shelf water depths of the Laptev Sea (Bauch et al. 2001). But, at water depths lower than 30 meters - i.e., in the inner shelf and nearer to the coasts - sedimentation continued at relatively higher rates, presumably due to input of terrigenous material from river runoff as well as coastal erosion. In relation to the latter process, the huge Lena Delta should comprise a region of sediment catchment where aggradation wins over erosion. However, little is known about the detailed history of this delta during the second half of the Holocene. We therefore have investigated three islands within the Lena Delta. All of these are comprised of massive peat of several meters in thickness. Picking discrete specimens of water mosses (Sphagnum) only, we have carefully dated these peat sections. The depth/age relation of the sampled profiles reflect the growth rate of peat, and thus, the islands. It shows that the islands' history above the present-day delta sea level is about 4000 yrs. old. Moreover, a significant change in peat growth is noted after 2500 yrs BP in both, accumulation and composition, and allows the conclusion of a major shift in Arctic environmental conditions since then. Thus, our results add further information also for other coastal studies, as the ongoing degradation of the rather vulnerable

  18. How does a tidal embayment morphodynamically react on sea level rise?

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Wegen, Mick

    2010-05-01

    Conditions for (assumed) equilibrium in tidal embayments have been studied extensively in the past years with morphodynamic 1D models (Van Dongeren and De Vriend, 1994; Schuttelaars and de Swart, 1996, 2000; Lanzoni and Seminara, 2002) and 2D models (Hibma et al. [2003], Van der Wegen and Roelvink [2008]) Van der Wegen et al 2008). The current research addresses the impact of sea level rise on tidal embayments. Although effects of sea level rise may only become apparent after decades, the character of the embayment can change considerably. Examples are the (dis)appearance or re-allocation of intertidal flats, increased tidal resonance, shift from sediment export to import, deepening of channel area and other related (ecological) parameters. The research applies a 2D morphodynamic model (Delft3D) in an idealized environment. The model is based on the 2 D shallow water equations, the Engelund -Hansen transport formula and includes bed slope effects, drying and flooding procedures and an advanced morphodynamic update scheme (Roelvink 2006). The initial condition of the bathymetry is generated by 3000 years of morphodynamic calculations in a 80 km long and 2.5 km wide rectangular tidal embayment under constant M2 tidal forcing conditions (Van der Wegen and Roelvink [2008]). After this period sea level rise gradually developing towards a rate of 0.4 m/century is added to the boundary conditions. Model results describe development towards less intertidal area and a transition from an exporting system to a importing system. Model results are evaluated in terms of M2, M4 and M6 tidal constituents as well as against Vs/Vc (shoal volume over channel volume) versus a/h (amplitude over water depth) relationship as proposed by Friedrichs and Aubrey (1988). Although the model describes morphodynamic development in a strongly idealized environment the results can provide an excellent tool to systematically study the impact of sea level rise in tidal embayments as well as the time

  19. Estimation of Peak Water Level in Pearl River Estuary under the Background of Sea Level Rise

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    KONG; Lan; CHEN; Xiao-hong; ZHUANG; Cheng-bin; CHEN; Dong-wei

    2012-01-01

    [Objective] The study aimed to predict the peak water level in Pearl River Estuary under the background of sea level rise. [Method] The changing trends of peak water level at Denglongshan station and Hengmen station were analyzed firstly on the basis of regression models, and then sea level rise in Pearl River Estuary in 2050 was predicted to estimate the 1-in-50-year peak water level in the same year. [Result] Regression analyses showed that the increasing rate of peak water level over past years was 6.3 mm/a at Denglongshan station and 5.8 mm/a at Hengmen station. In addition, if sea level will rise by 20, 30 and 60 cm respectively in 2050, it was predicted that the 1-in-50-year peak water level will reach 3.04, 3.14 and 3.44 m at Denglongshan station, and 3.19, 3.29 and 3.59 m at Hengmen station separately. [Conclusion] The estimation of peak water level in Pearl River Estuary could provide theoretical references for water resources planning.

  20. Mudflat morphodynamics and the impact of sea level rise in South San Francisco Bay

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van der Wegen, Mick; Jaffe, Bruce E.; Foxgrover, Amy; Roelvink, Dano

    2017-01-01

    Estuarine tidal mudflats form unique habitats and maintain valuable ecosystems. Historic measurements of a mudflat in San Fancsico Bay over the past 150 years suggest the development of a rather stable mudflat profile. This raises questions on its origin and governing processes as well as on the mudflats’ fate under scenarios of sea level rise and decreasing sediment supply. We developed a 1D morphodynamic profile model (Delft3D) that is able to reproduce the 2011 measured mudflat profile. The main, schematised, forcings of the model are a constant tidal cycle and constant wave action. The model shows that wave action suspends sediment that is transported landward during flood. A depositional front moves landward until landward bed levels are high enough to carry an equal amount of sediment back during ebb. This implies that, similar to observations, the critical shear stress for erosion is regularly exceeded during the tidal cycle and that modelled equilibrium conditions include high suspended sediment concentrations at the mudflat. Shear stresses are highest during low water, while shear stresses are lower than critical (and highest at the landward end) along the mudflat during high water. Scenarios of sea level rise and decreasing sediment supply drown the mudflat. In addition, the mudflat becomes more prone to channel incision because landward accumulation is hampered. This research suggests that sea level rise is a serious threat to the presence of many estuarine intertidal mudflats, adjacent salt marshes and their associated ecological values.

  1. 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.

  2. A model to constrain 21st Century sea level rise from tidewater glaciers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ultee, E.; Bassis, J. N.

    2016-12-01

    Tidewater glaciers are large contributors to global mean sea level rise, both in their own right (e.g. Columbia Glacier, Alaska) and as outlets of the continental ice sheets. Tidewater glaciers are channeled through narrow fjords ( 100-101 km) that are difficult to resolve in continental-scale ice sheet models, hindering sea level rise projections. Moreover, tidewater glaciers respond to difficult-to-resolve local variables, such as precipitation rate and ocean forcing. Here we present a "flowline" model for networks of tidewater glaciers based on Nye's perfect plastic approximation, and we describe how it can be applied to generate constraints on the glaciological contribution to 21st Century sea level rise. The model can be forced with modeled or observed surface mass balance, or coupled with an ice sheet model upstream. Several test cases from Alaska and Greenland demonstrate our model's performance, and we illustrate how adjustments to the sole model parameter can constrain the decade- to century-scale ice flux to the ocean.

  3. Infrastructure effects on estuarine wetlands increase their vulnerability to sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez, Jose; Saco, Patricia; Sandi, Steven; Saintilan, Neil; Riccardi, Gerardo

    2017-04-01

    At the regional and global scales, coastal management and planning for future sea level rise scenarios is typically supported by modelling tools that predict the expected inundation extent. These tools rely on a number of simplifying assumptions that, in some cases, may result in important miscalculation of the inundation effects. One of such cases is estuarine wetlands, where vegetation strongly depends on both the magnitude and the timing of inundation. Many coastal wetlands display flow restrictions due to infrastructure or drainage works, which produce alterations to the inundation patterns that can not be captured by conventional models. In this contribution we explore the effects of flow restrictions on inundation patterns under sea level rise conditions in estuarine wetlands. We use a spatially-distributed dynamic wetland ecogeomorphological model that not only incorporates the effects of flow restrictions due to culverts, bridges and weirs as well as vegetation, but also considers that vegetation changes as a consequence of increasing inundation. We also consider the ability of vegetation to capture sediment and produce accretion. We apply our model to an estuarine wetland in Australia and show that our model predicts a much faster wetland loss due to sea level rise than conventional approaches.

  4. Assessing the impact of sea-level rise on a vulnerable coastal community in Accra, Ghana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kwasi Appeaning Addo

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Climate change and its associated sea-level rise are expected to significantly affect vulnerable coastal communities. Although the extent of the impact will be localised, its assessment will adopt a monitoring approach that applies globally. The topography of the beach, the type of geological material and the level of human intervention will determine the extent of the area to be flooded and the rate at which the shoreline will move inland. Gleefe, a coastal community in Ghana, has experienced frequent flooding in recent times due to the increasing occurrence of storm surge and sea-level rise. This study used available geospatial data and field measurements to determine how the beach topography has contributed to the incidence of flooding at Gleefe. The topography is generally low-lying. Sections of the beach have elevations of around 1 m, which allows seawater to move inland during very high tide. Accelerated sea-level rise as predicted by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC will destroy homes of the inhabitants and inundate the Densu wetlands behind the beach. Destruction of infrastructure will render the inhabitants homeless, whilst flooding of the wetlands will destroy the habitats of migratory birds and some endangered wildlife species such as marine turtle. Effective adaptation measures should be adopted to protect this very important coastal environment, the ecology of the wetlands and the livelihoods of the community dwellers.

  5. Relative sea-level changes during the Holocene in Bangladesh

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rashid, Towhida; Suzuki, S.; Sato, Hiroshi; Monsur, M. H.; Saha, S. K.

    2013-03-01

    This paper presents a reconstruction of the Holocene paleo-environment in the central part of Bangladesh in relation to relative sea-level changes 200 km north of the present coastline. Lithofacies characteristics, mangal peat, diatoms and paleophysiographical evidence were considered to reconstruct the past position and C-14 ages were used to determine the time of formation of the relative sea level during the Holocene. With standard reference datum, the required m.s.l. at the surface of five sections was calculated. The relative sea-level (RSL) curve suggests that Bangladesh experienced two mid-Holocene RSL transgressions punctuated by regressions. The curve shows an RSL highstand at approximately 7500 cal BP, although the height of this highstand could not be determined because the transgressive phase was observed in a bioturbated sand flat facies. The curve shows a regression of approximately 6500 cal BP, and the RSL was considerably lower, perhaps 1-2 m, than the present m.s.l. The abundant marine diatoms and mangrove pollens indicate the highest RSL transgression in Bangladesh at approximately 6000 cal BP, being at least 4.5 to 5 m higher than the modern m.s.l. After this phase, the relative sea level started to fall, and consequently, a freshwater peat developed at approximately 5980-5700 cal BP. The abundant mangrove pollens in the salt-marsh succession shows the regression at approximately 5500 cal BP, when it was 1-2 m higher than the modern sea level. The curve indicates that at approximately 5000 cal BP and onwards, the RSL started to fall towards its present position, and the present shoreline of Bangladesh was established at approximately 1500 cal BP and has not noticeably migrated inland since.

  6. 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.

  7. Coastal flood damage and adaptation costs under 21st century sea-level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hinkel, Jochen; Lincke, Daniel; Vafeidis, Athanasios T; Perrette, Mahé; Nicholls, Robert James; Tol, Richard S J; Marzeion, Ben; Fettweis, Xavier; Ionescu, Cezar; Levermann, Anders

    2014-03-04

    Coastal flood damage and adaptation costs under 21st century sea-level rise are assessed on a global scale taking into account a wide range of uncertainties in continental topography data, population data, protection strategies, socioeconomic development and sea-level rise. Uncertainty in global mean and regional sea level was derived from four different climate models from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5, each combined with three land-ice scenarios based on the published range of contributions from ice sheets and glaciers. Without adaptation, 0.2-4.6% of global population is expected to be flooded annually in 2100 under 25-123 cm of global mean sea-level rise, with expected annual losses of 0.3-9.3% of global gross domestic product. Damages of this magnitude are very unlikely to be tolerated by society and adaptation will be widespread. The global costs of protecting the coast with dikes are significant with annual investment and maintenance costs of US$ 12-71 billion in 2100, but much smaller than the global cost of avoided damages even without accounting for indirect costs of damage to regional production supply. Flood damages by the end of this century are much more sensitive to the applied protection strategy than to variations in climate and socioeconomic scenarios as well as in physical data sources (topography and climate model). Our results emphasize the central role of long-term coastal adaptation strategies. These should also take into account that protecting large parts of the developed coast increases the risk of catastrophic consequences in the case of defense failure.

  8. Coastal marsh response to rising sea levels in the Grand Bay, MS estuary

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-12-01

    The Grand Bay estuary, situated along the border of Alabama and Mississippi, is a marine dominant estuary. Juncus roemerianus and Spartina alterniflora cover approximately 49% of the estuary (Eleuterius and Criss, 1991); However, this marsh system is prone to erosion more than other marsh systems in the state (Mississippi Department of Marine Resources 1999). Water level and wind-driven waves are critical factors that cause erosion in the Grand Bay estuary. Sediment transport induced by wave forces from the Gulf of Mexico and sea level rise force salt marshes to migrate landward (Schmid 2000). Understanding projected variations in vegetation can aid in productive restoration planning and coastal management decisions. An integrated hydro-marsh model was developed to incorporate the dynamic interaction between tidal hydrodynamics and salt marsh system. This model projects salt marsh productivity by coupling a two-dimensional, depth-integrated ADvanced CIRCulation (ADCIRC) finite element model and a parametric marsh model (Morris et al., 2002). The model calculates marsh productivity as a function of mean low water (MLW), mean high water (MHW), and the elevation of the marsh platform. The coupling exchange process is divided into several time intervals that capture the rate of sea level rise, and update the elevation and bottom friction from the computed marsh productivity. Accurate description of salt marsh platform is necessary for calculating accurate biomass results (Hagen et al. 2013). Lidar-derived digital elevation models (DEM) over-estimate marsh platform elevations, but can be corrected with Real Time Kinematic (RTK) survey data (Medeiros et al., 2015). Using RTK data, the salt marsh platform was updated and included in a high resolution hydrodynamic model. Four projections of sea level rise (Parris et al., 2012) were used to project salt marsh productivity for the year 2100 for the Grand Bay, MS estuary. The results showed a higher productivity under low sea

  9. Assessing storm surge hazard and impact of sea level rise in the Lesser Antilles case study of Martinique

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Y. Krien

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available In the Lesser Antilles, coastal inundations from hurricane-induced storm surges pose a great threat to lives, properties and ecosystems. Assessing current and future storm surge hazards with sufficient spatial resolution is of primary interest to help coastal planners and decision makers develop mitigation and adaptation measures. Here, we use wave–current numerical models and statistical methods to investigate worst case scenarios and 100-year surge levels for the case study of Martinique under present climate or considering a potential sea level rise. Results confirm that the wave setup plays a major role in the Lesser Antilles, where the narrow island shelf impedes the piling-up of large amounts of wind-driven water on the shoreline during extreme events. The radiation stress gradients thus contribute significantly to the total surge – up to 100 % in some cases. The nonlinear interactions of sea level rise (SLR with bathymetry and topography are generally found to be relatively small in Martinique but can reach several tens of centimeters in low-lying areas where the inundation extent is strongly enhanced compared to present conditions. These findings further emphasize the importance of waves for developing operational storm surge warning systems in the Lesser Antilles and encourage caution when using static methods to assess the impact of sea level rise on storm surge hazard.

  10. New estimates of potential impacts of sea level rise and coastal floods in Poland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Paprotny

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Polish coastal zone is thought to be of the most exposed to sea level rise in Europe. With climate change expected to raise mean sea levels between 26 and 200 cm by the end of the century, and storms increasing in severity, accurate estimates of those phenomena are needed. Recent advances in quality and availability of spatial data in Poland made in possible to revisit previous estimates. Up-to-date detailed information on land use, population and buildings were used to calculate inundation risk at a broad range of scenarios. Inclusion, though imperfect, of flood defences from a high-resolution digital elevation model contributes to a further improvement of estimates. The results revealed that even by using a static "bathtub fill" approach the amount of land, population or assets at risk has been significantly revised down. Sea level rise or storm surges are unlikely to reach intensity required to cause significant damage to the economy or endanger the population. The exposure of different kinds of assets and sectors of the economy varies to a large extent, though the structural breakdown of potential losses is remarkably stable between scenarios.

  11. New estimates of potential impacts of sea level rise and coastal floods in Poland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paprotny, D.; Terefenko, P.

    2015-04-01

    Polish coastal zone is thought to be of the most exposed to sea level rise in Europe. With climate change expected to raise mean sea levels between 26 and 200 cm by the end of the century, and storms increasing in severity, accurate estimates of those phenomena are needed. Recent advances in quality and availability of spatial data in Poland made in possible to revisit previous estimates. Up-to-date detailed information on land use, population and buildings were used to calculate inundation risk at a broad range of scenarios. Inclusion, though imperfect, of flood defences from a high-resolution digital elevation model contributes to a further improvement of estimates. The results revealed that even by using a static "bathtub fill" approach the amount of land, population or assets at risk has been significantly revised down. Sea level rise or storm surges are unlikely to reach intensity required to cause significant damage to the economy or endanger the population. The exposure of different kinds of assets and sectors of the economy varies to a large extent, though the structural breakdown of potential losses is remarkably stable between scenarios.

  12. The dynamic effects of sea level rise on low-gradient coastal landscapes: A review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Passeri, Davina L.; Hagen, Scott C.; Medeiros, Stephen C.; Bilskie, Matthew V.; Alizad, Karim; Wang, Dingbao

    2015-06-01

    Coastal responses to sea level rise (SLR) include inundation of wetlands, increased shoreline erosion, and increased flooding during storm events. Hydrodynamic parameters such as tidal ranges, tidal prisms, tidal asymmetries, increased flooding depths and inundation extents during storm events respond nonadditively to SLR. Coastal morphology continually adapts toward equilibrium as sea levels rise, inducing changes in the landscape. Marshes may struggle to keep pace with SLR and rely on sediment accumulation and the availability of suitable uplands for migration. Whether hydrodynamic, morphologic, or ecologic, the impacts of SLR are interrelated. To plan for changes under future sea levels, coastal managers need information and data regarding the potential effects of SLR to make informed decisions for managing human and natural communities. This review examines previous studies that have accounted for the dynamic, nonlinear responses of hydrodynamics, coastal morphology, and marsh ecology to SLR by implementing more complex approaches rather than the simplistic "bathtub" approach. These studies provide an improved understanding of the dynamic effects of SLR on coastal environments and contribute to an overall paradigm shift in how coastal scientists and engineers approach modeling the effects of SLR, transitioning away from implementing the "bathtub" approach. However, it is recommended that future studies implement a synergetic approach that integrates the dynamic interactions between physical and ecological environments to better predict the impacts of SLR on coastal systems.

  13. Predictions of extreme precipitation and sea-level rise under climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Senior, C A; Jones, R G; Lowe, J A; Durman, C F; Hudson, D

    2002-07-15

    Two aspects of global climate change are particularly relevant to river and coastal flooding: changes in extreme precipitation and changes in sea level. In this paper we summarize the relevant findings of the IPCC Third Assessment Report and illustrate some of the common results found by the current generation of coupled atmosphere-ocean general circulation models (AOGCMs), using the Hadley Centre models. Projections of changes in extreme precipitation, sea-level rise and storm surges affecting the UK will be shown from the Hadley Centre regional models and the Proudman Oceanographic Laboratory storm-surge model. A common finding from AOGCMs is that in a warmer climate the intensity of precipitation will increase due to a more intense hydrological cycle. This leads to reduced return periods (i.e. more frequent occurrences) of extreme precipitation in many locations. The Hadley Centre regional model simulates reduced return periods of extreme precipitation in a number of flood-sensitive areas of the UK. In addition, simulated changes in storminess and a rise in average sea level around the UK lead to reduced return periods of extreme high coastal water events. The confidence in all these results is limited by poor spatial resolution in global coupled models and by uncertainties in the physical processes in both global and regional models, and is specific to the climate change scenario used.

  14. A Climate Change Adaptation Planning Process for Low-Lying, Communities Vulnerable to Sea Level Rise

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristi Tatebe

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available While the province of British Columbia (BC, Canada, provides guidelines for flood risk management, it is local governments’ responsibility to delineate their own flood vulnerability, assess their risk, and integrate these with planning policies to implement adaptive action. However, barriers such as the lack of locally specific data and public perceptions about adaptation options mean that local governments must address the need for adaptation planning within a context of scientific uncertainty, while building public support for difficult choices on flood-related climate policy and action. This research demonstrates a process to model, visualize and evaluate potential flood impacts and adaptation options for the community of Delta, in Metro Vancouver, across economic, social and environmental perspectives. Visualizations in 2D and 3D, based on hydrological modeling of breach events for existing dike infrastructure, future sea level rise and storm surges, are generated collaboratively, together with future adaptation scenarios assessed against quantitative and qualitative indicators. This ‘visioning package’ is being used with staff and a citizens’ Working Group to assess the performance, policy implications and social acceptability of the adaptation strategies. Recommendations based on the experience of the initiative are provided that can facilitate sustainable future adaptation actions and decision-making in Delta and other jurisdictions.

  15. Effects of sea-level rise on barrier island groundwater system dynamics: ecohydrological implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masterson, John P.; Fienen, Michael N.; Thieler, E. Robert; Gesch, Dean B.; Gutierrez, Benjamin T.; Plant, Nathaniel G.

    2014-01-01

    We used a numerical model to investigate how a barrier island groundwater system responds to increases of up to 60 cm in sea level. We found that a sea-level rise of 20 cm leads to substantial changes in the depth of the water table and the extent and depth of saltwater intrusion, which are key determinants in the establishment, distribution and succession of vegetation assemblages and habitat suitability in barrier islands ecosystems. In our simulations, increases in water-table height in areas with a shallow depth to water (or thin vadose zone) resulted in extensive groundwater inundation of land surface and a thinning of the underlying freshwater lens. We demonstrated the interdependence of the groundwater response to island morphology by evaluating changes at three sites. This interdependence can have a profound effect on ecosystem composition in these fragile coastal landscapes under long-term changing climatic conditions.

  16. Bayesian methods for model uncertainty analysis with application to future sea level rise

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Patwardhan, A.; Small, M.J. (Carnegie Mellon Univ., Pittsburgh, PA (United States))

    1992-12-01

    This paper addresses the use of data for identifying and characterizing uncertainties in model parameters and predictions. The Bayesian Monte Carlo method is formally presented and elaborated, and applied to the analysis of the uncertainty in a predictive model for global mean sea level change. The method uses observations of output variables, made with an assumed error structure, to determine a posterior distribution of model outputs. This is used to derive a posterior distribution for the model parameters. Results demonstrate the resolution of the uncertainty that is obtained as a result of the Bayesian analysis and also indicate the key contributors to the uncertainty in the sea level rise model. While the technique is illustrated with a simple, preliminary model, the analysis provides an iterative framework for model refinement. The methodology developed in this paper provides a mechanism for the incorporation of ongoing data collection and research in decision-making for problems involving uncertain environmental change.

  17. Sea level change

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Church, J.A.; Clark, P.U.; Cazenave, A.; Gregory, J.M.; Jevrejeva, S.; Levermann, A.; Merrifield, M.A.; Milne, G.A.; Nerem, R.S.; Nunn, P.D.; Payne, A.J.; Pfeffer, W.T.; Stammer, D.; Unnikrishnan, A.S.

    This chapter considers changes in global mean sea level, regional sea level, sea level extremes, and waves. Confidence in projections of global mean sea level rise has increased since the Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) because of the improved...

  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. Song Hong (Red River) delta evolution related to millennium-scale Holocene sea-level changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanabe, Susumu; Hori, Kazuaki; Saito, Yoshiki; Haruyama, Shigeko; Vu, Van Phai; Kitamura, Akihisa

    2003-11-01

    The Song Hong (Red River) delta occurs on the northwest coast of the South China Sea. Its evolution in response to Holocene sea-level changes was clarified on the basis of sedimentary facies and 14 radiocarbon dates from the 40 m long Duy Tien core from the delta plain, and using previously reported geological, geomorphological, and archaeological data. The delta prograded into the drowned valley as a result of early Holocene inundation from 9 to 6 cal. kyr BP, as sea-level rise decelerated. The sea-level highstand at +2-3 m from 6 to 4 cal. kyr BP allowed widespread mangrove development on the delta plain and the formation of marine notches in the Ha Long Bay and Ninh Binh areas. During sea-level lowering after 4 cal. kyr BP, the former delta plain emerged as a marine terrace, and the delta changed into the present tide- and wave-influenced delta with accompanying beach ridges. Delta morphology, depositional pattern, and sedimentary facies are closely related to Holocene sea-level changes. In particular, falling sea level at 4 cal. kyr BP had a major impact on the evolution of the Song Hong delta, and is considered to be linked to climate changes.

  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. Relative Sea Level Trends Along the Coast of the Bay of Bengal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Becker, M.; Calmant, S.; Papa, F.; Delebecque, C.; Islam, A. S.; Shum, C. K.

    2016-12-01

    In the coastal belt of the Bay of Bengal, the sea level rise is one of a major threat, linked to climate change, which drastically affects the livelihoods of millions of people. A comprehensive understanding of sea level trends and its variability in this region is therefore crucial and should help to anticipate the impacts of climate change and implement adaptation strategies. This region is bordered mostly by Bangladesh, India, Malaysia, Myanmar, and Thailand. Here, we revisit the sea level changes in the Bay of Bengal region from tide gauges and satellite altimetry over the period 1993-2014. The 23 monthly mean tide gauge records, used in this study, are retrieved from PSMSL (15 records) and supplemented with Bangladeshi observations (8 records). We show that, over the satellite altimetry era, the sea level interannual/decadal variability is mainly due to ocean thermal expansion variability driven by IOD/ENSO events and their low frequency modulation. We focus on relative sea level rise at major coastal cities and try to separate the climatic signal (long term trend plus interannual/decadal variability) from local effects, in particular vertical land movements. Results from GPS are analysed where available. When no such data exist, vertical land movements are deduced from the combined use of tide gauge and altimetry data. While the analysis is performed over the whole region, a particular attention is given to the low-lyingBangladesh's coastal area.

  2. Sea level rise over the Mediterranean: present climate and scenario Simulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dell'Aquila, A.; Calmanti, S.; Carillo, A.; Rupolo, V.; Ruti, Pm; Sannino, G.; Artale, V.

    2010-09-01

    A regional atmosphere-ocean coupled model (the PROTHEUS system) has been used to estimate sea level rise in the Mediterranean basin. A present climate simulation has been forced by ERA40 covering the period 1958-2001. Another simulation has been forced by the coupled model ECHAM5-MPIOM for the period 1951-2000 and under the scenario SRES A1B for the period 2001-2050. The present climate simulation has been verified in terms of temperature and salinity against observed data, showing good performances both in the mean values and in the variability. Halosteric and thermosteric components have been computed and the total steric sea level has been compared with satellite data. The comparison with altimeter data has been done for the whole Mediterranean and for sub-basins, the capability of the system to reproduce the inter-annual variability of the sea level has been verified. Data from the scenario simulation have been used to evaluate long term trends for the XX and XXI centuries. The modelling tools presented in this work, developed in the framework of CIRCE EU Project RL2 will also contribute to the Med-CORDEX activities.

  3. 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.

  4. Soil Accretionary Dynamics, Sea-Level Rise and the Survival of Wetlands in Venice Lagoon: A Field and Modelling Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Day, J. W.; Rybczyk, J.; Scarton, F.; Rismondo, A.; Are, D.; Cecconi, G.

    1999-11-01

    Over the past century, Venice Lagoon (Italy) has experienced a high rate of wetland loss. To gain an understanding of the factors leading to this loss, from March 1993 until May 1996 the soil accretionary dynamics of these wetlands were studied. Vertical accretion, short term sedimentation, soil vertical elevation change and horizontal shoreline change were measured at several sites with varying sediment availability and wave energy. Short term sedimentation averaged 3-7 g dry m -2day -1per site with a maximum of 76 g m -2 day -1. The highest values were measured during strong pulsing events, such as storms and river floods, that mobilized and transported suspended sediments. Accretion ranged from 2-23 mm yr -1and soil elevation change ranged from -32 to 13·8 mm yr -1. The sites with highest accretion were near a river mouth and in an area where strong wave energy resuspended bottom sediments that were deposited on the marsh surface. A marsh created with dredged spoil had a high rate of elevation loss, probably due mainly to compaction. Shoreline retreat and expansion of tidal channels also occurred at several sites due to high wave energy and a greater tidal prism. The current rate of elevation gain at some sites was not sufficient to offset relative sea-level rise. The results suggest that reduction of wave energy and increasing sediment availability are needed to offset wetland loss in different areas of the lagoon. Using the data collected as part of this project, we developed a wetland elevation model designed to predict the effect of increasing rates of eustatic sea-level rise on wetland sustainability. The advantage of this model, in conjunction with measured short-term rates of soil elevation change, to determine sustainability is that the model integrates the effects of long term processes (e.g. compaction and decomposition) and takes into account feedback mechanisms that affect elevation. Specifically, changes in elevation can result in changes in

  5. The Science-Policy Link: Stakeholder Reactions to the Uncertainties of Future Sea Level Rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plag, H.; Bye, B.

    2011-12-01

    Policy makers and stakeholders in the coastal zone are equally challenged by the risk of an anticipated rise of coastal Local Sea Level (LSL) as a consequence of future global warming. Many low-lying and often densely populated coastal areas are under risk of increased inundation. More than 40% of the global population is living in or near the coastal zone and this fraction is steadily increasing. A rise in LSL will increase the vulnerability of coastal infrastructure and population dramatically, with potentially devastating consequences for the global economy, society, and environment. Policy makers are faced with a trade-off between imposing today the often very high costs of coastal protection and adaptation upon national economies and leaving the costs of potential major disasters to future generations. They are in need of actionable information that provides guidance for the development of coastal zones resilient to future sea level changes. Part of this actionable information comes from risk and vulnerability assessments, which require information on future LSL changes as input. In most cases, a deterministic approach has been applied based on predictions of the plausible range of future LSL trajectories as input. However, there is little consensus in the scientific community on how these trajectories should be determined, and what the boundaries of the plausible range are. Over the last few years, many publications in Science, Nature and other peer-reviewed scientific journals have revealed a broad range of possible futures and significant epistemic uncertainties and gaps concerning LSL changes. Based on the somewhat diffuse science input, policy and decision makers have made rather different choices for mitigation and adaptation in cases such as Venice, The Netherlands, New York City, and the San Francisco Bay area. Replacing the deterministic, prediction-based approach with a statistical one that fully accounts for the uncertainties and epistemic gaps

  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. 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

    . 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......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...

  8. Impacts of Sea-Level Rise and Human Activity on a Tropical Continental Shelf, RN State, NE Brazil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vital, H.; Barros Pereira, T. R.; Lira, H. F.; Tabosa, W. F.; Eichler, P.; Stattegger, K.; Sen Gupta, B. K.; Gomes, M. P.; Nogueira, M. L. D. S.; Pierri, G. C. S.

    2014-12-01

    The northeastern Brazilian, tropical coast-shelf system along the Atlantic Ocean is a sediment-starved zone, because of low relief, small drainage basins, and a semiarid climate. This work presents the major results of a study of environmental changes, particularly those related to Holocene sea-level rise, affecting the coast and shallow waters of Rio Grande do Norte (RN) State, NE Brazil. The methods included bottom-sediment characterization, bioindicator tracking, and integrated shallow-water geophysical investigation. This coastline is marked by active sea cliffs carved into tablelands alternating with reef- or dune-barrier sections, beach rocks and lagoons, whereas the shelf is a narrow, very shallow, and highly energetic system. Overall, the area is under the natural influence of tides (with a semidiurnal mesotidal regime) and the anthropogenic influence of salt exploration, oil industry, shrimp farms, tourism, and wind-farms. Sedimentation during the Holocene has been controlled mainly by sea-level variation, longshore currents, and the advance and westward propagation of active dunes along the coast. As in other areas around the world, growing numbers of permanent and seasonal residents choose to live at or near the ocean. Coastal erosion is a cause for concern along many Brazilian beaches, and several erosion hot spots are already recognized in RN State. Curves of Holocene relative sea-level variation were established for RN State, but the absence of long-term oceanographic observations in the last centuries or that of detailed altimetry maps hinders the evaluation of different risk scenarios at the local level. Nevertheless, impacts of the current sea-level rise and human activity can be observed along the RN coastal-shelf system. Particular aspects of the study, such as oil-spill monitoring, coastal-water sewage contamination, and coastal erosion, will be highlighted.

  9. Protection versus retreat: the economic costs of sea-level rise

    OpenAIRE

    S Fankhauser

    1995-01-01

    The author analyses the relative role of protection (or damage mitigation) expenditures within the total costs associated with raised sea levels induced by climate change. A rule of thumb is derived to approximate the optimal level of protection. Economic efficiency requires that protection expenditures are designed such that the sum of protection costs plus remaining land-loss damage is minimised. The optimal protection level will depend on the relative importance of dryland loss compared wi...

  10. The response of low to moderate sediment supply incised valley systems to episodic sea-level rises

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Thomas, M.A.; Anderson, J.B.; Siringan, F.P. (Rice Univ., Houston, TX (United States))

    1991-03-01

    Low to moderate sediment supply incised valley systems (e.g., the Trinity, Sabine, and Lavaca rivers) are characterized by mud-dominated estuarine fill and by sedimentation that is limited to the valley cut during low sea level. In contrast, within the high sediment supply Brazos valley system substantial sedimentation has occurred between the lowstand valleys for at least the last 7000 years. Within the Trinity/Sabine incised valley system, sand prone facies include fluvial and tidal inlet deposits. Fluvial deposits are relatively uniform in thickness and distribution, while tidal inlets form discontinuous and pod-like deposits. The valley-fill stratigraphy consists of transgressive parasequences, whose bounding flooding surfaces can be mapped with core and high resolution seismic data. Each parasequences is represented by paired upper bay marsh/bayhead delta and tidal inlet/flood tidal delta facies. Coeval shoreline facies are reworked during the sea-level rise that terminates a particular parasequence. Over 200 sediment cores from the study area are used to define the shapes of these sand bodies, and to establish their origin based on grain sizes, sedimentary structures, and faunal assemblages. The stratigraphy interpreted from these low to moderate sediment supply incised valley systems imply sea level rose episodically during the last transgression. Rapid sea-level rises are responsible for development of isolated shelf sand deposits and may correlate to stream piracy events in the nearby Brazos system. Ongoing investigations concentrate on the distal portions of the incised valleys where they become the feeders to shelf margin deposits within the lowstand systems tract.

  11. Hydrodynamic response of a fringing coral reef to a rise in mean sea level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taebi, Soheila; Pattiaratchi, Charitha

    2014-07-01

    Ningaloo Reef, located along the northwest coast of Australia, is one of the longest fringing coral reefs in the world extending ~300 km. Similar to other fringing reefs, it consists of a barrier reef ~1-6 km offshore with occasional gaps, backed by a shallow lagoon. Wave breaking on the reef generates radiation stress gradients that produces wave setup across the reef and lagoon and mean currents across the reef. A section of Ningaloo Reef at Sandy Bay was chosen as the focus of an intense 6-week field experiment and numerical simulation using the wave model SWAN coupled to the three-dimensional circulation model ROMS. The physics of nearshore processes such as wave breaking, wave setup and mean flow across the reef was investigated in detail by examining the various momentum balances established in the system. The magnitude of the terms and the distance of their peaks from reef edge in the momentum balance were sensitive to the changes in mean sea level, e.g. the wave forces decreased as the mean water depth increased (and hence, wave breaking dissipation was reduced). This led to an increase in the wave power at the shoreline, a slight shift of the surf zone to the lee side of the reef and changes in the intensity of the circulation. The predicted hydrodynamic fields were input into a Lagrangian particle tracking model to estimate the transport time scale of the reef-lagoon system. Flushing time of the lagoon with the open ocean was computed using two definitions in renewal of semi-enclosed water basins and revealed the sensitivity of such a transport time scale to methods. An increase in the lagoon exchange rate at smaller mean sea-level rise and the decrease at higher mean sea-level rise was predicted through flushing time computed using both methods.

  12. Greenland ice-sheet contribution to sea-level rise buffered by meltwater storage in firn.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harper, J; Humphrey, N; Pfeffer, W T; Brown, J; Fettweis, X

    2012-11-08

    Surface melt on the Greenland ice sheet has shown increasing trends in areal extent and duration since the beginning of the satellite era. Records for melt were broken in 2005, 2007, 2010 and 2012. Much of the increased surface melt is occurring in the percolation zone, a region of the accumulation area that is perennially covered by snow and firn (partly compacted snow). The fate of melt water in the percolation zone is poorly constrained: some may travel away from its point of origin and eventually influence the ice sheet's flow dynamics and mass balance and the global sea level, whereas some may simply infiltrate into cold snow or firn and refreeze with none of these effects. Here we quantify the existing water storage capacity of the percolation zone of the Greenland ice sheet and show the potential for hundreds of gigatonnes of meltwater storage. We collected in situ observations of firn structure and meltwater retention along a roughly 85-kilometre-long transect of the melting accumulation area. Our data show that repeated infiltration events in which melt water penetrates deeply (more than 10 metres) eventually fill all pore space with water. As future surface melt intensifies under Arctic warming, a fraction of melt water that would otherwise contribute to sea-level rise will fill existing pore space of the percolation zone. We estimate the lower and upper bounds of this storage sink to be 322 ± 44 gigatonnes and  1,289(+388)(-252) gigatonnes, respectively. Furthermore, we find that decades are required to fill this pore space under a range of plausible future climate conditions. Hence, routing of surface melt water into filling the pore space of the firn column will delay expansion of the area contributing to sea-level rise, although once the pore space is filled it cannot quickly be regenerated.

  13. 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...

  14. Relative sea-level change in the central Cyclades (Greece) since the Early Bronze Age

    Science.gov (United States)

    Draganits, E.

    2012-04-01

    The Aegean is a focus of important cultural achievements in Europe since the Neolithic period. The resulting abundance of archaeological remains, many of them below sea-level represent an advantageous area for the study of local relative sea-level change. We have carried out detailed mapping of Despotiko Island (SW of Antiparos) and its surrounding. Despotiko is situated almost exactly in the center of the Cyclades (as defined nowadays), more so than Delos, and therefore is very well suited for sea-level studies of the Cyclades. This beneficial location, combined with a spacious and protected bay, additionally may explain its former importance as stepping-stone in the Aegean Sea. The island is uninhabited at present, but Early Bronze Age settlement sites and graveyards as well as a large Archaic sanctuary proof its former importance. The sanctuary is situated on a gently northeast dipping slope in the northeast part of Despotiko, in range of sight of the Órmos Despotiko. Since 1997 large parts of this important sanctuary have been excavated during several excavation campaigns. Tectonically, Despotiko, Antiparos and Paros, belong to the Attic-Cycladic Crystalline of the Central Hellenides, a stack of metamorphic tectonic nappes, mainly comprising variable types of gneiss, schist, marble and amphibolite, and tectonic slices of unmetamorphosed sediments on top, separated by low-angle normal faults from the metamorphic units below. Submerged archaeological structures at the sea bottom of the Órmos Despotiko, a Classical marble inscription from the sanctuary and partly submerged agriculture trenches at the east coast Despotiko, indicate that the relative sea-level in this area was some 3 m lower during the Early Bronze Age and still more than 1 m lower during Classical time. These values of relative sea-level rise indicate a subsidence component additional to the global sea-level rise in the investigated time period. Neglecting possible vertical tectonic movements and

  15. Divergence of seafloor elevation and sea level rise in coral reef ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yates, Kimberly K.; Zawada, David G.; Smiley, Nathan A.; Tiling-Range, Ginger

    2017-01-01

    Coral reefs serve as natural barriers that protect adjacent shorelines from coastal hazards such as storms, waves, and erosion. Projections indicate global degradation of coral reefs due to anthropogenic impacts and climate change will cause a transition to net erosion by mid-century. Here, we provide a comprehensive assessment of the combined effect of all of the processes affecting seafloor accretion and erosion by measuring changes in seafloor elevation and volume for five coral reef ecosystems in the Atlantic, Pacific, and Caribbean over the last several decades. Regional-scale mean elevation and volume losses were observed at all five study sites and in 77 % of the 60 individual habitats that we examined across all study sites. Mean seafloor elevation losses for whole coral reef ecosystems in our study ranged from −0.09 to −0.8 m, corresponding to net volume losses ranging from 3.4  ×  106 to 80.5  ×  106 m3 for all study sites. Erosion of both coral-dominated substrate and non-coral substrate suggests that the current rate of carbonate production is no longer sufficient to support net accretion of coral reefs or adjacent habitats. We show that regional-scale loss of seafloor elevation and volume has accelerated the rate of relative sea level rise in these regions. Current water depths have increased to levels not predicted until near the year 2100, placing these ecosystems and nearby communities at elevated and accelerating risk to coastal hazards. Our results set a new baseline for projecting future impacts to coastal communities resulting from degradation of coral reef systems and associated losses of natural and socioeconomic resources.

  16. Uncertainties in measuring populations potentially impacted by sea level rise and coastal flooding.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pinki Mondal

    Full Text Available A better understanding of the impact of global climate change requires information on the locations and characteristics of populations affected. For instance, with global sea level predicted to rise and coastal flooding set to become more frequent and intense, high-resolution spatial population datasets are increasingly being used to estimate the size of vulnerable coastal populations. Many previous studies have undertaken this by quantifying the size of populations residing in low elevation coastal zones using one of two global spatial population datasets available - LandScan and the Global Rural Urban Mapping Project (GRUMP. This has been undertaken without consideration of the effects of this choice, which are a function of the quality of input datasets and differences in methods used to construct each spatial population dataset. Here we calculate estimated low elevation coastal zone resident population sizes from LandScan and GRUMP using previously adopted approaches, and quantify the absolute and relative differences achieved through switching datasets. Our findings suggest that the choice of one particular dataset over another can translate to a difference of more than 7.5 million vulnerable people for countries with extensive coastal populations, such as Indonesia and Japan. Our findings also show variations in estimates of proportions of national populations at risk range from <0.1% to 45% differences when switching between datasets, with large differences predominantly for countries where coarse and outdated input data were used in the construction of the spatial population datasets. The results highlight the need for the construction of spatial population datasets built on accurate, contemporary and detailed census data for use in climate change impact studies and the importance of acknowledging uncertainties inherent in existing spatial population datasets when estimating the demographic impacts of climate change.

  17. Uncertainties in measuring populations potentially impacted by sea level rise and coastal flooding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mondal, Pinki; Tatem, Andrew J

    2012-01-01

    A better understanding of the impact of global climate change requires information on the locations and characteristics of populations affected. For instance, with global sea level predicted to rise and coastal flooding set to become more frequent and intense, high-resolution spatial population datasets are increasingly being used to estimate the size of vulnerable coastal populations. Many previous studies have undertaken this by quantifying the size of populations residing in low elevation coastal zones using one of two global spatial population datasets available - LandScan and the Global Rural Urban Mapping Project (GRUMP). This has been undertaken without consideration of the effects of this choice, which are a function of the quality of input datasets and differences in methods used to construct each spatial population dataset. Here we calculate estimated low elevation coastal zone resident population sizes from LandScan and GRUMP using previously adopted approaches, and quantify the absolute and relative differences achieved through switching datasets. Our findings suggest that the choice of one particular dataset over another can translate to a difference of more than 7.5 million vulnerable people for countries with extensive coastal populations, such as Indonesia and Japan. Our findings also show variations in estimates of proportions of national populations at risk range from population datasets. The results highlight the need for the construction of spatial population datasets built on accurate, contemporary and detailed census data for use in climate change impact studies and the importance of acknowledging uncertainties inherent in existing spatial population datasets when estimating the demographic impacts of climate change.

  18. Dynamic simulation of storm-driven barrier island morphology under future sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Passeri, D. L.; Long, J.; Plant, N. G.; Bilskie, M. V.; Hagen, S. C.

    2016-12-01

    The impacts of short-term processes such as tropical and extratropical storms have the potential to alter barrier island morphology. On the event scale, the effects of storm-driven morphology may result in damage or loss of property, infrastructure and habitat. On the decadal scale, the combination of storms and sea level rise (SLR) will evolve barrier islands. The effects of SLR on hydrodynamics and coastal morphology are dynamic and inter-related; nonlinearities in SLR can cause larger peak surges, lengthier inundation times and additional inundated land, which may result in increased erosion, overwash or breaching along barrier islands. This study uses a two-dimensional morphodynamic model (XBeach) to examine the response of Dauphin Island, AL to storm surge under future SLR. The model is forced with water levels and waves provided by a large-domain hydrodynamic model. A historic validation of hurricanes Ivan and Katrina indicates the model is capable of predicting morphologic response with high skill (0.5). The validated model is used to simulate storm surge driven by Ivan and Katrina under four future SLR scenarios, ranging from 20 cm to 2 m. Each SLR scenario is implemented using a static or "bathtub" approach (in which water levels are increased linearly by the amount of SLR) versus a dynamic approach (in which SLR is applied at the open ocean boundary of the hydrodynamic model and allowed to propagate through the domain as guided by the governing equations). Results illustrate that higher amounts of SLR result in additional shoreline change, dune erosion, overwash and breaching. Compared to the dynamic approach, the static approach over-predicts inundation, dune erosion, overwash and breaching of the island. Overall, results provide a better understanding of the effects of SLR on storm-driven barrier island morphology and support a paradigm shift away from the "bathtub" approach, towards considering the integrated, dynamic effects of SLR.

  19. Coastal retreat and improved water quality mitigate losses of seagrass from sea level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saunders, Megan I; Leon, Javier; Phinn, Stuart R; Callaghan, David P; O'Brien, Katherine R; Roelfsema, Chris M; Lovelock, Catherine E; Lyons, Mitchell B; Mumby, Peter J

    2013-08-01

    The distribution and abundance of seagrass ecosystems could change significantly over the coming century due to sea level rise (SLR). Coastal managers require mechanistic understanding of the processes affecting seagrass response to SLR to maximize their conservation and associated provision of ecosystem services. In Moreton Bay, Queensland, Australia, vast seagrass meadows supporting populations of sea turtles and dugongs are juxtaposed with the multiple stressors associated with a large and rapidly expanding human population. Here, the interactive effects of predicted SLR, changes in water clarity, and land use on future distributions of seagrass in Moreton Bay were quantified. A habitat distribution model of present day seagrass in relation to benthic irradiance and wave height was developed which correctly classified habitats in 83% of cases. Spatial predictions of seagrass and presence derived from the model and bathymetric data were used to initiate a SLR inundation model. Bathymetry was iteratively modified based on SLR and sedimentary accretion in seagrass to simulate potential seagrass habitat at 10 year time steps until 2100. The area of seagrass habitat was predicted to decline by 17% by 2100 under a scenario of SLR of 1.1 m. A scenario including the removal of impervious surfaces, such as roads and houses, from newly inundated regions, demonstrated that managed retreat of the shoreline could potentially reduce the overall decline in seagrass habitat to just 5%. The predicted reduction in area of seagrass habitat could be offset by an improvement in water clarity of 30%. Greater improvements in water clarity would be necessary for larger magnitudes of SLR. Management to improve water quality will provide present and future benefits to seagrasses under climate change and should be a priority for managers seeking to compensate for the effects of global change on these valuable habitats.

  20. Saltmarsh boundary modulates dispersal of mangrove propagules: implications for mangrove migration with sea-level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, Jennifer M; Bell, Susan S

    2015-01-01

    Few studies have empirically examined the suite of mechanisms that underlie the distributional shifts displayed by organisms in response to changing climatic condition. Mangrove forests are expected to move inland as sea-level rises, encroaching on saltmarsh plants inhabiting higher elevations. Mangrove propagules are transported by tidal waters and propagule dispersal is likely modified upon encountering the mangrove-saltmarsh ecotone, the implications of which are poorly known. Here, using an experimental approach, we record landward and seaward dispersal and subsequent establishment of mangrove propagules that encounter biotic boundaries composed of two types of saltmarsh taxa: succulents and grasses. Our findings revealed that propagules emplaced within saltmarsh vegetation immediately landward of the extant mangrove fringe boundary frequently dispersed in the seaward direction. However, propagules moved seaward less frequently and over shorter distances upon encountering boundaries composed of saltmarsh grasses versus succulents. We uniquely confirmed that the small subset of propagules dispersing landward displayed proportionately higher establishment success than those transported seaward. Although impacts of ecotones on plant dispersal have rarely been investigated in situ, our experimental results indicate that the interplay between tidal transport and physical attributes of saltmarsh vegetation influence boundary permeability to propagules, thereby directing the initial phase of shifting mangrove distributions. The incorporation of tidal inundation information and detailed data on landscape features, such as the structure of saltmarsh vegetation at mangrove boundaries, should improve the accuracy of models that are being developed to forecast mangrove distributional shifts in response to sea-level rise.

  1. Saltmarsh boundary modulates dispersal of mangrove propagules: implications for mangrove migration with sea-level rise.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer M Peterson

    Full Text Available Few studies have empirically examined the suite of mechanisms that underlie the distributional shifts displayed by organisms in response to changing climatic condition. Mangrove forests are expected to move inland as sea-level rises, encroaching on saltmarsh plants inhabiting higher elevations. Mangrove propagules are transported by tidal waters and propagule dispersal is likely modified upon encountering the mangrove-saltmarsh ecotone, the implications of which are poorly known. Here, using an experimental approach, we record landward and seaward dispersal and subsequent establishment of mangrove propagules that encounter biotic boundaries composed of two types of saltmarsh taxa: succulents and grasses. Our findings revealed that propagules emplaced within saltmarsh vegetation immediately landward of the extant mangrove fringe boundary frequently dispersed in the seaward direction. However, propagules moved seaward less frequently and over shorter distances upon encountering boundaries composed of saltmarsh grasses versus succulents. We uniquely confirmed that the small subset of propagules dispersing landward displayed proportionately higher establishment success than those transported seaward. Although impacts of ecotones on plant dispersal have rarely been investigated in situ, our experimental results indicate that the interplay between tidal transport and physical attributes of saltmarsh vegetation influence boundary permeability to propagules, thereby directing the initial phase of shifting mangrove distributions. The incorporation of tidal inundation information and detailed data on landscape features, such as the structure of saltmarsh vegetation at mangrove boundaries, should improve the accuracy of models that are being developed to forecast mangrove distributional shifts in response to sea-level rise.

  2. Mass culturing of living sands (Baculogypsina sphaerulata) to protect island coasts against sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hosono, Takashi; Lopati, Paeniu; Makolo, Filipo; Kayanne, Hajime

    2014-07-01

    Coral reef islands have a self-sustaining mechanism that expands and maintains the islands through the deposition of calcium carbonate (CaCO3) by marine organisms. However, the human societies established on such low-lying coral reef islands are vulnerable to rapid sea-level rises. Enhancing the self-sustaining mechanism of coral reefs will become one of the required sustainable countermeasures against sea-level rise. We examined the feasibility of mass culturing the large benthic foraminifera Baculogypsina sphaerulata, which is known as "living sand." We developed a rearing system with the key components of an artificial lawn as a habitat and a stirring device to create vertical water currents. Batches of B. sphaerulata in two different size groups were reared to examine size growth and reproduction under the culture conditions. All culture batches reproduced asexually following generations over 6 months in culture. The small-sized group exhibited steady growth, whereas the large-sized group underwent a reduction in mean size because large individuals (> 1.5 mm2) died off. Similar traits of size structure between the culture batches and natural populations indicate that our culturing conditions can successfully reproduce environments similar to the habitat of this species. Reproduction, consistent size growth, and size structure similar to the natural population indicate that the examined rearing system is viable for culturing Foraminifera at a large scale.

  3. 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

  4. Assessing the Impacts of Sea Level Rise on Salinity Intrusion and Transport Time Scales in a Tidal Estuary, Taiwan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wen-Cheng Liu

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Global climate change has resulted in a gradual sea level rise. Sea level rise can cause saline water to migrate upstream in estuaries and rivers, thereby threatening freshwater habitat and drinking-water supplies. In the present study, a three-dimensional hydrodynamic model was established to simulate salinity distributions and transport time scales in the Wu River estuary of central Taiwan. The model was calibrated and verified using tidal amplitudes and phases, time-series water surface elevation and salinity distributions in 2011. The results show that the model simulation and measured data are in good agreement. The validated model was then applied to calculate the salinity distribution, flushing time and residence time in response to a sea level rise of 38.27 cm. We found that the flushing time for high flow under the present condition was lower compared to the sea level rise scenario and that the flushing time for low flow under the present condition was higher compared to the sea level rise scenario. The residence time for the present condition and the sea level rise scenario was between 10.51 and 34.23 h and between 17.11 and 38.92 h, respectively. The simulated results reveal that the residence time of the Wu River estuary will increase when the sea level rises. The distance of salinity intrusion in the Wu River estuary will increase and move further upstream when the sea level rises, resulting in the limited availability of water of suitable quality for municipal and industrial uses.

  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.

    of the issues on infrastructure and uncertainties in policy planning also are attempted. Keywords: sea level rise, vulnerability, tides, coastal zone, erosion, inundation, Cochin, southwest coast of India 1. Introduction In addition to all the stresses...). By the end of this century, anticipated increases in sea level rise of two to five times the present rates could lead to inundation of low lying coastal regions, more frequent flooding episodes and worsening beach erosion (Houghton et al., 1996; Watson et al...

  6. Strategies for Sharing Scientific Research on Sea Level Rise: Suggestions from Stakeholder Focus Groups

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeLorme, D.; Hagen, S. C.; Stephens, S. H.

    2013-12-01

    This presentation reports results of focus groups with coastal resource managers on suggestions for effectively sharing sea level rise (SLR) scientific research with the public and other target audiences. The focus groups were conducted during three annual stakeholder workshops as an important and innovative component of an ongoing five-year multi-disciplinary NOAA-funded project, Ecological Effects of Sea Level Rise in the Northern Gulf of Mexico (EESLR-NGOM). The EESLR-NGOM project is assessing SLR risks to the natural and built environment along the Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida Panhandle coasts. The purpose was to engage stakeholders (e.g., coastal resource managers) in helping target, translate, and tailor the EESLR-NGOM project's scientific findings and emerging products so they are readily accessible, understandable, and useful. The focus groups provided insight into stakeholders' SLR informational and operational needs, solicited input on the project's products, and gathered suggestions for public communication and outreach. A total of three ninety-minute focus groups of between eight and thirteen participants each were conducted at annual workshops in Alabama, Florida, and Mississippi. The moderator asked a series of open-ended questions about SLR-related topics using an interview guide and encouraged participant interaction. All focus group audio-recordings were transcribed, and analyzed by carefully reading the 102 total pages of transcript data and identifying patterns and themes. Participants thought outreach about SLR impact and the EESLR-NGOM project scientific research/products was vital and acknowledged various communication challenges and opportunities. They identified three target audiences (local officials, general public, coastal resource managers themselves) that likely require different educational efforts and tools. Participants felt confident the EESLR-NGOM project products will benefit their resource planning and decision making and

  7. Postglacial relative sea level change at Fildes Peninsula, King George Island (West Antarctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. V. Polishchuk

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Analysis and integration of data obtained in our field and laboratory investigations of 2008–2012 together with results of previous paleogeographic studies were conducted to reveal parameters and factors of the post-glacial changes in the relative sea-level on the Fildes Peninsula and the King George Island. Results of dating of organic material taken from cross-sections of Quaternary deposits, data on morphology of marine landforms as well as on bottom sediments in lakes were used to construct a curve of changes in the relative sea-level.Our research has shown that the rapid rise of relative sea level in the area (since the beginning of the Holocene decelerated about 8000 years BP, achieving its maximum about 7000 years BP. This was followed by the fall of relative sea-level (the land elevation by 18–20  m in total, and it was characterized by relatively high rate of fall during periods of 6000– 5000 years BP, 4000–2500 years BP, and during the last 1500 years; the rate decreased in 5000–4000 years BP and 2500– 1600 years BP. The changes in relative sea level in this region were determined by the following factors: the eustatic component of the global changes in sea-level and, possibly, oscillations in the global sea level of another nature; local parameters of the Last glacial maximum; a course of the Peninsula deglaciation; regional physical characteristics of the Earth's crust and the mantle substances; local tectonic processes, including the isostatic rebound. Since the beginning of the Holocene up to about 7000 years BP, the main contribution to changes of the relative sea-level in this area was made by the global eustatic factor. The subsequent fall of the relative sea-level (elevation of the Peninsula surface proceeded under condition of reduced role of the eustatic factor and predominance of other factors.

  8. Multiproxy assessment of Holocene relative sea-level changes in the western Mediterranean: sea-level variability and improvements in the definition of the isostatic signal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vacchi, Matteo; Rovere, Alessio; Marriner, Nick; Morhange, Christophe; Spada, Giorgio; Fontana, Alessandro

    2016-04-01

    After the review of 918 radiocarbon dated Relative Sea-Level (RSL) data-points we present here the first quality-controlled database constraining the Holocene sea-level histories of the western Mediterranean Sea (Spain, France, Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, Malta and Tunisia). We reviewed and standardized the geological RSL data-points using a new multi-proxy methodology based on: (1) modern taxa assemblages in Mediterranean lagoons and marshes; (2) beachrock characteristics (cement fabric and chemistry, sedimentary structures); and (3) the modern distribution of Mediterranean fixed biological indicators. These RSL data-points were coupled with the large number of archaeological RSL indicators available for the western Mediterranean. We assessed the spatial variability of RSL histories for 22 regions and compared these with the ICE-5G VM2 GIA model. In the western Mediterranean, RSL rose continuously for the whole Holocene with a sudden slowdown at ~7.5 ka BP and a further deceleration during the last ~4.0 ka BP, after which time observed RSL changes are mainly related to variability in isostatic adjustment. The sole exception is southern Tunisia, where data show evidence of a mid-Holocene high-stand compatible with the isostatic impacts of the melting history of the remote Antarctic ice sheet. Our results indicate that late-Holocene sea-level rise was significantly slower than the current one. First estimates of GIA contribution indicate that, at least in the northwestern sector, it accounts at least for the 25-30% of the ongoing sea-level rise recorded by Mediterranean tidal gauges. Such contribution is less constrained at lower latitudes due to the lower quality of the late Holocene index points. Future applications of spatio-temporal statistical techniques are required to better quantify the gradient of the isostatic contribution and to provide improved context for the assessment of 20th century acceleration of Mediterranean sea-level rise.

  9. Impacts of Climate Change on Estuarine Habitats in the UK: Critical Evaluation of the Saltmarshes and Sea-Level Rise Model (SLAMM)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pylarinou, A.; French, J.; Burningham, H.

    2013-12-01

    Estuarine wetland environments are at risk of significant transformation and loss due to sea-level rise and there is an increasing need to model such impacts. In a UK context, the relatively small size and morphological complexity of many estuaries necessitates a high spatial resolution but models must also be capable of efficient application over time scales of decades to centuries that correspond to widely used IPCC climate change scenarios. Little previous work of this kind has been carried out to date in the UK. An exception is the EU-funded BRANCH project, which simulated the drowning of intertidal topography, due to sea-level rise, and potential mudflat and saltmarsh responses to a change in inundation regime. However, this approach neglects the interplay of sea-level rise and sedimentation. Accordingly, this study investigates the potential of a more dynamic spatial landscape model to represent meso-scale impacts of sea-level rise on UK estuary environments. It takes as a starting point the Sea Level Affecting Marshes Model (SLAMM), which has been widely used in the USA. This is built around the US National Wetlands Inventory classification and adapting it to suit the tidal sedimentary environments and habitats typical of the UK requires changes to the source code. This paper presents results obtained from the application of an appropriately modified SLAMM code to contrasting estuarine environments in eastern England. The aim is to evaluate the ability of SLAMM to produce plausible projections of intertidal habitat change. The estuaries studied are covered by high-resolution altimetry data, and an extensive literature on their physical process regime allows the parameterisation of the various sub-models in SLAMM. A Matlab-based shell is used to perform an initial sensitivity analysis to better understand the nature of the modelled sea-level rise effects. This shell also provides a framework for Monte Carlo simulations forced by a set of UKCP09 sea-level rise

  10. Sea-level rise and potential drowning of the Italian coastal plains: Flooding risk scenarios for 2100

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antonioli, F.; Anzidei, M.; Amorosi, A.; Lo Presti, V.; Mastronuzzi, G.; Deiana, G.; De Falco, G.; Fontana, A.; Fontolan, G.; Lisco, S.; Marsico, A.; Moretti, M.; Orrù, P. E.; Sannino, G. M.; Serpelloni, E.; Vecchio, A.

    2017-02-01

    We depict the relative sea-level rise scenarios for the year 2100 from four areas of the Italian peninsula. Our estimates are based on the Rahmstorf (2007) and IPCC-AR5 reports 2013 for the RCP-8.5 scenarios (http://www.ipcc.ch) The subsequent loss of land will impact the environment and local infrastructures, suggesting land planners and decision makers to take into account these scenarios for a cognizant coastal management. Our method developed for the Italian coast can be applied worldwide in other coastal areas expected to be affected by marine ingression due to global climate change.

  11. Limited effectiveness of solar radiation management geoengineering in preventing sea-level rise from the Greenland Ice Sheet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Applegate, Patrick; Keller, Klaus

    2015-04-01

    The Greenland Ice Sheet (GIS) is an important contributor to present-day sea level rise, and the ice sheet's importance for sea level rise will likely increase with Arctic temperatures. Some scientists have recently suggested that geoengineering, the deliberate management of Earth's climate, could prevent sea level rise from the ice sheets. Previous efforts to assess geoengineering's effects on the GIS and sea level rise have broken important new ground, but neglect key feedbacks and/or are silent on the short-term effects of geoengineering that are perhaps most important for decision-making. Here, we use a simplified, three-dimensional model of the GIS (SICOPOLIS by Ralf Greve) to examine the response of the Greenland Ice Sheet under plausible geoengineering scenarios. We find that i) the GIS generally continues to melt over the first 100 yr after geoengineering initiation; ii) reductions in GIS sea level contributions over these first 100 yr are small; and iii) there is a delay of decades to centuries between the initiation of aggressive geoengineering and any regrowth of the ice sheet, and the rate of this regrowth is slow. However, geoengineering produces appreciable reductions in the rate of sea level rise contributions from the GIS within the first few decades. Our results suggest that past studies have overestimated the effectiveness of geoengineering in preventing mass loss from the Greenland Ice Sheet and in reversing sea level rise once it has occurred. We comment on the importance of feedbacks in the ice sheet system in assessing geoengineering's effectiveness in reducing sea level rise from the GIS.

  12. Threatened and endangered subspecies with vulnerable ecological traits Also have high susceptibility to sea level rise and habitat fragmentation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benscoter, Allison M.; Reece, Joshua S.; Noss, Reed F.; Brandt, Laura B.; Mazzotti, Frank J.; Romañach, Stephanie S.; Watling, James I.

    2013-01-01

    The presence of multiple interacting threats to biodiversity and the increasing rate of species extinction make it critical to prioritize management efforts on species and communities that maximize conservation success. We implemented a multi-step approach that coupled vulnerability assessments evaluating threats to Florida taxa such as climate change, sea-level rise, and habitat fragmentation with in-depth literature surveys of taxon-specific ecological traits. The vulnerability, adaptive capacity, and ecological traits of 12 threatened and endangered subspecies were compared to non-listed subspecies of the same parent species. Overall, the threatened and endangered subspecies showed high vulnerability and low adaptive capacity, in particular to sea level rise and habitat fragmentation. They also exhibited larger home ranges and greater dispersal limitation compared to non-endangered subspecies, which may inhibit their ability to track changing climate in fragmented landscapes. There was evidence for lower reproductive capacity in some of the threatened or endangered taxa, but not for most. Taxa located in the Florida Keys or in other low coastal areas were most vulnerable to sea level rise, and also showed low levels of adaptive capacity, indicating they may have a lower probability of conservation success. Our analysis of at-risk subspecies and closely related non-endangered subspecies demonstrates that ecological traits help to explain observed differences in vulnerability and adaptive capacity. This study points to the importance of assessing the relative contributions of multiple threats and evaluating conservation value at the species (or subspecies) level when resources are limited and several factors affect conservation success.

  13. Threatened and endangered subspecies with vulnerable ecological traits also have high susceptibility to sea level rise and habitat fragmentation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Allison M Benscoter

    Full Text Available The presence of multiple interacting threats to biodiversity and the increasing rate of species extinction make it critical to prioritize management efforts on species and communities that maximize conservation success. We implemented a multi-step approach that coupled vulnerability assessments evaluating threats to Florida taxa such as climate change, sea-level rise, and habitat fragmentation with in-depth literature surveys of taxon-specific ecological traits. The vulnerability, adaptive capacity, and ecological traits of 12 threatened and endangered subspecies were compared to non-listed subspecies of the same parent species. Overall, the threatened and endangered subspecies showed high vulnerability and low adaptive capacity, in particular to sea level rise and habitat fragmentation. They also exhibited larger home ranges and greater dispersal limitation compared to non-endangered subspecies, which may inhibit their ability to track changing climate in fragmented landscapes. There was evidence for lower reproductive capacity in some of the threatened or endangered taxa, but not for most. Taxa located in the Florida Keys or in other low coastal areas were most vulnerable to sea level rise, and also showed low levels of adaptive capacity, indicating they may have a lower probability of conservation success. Our analysis of at-risk subspecies and closely related non-endangered subspecies demonstrates that ecological traits help to explain observed differences in vulnerability and adaptive capacity. This study points to the importance of assessing the relative contributions of multiple threats and evaluating conservation value at the species (or subspecies level when resources are limited and several factors affect conservation success.

  14. Threatened and endangered subspecies with vulnerable ecological traits also have high susceptibility to sea level rise and habitat fragmentation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benscoter, Allison M; Reece, Joshua S; Noss, Reed F; Brandt, Laura A; Mazzotti, Frank J; Romañach, Stephanie S; Watling, James I

    2013-01-01

    The presence of multiple interacting threats to biodiversity and the increasing rate of species extinction make it critical to prioritize management efforts on species and communities that maximize conservation success. We implemented a multi-step approach that coupled vulnerability assessments evaluating threats to Florida taxa such as climate change, sea-level rise, and habitat fragmentation with in-depth literature surveys of taxon-specific ecological traits. The vulnerability, adaptive capacity, and ecological traits of 12 threatened and endangered subspecies were compared to non-listed subspecies of the same parent species. Overall, the threatened and endangered subspecies showed high vulnerability and low adaptive capacity, in particular to sea level rise and habitat fragmentation. They also exhibited larger home ranges and greater dispersal limitation compared to non-endangered subspecies, which may inhibit their ability to track changing climate in fragmented landscapes. There was evidence for lower reproductive capacity in some of the threatened or endangered taxa, but not for most. Taxa located in the Florida Keys or in other low coastal areas were most vulnerable to sea level rise, and also showed low levels of adaptive capacity, indicating they may have a lower probability of conservation success. Our analysis of at-risk subspecies and closely related non-endangered subspecies demonstrates that ecological traits help to explain observed differences in vulnerability and adaptive capacity. This study points to the importance of assessing the relative contributions of multiple threats and evaluating conservation value at the species (or subspecies) level when resources are limited and several factors affect conservation success.

  15. Coastal vulnerability to sea-level rise: a preliminary database for the U.S. Atlantic, Pacific, and Gulf of Mexico coasts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammar-Klose, Erika S.; Thieler, E. Robert

    2001-01-01

    The prediction of coastal evolution is not straightforward. There is no standard methodology, and even the kind of data required to make such predictions are the subject of much scientific debate. Since a viable, quantitative predictive model for coastal evolution is not available. The relative susceptibility of the Nation's coastline to sea-level rise is quantified here at a regional to national scale using basic information on coastal geomorphology, rate of sea-level rise, past shoreline evolution and other factors. This approach combines the coastal system's susceptibility to change with its natural ability to adapt to changing environmental and conditions, and yields a relative measure of the system's natural vulnerability to the effects of sea-level rise. This information has immediate application to many of the decisions our society will be making regarding coastal development in both the short- and long-term.

  16. Hydroclimatic modelling of local sea level rise and its projection in future

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naren, A.; Maity, Rajib

    2016-09-01

    Studies on sea level rise (SLR) in the context of climate change are gaining importance in the recent past. Whereas there is some clear evidence of SLR at global scale, its trend varies significantly from location to location. The role of different meteorological variables on sea level change (SLC) is explored. We hypothesise that the role of such variables varies from location to location and modelling of local SLC requires a proper identification of specific role of individual factors. After identifying a group of various local meteorological variables, Supervised Principal Component Analysis (SPCA) is used to develop a location specific Combined Index (CI). The SPCA ensures that the developed CI possesses highest possible association with the historical SLC at that location. Further, using the developed CI, an attempt is made to model the local sea level (LSL) variation in synchronous with the changing climate. The developed approach, termed as hydroclimatic semi-empirical approach, is found to be potential for local SLC at different coastal locations. The validated hydroclimatic approach is used for future projection of SLC at those coastal locations till 2100 for different climate change scenarios, i.e. different Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs). Future hydrometeorological variables are obtained from Global Climate Models (GCMs) for different such scenarios, i.e. RCP2.6, RCP4.5 and RCP8.5. Effect of glacial isostatic readjustment (GIA) is not included in this study. However, if the reliable information on GIA is available for a location, the same can be arithmetically added to the final outcome of the proposed hydrometeorological approach.

  17. Late Quaternary relative sea level in Southern California and Monterey Bay

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynolds, Laura C.; Simms, Alexander R.

    2015-10-01

    Few records of late Quaternary relative sea level (RSL) are available for the Pacific coast of North America south of San Francisco Bay, a region where RSL data would be particularly useful for constraining vertical rates of tectonic motion. This paper provides the first regional, uplift-corrected late Quaternary RSL history for southern California derived from a compilation of 132 previously published and unpublished radiocarbon ages from nearshore, estuarine, and freshwater deposits in sediment cores from coastal southern California. We also provide a local, uplift-corrected RSL history for Monterey Bay, central California, generated from 48 radiocarbon ages from Elkhorn Slough and surrounding environments. Our resulting compilations show rapid sea-level rise from 15 ka which begins to decelerate to present mean sea level (PMSL) between 6 and 8 ka. Late Holocene (Bay in central California. Both rates of late Holocene RSL rise calculated are lower than recent RSL rates from southern California (˜1.61 ± 0.34 to 2.4 ± 1.04 mm a-1) and Monterey Bay (1.49 ± 0.95 mm a-1), derived from uplift-corrected, 20th century tide gauge data. This new RSL data fills geographical gaps in relative sea-level histories, as well as provides important datums for local tectonic processes.

  18. Unabated global mean sea-level rise over the satellite altimeter era

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watson, Christopher S.; White, Neil J.; Church, John A.; King, Matt A.; Burgette, Reed J.; Legresy, Benoit

    2015-06-01

    The rate of global mean sea-level (GMSL) rise has been suggested to be lower for the past decade compared with the preceding decade as a result of natural variability, with an average rate of rise since 1993 of +3.2 +/- 0.4 mm yr-1 (refs , ). However, satellite-based GMSL estimates do not include an allowance for potential instrumental drifts (bias drift). Here, we report improved bias drift estimates for individual altimeter missions from a refined estimation approach that incorporates new Global Positioning System (GPS) estimates of vertical land movement (VLM). In contrast to previous results (for example, refs , ), we identify significant non-zero systematic drifts that are satellite-specific, most notably affecting the first 6 years of the GMSL record. Applying the bias drift corrections has two implications. First, the GMSL rate (1993 to mid-2014) is systematically reduced to between +2.6 +/- 0.4 mm yr-1 and +2.9 +/- 0.4 mm yr-1, depending on the choice of VLM applied. These rates are in closer agreement with the rate derived from the sum of the observed contributions, GMSL estimated from a comprehensive network of tide gauges with GPS-based VLM applied (updated from ref. ) and reprocessed ERS-2/Envisat altimetry. Second, in contrast to the previously reported slowing in the rate during the past two decades, our corrected GMSL data set indicates an acceleration in sea-level rise (independent of the VLM used), which is of opposite sign to previous estimates and comparable to the accelerated loss of ice from Greenland and to recent projections, and larger than the twentieth-century acceleration.

  19. Coastal Flood Risks in the Bangkok Metropolitan Region, Thailand: Combined Impacts of Land Subsidence, Sea Level Rise and Storm Surge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duangyiwa, C.; Yu, D.; Wilby, R.; Aobpaet, A.

    2015-12-01

    Due to the fast-changing climatic and anthropogenic conditions at coastal regions, many coastal mega-cities are becoming increasingly vulnerable to internal and external risks. The risk is particularly high for low-lying coastal cities in developing nations, with Southeast Asia recognized as a hotspot of vulnerability due to the increasing population density, rapid change of natural landscape associated with urbanization and intensified hydrological and atmospheric conditions at the coastal front in an uncertain climate future. The Bangkok Metropolitan Region is one of the largest coastal megacities in Southeast Asia that are challenged by the potential impacts due to climate change and anthropological variability in the coming decades. Climate-related risks in this region are associated with its relatively low-lying nature of the terrain and adjacency to the coast. Coastal inundation due to high tides from the sea occurs annually in the area close to the seashore. This is set to increase given a projected rising sea level and the sinking landscape due to groundwater extraction and urbanization. The aim of this research is, therefore, to evaluate the vulnerability of the city to sea level rise, land subsidence and storm surge. Distributed land subsidence rate, projected sea level rise and existing structural features such as flood defences are taken into account. The 2011 flood in Thailand is used as a baseline event. Scenarios were designed with projections of land subsidence and sea level rise to 2050s, 2080s, and 2100s. A two-dimensional flood inundation model (FloodMap, Yu and Lane 2006) is used to derive inundation depth and velocity associated with each scenario. The impacts of coastal flood risk on critical infrastructures (e.g. power supply, transportation network, rescue centers, hospitals, schools and key government buildings) are evaluated (e.g. Figure 1). Results suggest progressively increase but non-linear risks of coastal flooding to key coastal

  20. Adaptation to the impact of sea level rise in the Northeastern Nile Delta, Egypt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mabrouk, Badr; Farhat Abd-Elhamid, Hany; Badr, Marmar; Ludwig, Ralf

    2013-04-01

    Northeastern Delta is one of the most promising developmental areas in Egypt. This area is characterized by a prominent watershed having abundant water resources (especially groundwater). Currently, this area undergoes a rapid environmental degradation, such as land subsidence, water and soil salinaization. It accommodates about 60% of the total arable lands of the Delta, and inhabited by about 45 % of its total population. In addition, the northern part of this area comprises about 25% of the total Mediterranean wetlands. In this area a number of desalination plants were installed to desalinate brackish water and inject the brine to the aquifer using deep wells. This work aims to evaluate the environmental impact of injecting brine water on groundwater quality. Also, the impact of climate change and sea level rise are considered. The work is a combination of field work and simulation processes of groundwater flow and seawater intrusion using numerical models. The field work was used to collect and analyze data, information pertaining to the groundwater resources, interpretation of aerial photos and satellite images and preparation of ground water potential maps has. This was followed by detailed test boring wells as chemical analysis of seawater intrusion detection and pollution flow mapping were done. Numerical models (MODFLOW and MT3D) were used to evaluate both current and future situation of the groundwater flow and seawater intrusion in the Nile Delta aquifer in the studied area. The aquifer in the studied area is divided into five barrier beds according to its hydrological characteristics. The increase in extraction rates of brackish water and increasing the salinity of groundwater were experienced in details. Different scenarios to mitigate the severe salinity effect of injected brine water of high salinity rejected from desalination process. The brine water is assumed to be injected into deep wells to different depths and observation of changes in salinity

  1. The coastal area of Togo: A space vulnerable to sea level rise hotly disputed

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adjoussi, P. D.

    2015-12-01

    Abstract Erosion caused in the coastal area of Togo especially in the cell to the east of the harbor of Lomé some reorganization of space and a reallocation of tasks functions of the importance of existing issues. This reorganization is an important race against time between the various stakeholders which paradoxically make this area a very dynamic environment. In spite of the disaster situation in the area, it is changing. This mutation has been observed for a decade in many ways. Fishing is a traditional activity disappears causing the emergence of new activities such as the extraction of gravel, the gardening, the informal trade of any kind, installing hotels, etc.. At the socio-economic transformation is associated with a beach in state of deficit causing the decline of the coastline that reaches approximately 500 m over a few kilometers according to the old marks missing. The decline of the coastline is by undermining the beach by the waves at high tide. These issues are reshaping the land use map that passes a distribution of fishing villages on the coast in 1980 to a suburban area exposed to sea level rise corollary to anticipated climate change. Keywords: Space, Reorganization, Vulnerability, Stakeholders, Sea Level, Fishing

  2. Estimating the sources of global sea level rise with data assimilation techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-02-01

    A rapidly melting ice sheet produces a distinctive geometry, or fingerprint, of sea level (SL) change. Thus, a network of SL observations may, in principle, be used to infer sources of meltwater flux. We outline a formalism, based on a modified Kalman smoother, for using tide gauge observations to estimate the individual sources of global SL change. We also report on a series of detection experiments based on synthetic SL data that explore the feasibility of extracting source information from SL records. The Kalman smoother technique iteratively calculates the maximum-likelihood estimate of Greenland ice sheet (GIS) and West Antarctic ice sheet (WAIS) melt at each time step, and it accommodates data gaps while also permitting the estimation of nonlinear trends. Our synthetic tests indicate that when all tide gauge records are used in the analysis, it should be possible to estimate GIS and WAIS melt rates greater than ∼0.3 and ∼0.4 mm of equivalent eustatic sea level rise per year, respectively. We have also implemented a multimodel Kalman filter that allows us to account rigorously for additional contributions to SL changes and their associated uncertainty. The multimodel filter uses 72 glacial isostatic adjustment models and 3 ocean dynamic models to estimate the most likely models for these processes given the synthetic observations. We conclude that our modified Kalman smoother procedure provides a powerful method for inferring melt rates in a warming world.

  3. Vulnerability of the peatland carbon sink to sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whittle, Alex; Gallego-Sala, Angela V.

    2016-06-01

    Freshwater peatlands are carbon accumulating ecosystems where primary production exceeds organic matter decomposition rates in the soil, and therefore perform an important sink function in global carbon cycling. Typical peatland plant and microbial communities are adapted to the waterlogged, often acidic and low nutrient conditions that characterise them. Peatlands in coastal locations receive inputs of oceanic base cations that shift conditions from the environmental optimum of these communities altering the carbon balance. Blanket bogs are one such type of peatlands occurring in hyperoceanic regions. Using a blanket bog to coastal marsh transect in Northwest Scotland we assess the impacts of salt intrusion on carbon accumulation rates. A threshold concentration of salt input, caused by inundation, exists corresponding to rapid acidophilic to halophilic plant community change and a carbon accumulation decline. For the first time, we map areas of blanket bog vulnerable to sea-level rise, estimating that this equates to ~7.4% of the total extent and a 0.22 Tg yr‑1 carbon sink. Globally, tropical peatlands face the proportionally greatest risk with ~61,000 km2 (~16.6% of total) lying ≤5 m elevation. In total an estimated 20.2 ± 2.5 GtC is stored in peatlands ≤5 m above sea level, which are potentially vulnerable to inundation.

  4. Estimating the sources of global sea level rise with data assimilation techniques.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-02-26

    A rapidly melting ice sheet produces a distinctive geometry, or fingerprint, of sea level (SL) change. Thus, a network of SL observations may, in principle, be used to infer sources of meltwater flux. We outline a formalism, based on a modified Kalman smoother, for using tide gauge observations to estimate the individual sources of global SL change. We also report on a series of detection experiments based on synthetic SL data that explore the feasibility of extracting source information from SL records. The Kalman smoother technique iteratively calculates the maximum-likelihood estimate of Greenland ice sheet (GIS) and West Antarctic ice sheet (WAIS) melt at each time step, and it accommodates data gaps while also permitting the estimation of nonlinear trends. Our synthetic tests indicate that when all tide gauge records are used in the analysis, it should be possible to estimate GIS and WAIS melt rates greater than ∼0.3 and ∼0.4 mm of equivalent eustatic sea level rise per year, respectively. We have also implemented a multimodel Kalman filter that allows us to account rigorously for additional contributions to SL changes and their associated uncertainty. The multimodel filter uses 72 glacial isostatic adjustment models and 3 ocean dynamic models to estimate the most likely models for these processes given the synthetic observations. We conclude that our modified Kalman smoother procedure provides a powerful method for inferring melt rates in a warming world.

  5. An eclectic morphostratigraphic model for the sedimentary response to Holocene sea-level rise in northwest Europe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, J. R. L.

    2003-09-01

    The improved empirical understanding of silt facies in Holocene coastal sequences provided by such as diatom, foraminifera, ostracode and testate amoebae analysis, combined with insights from quantitative stratigraphic and hydraulic simulations, has led to an inclusive, integrated model for the palaeogeomorphology, stratigraphy, lithofacies and biofacies of northwest European Holocene coastal lowlands in relation to sea-level behaviour. The model covers two general circumstances and is empirically supported by a range of field studies in the Holocene deposits of a number of British estuaries, particularly, the Severn. Where deposition was continuous over periods of centuries to millennia, and sea level fluctuated about a rising trend, the succession consists of repeated cycles of silt and peat lithofacies and biofacies in which series of transgressive overlaps (submergence sequences) alternate with series of regressive overlaps (emergence sequences) in association with the waxing and waning of tidal creek networks. Environmental and sea-level change are closely coupled, and equilibrium and secular pattern is of the kind represented ideally by a closed limit cycle. In the second circumstance, characteristic of unstable wetland shores and generally affecting smaller areas, coastal erosion ensures that episodes of deposition in the high intertidal zone last no more than a few centuries. The typical response is a series of regressive overlaps (emergence sequence) in erosively based high mudflat and salt-marsh silts that record, commonly as annual banding, exceptionally high deposition rates and a state of strong disequilibrium. Environmental change, including creek development, and sea-level movement are uncoupled. Only if deposition proceeds for a sufficiently long period, so that marshes mature, are equilibrium and close coupling regained.

  6. Extreme storms, sea level rise, and coastal change: implications for infrastructure reliability in the Gulf of Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anarde, K.; Kameshwar, S.; Irza, N.; Lorenzo-Trueba, J.; Nittrouer, J. A.; Padgett, J.; Bedient, P. B.

    2016-12-01

    Predicting coastal infrastructure reliability during hurricane events is important for risk-based design and disaster planning, such as delineating viable emergency response routes. Previous research has focused on either infrastructure vulnerability to coastal flooding or the impact of changing sea level and landforms on surge dynamics. Here we investigate the combined impact of sea level, morphology, and coastal flooding on the reliability of highway bridges - the only access points between barrier islands and mainland communities - during future extreme storms. We forward model coastal flooding for static projections of geomorphic change using ADCIRC+SWAN. First-order parameters that are adjusted include sea level and elevation. These are varied for each storm simulation to evaluate relative impact on the reliability of bridges surrounding Freeport, TX. Simulated storms include both synthetic and historical events, which are classified by intensity using the storm's integrated kinetic energy, a metric for surge generation potential. Reliability is estimated through probability of failure - given wave and surge loads - and time inundated. Findings include that: 1) bridge reliability scales inversely with surge height, and 2) sea level rise reduces bridge reliability due to a monotonic increase in surge height. The impact of a shifting landscape on bridge reliability is more complex: barrier island rollback can increase or decrease inundation times for storms of different intensity due to changes in wind-setup and back-barrier bay interactions. Initial storm surge readily inundates the coastal landscape during large intensity storms, however the draining of inland bays following storm passage is significantly impeded by the barrier. From a coastal engineering standpoint, we determine that to protect critical infrastructure, efforts now implemented that nourish low-lying barriers may be enhanced by also armoring back-bay coastlines and elevating bridge approach

  7. Coastal lagoons and beach ridges as complementary sedimentary archives for the reconstruction of Holocene relative sea-level changes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sander, Lasse; Hede, Mikkel Ulfeldt; Fruergaard, Mikkel

    2016-01-01

    , Denmark. The reconstruction of the initial mid-Holocene sea-level rise is based on the sedimentary infill from topography-confined coastal lagoons (Sander et al., Boreas, 2015b). Sea-level index points over the mid- to late Holocene period of sea-level stability and fall are retrieved from the internal......Coastal lagoons and beach ridges are genetically independent, though non-continuous, sedimentary archives. We here combine the results from two recently published studies in order to produce an 8000-year-long record of Holocene relative sea-level changes on the island of Samsø, southern Kattegat...... proximate occurrence of coastal lagoons and beach ridges allows us to produce seamless time series of relative sea-level changes from field sites in SW Scandinavia and in similar coastal environments....

  8. Trends of sea level rise in the South China Sea during the 1990s: An altimetry result

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2002-01-01

    Using 7 years of TOPEX/POSEIDON satellite altimetry data, we have identified a general trend of sea level rising in the South China Sea between January 1993 and December 1999. The estimated bulk rising rate of the entire basin is ~1 cm/a. The rise of sea level appears to be spatially non-homogeneous, which shows a highest rate of 2.7 cm/a in the deep basin west of Luzon and generally Iow (even negafive) rates over the shallow continental shelves. It is believed that the observed rapid rising of sea level is a regional phenomenon and is mainly caused by warming of the upper layer of the South China Sea, which showed a bulk warming rate of 0.15℃/a in the same period. It is also suggested that the observed rising trend is mainly a decadal signal, which is possibly associated with decadal variation of the Pacific warm pool region.

  9. Surface elevation change and susceptibility of different mangrove zones to sea-level rise on Pacific high islands of Micronesia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krauss, K.W.; Cahoon, D.R.; Allen, J.A.; Ewel, K.C.; Lynch, J.C.; Cormier, N.

    2010-01-01

    Mangroves on Pacific high islands offer a number of important ecosystem services to both natural ecological communities and human societies. High islands are subjected to constant erosion over geologic time, which establishes an important source of terrigeneous sediment for nearby marine communities. Many of these sediments are deposited in mangrove forests and offer mangroves a potentially important means for adjusting surface elevation with rising sea level. In this study, we investigated sedimentation and elevation dynamics of mangrove forests in three hydrogeomorphic settings on the islands of Kosrae and Pohnpei, Federated States of Micronesia (FSM). Surface accretion rates ranged from 2.9 to 20.8 mm y-1, and are high for naturally occurring mangroves. Although mangrove forests in Micronesian high islands appear to have a strong capacity to offset elevation losses by way of sedimentation, elevation change over 61/2 years ranged from -3.2 to 4.1 mm y-1, depending on the location. Mangrove surface elevation change also varied by hydrogeomorphic setting and river, and suggested differential, and not uniformly bleak, susceptibilities among Pacific high island mangroves to sea-level rise. Fringe, riverine, and interior settings registered elevation changes of -1.30, 0.46, and 1.56 mm y-1, respectively, with the greatest elevation deficit (-3.2 mm y-1) from a fringe zone on Pohnpei and the highest rate of elevation gain (4.1 mm y-1) from an interior zone on Kosrae. Relative to sea-level rise estimates for FSM (0.8-1.8 mm y-1) and assuming a consistent linear trend in these estimates, soil elevations in mangroves on Kosrae and Pohnpei are experiencing between an annual deficit of 4.95 mm and an annual surplus of 3.28 mm. Although natural disturbances are important in mediating elevation gain in some situations, constant allochthonous sediment deposition probably matters most on these Pacific high islands, and is especially helpful in certain hydrogeomorphic zones

  10. Diving In To Sea Level Rise Using The Polar Explorer ';App'

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-12-01

    The vast majority of our lifetime is spent learning outside the classroom, yet the major emphasis in developing climate change instructional materials has been the traditional K16 school environment. The Polar Learning and Responding (PoLAR) project of the National Science Foundation supported Climate Change Education Partnership (CCEP) program chose to move beyond the classroom to focus on lifelong learners, in order to engage the adult population in building public understanding about climate change. Yet reaching individuals who make their own decisions about what and how they choose to learn requires a very different approach to developing educational materials. With an adult audience how we deliver content can be as critical as what we deliver. Using materials and platforms that are readily available and familiar to the user is important. With a significant segment of our time spent connected to smart phones and tablets, employing these platforms to deliver content makes sense. Whether at work, home or in transit, portable devices are critical companions and trusted tools in providing information on everything from the latest news to the daily weather. The world of Apps is equally as familiar to the adult user, so developing an engaging climate App for a portable device offers a successful strategy. The 'Polar Explorer - Sea Level Rise (SLR) App', is one of the new interactive products developed as part of the PoLAR project. Modeled after Columbia's Earth Observer App, a data exploration and data visualization tool, the Polar Explorer SLR App includes a wide range of real Earth data from ocean and atmospheric temperatures to depth of ice layers, underlying topography and human impacts. The Polar Explorer SLR App is grounded in the concept that scientists gain insights into climate change and climate processes through directly examining data. With some scaffolding, the public can gain similar insights using the same data. Structured to be 'question driven' the

  11. Sea level rise and inundation of island interiors: Assessing impacts of lake formation and evaporation on water resources in arid climates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gulley, J. D.; Mayer, A. S.; Martin, J. B.; Bedekar, V.

    2016-09-01

    Coasts of many low-lying islands will be inundated should sea level rise by 1 m by 2100 as projected, thereby decreasing water resources through aquifer salinization. A lesser known impact occurs if rising sea level elevates water tables above interior topographic lows to form lakes. Impacts of lake formation on water resources, however, remain unquantified. Here we use hydrological models, based on islands in the Bahamian archipelago, to demonstrate that on islands with negative water budgets, evaporation following lake inundation can cause more than twice the loss of fresh groundwater resources relative to an equivalent amount of coastal inundation. This result implies that in dry climates, low-lying islands with inland depressions could face substantially greater threats to their water resources from sea level rise than previously considered.

  12. Investigating sea level rise due to global warming in the teaching laboratory using Archimedes’ principle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Stephen; Pearce, Darren

    2015-11-01

    A teaching laboratory experiment is described that uses Archimedes’ principle to precisely investigate the effect of global warming on the oceans. A large component of sea level rise is due to the increase in the volume of water due to the decrease in water density with increasing temperature. Water close to 0 °C is placed in a beaker and a glass marble hung from an electronic balance immersed in the water. As the water warms, the weight of the marble increases as the water is less buoyant due to the decrease in density. In the experiment performed in this paper a balance with a precision of 0.1 mg was used with a marble 40.0 cm3 and mass of 99.3 g, yielding water density measurements with an average error of -0.008 ± 0.011%.

  13. Adaptation or Resistance: a classification of responses to sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooper, J. A.

    2016-02-01

    Societal responses to sea level rise and associated coastal change are apparently diverse in nature and motivation. Most are commonly referred to as 'adaptation'. Based on a review of current practice, however, it is argued that many of these responses do not involve adaptation, but are rather resisting change. There are several instances where formerly adaptive initiatives involving human adaptability are being replaced by initiatives that resist change. A classification is presented that recognises a continuum of responses ranging from adaptation to resistance, depending upon the willingness to change human activities to accommodate environmental change. In many cases climate change adaptation resources are being used for projects that are purely resistant and which foreclose future adaptation options. It is argued that a more concise definition of adaptation is needed if coastal management is to move beyond the current position of holding the shoreline, other tah n in a few showcase examples.

  14. ANALISA SEA LEVEL RISE PERAIRAN INDONESIA MENGGUNAKAN DATA SATELIT ALTIMETRI JASON-2 TAHUN 2009-2012

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nur Rahman

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Kenaikan muka air laut (Sea Level Rise disebabkan oleh semakin meningkatnya suhu global bumi atau yang biasa disebut dengan pemanasan global. Fenomena ini harus diwaspadai, mengingat luas perairan di Indonesia mendominasi sebesar 75,32 % serta banyak terdapat pemukiman maupun pusat perekonomian yang terletak dekat dengan perairan. Dengan luas perairan yang sangat besar maka metode pengamatan konvensional seperti menggunakan kapal survei kelautan bukanlah metode yang efektif dan efisien. Penggunaan teknologi satelit altimetri menjadi salah satu alternatif yang tepat untuk mengamati fenomena ini. Salah satu satelit altimetri tersebut adalah Satelit Jason-2. Pemantauan kenaikan muka air laut dilakukan pada perairan Indonesia dalam kurun waktu 4 tahun (2009-2012 dengan mengambil 20 titik pengamatan. Terdapat 12 titik yang mengalami kenaikan dengan kenaikan terbesar mencapai 12 mm/tahun yaitu di titik Samudera Pasifik tepatnya sebelah utara Papua Barat, sedangkan kenaikan muka air laut terkecil terjadi pada titik Selat Makassar dengan kenaikan sebesar 0,587 mm/tahun.

  15. Exploring the effect of backbarrier dynamics on barrier island response to sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lorenzo-Trueba, J.; Mariotti, G.

    2016-12-01

    Barriers islands and their associated backbarrier environments serve as buffer zones between the coastal ocean and mainland developments, including population centers and infrastructures, and provide a wide range of ecosystem services. Despite their economic and ecological importance, there exists a critical gap in understanding how barrier-marsh-lagoon systems respond to sea-level rise. Here, we address this fundamental knowledge gap by dynamically coupling two existing models: a morphodynamic model for barrier evolution, and a marsh-lagoon model. The barrier model accounts for the interaction between shoreface dynamics and overwash fluxes, which can lead to periodic barrier retreat, due to time lags in the shoreface response, or width drowning, which occurs when the shoreface response rate is insufficient to maintain the barrier geometry during overwash-driven landward migration. The marsh-lagoon model explicitly describes marsh edge processes in both the backbarrier and the interior marshes, and accounts for the modification of the wave regime associated with lagoon width, i.e., fetch. Model results show that a number of factors, which are not typically associated with the dynamics of coastal barriers, can enhance the rate of overwash-driven landward migration by increasing backbarrier accommodation space. For instance, an increase in lagoon width and export of fine sediment from the lagoon via tidal dispersion, and/or an expansion of inland marshes via upland migration, can lessen lagoon sedimentation rates and trigger lagoon deepening. Fast barrier migration rates induced by a deeper lagoon can enhance barrier drowning when onshore directed sediment transport at the shoreface does not respond fast enough. We therefore conclude that the supply of muddy sediments to the backbarrier marsh ecosystems can be essential to maintaining the barrier system under elevated rates of sea level rise. Overall, our findings highlight the importance of incorporating backbarrier

  16. Coastal Vulnerability to Sea Level Rise and Erosion in Northwest Alaska (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gorokhovich, Y.; Leiserowitz, A.

    2009-12-01

    Northwest Alaska is experiencing significant climate change and human impacts. The study area includes the coastal zone of Kotzebue Sound and the Chukchi Sea and provides the local population (predominantly Inupiaq Eskimo) with critical subsistence resources of meat, fish, berries, herbs, and wood. The geomorphology of the coast includes barrier islands, inlets, estuaries, deltas, cliffs, bluffs, and beaches that host modern settlements and infrastructure. Coastal dynamics and sea-level rise are contributing to erosion, intermittent erosion/accretion patterns, landslides, slumps and coastal retreat. These factors are causing the sedimentation of deltas and lagoons, and changing local bathymetry, morphological parameters of beaches and underwater slopes, rates of coastal dynamics, and turbidity and nutrient cycling in coastal waters. This study is constructing vulnerability maps to help local people and federal officials understand the potential consequences of sea-level rise and coastal erosion on local infrastructure, subsistence resources, and culturally important sites. A lack of complete and uniform data (in terms of methods of collection, geographic scale and spatial resolution) creates an additional level of uncertainty that complicates geographic analysis. These difficulties were overcome by spatial modeling with selected spatial resolution using extrapolation methods. Data include subsistence resource maps obtained using Participatory GIS with local hunters and elders, geological and geographic data on coastal dynamics from satellite imagery, aerial photos, bathymetry and topographic maps, and digital elevation models. These data were classified and ranked according to the level of coastal vulnerability (Figure 1). The resulting qualitative multicriteria model helps to identify the coastal areas with the greatest vulnerability to coastal erosion and of the potential loss of subsistence resources. Acknowldgements: Dr. Ron Abileah (private consultant, j

  17. Sensitivity of Circulation in the Skagit River Estuary to Sea Level Rise and Future Flows

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Khangaonkar, Tarang; Long, Wen; Sackmann, Brandon; Mohamedali, Teizeen; Hamlet, Alan F.

    2016-01-01

    Future climate simulations based on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change emissions scenario (A1B) have shown that the Skagit River flow will be affected, which may lead to modification of the estuarine hydrodynamics. There is considerable uncertainty, however, about the extent and magnitude of resulting change, given accompanying sea level rise and site-specific complexities with multiple interconnected basins. To help quantify the future hydrodynamic response, we developed a three dimensional model of the Skagit River estuary using the Finite Volume Coastal Ocean Model (FVCOM). The model was set up with localized high-resolution grids in Skagit and Padilla Bay sub-basins within the intermediate-scale FVCOM based model of the Salish Sea (greater Puget Sound and Georgia Basin). Future changes to salinity and annual transport through the basin were examined. The results confirmed the existence of a residual estuarine flow that enters Skagit Bay from Saratoga Passage to the south and exits through Deception Pass. Freshwater from the Skagit River is transported out in the surface layers primarily through Deception Pass and Saratoga Passage, and only a small fraction (≈4%) is transported to Padilla Bay. The moderate future perturbations of A1B emissions, corresponding river flow, and sea level rise of 0.48 m examined here result only in small incremental changes to salinity structure and inter-basin freshwater distribution and transport. An increase in salinity of ~1 ppt in the near-shore environment and a salinity intrusion of approximately 3 km further upstream is predicted in Skagit River, well downstream of the drinking water intakes.

  18. Practical Tips and Techniques on the Process of Transdisciplinary Sea Level Rise Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeLorme, D.; Hagen, S. C.; Kidwell, D.; Stephens, S. H.

    2015-12-01

    There is increasing awareness of the need for transdisciplinary science to address complex climate change issues, yet practical guidance is lacking. This presentation describes the iterative planning, implementation, and evaluation process of an ongoing transdisciplinary sea level rise (SLR) research project. Observations, reflections, and recommendations from firsthand experience are shared, illustrated with examples, and placed within a transdisciplinary research framework. The NOAA-sponsored project, Ecological Effects of Sea Level Rise in the Northern Gulf of Mexico (EESLR-NGOM) is a six-year regional study involving a team of biology, ecology, civil/coastal engineering, and communication scholars working with government agency personnel and industry professionals; supervising students and post-doctoral researchers; and engaging a group of non-academic stakeholders (i.e., coastal resource managers). EESLR-NGOM's focus is on detailed assessment and process-based modeling to project SLR impacts on northern Gulf of Mexico coastal wetland habitats and flood plains. This presentation highlights collaboration, communication, and project management considerations, and explains knowledge co-production from a dynamic combination of natural and social scientific methods (secondary data analysis, computer modeling, field observations, field and laboratory experiments, focus group interviews, surveys) and interrelated stakeholder engagement mechanisms (advisory committee, project flow chart, workshops, focus groups, webinars) infused throughout the EESLR-NGOM project to improve accessibility and utility of the scientific results and products. Attention is also given to project evaluation including monitoring, multiple quantitative and qualitative measures, and recognition of challenges and limitations. This presentation should generate productive dialogue and direction for similar endeavors to find transformative solutions to pressing problems of climate change.

  19. Using modelling to predict impacts of sea level rise and increased turbidity on seagrass distributions in estuarine embayments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Tom R.; Harasti, David; Smith, Stephen D. A.; Kelaher, Brendan P.

    2016-11-01

    Climate change induced sea level rise will affect shallow estuarine habitats, which are already under threat from multiple anthropogenic stressors. Here, we present the results of modelling to predict potential impacts of climate change associated processes on seagrass distributions. We use a novel application of relative environmental suitability (RES) modelling to examine relationships between variables of physiological importance to seagrasses (light availability, wave exposure, and current flow) and seagrass distributions within 5 estuarine embayments. Models were constructed separately for Posidonia australis and Zostera muelleri subsp. capricorni using seagrass data from Port Stephens estuary, New South Wales, Australia. Subsequent testing of models used independent datasets from four other estuarine embayments (Wallis Lake, Lake Illawarra, Merimbula Lake, and Pambula Lake) distributed along 570 km of the east Australian coast. Relative environmental suitability models provided adequate predictions for seagrass distributions within Port Stephens and the other estuarine embayments, indicating that they may have broad regional application. Under the predictions of RES models, both sea level rise and increased turbidity are predicted to cause substantial seagrass losses in deeper estuarine areas, resulting in a net shoreward movement of seagrass beds. Seagrass species distribution models developed in this study provide a valuable tool to predict future shifts in estuarine seagrass distributions, allowing identification of areas for protection, monitoring and rehabilitation.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, P K Dinesh

    2006-12-01

    This study presents the results of the impact assessment analysis of the coastal zones of Cochin along the southwest coast of India. The climatological cycle of sea level derived for the region for the period 1939-2003 has shown a range of about 17 cm. From the results obtained on the coastal sedimentary environments, it is found that climate-induced sea level rise scenarios will bring profound effects. It is also revealed that the mean beach slope and relief play a vital role in land loss of the region. The local relief of coastal zone will decrease as sea level rises, thus increasing the percentage of land above mean sea level subjected to episodic inundations. Results of the yearly probability of damages indicated the urgency to upgrade the existing designs of coastal protection structures. A brief characterisation of the issues on infrastructure and uncertainties in policy planning also are attempted.

  1. 气候变暖与海平面上升%Climate warming and sea level rise

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    岳军; Dong YUE; 吴桑云; 耿秀山; 赵长荣

    2012-01-01

    Based on a large number of actual data, the author believe that the modem global warming and sea level rise resulted from climate warming after the cold front of the Little Ice Age about 200 years ago and the developmnet of the sea level rise phase. In the past 30 years, the rate of sea level rise was increasing, which is under the background of the average temperature uplift 0.2F°(0.11℃)every 10 years in succession from the 1980s to the past 10 years this century. On the basis of the absolute and relative sea-level rise rate that was calculated from the tidal data during the same period at home and abroad in the last 30 years, in accordance with the resolutions of the 2010 climate conference in Cancun, at the same time, considering the previous prediction and research, the world's sea levels and the relative sea level in Tianjin, Shanghai, Dongying, Xiamen, Haikou and other coastal cities that have severe land subsidence in 2050 and 2100 are calculated and evaluated.%本文通过大量实际资料分析认为,现代全球变暖与海平面上升,源于200多年前小冰期冷峰出现后的气候返暖、海平面回升过程演变的结果。近30年的世界海平面上升的速率,有着上世纪80、90年代和本世纪前10年世界平均气温每10年以0.2F°(0.11℃)为梯度的连续抬升为背景。在此以CO。含量为气候指标,划分出了公元200年以来的八个暖段(暖期)。若按冷暖极值距200年或250年计算,则由目前正在发展的暖期,将在公元2050年或2100年前后结束,而后开始降温。作者依据最近30年同一时段国内外验潮资料计算获得的绝对海平面升降速率为+1.52±0.27mm/a及相对海平面升降速率为+1.39±0.26mm/a。按照2010年坎昆气候大会决议要求,在对前人有关研究成果进行考量时,对将来的2050和2100年世界海平面预测及我国地面沉降较明显的沿海城市如天

  2. Simulating the Effects of Sea Level Rise on the Resilience and Migration of Tidal Wetlands along the Hudson River

    OpenAIRE

    Tabak, Nava M.; Magdeline Laba; Sacha Spector

    2016-01-01

    Sea Level Rise (SLR) caused by climate change is impacting coastal wetlands around the globe. Due to their distinctive biophysical characteristics and unique plant communities, freshwater tidal wetlands are expected to exhibit a different response to SLR as compared with the better studied salt marshes. In this study we employed the Sea Level Affecting Marshes Model (SLAMM), which simulates regional- or local-scale changes in tidal wetland habitats in response to SLR, and adapted it for appli...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Applegate, Patrick J.; Keller, Klaus

    2015-08-01

    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 (≫103 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 (<103 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.

  4. Consequences of climatic change, sea level rise and society evolution on the Kerkennah archipelago coast and sabkha

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lucile, Etienne; Gérard, Beltrando; Abdelkarim, Daoud

    2015-04-01

    Interaction between human activities, climate evolution and sea level can be summarised in a system where every element impacts the others. In the Kerkennah archipelago (Tunisia), recent observations have shown that the climate has become more arid, that the sea level is rising and that the society is modernizing at least since 1970. In our work we tried to understand the relations between the elements of the socio-ecosystem of Kerkennah to identify potential causes of the coastline movements and sabkhas extension (low and salty areas). Using photointerpretation (topographic map, Spot 5 image, aerial photographs) and remote sensing (2 landsat TM5 images), we detected and evaluated the movements of the coastline and of the sabkhas limits. Field data have also been added and all information has been used together in a GIS showing a significant retreat of the coastline (maximum of 41.2±6m in 47years) and an increase in the surface of sabkhas (+18%) between 1963 and 2010. The same dataset has been reanalysed at a much finer spatial scale to correlate observed changes to human pressure. This showed that coast erosion rates are more important where the coastline is partially artificialized or just after the end of a dam or a rockfill. Advances to the sea observed on some portions of the coast are always linked to human infrastructures. We conclude that the climatic change and the sea level rise increased the physical vulnerability of the archipelago and that the human installations near the coast amplify this vulnerability. Similarly, the extension of sabkha surfaces is global and most likely due to a natural perturbation of the seasonal cycle in the sabkhas by the sea level rise and by the stronger aridity in summer. However, discrepancies exist between individual areas and can be explained by the presence of active fault and/or by the evolution of agricultural practices. Indeed, frequent periods of drought and the political will for development of the Kerkennah

  5. How a barrier island may react on a sea-level rise: The Holocene to Recent Rømø barrier island, Danish Wadden Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Johannessen, Peter N.; Nielsen, Lars H.; Møller, Ingelise

    of c. 15 m and a resolution of c. 20–30 cm (Nielsen et al., 2009), and dating of 70 core samples using optically stimulated luminescence (OSL). The area has experienced a relative sea-level rise of c. 15 m during the last c. 8000 years. The Recent tidal amplitude reaches c. 1.8 m. During strong wind...... and related shoreface sand and lagoonal sediments are up to 20 m thick and overlie Weichselian fluvial sand. The first 5000 years the barrier island aggraded and the last 3000 years it prograded despite the relative rising sea level rise of c. 15 m during the last c. 8000 years. This shows......, that if there is a surplus of sand in a tidal area, barrier islands may aggrade even if there is a rise in sea level. If the rate of sea level rise decreases then the barrier island may prograded. With this unique dataset with extremely large amounts of OSL datings from core sediments it has been possible to construct...

  6. Comparing the role of absolute sea-level rise and vertical tectonic motions in coastal flooding, Torres Islands (Vanuatu).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballu, Valérie; Bouin, Marie-Noëlle; Siméoni, Patricia; Crawford, Wayne C; Calmant, Stephane; Boré, Jean-Michel; Kanas, Tony; Pelletier, Bernard

    2011-08-09

    Since the late 1990s, rising sea levels around the Torres Islands (north Vanuatu, southwest Pacific) have caused strong local and international concern. In 2002-2004, a village was displaced due to increasing sea incursions, and in 2005 a United Nations Environment Programme press release referred to the displaced village as perhaps the world's first climate change "refugees." We show here that vertical motions of the Torres Islands themselves dominate the apparent sea-level rise observed on the islands. From 1997 to 2009, the absolute sea level rose by 150 + /-20 mm. But GPS data reveal that the islands subsided by 117 + /-30 mm over the same time period, almost doubling the apparent gradual sea-level rise. Moreover, large earthquakes that occurred just before and after this period caused several hundreds of mm of sudden vertical motion, generating larger apparent sea-level changes than those observed during the entire intervening period. Our results show that vertical ground motions must be accounted for when evaluating sea-level change hazards in active tectonic regions. These data are needed to help communities and governments understand environmental changes and make the best decisions for their future.

  7. Comparing the role of absolute sea-level rise and vertical tectonic motions in coastal flooding, Torres Islands (Vanuatu)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballu, Valérie; Bouin, Marie-Noëlle; Siméoni, Patricia; Crawford, Wayne C.; Calmant, Stephane; Boré, Jean-Michel; Kanas, Tony; Pelletier, Bernard

    2011-08-01

    Since the late 1990s, rising sea levels around the Torres Islands (north Vanuatu, southwest Pacific) have caused strong local and international concern. In 2002-2004, a village was displaced due to increasing sea incursions, and in 2005 a United Nations Environment Programme press release referred to the displaced village as perhaps the world's first climate change "refugees." We show here that vertical motions of the Torres Islands themselves dominate the apparent sea-level rise observed on the islands. From 1997 to 2009, the absolute sea level rose by 150 + /-20 mm. But GPS data reveal that the islands subsided by 117 + /-30 mm over the same time period, almost doubling the apparent gradual sea-level rise. Moreover, large earthquakes that occurred just before and after this period caused several hundreds of mm of sudden vertical motion, generating larger apparent sea-level changes than those observed during the entire intervening period. Our results show that vertical ground motions must be accounted for when evaluating sea-level change hazards in active tectonic regions. These data are needed to help communities and governments understand environmental changes and make the best decisions for their future.

  8. Vulnerability of the Nigerian coast: An insight into sea level rise owing to climate change and anthropogenic activities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danladi, Iliya Bauchi; Kore, Basiru Mohammed; Gül, Murat

    2017-10-01

    Coastal areas are important regions in the world as they host huge population, diverse ecosystems and natural resources. However, owing to their settings, elevations and proximities to the sea, climate change (global warming) and human activities are threatening issues. Herein, we report the coastline changes and possible future threats related to sea level rise owing to global warming and human activities in the coastal region of Nigeria. Google earth images, Digital Elevation Model (DEM) and geological maps were used. Using google earth images, coastal changes for the past 43 years, 3 years prior to and after the construction of breakwaters along Goshen Beach Estate (Lekki) were examined. Additionally, coastline changes along Lekki Phase I from 2013 to 2016 were evaluated. The DEM map was used to delineate 0-2 m, 2-5 m and 5-10 m asl which correspond to undifferentiated sands and gravels to clays on the geological map. The results of the google earth images revealed remarkable erosion along both Lekki and Lekki Phase I, with the destruction of a lagoon in Lekki Phase I. Based on the result of the DEM map and geology, elevations of 0-2 m, 2-5 m and 5-10 m asl were interpreted as highly risky, moderately risky and risky respectively. Considering factors threatening coastal regions, the erosion and destruction of the lagoon along the Nigerian coast may be ascribed to sea level rise as a result of global warming and intense human activities respectively.

  9. Beyond just sea-level rise: considering macroclimatic drivers within coastal wetland vulnerability assessments to climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osland, Michael J; Enwright, Nicholas M; Day, Richard H; Gabler, Christopher A; Stagg, Camille L; Grace, James B

    2016-01-01

    Due to their position at the land-sea interface, coastal wetlands are vulnerable to many aspects of climate change. However, climate change vulnerability assessments for coastal wetlands generally focus solely on sea-level rise without considering the effects of other facets of climate change. Across the globe and in all ecosystems, macroclimatic drivers (e.g., temperature and rainfall regimes) greatly influence ecosystem structure and function. Macroclimatic drivers have been the focus of climate change-related threat evaluations for terrestrial ecosystems, but largely ignored for coastal wetlands. In some coastal wetlands, changing macroclimatic conditions are expected to result in foundation plant species replacement, which would affect the supply of certain ecosystem goods and services and could affect ecosystem resilience. As examples, we highlight several ecological transition zones where small changes in macroclimatic conditions would result in comparatively large changes in coastal wetland ecosystem structure and function. Our intent in this communication is not to minimize the importance of sea-level rise. Rather, our overarching aim is to illustrate the need to also consider macroclimatic drivers within vulnerability assessments for coastal wetlands. Published 2015. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  10. How Shall We Tell Our People? The Art and Science of Communicating Sea-Level Rise to Coastal Audiences (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moser, S. C.

    2010-12-01

    Improved sea-level rise projections and translation into decision-relevant information (e.g., changed flood frequencies and elevations, increased rates in coastal erosion, salinity changes in coastal aquifers) are critical for coastal managers, planners, and local elected officials to feel more confident in bringing climate change and its related coastal impacts to the attention of their communities. Those who have done so or are considering doing so, however, are not just concerned with “getting the science right” or getting the most credible and relevant information. They immediately, and sometimes primarily, are concerned with the reactions of coastal residents, developers, and business interests to the prospects of potentially difficult and substantial changes in coastal land use, their property rights, and the potential loss of their homes and establishments. How to engage the public constructively in developing adaptation strategies is a largely unmet challenge for most coastal managers. Similarly, they have not been trained in how to effectively communicate an issue that is ripe with the potential for loss, danger, and social and legal conflict - more so than they already face. Better physical science on sea-level rise alone will not meet these needs. Meanwhile, the social sciences have only begun to study public attitudes toward local impacts and adaptation responses. This paper will summarize key insights available at this time and point to important research and education/training needs to better assist practitioners faced with developing and implementing coastal adaptation strategies.

  11. Beyond just sea-level rise: Considering macroclimatic drivers within coastal wetland vulnerability assessments to climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osland, Michael J.; Enwright, Nicholas M.; Day, Richard H.; Gabler, Christopher A.; Stagg, Camille L.; Grace, James B.

    2016-01-01

    Due to their position at the land-sea interface, coastal wetlands are vulnerable to many aspects of climate change. However, climate change vulnerability assessments for coastal wetlands generally focus solely on sea-level rise without considering the effects of other facets of climate change. Across the globe and in all ecosystems, macroclimatic drivers (e.g., temperature and rainfall regimes) greatly influence ecosystem structure and function. Macroclimatic drivers have been the focus of climate-change related threat evaluations for terrestrial ecosystems, but largely ignored for coastal wetlands. In some coastal wetlands, changing macroclimatic conditions are expected to result in foundation plant species replacement, which would affect the supply of certain ecosystem goods and services and could affect ecosystem resilience. As examples, we highlight several ecological transition zones where small changes in macroclimatic conditions would result in comparatively large changes in coastal wetland ecosystem structure and function. Our intent in this communication is not to minimize the importance of sea-level rise. Rather, our overarching aim is to illustrate the need to also consider macroclimatic drivers within vulnerability assessments for coastal wetlands.

  12. Detailed Flood Modeling and Hazard Assessment from Storm Tides, Rainfall and Sea Level Rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orton, P. M.; Hall, T. M.; Georgas, N.; Conticello, F.; Cioffi, F.; Lall, U.; Vinogradov, S. V.; Blumberg, A. F.

    2014-12-01

    A flood hazard assessment has been conducted for the Hudson River from New York City to Troy at the head of tide, using a three-dimensional hydrodynamic model and merging hydrologic inputs and storm tides from tropical and extra-tropical cyclones, as well as spring freshet floods. Our recent work showed that neglecting freshwater flows leads to underestimation of peak water levels at up-river sites and neglecting stratification (typical with two-dimensional modeling) leads to underestimation all along the Hudson. The hazard assessment framework utilizes a representative climatology of over 1000 synthetic tropical cyclones (TCs) derived from a statistical-stochastic TC model, and historical extra-tropical cyclones and freshets from 1950-present. Hydrodynamic modeling is applied with seasonal variations in mean sea level and ocean and estuary stratification. The model is the Stevens ECOM model and is separately used for operational ocean forecasts on the NYHOPS domain (http://stevens.edu/NYHOPS). For the synthetic TCs, an Artificial Neural Network/ Bayesian multivariate approach is used for rainfall-driven freshwater inputs to the Hudson, translating the TC attributes (e.g. track, SST, wind speed) directly into tributary stream flows (see separate presentation by Cioffi for details). Rainfall intensity has been rising in recent decades in this region, and here we will also examine the sensitivity of Hudson flooding to future climate warming-driven increases in storm precipitation. The hazard assessment is being repeated for several values of sea level, as projected for future decades by the New York City Panel on Climate Change. Recent studies have given widely varying estimates of the present-day 100-year flood at New York City, from 2.0 m to 3.5 m, and special emphasis will be placed on quantifying our study's uncertainty.

  13. Global DEM Errors Underpredict Coastal Vulnerability to Sea Level Rise and Flooding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kulp, Scott; Strauss, Benjamin

    2016-04-01

    Elevation data based on NASA's Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) have been widely used to evaluate threats from global sea level rise, storm surge, and coastal floods. However, SRTM data are known to include large vertical errors in densely urban or densely vegetated areas. The errors may propagate to derived land and population exposure assessments. We compare assessments based on SRTM data against references employing high-accuracy bare-earth elevation data generated from lidar data available for coastal areas of the United States. We find that both 1-arcsecond and 3-arcsecond horizontal resolution SRTM data systemically underestimate exposure across all assessed spatial scales and up to at least 10m above the high tide line. At 3m, 1-arcsecond SRTM underestimates U.S. population exposure by more than 60%, and under-predicts population exposure in 90% of coastal states, 87% of counties, and 83% of municipalities. These fractions increase with elevation, but error medians and variability fall to lower levels, with national exposure underestimated by just 24% at 10m. Results using 3-arcsecond SRTM are extremely similar. Coastal analyses based on SRTM data thus appear to greatly underestimate sea level and flood threats, especially at lower elevations. However, SRTM-based estimates may usefully be regarded as providing lower bounds to actual threats. We additionally assess the performance of NOAA's Global Land One-km Base Elevation Project (GLOBE), another publicly-available global DEM, but do not reach any definitive conclusion because of the spatial heterogeneity in its quality.

  14. Will the Effects of Sea-Level Rise Create Ecological Traps for Pacific Island Seabirds?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michelle H Reynolds

    Full Text Available More than 18 million seabirds nest on 58 Pacific islands protected within vast U.S. Marine National Monuments (1.9 million km2. However, most of these seabird colonies are on low-elevation islands and sea-level rise (SLR and accompanying high-water perturbations are predicted to escalate with climate change. To understand how SLR may impact protected islands and insular biodiversity, we modeled inundation and wave-driven flooding of a globally important seabird rookery in the subtropical Pacific. We acquired new high-resolution Digital Elevation Models (DEMs and used the Delft3D wave model and ArcGIS to model wave heights and inundation for a range of SLR scenarios (+0.5, +1.0, +1.5, and +2.0 m at Midway Atoll. Next, we classified vegetation to delineate habitat exposure to inundation and identified how breeding phenology, colony synchrony, and life history traits affect species-specific sensitivity. We identified 3 of 13 species as highly vulnerable to SLR in the Hawaiian Islands and quantified their atoll-wide distribution (Laysan albatross, Phoebastria immutabilis; black-footed albatross, P. nigripes; and Bonin petrel, Pterodroma hypoleuca. Our models of wave-driven flooding forecast nest losses up to 10% greater than passive inundation models at +1.0 m SLR. At projections of + 2.0 m SLR, approximately 60% of albatross and 44% of Bonin petrel nests were overwashed displacing more than 616,400 breeding albatrosses and petrels. Habitat loss due to passive SLR may decrease the carrying capacity of some islands to support seabird colonies, while sudden high-water events directly reduce survival and reproduction. This is the first study to simulate wave-driven flooding and the combined impacts of SLR, groundwater rise, and storm waves on seabird colonies. Our results highlight the need for early climate change planning and restoration of higher elevation seabird refugia to prevent low-lying protected islands from becoming ecological traps in the

  15. 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.

  16. 21st-Century Sea Level Rise, Economic Growth, and Seawater Intrusion in Coastal Aquifers of California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loaiciga, H. A.; Pingel, T.

    2008-12-01

    21st-century sea-level rise predictions for California's coastal waters range from 0.10 m to 0.80 m. In coastal semiarid aquifers of California with low topographic relief and heavy groundwater pumping this might lead to pervasive landward migration of seawater plumes. In other coastal aquifers with pronounced seaward hydraulic gradient, the effect of sea-level rise might not be as pronounced. This paper implements a variable- fluid-density, 3-D, finite element numerical flow and transport model to assess the evolution of coastal aquifer salinity during the 21st century due to sea level rise by ice melting and oceanic thermal expansion, and by extraction driven by economic and population growth in semiarid coastal regions of California. The paper focuses on contrasting two different hydrogeologic settings in two heavily mined coastal aquifer with a state- of-the-art numerical simulation model.

  17. Responses of estuarine salinity and transport processes to sea level rise in the Zhujiang (Pearl River) Estuary

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    CHEN Yuxiang; ZUO Juncheng; ZOU Huazhi; ZHANG Min; ZHANG Kairong

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the changes of hydrodynamics in estuaries with respect to magnitude of sea level rise is important to understand the changes of transport process. Based on prediction of sea level rise over the 21st century, the Zhujiang (Pearl River) Estuary was chosen as a prototype to study the responses of the estuary to potential sea level rise. The numerical model results show that the average salt content, saltwater intrusion distance, and stratification will increase as the sea level rises. The changes of these parameters have obvious seasonal variations. The salt content in the Lingdingyang shows more increase in April and October (the transition periods). The saltwater intrusion distance has larger increase during the low-flow periods than during the high-flow periods in the Lingdingyang. The result is just the opposite in Modaomen. The stratification and its increase are larger during the low-flow periods than during the high-flow periods in Lingdingyang. The response results of transport processes to sea level rise demonstrate that: (1) The time of vertical transport has pronounced increase. The increased tidal range and currents would reinforce the vertical mixing, but the increased stratification would weaken the vertical exchange. The impact of stratification changes overwhelms the impact of tidal changes. It would be more difficult for the surface water to reach the bottom. (2) The lengthways estuarine circulation would be strengthened. Both the offshore surface residual current and inshore bottom residual current will be enhanced. The whole meridional resident flow along the transect of the Lingdingyang would be weakened. These phenomena are caused by the decrease of water surface slope (WWS) and the change of static pressure with the increase of water depth under sea level rise.

  18. 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.

  19. Estuarine response to river flow and sea-level rise under future climate change and human development

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    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.

  20. Relative sea-level changes during the last century recorded by coral microatolls in Belloc, Haiti

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weil-Accardo, J.; Feuillet, N.; Jacques, E.; Deschamps, P.; Saurel, J.-M.; Thirumalai, K.; Demeza, S.; Anglade, D.

    2016-04-01

    We present here the first study of coral microatolls in the Caribbean. An exceptional site (Belloc reef) where dozens of microatolls were growing was uplifted and exposed during the 12 January 2010 Mw 7 Haiti earthquake. Total station measurements of the old pre-earthquake and the new post-earthquake coral highest level of survival (HLS) on two generations of Siderastrea siderea corals allowed us to estimate a value of 45 ± 14 cm for the coseismic uplift. In this small 90 m × 70 m reef, microatolls of different shapes (cups, hats or flats) coexist, indicating long term submergence, emergence or stable relative sea-level. This variability in coral shape is uncommon. Two slices of microatolls, one cup-shaped (B8) and one hat-shaped (B10) were sampled with a chain saw and X-rayed to study their stratigraphy. B10 recorded a mean relative sea-level decrease of about - 1 mm/yr over the last five decades, whereas B8 has grown in a context of relative sea-level rise at a rate of about 1 mm/yr over nine decades. Several sudden and temporary die downs simultaneously disrupted the growth of both corals in 1940 ± 2, 1963 ± 2, 1983 ± 2, 1992 ± 1, 2001 ± 1 and 2009 and may be caused by oceanographic/climatic phenomena occurring in the tropical North Atlantic. The last one, in 2009, was associated with a clear sea-level height decrease (about 10 cm) in the satellite data. B10 was strongly affected by these events and records die downs of systematically larger amplitude, which tended to delay its upward growth compared to B8. This makes B10 less reliable for the evaluation of the relative sea-level trend, its emergence rate being only an apparent estimate due to die downs. Fossil coral microatolls of Diploria strigosa which died between 1958 and 1966 (according to U/Th dating), probably during one of the strongest hurricane reported in Haiti (Flora, 1963), display a cup shape attesting for submergence. Their HLS is 1 cm below the HLS of the S. siderea killed in 2010. The

  1. Influence of sea level rise on iron diagenesis in an east Florida subterranean estuary

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roy, M.; Martin, J.B.; Cherrier, J.; Cable, J.E.; Smith, C.G.

    2010-01-01

    Subterranean estuary occupies the transition zone between hypoxic fresh groundwater and oxic seawater, and between terrestrial and marine sediment deposits. Consequently, we hypothesize, in a subterranean estuary, biogeochemical reactions of Fe respond to submarine groundwater discharge (SGD) and sea level rise. Porewater and sediment samples were collected across a 30-m wide freshwater discharge zone of the Indian River Lagoon (Florida, USA) subterranean estuary, and at a site 250. m offshore. Porewater Fe concentrations range from 0.5 ??M at the shoreline and 250. m offshore to about 286 ??M at the freshwater-saltwater boundary. Sediment sulfur and porewater sulfide maxima occur in near-surface OC-rich black sediments of marine origin, and dissolved Fe maxima occur in underlying OC-poor orange sediments of terrestrial origin. Freshwater SGD flow rates decrease offshore from around 1 to 0.1. cm/day, while bioirrigation exchange deepens with distance from about 10. cm at the shoreline to about 40. cm at the freshwater-saltwater boundary. DOC concentrations increase from around 75 ??M at the shoreline to as much as 700 ??M at the freshwater-saltwater boundary as a result of labile marine carbon inputs from marine SGD. This labile DOC reduces Fe-oxides, which in conjunction with slow discharge of SGD at the boundary, allows dissolved Fe to accumulate. Upward advection of fresh SGD carries dissolved Fe from the Fe-oxide reduction zone to the sulfate reduction zone, where dissolved Fe precipitates as Fe-sulfides. Saturation models of Fe-sulfides indicate some fractions of these Fe-sulfides get dissolved near the sediment-water interface, where bioirrigation exchanges oxic surface water. The estimated dissolved Fe flux is approximately 0.84 ??M Fe/day per meter of shoreline to lagoon surface waters. Accelerated sea level rise predictions are thus likely to increase the Fe flux to surface waters and local primary productivity, particularly along coastlines where

  2. Integrated Modeling for the Assessment of Ecological Impacts of Sea Level Rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagen, S. C.; Lewis, G.; Bartel, R.; Batten, B.; Huang, W.; Morris, J.; Slinn, D. N.; Sparks, J.; Walters, L.; Wang, D.; Weishampel, J.; Yeh, G.

    2010-12-01

    Sea level rise (SLR) has the potential to affect a variety of coastal habitats with a myriad of deleterious ecological effects and to overwhelm human settlements along the coast. SLR should be given serious consideration when more than half of the U.S. population lives within 50 miles of the coast. SLR effects will be felt along coastal beaches and in estuarine waters, with consequences to barrier islands, submerged aquatic vegetation beds, sand and mud flats, oyster reefs, and tidal and freshwater wetlands. Managers of these coastal resources must be aware of potential consequences of SLR and adjust their plans accordingly to protect and preserve the resources under their care. The Gulf Coast provides critical habitats for a majority of the commercially important species in the Gulf of Mexico, which depend on inshore waters for either permanent residence or nursery area. The ecosystem services provided by these coastal habitats are at risk from rising sea level. Our team will assess the risk to coasts and coastal habitats from SLR in a 5-year project. We will apply existing models of circulation and transport from the watershed to the sea. The ultimate prediction will be of sediment loadings to the estuary as a result of overland flow, shoreline and barrier island erosion, and salinity transport, all of which will be used to model the evolution of intertidal marshes (MEM II). Over the five-year course of our research we will be simulating hydrodynamics and transport for all three NERRS reserves, including: Apalachicola, Weeks Bay and Grand Bay. The project will result in products whereby managers will be able to assess marshes, oyster reefs, submerged aquatic vegetation, predict wetland stability and indentify restoration locations for marsh and oyster habitats. In addition, we will produce Decision Support tools that will enable managers to predict future coastal erosion rates for management-specified shorelines. Project outcomes will enable the management

  3. Floods in Mekong Delta Under Sea-Level Rise Projections By IPCC AR5

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takagi, H.

    2014-12-01

    One of the mightiest rivers in the planet, the Mekong ranks 10th amongst the world's great rivers on the basis of mean annual flow at the mouth. It flows southwards over a distance of approximately 4,800 km from its source to the sea, through six different countries: China, Myanmar, Lao PDR, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam. This great basin has been considered to be one of the most sensitive areas in the world to climate change. The present paper investigates fluvial flood hazards in urban areas in the Mekong Delta to inundation due to seasonal flooding, a phenomenon which is likely to be exacerbated by future sea-level rise. Unlike past researches which mainly focus on flooding due to river discharge from upstream or heavy precipitation, the present paper scrutinizes the influence of ocean tides. The research reveals that ocean tides predominantly determine water elevation even in an upstream location such as Can Tho City, 80 km inland from the river mouth, and that the river flow causes tidal damping and effectively reduces the energy of the incoming tides. This tidal damping is especially pronounced during the rainy season. Analysis based on the water levels monitored by the Mekong River Commission reveals that the ground near the riverbank of Can Tho had experienced inundation for a total of 215 hours between July 2009 and June 2010 (2.5% of the time over a one year period). It is also shown that inundation reached up to a maximum height of 47 cm above the roads of Can Tho downtown in this one-year period. Assuming two scenarios of sea-level rise of 25 cm in the middle of the 21st century and 60 cm in the end of the century, all based on the Fifth Assessment Report of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC AR5) projections, it was found that the duration of inundation will be prolonged from the present percentage of 2.5% to 7.5% and 24% of the year, respectively. It is important to note that while at present this flooding is seasonal and limited, in the

  4. 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

  5. The timing of Mediterranean sapropel deposition relative to insolation, sea-level and African monsoon changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grant, K. M.; Grimm, R.; Mikolajewicz, U.; Marino, G.; Ziegler, M.; Rohling, E. J.

    2016-05-01

    The Mediterranean basin is sensitive to global sea-level changes and African monsoon variability on orbital timescales. Both of these processes are thought to be important to the deposition of organic-rich sediment layers or 'sapropels' throughout the eastern Mediterranean, yet their relative influences remain ambiguous. A related issue is that an assumed 3-kyr lag between boreal insolation maxima and sapropel mid-points remains to be tested. Here we present new geochemical and ice-volume-corrected planktonic foraminiferal stable isotope records for sapropels S1 (Holocene), S3, S4, and S5 (Marine Isotope Stage 5) in core LC21 from the southern Aegean Sea. The records have a radiometrically constrained chronology that has already been synchronised with the Red Sea relative sea-level record, and this allows detailed examination of the timing of sapropel deposition relative to insolation, sea-level, and African monsoon changes. We find that sapropel onset was near-synchronous with monsoon run-off into the eastern Mediterranean, but that insolation-sapropel/monsoon phasings were not systematic through the last glacial cycle. These latter phasings instead appear to relate to sea-level changes. We propose that persistent meltwater discharges into the North Atlantic (e.g., at glacial terminations) modified the timing of sapropel deposition by delaying the timing of peak African monsoon run-off. These observations may reconcile apparent model-data offsets with respect to the orbital pacing of the African monsoon. Our observations also imply that the previous assumption of a systematic 3-kyr lag between insolation maxima and sapropel midpoints may lead to overestimated insolation-sapropel phasings. Finally, we surmise that both sea-level rise and monsoon run-off contributed to surface-water buoyancy changes at times of sapropel deposition, and their relative influences differed per sapropel case, depending on their magnitudes. Sea-level rise was clearly important for

  6. Supporting Coastal Management Decisions in the Face of Sea-Level Rise: Case Study for the Chesapeake Bay Region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Staudt, A. C.; Glick, P.; Clough, J. S.; Nunley, B.

    2008-12-01

    Sea-level rise needs to be a major consideration in regional coastal management and ecological restoration plans. The National Wildlife Federation has initiated a multi-pronged strategy for assisting decision makers at government agencies that manage near-shore ecosystems in several vulnerable coastal regions. Results from our work in the Chesapeake Bay region will be presented. This strategy involves: (1) Detailed modeling of how coastal habitats will migrate in response to a range of sea-level rise scenarios. For this work, we used the Sea Level Affecting Marshes Model (SLAMM), which simulates the dominant processes involved in wetland conversions and shoreline modifications during long-term sea-level rise and takes into consideration localized changes in land elevation due to geological and ecological factors. These model results provide specific information about the locations that are likely to experience shifts in coastal marshes, swamps, beaches, and other habitats due to sea-level rise at a scale that is relevant to regional decision making. (2) Extensive literature review and analysis of habitat, fish, and wildlife impacts potentially resulting from expected sea-level rise and other local climate changes. Synthesizing the available research is an important service for natural resource agencies that are only beginning to consider climate impacts on ecosystems and natural resources. (3) Analysis of government programs and policies relevant to coastal management and identification of opportunities to revise these policies in light of projected climate changes. An important aspect of this analysis is meeting with key decision makers at relevant state fish and wildlife agencies to better understand the factors that affect their abilities to effect policy changes. (4) Proactive campaign to share our results with diverse audiences. We have developed different research products, ranging from a technical report of the modeling results to short report briefs, to

  7. Sedimentary Evidence for a Rapid Sea Level Rise at 7,600 cal yr BP from North-Central Cuba

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peros, M. C.; Agosta G'meiner, A. M.; Collins, S.

    2016-12-01

    A lack of high-resolution relative sea level (RSL) proxy data has meant that the pattern of early Holocene RSL change in the Caribbean is poorly understood. A RSL curve published by Toscano and Macintyre (2003) using inter-tidal mangrove peats and submerged corals suggests RSL underwent a relatively fast and `smooth' curvilinear increase during the Holocene. However, others, such as Blanchon and Shaw (1995), suggest that RSL increased rapidly at around 7600 cal yr BP, in response to the final stages of the melting of the Laurentide Ice Sheet (melt water pulse 1C or catastrophic rise event 3). We investigated this question using multi-proxy data from a flooded sinkhole (Cenote Jennifer) on the north coast of central Cuba. Cenote Jennifer is located 7 m above mean sea level and 2 km from the Bahamas Channel and appears to have a high degree of connectivity with the ocean through a network of underground caverns. The water depth is 13 m and the bottommost 5 m is anoxic. A sediment core collected from Cenote Jennifer was studied using loss-on-ignition, pollen analysis, high-resolution XRF core-scanning, and grain size analysis. An age-depth model was generated for the core by AMS dating. The results show that the bottommost stratigraphic unit ( 9000 to 7600 cal yr BP) is a fine-grained carbonate-rich mud (i.e., marl). This unit abruptly transitions into finely laminated organic-rich sediment from 7600 cal yr BP to the present. The pollen analysis shows that the sinkhole supported a cattail (Typha) community until 7600 cal yr BP, indicating low water levels ( 1 m). At 7600 cal yr BP, the cattail community disappeared and the vegetation of the surrounding bedrock became dominated by a thorny coastal scrubland. In addition, a 3 cm thick fining-upward siliciclastic unit is present immediately above the marl-organic contact, suggesting: 1) a marine sediment source given the limestone-dominated nature of the region, and 2) the presence of a short-duration, high

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    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.

    2014-01-01

    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 l

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    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.

    2014-01-01

    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

  10. Interdisciplinary assessment of sea-level rise and climate change impacts on the lower Nile delta, Egypt.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sušnik, Janez; Vamvakeridou-Lyroudia, Lydia S; Baumert, Niklas; Kloos, Julia; Renaud, Fabrice G; La Jeunesse, Isabelle; Mabrouk, Badr; Savić, Dragan A; Kapelan, Zoran; Ludwig, Ralf; Fischer, Georg; Roson, Roberto; Zografos, Christos

    2015-01-15

    CLImate-induced changes on WAter and SECurity (CLIWASEC) was a cluster of three complementary EC-FP7 projects assessing climate-change impacts throughout the Mediterranean on: hydrological cycles (CLIMB - CLimate-Induced changes on the hydrology of Mediterranean Basins); water security (WASSERMed - Water Availability and Security in Southern EuRope and the Mediterranean) and human security connected with possible hydro-climatic conflicts (CLICO - CLImate change hydro-COnflicts and human security). The Nile delta case study was common between the projects. CLIWASEC created an integrated forum for modelling and monitoring to understand potential impacts across sectors. This paper summarises key results from an integrated assessment of potential challenges to water-related security issues, focusing on expected sea-level rise impacts by the middle of the century. We use this common focus to illustrate the added value of project clustering. CLIWASEC pursued multidisciplinary research by adopting a single research objective: sea-level rise related water security threats, resulting in a more holistic view of problems and potential solutions. In fragmenting research, policy-makers can fail to understand how multiple issues can materialize from one driver. By combining efforts, an integrated assessment of water security threats in the lower Nile is formulated, offering policy-makers a clearer picture of inter-related issues to society and environment. The main issues identified by each project (land subsidence, saline intrusion - CLIMB; water supply overexploitation, land loss - WASSERMed; employment and housing security - CLICO), are in fact related. Water overexploitation is exacerbating land subsidence and saline intrusion, impacting on employment and placing additional pressure on remaining agricultural land and the underdeveloped housing market. All these have wider implications for regional development. This richer understanding could be critical in making better

  11. Application of geoprocessing and simulation modeling to estimate impacts of sea level rise on the northeast coast of Florida

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lee, J.K.; Park, R.A.; Mausel, P.W. (Indiana Univ., Bloomington (United States) Indiana State Univ., Terre Haute (United States))

    1992-11-01

    Simulation modeling was applied to predict the response of northeast Florida coastal wetlands to future sea level rise due to global warming. Remote sensing and geographic information systems (GIS) were used to develop, manipulate, and synthesize model input including land cover, digital elevation data, and site characteristics data. The SLAMM3 model evaluated the input data to predict responses of coastal wetlands and lowlands to inundation and erosion by sea level rise, and determined transfers from one habitat to another on a cell-by-cell basis. Significant changes were predicted from different scenarios of sea level rise: 0.5 m, 1.0 m, and 1.25 m. The simulations indicated that 31.9 percent and 40.0 percent of wetlands within the study area would be lost with a 1.0 m and 1.25 m sea level rise, respectively, while 6.5 percent would be lost with 0.5 m rise. 45 refs.

  12. Responses of eastern Chinese coastal salt marshes to sea-level rise combined with vegetative and sedimentary processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ge, Zhen-Ming; Wang, Heng; Cao, Hao-Bin; Zhao, Bin; Zhou, Xiao; Peltola, Heli; Cui, Li-Fang; Li, Xiu-Zhen; Zhang, Li-Quan

    2016-06-01

    The impacts of sea-level rise (SLR) on coastal ecosystems have attracted worldwide attention in relation to global change. In this study, the salt marsh model for the Yangtze Estuary (SMM-YE, developed in China) and the Sea Level Affecting Marshes Model (SLAMM, developed in the U.S.) were used to simulate the effects of SLR on the coastal salt marshes in eastern China. The changes in the dominant species in the plant community were also considered. Predictions based on the SLAMM indicated a trend of habitat degradation up to 2100; total salt marsh habitat area continued to decline (4–16%) based on the low-level scenario, with greater losses (6–25%) predicted under the high-level scenario. The SMM-YE showed that the salt marshes could be resilient to threats of SLR through the processes of accretion of mudflats, vegetation expansion and sediment trapping by plants. This model predicted that salt marsh areas increased (3–6%) under the low-level scenario. The decrease in the total habitat area with the SMM-YE under the high-level scenario was much lower than the SLAMM prediction. Nevertheless, SLR might negatively affect the salt marsh species that are not adapted to prolonged inundation. An adaptive strategy for responding to changes in sediment resources is necessary in the Yangtze Estuary.

  13. Apparent Sea Level Rise due to Loading of the Atlantic City Pier by Spectators Viewing (1929-1978) Diving Horses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galvin, C.

    2012-12-01

    Cyril Galvin, Coastal Engineer Springfield, Virginia 22150 USA Since 1911, the Steel Pier at Atlantic City, New Jersey, has been the site of the Atlantic City tide gauge, except for two intervals: 1911-1921 when the gauge was at the Million Dollar Pier in Atlantic City, and 1985-1991 when the gauge was at the Ventnor Fishing Pier (see Table 2, Zervos, 2009). By design, the Steel Pier was an amusement pier, and its most famous amusement was the Diving Horses: they dove bareback with a woman rider from a platform about 40 feet above sea level. They did that between 1929 and 1978, except for seven years - a post-war period, 1945 to 1953, when diving was suspended. The popularity of the diving horses is recorded on photos of crowds which occupied the bleachers at the seaward end of the pier to view the diving horses. By my count, the crowd pictured in the end papers of the book by Steve Liebowitz (2009) was about 4000 people. Typically, there were multiple shows daily. The weight of the crowd, estimated from the count of the crowd, was about 150 tons. This weight was loaded down on the piles by the crowd of spectators, and unloaded between shows of the diving horses. Most of the piles supporting the pier deck were imbedded in sand newly deposited since 1850. Using Atlantic City sea levels from the PSMSL data base and historical facts from Liebowitz (2009), and beginning with a 1912 start of the tide gauge, the apparent sea level rose at a rate of 3.1mm/yr until 1929 when the horses began diving. With the 1929 start of diving, the apparent sea level rise tripled, averaging 9.4 mm/yr until the act was suspended in 1945. In the 1945-1953 interval, when the horses did not dive (no crowds on the pier), apparent sea level fell (sea level FELL) at a rate of -1.6 mm/yr. The horses resumed diving in 1953, when the apparent sea level resumed at a rate of 4.0mm/yr. This 4.0 mm/yr is identical to the longtime sea level trend (1911-2006) from Zervos (2009) of 3.99mm/yr The history

  14. Mitigation of short-lived climate pollutants slows sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Aixue; Xu, Yangyang; Tebaldi, Claudia; Washington, Warren M.; Ramanathan, Veerabhadran

    2013-08-01

    Under present growth rates of greenhouse gas and black carbon aerosol emissions, global mean temperatures can warm by as much as 2°C from pre-industrial temperatures by about 2050. Mitigation of the four short-lived climate pollutants (SLCPs), methane, tropospheric ozone, hydrofluorocarbons and black carbon, has been shown to reduce the warming trend by about 50% (refs , ) by 2050. Here we focus on the potential impact of this SLCP mitigation on global sea-level rise (SLR). The temperature projections under various SLCP scenarios simulated by an energy-balance climate model are integrated with a semi-empirical SLR model, derived from past trends in temperatures and SLR, to simulate future trends in SLR. A coupled ocean-atmosphere climate model is also used to estimate SLR trends due to just the ocean thermal expansion. Our results show that SLCP mitigation can have significant effects on SLR. It can decrease the SLR rate by 24-50% and reduce the cumulative SLR by 22-42% by 2100. If the SLCP mitigation is delayed by 25 years, the warming from pre-industrial temperature exceeds 2°C by 2050 and the impact of mitigation actions on SLR is reduced by about a third.

  15. Migratory connectivity magnifies the consequences of habitat loss from sea-level rise for shorebird populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iwamura, Takuya; Possingham, Hugh P; Chadès, Iadine; Minton, Clive; Murray, Nicholas J; Rogers, Danny I; Treml, Eric A; Fuller, Richard A

    2013-06-22

    Sea-level rise (SLR) will greatly alter littoral ecosystems, causing habitat change and loss for coastal species. Habitat loss is widely used as a measurement of the risk of extinction, but because many coastal species are migratory, the impact of habitat loss will depend not only on its extent, but also on where it occurs. Here, we develop a novel graph-theoretic approach to measure the vulnerability of a migratory network to the impact of habitat loss from SLR based on population flow through the network. We show that reductions in population flow far exceed the proportion of habitat lost for 10 long-distance migrant shorebirds using the East Asian-Australasian Flyway. We estimate that SLR will inundate 23-40% of intertidal habitat area along their migration routes, but cause a reduction in population flow of up to 72 per cent across the taxa. This magnifying effect was particularly strong for taxa whose migration routes contain bottlenecks-sites through which a large fraction of the population travels. We develop the bottleneck index, a new network metric that positively correlates with the predicted impacts of habitat loss on overall population flow. Our results indicate that migratory species are at greater risk than previously realized.

  16. Uncertainties in Tidally Adjusted Estimates of Sea Level Rise Flooding (Bathtub Model for the Greater London

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ali P. Yunus

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Sea-level rise (SLR from global warming may have severe consequences for coastal cities, particularly when combined with predicted increases in the strength of tidal surges. Predicting the regional impact of SLR flooding is strongly dependent on the modelling approach and accuracy of topographic data. Here, the areas under risk of sea water flooding for London boroughs were quantified based on the projected SLR scenarios reported in Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC fifth assessment report (AR5 and UK climatic projections 2009 (UKCP09 using a tidally-adjusted bathtub modelling approach. Medium- to very high-resolution digital elevation models (DEMs are used to evaluate inundation extents as well as uncertainties. Depending on the SLR scenario and DEMs used, it is estimated that 3%–8% of the area of Greater London could be inundated by 2100. The boroughs with the largest areas at risk of flooding are Newham, Southwark, and Greenwich. The differences in inundation areas estimated from a digital terrain model and a digital surface model are much greater than the root mean square error differences observed between the two data types, which may be attributed to processing levels. Flood models from SRTM data underestimate the inundation extent, so their results may not be reliable for constructing flood risk maps. This analysis provides a broad-scale estimate of the potential consequences of SLR and uncertainties in the DEM-based bathtub type flood inundation modelling for London boroughs.

  17. 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.

  18. EFFECT OF SALT WEDGE INTRUSION IN KUSHIRO WETLAND CONSIDERING SEA LEVEL RISE

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakamoto, Atsushi; Shintani, Tetsuya; Nakayama, Keisuke; Maruya, Yasuyuki; Ishida, Tetsuya; Houmura, Kenichi

    This paper describes the effect of sea-level rise (SLR) on the salt wedge intrusion in terms of ecological system in Kushiro wetland. Kushiro wetland was registered by Ramsar Treaty and the largest wetland in Japan. A previous study demonstrates that the salt wedge intrusion may not affect ecological system of Kushiro wetland, such as loss of freshwater plants along Kushiro River. However, it is revealed that SLR may occur in the end of the 21st century, which enhances the increase in the distance of the salt wedge intrusion along Kushiro River and the loss of endangered species of Kushiro wetland along Kushiro River. This study thus aims to investigate the influence of the salt wedge intrusion on freshwater plants along Kushiro River, and to clarify the salt wedge intrusion when SLR occurs due to climate change. We attempted to investigate the influence of SLR on endangered species along Kyu-Kushiro River in which sea water is likely to intrude up to about 8 km from the river mouth. As results, it is suggested from field observations that salinity may decrease freshwater plants along Kushiro River, and it clarifies the possibility that the salt wedge intrudes Kushiro River due to SLR by using 3D hydrodynamic model, Fantom3D.

  19. Effects of elevated temperatures and rising sea level on Arctic Coast

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnes, Peter W.

    1990-01-01

    Ice is a major agent on the inner shelf, gouging the bottom, increasing hydraulic scour, transporting sediment, and influencing river flood patterns. Rapid coastal retreat is common and low barrier islands and beaches are constantly changing due to the influence of permafrost, ice-push, waves, and currents. Coastal processes are presently a balance between the influence of ice and the action of waves and currents. Quantitative values for processes are poorly known, however our qualitative understanding is nearly complete. Climatic warming and rising sea levels would decrease the temporal and aerial extent of coastal ice thereby expanding the role of waves and currents. As a result, shoreline retreat rates would increase, producing a transgressive erosional surface on the low coastal plain. With increased wave activity, beaches and barrier islands presently nourished by ice push processes would decay and disappear. Increased sediment supply from a deeply thawed, active layer would release more sediments to rivers and coasts. Additional research should be focused on permafrost and sea ice processes active during freeze up and breakup; the two seasons of most vigorous activity and change.

  20. Evaluation of dynamic coastal response to sea-level rise modifies inundation likelihood

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

    Sea-level rise (SLR) poses a range of threats to natural and built environments1, 2, making assessments of SLR-induced hazards essential for informed decision making3. We develop a probabilistic model that evaluates the likelihood that an area will inundate (flood) or dynamically respond (adapt) to SLR. The broad-area applicability of the approach is demonstrated by producing 30 × 30 m resolution predictions for more than 38,000 km2 of diverse coastal landscape in the northeastern United States. Probabilistic SLR projections, coastal elevation and vertical land movement are used to estimate likely future inundation levels. Then, conditioned on future inundation levels and the current land-cover type, we evaluate the likelihood of dynamic response versus inundation. We find that nearly 70% of this coastal landscape has some capacity to respond dynamically to SLR, and we show that inundation models over-predict land likely to submerge. This approach is well suited to guiding coastal resource management decisions that weigh future SLR impacts and uncertainty against ecological targets and economic constraints.

  1. Evolution of Two Urbanized Estuaries: Environmental Change, Legal Framework, and Implications for Sea-Level Rise Vulnerability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pedro J. Pinto

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available The San Francisco Bay (CA, USA and the Tagus Estuary (Lisbon, Portugal share striking similarities in terms of morphology and urban development. A finer analysis of development patterns reveals crucial differences in the extent of shoreline alteration and types of land use that now encroach upon natural estuarine habitat. Through historical map analysis and prior stratigraphic and historical research, we reconstruct in GIS environment the evolution of both estuaries over the last millennia and the relative distribution of different classes of land cover. We also discuss the legal frameworks that accompanied this evolution, and how they have influenced the process of wetland reclamation and landfilling. We compared the legal history and synchronous patterns of development by compiling historical mapping information and resorting to GIS analysis to explore spatial patterns over time. This method was useful in isolating events and decisions that were unique to each of the case studies. The Tagus Estuary has experienced disruption of natural environments for over two millennia. Yet, the State has been able to keep estuarine lowlands under public control, even if vast areas have been transformed into farmland. Public control could allow wetland migration with rising seas and restoration efforts. The San Francisco Bay was affected by several decades of elevated sediment loads in the 19th century, which induced rapid wetland expansion, but virtual cutoff of sediment supply by dams in the 20th century now impairs their ability to accrete. Meanwhile, tidal wetlands were subject to extremely fast and poorly regulated development. Artificially filled and/or drained wetlands were transferred to local governments and private landowners, in violation of the Public Trust Doctrine. The transformation of wetlands into salt ponds, industrial zones and even residential neighborhoods created extensive developed areas at or below sea level, which are vulnerable to

  2. The impact of future sea-level rise on the European Shelf tides

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pickering, M. D.; Wells, N. C.; Horsburgh, K. J.; Green, J. A. M.

    2012-03-01

    This paper investigates the effect of future sea-level rise (SLR) on the tides of the northwest European Continental Shelf. The European shelf tide is dominated by semidiurnal constituents. This study therefore focuses primarily on the changes in the M2 tidal constituent and the spring and neap tidal conditions. The validated operational Dutch Continental Shelf Model is run for the present day sea-level as well as 2 and 10 m SLR scenarios. The M2 tidal amplitude responds to SLR in a spatially non-uniform manner, with substantial amplitude increases and decreases in both scenarios. The M2 tidal response is non-linear between 2 and 10 m with respect to SLR, particularly in the North Sea. Under the 2 m SLR scenario the M2 constituent is particularly responsive in the resonant areas of the Bristol Channel and Gulf of St. Malo (with large amplitude decreases) and in the southeastern German Bight and Dutch Wadden Sea (with large amplitude increases). Changes in the spring tide are generally greater still than those in the M2 or neap tides. With 2 m SLR the spring tidal range increases up to 35 cm at Cuxhaven and decreases up to -49 cm at St. Malo. Additionally the changes in the shallow water tides are larger than expected. With SLR the depth, wave speed and wave length (tidal resonance characteristics) are increased causing changes in near resonant areas. In expansive shallow areas SLR causes reduced energy dissipation by bottom friction. Combined these mechanisms result in the migration of the amphidromes and complex patterns of non-linear change in the tide with SLR. Despite the significant uncertainty associated with the rate of SLR over the next century, substantial alterations to tidal characteristics can be expected under a high end SLR scenario. Contrary to existing studies this paper highlights the importance of considering the modification of the tides by future SLR. These substantial future changes in the tides could have wide reaching implications; including

  3. Two Probabilistic Methods for Attributing the Sources of Sea-Level Rise from Sparse Tide Gauge Records

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hay, C.; Morrow, E.; Kopp, R. E., III; Mitrovica, J. X.

    2014-12-01

    Recent estimates of 20th century global mean sea-level (GMSL) rise are in the range 1.6-1.9 mm/yr. However, these estimates use a temporally and spatially sparse network of tide gauge observations that may result in a biased estimate due to the incomplete sampling of a global field. Furthermore, this sparse sampling makes resolving the GMSL change into individual sources (e.g., mass loss from individual ice sheets and mountain glaciers, ocean thermal expansion, etc.) challenging. We have employed two different statistical techniques, a multi-model Kalman smoother (KS) and Gaussian process regression (GPR), to address the above challenges. Both techniques naturally accommodate spatio-temporal changes in the availability of tide gauge observations and use models of glacial isostatic adjustment, ocean dynamics, and the sea-level fingerprints of rapid land ice melt to exploit both the spatial and temporal information within observations of the sparsely-sampled global field. We present reconstructions of the global sea-level field estimated with both methods, as well as the associated constraints on the underlying sources of global mean sea-level change. Our results include estimates of the individual contributions of the world's ice sheets and mountain glaciers to 20th century sea-level change and provide new estimates of the spatial and temporal variability in sea level since 1900.

  4. Assessing coastal wetland vulnerability to sea-level rise along the northern Gulf of Mexico coast: Gaps and opportunities for developing a coordinated regional sampling network

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osland, Michael J.; Griffith, Kereen T.; Larriviere, Jack C.; Feher, Laura C.; Cahoon, Donald R.; Enwright, Nicholas M.; Oster, David A.; Tirpak, John M.; Woodrey, Mark S.; Collini, Renee C.; Baustian, Joseph J.; Breithaupt, Joshua L.; Cherry, Julia A; Conrad, Jeremy R.; Cormier, Nicole; Coronado-Molina, Carlos A.; Donoghue, Joseph F.; Graham, Sean A.; Harper, Jennifer W.; Hester, Mark W.; Howard, Rebecca J.; Krauss, Ken W.; Kroes, Daniel; Lane, Robert R.; Mckee, Karen L.; Mendelssohn, Irving A.; Middleton, Beth A.; Moon, Jena A.; Piazza, Sarai; Rankin, Nicole M.; Sklar, Fred H.; Steyer, Gregory D.; Swanson, Kathleen M.; Swarzenski, Christopher M.; Vervaeke, William; Willis, Jonathan M; Van Wilson, K.

    2017-01-01

    Coastal wetland responses to sea-level rise are greatly influenced by biogeomorphic processes that affect wetland surface elevation. Small changes in elevation relative to sea level can lead to comparatively large changes in ecosystem structure, function, and stability. The surface elevation table-marker horizon (SET-MH) approach is being used globally to quantify the relative contributions of processes affecting wetland elevation change. Historically, SET-MH measurements have been obtained at local scales to address site-specific research questions. However, in the face of accelerated sea-level rise, there is an increasing need for elevation change network data that can be incorporated into regional ecological models and vulnerability assessments. In particular, there is a need for long-term, high-temporal resolution data that are strategically distributed across ecologically-relevant abiotic gradients. Here, we quantify the distribution of SET-MH stations along the northern Gulf of Mexico coast (USA) across political boundaries (states), wetland habitats, and ecologically-relevant abiotic gradients (i.e., gradients in temperature, precipitation, elevation, and relative sea-level rise). Our analyses identify areas with high SET-MH station densities as well as areas with notable gaps. Salt marshes, intermediate elevations, and colder areas with high rainfall have a high number of stations, while salt flat ecosystems, certain elevation zones, the mangrove-marsh ecotone, and hypersaline coastal areas with low rainfall have fewer stations. Due to rapid rates of wetland loss and relative sea-level rise, the state of Louisiana has the most extensive SET-MH station network in the region, and we provide several recent examples where data from Louisiana’s network have been used to assess and compare wetland vulnerability to sea-level rise. Our findings represent the first attempt to examine spatial gaps in SET-MH coverage across abiotic gradients. Our analyses can be

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Projection of the Zhujiang (Pearl) River Delta’s potential submerged area due to sea level rise during the 21st century based on CMIP5 simulations

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    XIA Jiangjiang; YAN Zhongwei; ZHOU Wen; FONG Soi Kun; LEONG Ka Cheng; TANG Iu Man; CHANG S W; LEONG W K; JIN Shaofei

    2015-01-01

    Projections of potential submerged area due to sea level rise are helpful for improving understanding of the influence of ongoing global warming on coastal areas. The Ensemble Empirical Mode Decomposition method is used to adaptively decompose the sea level time series in order to extract the secular trend component. Then the linear relationship between the global mean sea level (GMSL) change and the Zhujiang (Pearl) River Delta (PRD) sea level change is calculated:an increase of 1.0 m in the GMSL corresponds to a 1.3 m (uncertainty interval from 1.25 to 1.46 m) increase in the PRD. Based on this relationship and the GMSL rise projected by the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 under three greenhouse gas emission scenarios (representative concentration pathways, or RCPs, from low to high emission scenarios RCP2.6, RCP4.5, and RCP8.5), the PRD sea level is calculated and projected for the period 2006–2100. By around the year 2050, the PRD sea level will rise 0.29 (0.21 to 0.40) m under RCP2.6, 0.31 (0.22 to 0.42) m under RCP4.5, and 0.34 (0.25 to 0.46) m under RCP8.5, respectively. By 2100, it will rise 0.59 (0.36 to 0.88) m, 0.71 (0.47 to 1.02) m, and 1.0 (0.68 to 1.41) m, respectively. In addition, considering the extreme value of relative sea level due to land subsidence (i.e., 0.20 m) and that obtained from intermonthly variability (i.e., 0.33 m), the PRD sea level will rise 1.94 m by the year 2100 under the RCP8.5 scenario with the upper uncertainty level (i.e., 1.41 m). Accordingly, the potential submerged area is 8.57×103 km2 for the PRD, about 1.3 times its present area.

  8. Plant growth under salinity and inundation stress: implications for sea-level rise on tidal wetland function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Climate change and sea-level rise (SLR) may increase salinity or inundation duration for tidal wetland organisms. To test the effects of these stressors on wetland productivity, we transplanted seedlings of seven common plant species to polyhaline, mesohaline and oligohaline tida...

  9. Sea Level Rise and Climate Change Effects on Marsh Plants Spartina Alterniflora and Typha Angustifolia Using Mesocosms

    Science.gov (United States)

    A four month experiment using greenhouse mesocosms was conducted to analyze the effect of sea level rise and climate change on salt marsh plants Spartina alterniflora (cordgrass) and Typha angustifolia (narrow-leaved cattail). Our goal was to examine the effects of three differen...

  10. Global assessment of vulnerability to sea-level rise in topography-limited and recharge-limited coastal groundwater systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michael, Holly A.; Russoniello, Christopher J.; Byron, Lindsay A.

    2013-04-01

    Impacts of rising sea level on the hydraulic balance between aquifers and the ocean threaten fresh water resources and aquatic ecosystems along many world coastlines. Understanding the vulnerability of groundwater systems to these changes and the primary factors that determine the magnitude of system response is critical to developing effective management and adaptation plans in coastal zones. We assessed the vulnerability of two types of groundwater systems, recharge-limited and topography-limited, to changes caused by sea-level rise over a range of hydrogeologic settings. Vulnerability in this context is defined by the rate and magnitude of salinization of coastal aquifers and changes in groundwater flow to the sea. Two-dimensional variable-density groundwater flow and salt transport simulations indicate that the response of recharge-limited systems is largely minimal, whereas topography-limited systems are vulnerable for various combinations of permeability, vertical anisotropy in permeability, and recharge. World coastlines were classified according to system type as a vulnerability indicator. Results indicate that approximately 70% of world coastlines may be topography-limited, though variability in hydrogeologic conditions strongly affects classification. Future recharge and sea-level rise scenarios have much less influence on the proportion of vulnerable coastlines than differences in permeability, distance to a hydraulic divide, and recharge, indicating that hydrogeologic properties and setting are more important factors to consider in determining system type than uncertainties in the magnitude of sea-level rise and hydrologic shifts associated with future climate change.

  11. Sea Level Rise and Climate Change Effects on Marsh Plants Spartina Alterniflora and Typha Angustifolia Using Mesocosms

    Science.gov (United States)

    A four month experiment using greenhouse mesocosms was conducted to analyze the effect of sea level rise and climate change on salt marsh plants Spartina alterniflora (cordgrass) and Typha angustifolia (narrow-leaved cattail). Our goal was to examine the effects of three differen...

  12. Computing Risk to West Coast Intertidal Rocky Habitat due to Sea Level Rise using LiDAR Topobathy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Compared to marshes, little information is available on the potential for rocky intertidal habitats to migrate upward in response to sea level rise (SLR). To address this gap, we utilized topobathy LiDAR digital elevation models (DEMs) downloaded from NOAA’s Digital Coast G...

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2012-01-01

    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

  14. Are sea-level-rise trends along the coasts of the north Indian Ocean consistent with global estimates?

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Unnikrishnan, A.S.; Shankar, D.

    yielded sea-level-rise estimates between 1.06–1.75 mm/ yrear-1 , with a regional average of 1.29 mm yr-1, when corrected for global isostatic adjustment (GIA) using model data, with a regional average of 1.29 mm-1.. These estimates are consistent...

  15. Rising Seas: Threat to Coastal Areas, A General Study about the Sea Level Rises on Coastal Areas of Earth, its Consequences and Preventive Measures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kataria, A.

    2015-12-01

    Scientific research indicates that sea levels worldwide have been rising at a rate of 3 millimeters per year since the early 1990s (IPCC), which is much higher than the previous century. The recent measurements (march 2015; NASA) tells us that the present rise of sea level is 64.4 mm. Most recent satellite measurements and tide gauge readings (NASA) tell us that present rate sea level rise is 3.20 mm per year. A recent study says we can expect the oceans to rise between 2.5 and 6.5 feet (0.8 and 2 meters) by 2100. The two main causes of rising seas are thermal expansion and glacier melting which further corresponds to the root cause of sea level rise: Green House effect. For every degree Celsius that global average temperature rises, we can expect 2.3 meters of sea-level rise sometime over the ensuing 2,000 years. The main consequence of Sea level rise is increase in oceanic acidity as it releases the entrapped carbon dioxide in between the glaciers. The problem goes from bad to worse when we take into consideration that one third of the world population lives in a 60 km range from the coast. In the event of a flood, this massive population would have to move away from the coasts. The main objective of research is to find all the most vulnerable areas, to make people aware about the consequences and to take proper measurements to fight with such natural calamities. The rise in sea level would inevitably cause massive migration like never seen before. Over 25% of the world population could disappear if sea levels continues to rise with same or faster rate as present. The oceans, sea life and life of people at coastal areas will get extremely effected unless there are considerable cuts in the carbon dioxide emissions. What we need to do is just to apply all the methods and measurements in our daily life that can help reduce the green house gases emissions. Also we need to plan that how to prevent all these cities in case of such natural hazards.

  16. 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

  17. Linking Historic Wetland Soil Accretion and Sea-Level Rise Data with Landcover Change in the US

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holmquist, J. R.; Brown, L. N.; MacDonald, G. M.

    2015-12-01

    Coastal marsh loss in the US due to sea-level rise and other anthropogenic factors has important ramifications for carbon sequestration, endangered species habitat, water quality, and myriad other ecosystem services. We compiled 486 reports of 137Cs dated cores from coastal marshes in North America and compared vertical accretion rates to relative sea-level rise (RSLR) from the nearest NOAA tide gauge between 1963 and the core collection year. There was a positive linear correlation between RSLR and vertical accretion. When RSLR was greater than 5 mm/yr RSLR outpaced accretion on average indicating a possible limitation to positive feedback within the system. We also calculated net-accretion (vertical accretion - RSLR) and summarized regional variation according to both coastal zone and watershed boundaries. From 1963 to present the West Coast has been the most historically resilient to RSLR, the Gulf Coast has been the most vulnerable, and the East Coast has been intermediate and variable. We compared regional trends in net-accretion to land cover change using 1996-2010 Coastal Change Analysis Program maps with freshwater wetland area constrained by tidal categories from the National Wetlands Inventory. Watersheds with historic net-accretion falling below -3.9 mm/yr in the Gulf Coast were much more likely to have massive losses of coastal wetland area from 1996-2010, up to 10% of 1996 wetland area in some cases. Areas with higher net-accretion did not show change, except for some gains in the San Francisco Bay. The Mississippi Delta mouth is a notable data anomaly with positive historical net-accretion as well as a net-loss of wetland surface to open water which may identify an important limitation of soil coring techniques in areas with dynamic sediment deposition.

  18. Predicting sea-level rise vulnerability of terrestrial habitat and wildlife of the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynolds, Michelle H.; Berkowitz, Paul; Courtot, Karen N.; Krause, Crystal M.; Reynolds, Michelle H.; Berkowitz, Paul; Courtot, Karen N.; Krause, Crystal M.

    2012-01-01

    If current climate change trends continue, rising sea levels may inundate low-lying islands across the globe, placing island biodiversity at risk. Recent models predict a rise of approximately one meter (1 m) in global sea level by 2100, with larger increases possible in areas of the Pacific Ocean. Pacific Islands are unique ecosystems home to many endangered endemic plant and animal species. The Northwestern Hawaiian Islands (NWHI), which extend 1,930 kilometers (km) beyond the main Hawaiian Islands, are a World Heritage Site and part of the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument. These NWHI support the largest tropical seabird rookery in the world, providing breeding habitat for 21 species of seabirds, 4 endemic land bird species and essential foraging, breeding, or haul-out habitat for other resident and migratory wildlife. In recent years, concern has grown about the increasing vulnerability of the NWHI and their wildlife populations to changing climatic patterns, particularly the uncertainty associated with potential impacts from global sea-level rise (SLR) and storms. In response to the need by managers to adapt future resource protection strategies to climate change variability and dynamic island ecosystems, we have synthesized and down scaled analyses for this important region. This report describes a 2-year study of a remote northwestern Pacific atoll ecosystem and identifies wildlife and habitat vulnerable to rising sea levels and changing climate conditions. A lack of high-resolution topographic data for low-lying islands of the NWHI had previously precluded an extensive quantitative model of the potential impacts of SLR on wildlife habitat. The first chapter (chapter 1) describes the vegetation and topography of 20 islands of Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument, the distribution and status of wildlife populations, and the predicted impacts for a range of SLR scenarios. Furthermore, this chapter explores the potential effects of SLR on

  19. Future climate change driven sea-level rise: secondary consequences from human displacement for island biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wetzel, Florian T; Kissling, W Daniel; Beissmann, Helmut; Penn, Dustin J

    2012-09-01

    Sea-level rise (SLR) due to global warming will result in the loss of many coastal areas. The direct or primary effects due to inundation and erosion from SLR are currently being assessed; however, the indirect or secondary ecological effects, such as changes caused by the displacement of human populations, have not been previously evaluated. We examined the potential ecological consequences of future SLR on >1,200 islands in the Southeast Asian and the Pacific region. Using three SLR scenarios (1, 3, and 6 m elevation, where 1 m approximates most predictions by the end of this century), we assessed the consequences of primary and secondary SLR effects from human displacement on habitat availability and distributions of selected mammal species. We estimate that between 3-32% of the coastal zone of these islands could be lost from primary effects, and consequently 8-52 million people would become SLR refugees. Assuming that inundated urban and intensive agricultural areas will be relocated with an equal area of habitat loss in the hinterland, we project that secondary SLR effects can lead to an equal or even higher percent range loss than primary effects for at least 10-18% of the sample mammals in a moderate range loss scenario and for 22-46% in a maximum range loss scenario. In addition, we found some species to be more vulnerable to secondary than primary effects. Finally, we found high spatial variation in vulnerability: species on islands in Oceania are more vulnerable to primary SLR effects, whereas species on islands in Indo-Malaysia, with potentially 7-48 million SLR refugees, are more vulnerable to secondary effects. Our findings show that primary and secondary SLR effects can have enormous consequences for human inhabitants and island biodiversity, and that both need to be incorporated into ecological risk assessment, conservation, and regional planning. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  20. Predicting Impacts of tropical cyclones and sea-Level rise on beach mouse habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Qin; Wang, Hongqing; Wang, Lixia; Tawes, Robert; Rollman, Drew

    2014-01-01

    Alabama beach mouse (ABM) (Peromyscus polionotus ammobates) is an important component of the coastal dune ecosystem along the Gulf of Mexico. Due to habitat loss and degradation, ABM is federally listed as an endangered species. In this study, we examined the impacts of storm surge and wind waves, which are induced by hurricanes and sea-level rise (SLR), on the ABM habitat on Fort Morgan Peninsula, Alabama, using advanced storm surge and wind wave models and spatial analysis tools in geographic information systems (GIS). Statistical analyses of the long-term historical data enabled us to predict the extreme values of winds, wind waves, and water levels in the study area at different return periods. We developed a series of nested domains for both wave and surge modeling and validated the models using field observations of surge hydrographs and high watermarks of Hurricane Ivan (2004). We then developed wave atlases and flood maps corresponding to the extreme wind, surge and waves without SLR and with a 0.5 m of SLR by coupling the wave and surge prediction models. The flood maps were then merged with a map of ABM habitat to determine the extent and location of habitat impacted by the 100-year storm with and without SLR. Simulation results indicate that more than 82% of ABM habitat would be inundated in such an extreme storm event, especially under SLR, making ABM populations more vulnerable to future storm damage. These results have aided biologists, community planners, and other stakeholders in the identification, restoration and protection of key beach mouse habitat in Alabama. Methods outlined in this paper could also be used to assist in the conservation and recovery of imperiled coastal species elsewhere.

  1. Structured decision making as a proactive approach to dealing with sea level rise in Florida

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Julien; Fackler, Paul L.; Nichols, James D.; Lubow, Bruce C.; Eaton, Mitchell J.; Runge, Michael C.; Stith, Bradley M.; Langtimm, Catherine A.

    2011-01-01

    Sea level rise (SLR) projections along the coast of Florida present an enormous challenge for management and conservation over the long term. Decision makers need to recognize and adopt strategies to adapt to the potentially detrimental effects of SLR. Structured decision making (SDM) provides a rigorous framework for the management of natural resources. The aim of SDM is to identify decisions that are optimal with respect to management objectives and knowledge of the system. Most applications of SDM have assumed that the managed systems are governed by stationary processes. However, in the context of SLR it may be necessary to acknowledge that the processes underlying managed systems may be non-stationary, such that systems will be continuously changing. Therefore, SLR brings some unique considerations to the application of decision theory for natural resource management. In particular, SLR is expected to affect each of the components of SDM. For instance, management objectives may have to be reconsidered more frequently than under more stable conditions. The set of potential actions may also have to be adapted over time as conditions change. Models have to account for the non-stationarity of the modeled system processes. Each of the important sources of uncertainty in decision processes is expected to be exacerbated by SLR. We illustrate our ideas about adaptation of natural resource management to SLR by modeling a non-stationary system using a numerical example. We provide additional examples of an SDM approach for managing species that may be affected by SLR, with a focus on the endangered Florida manatee.

  2. Sea-level rise and coastal groundwater inundation and shoaling at select sites in California, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoover, Daniel J.; Odigie, Kingsley; Swarzenski, Peter W.; Barnard, Patrick

    2016-01-01

    Study regionThe study region spans coastal California, USA, and focuses on three primary sites: Arcata, Stinson Beach, and Malibu Lagoon.Study focus1 m and 2 m sea-level rise (SLR) projections were used to assess vulnerability to SLR-driven groundwater emergence and shoaling at select low-lying, coastal sites in California. Separate and combined inundation scenarios for SLR and groundwater emergence were developed using digital elevation models of study site topography and groundwater surfaces constructed from well data or published groundwater level contours.New hydrological insights for the regionSLR impacts are a serious concern in coastal California which has a long (∼1800 km) and populous coastline. Information on the possible importance of SLR-driven groundwater inundation in California is limited. In this study, the potential for SLR-driven groundwater inundation at three sites (Arcata, Stinson Beach, and Malibu Lagoon) was investigated under 1 m and 2 m SLR scenarios. These sites provide insight into the vulnerability of Northern California coastal plains, coastal developments built on beach sand or sand spits, and developed areas around coastal lagoons associated with seasonal streams and berms. Northern California coastal plains with abundant shallow groundwater likely will see significant and widespread groundwater emergence, while impacts along the much drier central and southern California coast may be less severe due to the absence of shallow groundwater in many areas. Vulnerability analysis is hampered by the lack of data on shallow coastal aquifers, which commonly are not studied because they are not suitable for domestic or agricultural use. Shallow saline aquifers may be present in many areas along coastal California, which would dramatically increase vulnerability to SLR-driven groundwater emergence and shoaling. Improved understanding of the extent and response of California coastal aquifers to SLR will help in preparing for mitigation

  3. Coastal wetland response to sea-level rise in a fluvial estuarine system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alizad, Karim; Hagen, Scott C.; Morris, James T.; Medeiros, Stephen C.; Bilskie, Matthew V.; Weishampel, John F.

    2016-11-01

    Coastal wetlands are likely to lose productivity under increasing rates of sea-level rise (SLR). This study assessed a fluvial estuarine salt marsh system using the Hydro-MEM model under four SLR scenarios. The Hydro-MEM model was developed to apply the dynamics of SLR as well as capture the effects associated with the rate of SLR in the simulation. Additionally, the model uses constants derived from a 2-year bioassay in the Apalachicola marsh system. In order to increase accuracy, the lidar-based marsh platform topography was adjusted using Real Time Kinematic survey data. A river inflow boundary condition was also imposed to simulate freshwater flows from the watershed. The biomass density results produced by the Hydro-MEM model were validated with satellite imagery. The results of the Hydro-MEM simulations showed greater variation of water levels in the low (20 cm) and intermediate-low (50 cm) SLR scenarios and lower variation with an extended bay under higher SLR scenarios. The low SLR scenario increased biomass density in some regions and created a more uniform marsh platform in others. Under intermediate-low SLR scenario, more flooded area and lower marsh productivity were projected. Higher SLR scenarios resulted in complete inundation of marsh areas with fringe migration of wetlands to higher land. This study demonstrated the capability of Hydro-MEM model to simulate coupled physical/biological processes across a large estuarine system with the ability to project marsh migration regions and produce results that can aid in coastal resource management, monitoring, and restoration efforts.

  4. Long-term future contribution of the Greenland ice sheet to sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calov, Reinhard; Robinson, Alex; Ganopolski, Andrey

    2015-04-01

    We investigate the impact of future cumulative anthropogenic emissions on the fate of the Greenland ice sheet. For this study, we use the polythermal ice sheet model SICOPOLIS, which is bi-directionally coupled with the regional climate model of intermediate complexity REMBO. We constrain our model parameters with simulations over two glacial cycles employing anomalies from the global CLIMBER-2 model. CLIMBER-2 treats the major components or the Earth system, including atmosphere, ocean, terrestrial vegetation and carbon cycle. As constraints we include the cumulative error in ice thickness, the surface mass balance partition (ratio between precipitation and ice discharge) and the ice elevation drop between Eemian and present-day at the NEEM ice core location. Our model includes a new ice discharge parameterization, which describes the ice loss via small-scale outlet glaciers in a heuristic statistical approach. Using the large-ensemble of model versions consistent with our constraints, we estimate the range of the long-term future contribution of the Greenland ice sheet to sea-level rise under global warming. On the 100,000-year time scale, there is a visible modulation over the CO2 signal in the simulated Greenland ice volume caused by the 20,000 years precessional cycle of insolation. In nearly all of our scenarios (500 to 5000 Gt carbon cumulative emissions), the Greenland is sheet fully decays in the future after at least 40,000 years. For the extreme scenario (5000 Gt), the Greenland ice sheet decays much faster - after about 5000 years, while there is still 80% of the ice sheet left after 40,000 years only for the model versions with a low temperature sensitivity and the low cumulative carbon emission scenario (500 Gt). Our results underline that without future negative CO2 emissions, irreversible loss of Greenland ice sheet is essentially unavoidable.

  5. Optimal management of a multispecies shorebird flyway under sea-level rise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iwamura, Takuya; Fuller, Richard A; Possingham, Hugh P

    2014-12-01

    Every year, millions of migratory shorebirds fly through the East Asian-Australasian Flyway between their arctic breeding grounds and Australasia. This flyway includes numerous coastal wetlands in Asia and the Pacific that are used as stopover sites where birds rest and feed. Loss of a few important stopover sites through sea-level rise (SLR) could cause sudden population declines. We formulated and solved mathematically the problem of how to identify the most important stopover sites to minimize losses of bird populations across flyways by conserving land that facilitates upshore shifts of tidal flats in response to SLR. To guide conservation investment that minimizes losses of migratory bird populations during migration, we developed a spatially explicit flyway model coupled with a maximum flow algorithm. Migratory routes of 10 shorebird taxa were modeled in a graph theoretic framework by representing clusters of important wetlands as nodes and the number of birds flying between 2 nodes as edges. We also evaluated several resource allocation algorithms that required only partial information on flyway connectivity (node strategy, based on the impacts of SLR at nodes; habitat strategy, based on habitat change at sites; population strategy, based on population change at sites; and random investment). The resource allocation algorithms based on flyway information performed on average 15% better than simpler allocations based on patterns of habitat loss or local bird counts. The Yellow Sea region stood out as the most important priority for effective conservation of migratory shorebirds, but investment in this area alone will not ensure the persistence of species across the flyway. The spatial distribution of conservation investments differed enormously according to the severity of SLR and whether information about flyway connectivity was used to guide the prioritizations. With the rapid ongoing loss of coastal wetlands globally, our method provides insight into

  6. The impact of future sea-level rise on the global tides

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pickering, M. D.; Horsburgh, K. J.; Blundell, J. R.; Hirschi, J. J.-M.; Nicholls, R. J.; Verlaan, M.; Wells, N. C.

    2017-06-01

    Tides are a key component in coastal extreme water levels. Possible changes in the tides caused by mean sea-level rise (SLR) are therefore of importance in the analysis of coastal flooding, as well as many other applications. We investigate the effect of future SLR on the tides globally using a fully global forward tidal model: OTISmpi. Statistical comparisons of the modelled and observed tidal solutions demonstrate the skill of the refined model setup with no reliance on data assimilation. We simulate the response of the four primary tidal constituents to various SLR scenarios. Particular attention is paid to future changes at the largest 136 coastal cities, where changes in water level would have the greatest impact. Spatially uniform SLR scenarios ranging from 0.5 to 10 m with fixed coastlines show that the tidal amplitudes in shelf seas globally respond strongly to SLR with spatially coherent areas of increase and decrease. Changes in the M2 and S2 constituents occur globally in most shelf seas, whereas changes in K1 and O1 are confined to Asian shelves. With higher SLR tidal changes are often not proportional to the SLR imposed and larger portions of mean high water (MHW) changes are above proportional. Changes in MHW exceed ±10% of the SLR at 10% of coastal cities. SLR scenarios allowing for coastal recession tend increasingly to result in a reduction in tidal range. The fact that the fixed and recession shoreline scenarios result mainly in changes of opposing sign is explained by the effect of the perturbations on the natural period of oscillation of the basin. Our results suggest that coastal management strategies could influence the sign of the tidal amplitude change. The effect of a spatially varying SLR, in this case fingerprints of the initial elastic response to ice mass loss, modestly alters the tidal response with the largest differences at high latitudes.

  7. Antarctic contribution to sea level rise observed by GRACE with improved GIA correction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivins, Erik R.; James, Thomas S.; Wahr, John; Schrama, Ernst J. O.; Landerer, Felix W.; Simon, Karen M.

    2013-06-01

    Antarctic volume changes during the past 21 thousand years are smaller than previously thought, and here we construct an ice sheet history that drives a forward model prediction of the glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA) gravity signal. The new model, in turn, should give predictions that are constrained with recent uplift data. The impact of the GIA signal on a Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) Antarctic mass balance estimate depends on the specific GRACE analysis method used. For the method described in this paper, the GIA contribution to the apparent surface mass change is re-evaluated to be +55±13 Gt/yr by considering a revised ice history model and a parameter search for vertical motion predictions that best fit the GPS observations at 18 high-quality stations. Although the GIA model spans a range of possible Earth rheological structure values, the data are not yet sufficient for solving for a preferred value of upper and lower mantle viscosity nor for a preferred lithospheric thickness. GRACE monthly solutions from the Center for Space Research Release 04 (CSR-RL04) release time series from January 2003 to the beginning of January 2012, uncorrected for GIA, yield an ice mass rate of +2.9± 29 Gt/yr. The new GIA correction increases the solved-for ice mass imbalance of Antarctica to -57±34 Gt/yr. The revised GIA correction is smaller than past GRACE estimates by about 50 to 90 Gt/yr. The new upper bound to the sea level rise from the Antarctic ice sheet, averaged over the time span 2003.0-2012.0, is about 0.16±0.09 mm/yr.

  8. Tidal hydrodynamics under future sea level rise and coastal morphology in the Northern Gulf of Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Passeri, Davina L.; Hagen, Scott C.; Plant, Nathaniel G.; Bilskie, Matthew V.; Medeiros, Stephen C.; Alizad, Karim

    2016-05-01

    This study examines the integrated influence of sea level rise (SLR) and future morphology on tidal hydrodynamics along the Northern Gulf of Mexico (NGOM) coast including seven embayments and three ecologically and economically significant estuaries. A large-domain hydrodynamic model was used to simulate astronomic tides for present and future conditions (circa 2050 and 2100). Future conditions were simulated by imposing four SLR scenarios to alter hydrodynamic boundary conditions and updating shoreline position and dune heights using a probabilistic model that is coupled to SLR. Under the highest SLR scenario, tidal amplitudes within the bays increased as much as 67% (10.0 cm) because of increases in the inlet cross-sectional area. Changes in harmonic constituent phases indicated that tidal propagation was faster in the future scenarios within most of the bays. Maximum tidal velocities increased in all of the bays, especially in Grand Bay where velocities doubled under the highest SLR scenario. In addition, the ratio of the maximum flood to maximum ebb velocity decreased in the future scenarios (i.e., currents became more ebb dominant) by as much as 26% and 39% in Weeks Bay and Apalachicola, respectively. In Grand Bay, the flood-ebb ratio increased (i.e., currents became more flood dominant) by 25% under the lower SLR scenarios, but decreased by 16% under the higher SLR as a result of the offshore barrier islands being overtopped, which altered the tidal prism. Results from this study can inform future storm surge and ecological assessments of SLR, and improve monitoring and management decisions within the NGOM.

  9. Future coastal population growth and exposure to sea-level rise and coastal flooding--a global assessment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barbara Neumann

    Full Text Available Coastal zones are exposed to a range of coastal hazards including sea-level rise with its related effects. At the same time, they are more densely populated than the hinterland and exhibit higher rates of population growth and urbanisation. As this trend is expected to continue into the future, we investigate how coastal populations will be affected by such impacts at global and regional scales by the years 2030 and 2060. Starting from baseline population estimates for the year 2000, we assess future population change in the low-elevation coastal zone and trends in exposure to 100-year coastal floods based on four different sea-level and socio-economic scenarios. Our method accounts for differential growth of coastal areas against the land-locked hinterland and for trends of urbanisation and expansive urban growth, as currently observed, but does not explicitly consider possible displacement or out-migration due to factors such as sea-level rise. We combine spatially explicit estimates of the baseline population with demographic data in order to derive scenario-driven projections of coastal population development. Our scenarios show that the number of people living in the low-elevation coastal zone, as well as the number of people exposed to flooding from 1-in-100 year storm surge events, is highest in Asia. China, India, Bangladesh, Indonesia and Viet Nam are estimated to have the highest total coastal population exposure in the baseline year and this ranking is expected to remain largely unchanged in the future. However, Africa is expected to experience the highest rates of population growth and urbanisation in the coastal zone, particularly in Egypt and sub-Saharan countries in Western and Eastern Africa. The results highlight countries and regions with a high degree of exposure to coastal flooding and help identifying regions where policies and adaptive planning for building resilient coastal communities are not only desirable but essential

  10. Future coastal population growth and exposure to sea-level rise and coastal flooding--a global assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neumann, Barbara; Vafeidis, Athanasios T; Zimmermann, Juliane; Nicholls, Robert J

    2015-01-01

    Coastal zones are exposed to a range of coastal hazards including sea-level rise with its related effects. At the same time, they are more densely populated than the hinterland and exhibit higher rates of population growth and urbanisation. As this trend is expected to continue into the future, we investigate how coastal populations will be affected by such impacts at global and regional scales by the years 2030 and 2060. Starting from baseline population estimates for the year 2000, we assess future population change in the low-elevation coastal zone and trends in exposure to 100-year coastal floods based on four different sea-level and socio-economic scenarios. Our method accounts for differential growth of coastal areas against the land-locked hinterland and for trends of urbanisation and expansive urban growth, as currently observed, but does not explicitly consider possible displacement or out-migration due to factors such as sea-level rise. We combine spatially explicit estimates of the baseline population with demographic data in order to derive scenario-driven projections of coastal population development. Our scenarios show that the number of people living in the low-elevation coastal zone, as well as the number of people exposed to flooding from 1-in-100 year storm surge events, is highest in Asia. China, India, Bangladesh, Indonesia and Viet Nam are estimated to have the highest total coastal population exposure in the baseline year and this ranking is expected to remain largely unchanged in the future. However, Africa is expected to experience the highest rates of population growth and urbanisation in the coastal zone, particularly in Egypt and sub-Saharan countries in Western and Eastern Africa. The results highlight countries and regions with a high degree of exposure to coastal flooding and help identifying regions where policies and adaptive planning for building resilient coastal communities are not only desirable but essential. Furthermore, we

  11. Future Coastal Population Growth and Exposure to Sea-Level