KlimaCampus Kolloquium: Understanding Sea-Level Rise

Over the last decade, there has been significant progress in estimating historical sea-level change and understanding the reasons for sea-level change during the 20th century. This includes improved information on sea level in the last interglacial period, and the late Holocene. Data from salt-marsh sea-level records and instrumental records indicate an increase in the rate of global averaged sea-level rise from the 18th to the 20th century. Ocean thermal expansion and the loss of mass from glaciers are the two largest contributors to 20th century sea level change. It is now possible to close the sea level budget using observations alone since 1993 and using a combination of observations and models since 1900. The importance of ocean thermal expansion implies a need to understand the rate of energy storage in the ocean (the largest energy store in the climate system). The improved ability to understand 20th century sea-level rise implies greater confidence in projections of 21st century global mean sea level. There is a considerable regional variability in the rate of rise but at the moment we only have a partial understanding of this regional distribution. Changes in mean sea level have significant implications for changes in the frequency of coastal flooding events.




15:15 h


Bundesstr. 53, room 022/023
Seminar Room 022/023, Ground Floor, Bundesstrasse 53, 20146 Hamburg, Hamburg


John Church, Centre for Australian Weather and Climate Research / CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research


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