KlimaCampus Kolloquium: Between climate change and fairway deepening: How do models contribute to the development of sustainable future scenarios for the Elbe estuary and the region

Corinna Schrum, Johannes Pein, Moritz Mathis, Insa Meinke, Ralf Weisse

@Helmholtz-Zentrum Hereon, Institute of Coastal Systems -Analysis and Modeling and University of Hamburg 

How will climate change impact the Elbe estuary and what are the implications for the city of Hamburg and the port? This is a central question for long-term planning and climate adaptation measures of Hamburg. The Elbe estuary and the harbor is a system, that is influenced by different socio-economic and climate drivers. Climate drivers control the dynamics of the estuary through the water balance in the catchment area and through sea level at the river mouth. Biogeochemical dynamics and sediment transport are moreover controlled by temperature and nutrient loads. However, climate pressures are not the only drivers of the Elbe estuary, the estuary is also a massively engineered system. Substantial fairway deepening over more than a century but also coastal protection, dikes, punctures and changes of the course of the estuary represent an even stronger control of the Elbe estuarine dynamics.

Today`s management of the estuary takes place in a framework characterized by different federal-state responsibilities. In addition to coastal protection needs and economic objectives it also needs to serve ecological objectives. Conflicting interests and trade-offs often exist and the complex and sometimes unpredicted behavior of the estuarine system complicates management and implementation of climate adaptation measures.      

We here present a model framework that can support the exploration of adaptation options.

The framework couples a global climate model with regional focus and additional sea level rise contributions to a high-resolution estuary model. The framework resolves the most important drivers and feedbacks and meets the level of detail and accuracy requirements needed for planning processes.

Please register at: www.klimacampus-hamburg.de/klimacampus-colloquium/




15:15 Uhr


Virtual Seminar


Corinna Schrum, Helmholtz-Zentrum Hereon


Axel Andersson

Zur Übersicht