East Coast a sea level rise hotspot – Yale Climate Connections

Monday, May 18, 2015

When it comes to sea level rise, most of us probably think globally.

DORAN: “That’s what people are most familiar with – is that the ocean is like a bathtub and when we add water from melting land ice or we increase the volume of the water by heating it, the level goes up everywhere.”

But as Kara Doran, an oceanographer with the U.S. Geological Survey explains, sea level rise is not that simple – or that even. Currents, tides, weather patterns, and even land masses themselves affect sea level. Take the Gulf Stream for example.

DORAN: “And when the Gulf Stream weakens, the water sort of sloshes and tilts back toward the coast. So as the Gulf Stream is slowing down, the water level can actually rise along the East Coast of the United States.”

And then there are places where the land is sinking, or subsiding …

…(read more).

Global Climate Change
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