The findings indicate that glacial rebound — the rise or fall of land masses that were depressed by the huge weight of ice sheets during the last glacial period — explains differences in relative sea levels along the English coast.
Current sea levels in Northeast England, the most northerly study area, have been receding to their present level for the past 4,000 years. Unlike Northeast England, however, the Tees Estuary, Humber Estuary, Lincolnshire Marshes, Fenlands and North Norfolk area all reveal sea-level histories trending upward during the past 10,000 years.
Using data from sediment cores up to 20 meters deep, researchers found that sediment compaction explained the variations in sea-level observations at every study area, revealing striking correlations to the thickness of overlying sediment.
Coastal subsidence enhances recent sea-level rise, which leads to shoreline erosion and threatens to permanently submerge socio-economically and environmentally valuable wetlands. Yet the causes of subsidence remain controversial, and estimates of subsidence rates vary widely. This collaborative study offers insight into the future behavior of these environmental systems and is an effort to inform policy and management decisions for coastal protection.
“Rising sea levels threaten to permanently submerge wetland environments,” said Benjamin P. Horton, assistant professor in the Department of Earth and Environmental Science at Penn. “Management decisions regarding the best way to intervene to protect these environments depend upon empirically informed, scientific data for each of the processes operating in wetland systems, including sediment compaction. This is a high-profile topic, which is subject to a great deal of controversy, especially concerning the on-going discussions of why deltas around the world are losing wetlands at a particularly alarming rate.”
The study is published in the current issue of the journal Geology and was supported by funding from the National Science Foundation and the Natural Environment Research Council.
It was performed by Horton and by Ian Shennan of the Department of Geography at Durham University in the United Kingdom.
Jordan Reese | EurekAlert!
Multi-year study finds 'hotspots' of ammonia over world's major agricultural areas
17.03.2017 | University of Maryland
Diabetes Drug May Improve Bone Fat-induced Defects of Fracture Healing
17.03.2017 | Deutsches Institut für Ernährungsforschung Potsdam-Rehbrücke
Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.
The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.
Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...
Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.
Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...
In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...
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