Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Sea level on the rise – in real and virtual worlds

06.02.2007
The climate system, and in particular sea level, may be responding more quickly to rising carbon emissions than climate scientists have estimated with climate models.

An international team of climate scientists has cautioned against suggestions that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has previously overestimated the rate of climate change.

The team, from six institutions around the world, reviewed actual observations of carbon dioxide, temperature and sea level from 1990 to 2006 and compared them with projected changes for the same period.

In a review published in the journal Science today, the authors found that carbon dioxide concentration followed the modelled scenarios almost exactly, that global-mean surface temperatures were in the upper part of the range projected by the IPCC, and that observed sea level has been rising faster than the models had projected and closely followed the IPCC Third Assessment Report upper limit of an 88 cm rise between 1990 and 2100.

“Models of the potential contribution of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets need to be improved to include the potential of a relatively dynamic response,”

Dr Church said.The scientists noted that because the review period (1990-2006) was short, it would be premature to conclude that sea levels will continue to increase at the same rate in the future. However, they also said their findings show that previous projections have not exaggerated the rate of change but may in some respects have underestimated it.

Measurements of carbon dioxide through facilities such as the Australian Bureau of Meteorology’s Cape Grim observatory in Tasmania support the paper’s conclusions. The global average temperature estimates are collated separately by NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies in the USA and the Hadley Centre and Climatic Research Unit in the UK. The sea level observations come from both coastal and island tide gauges and data provided by satellites.

Sea levels have risen largely due to warming of the ocean and the consequent thermal expansion and melting of non-polar glaciers and ice caps and the ice sheets of Antarctica and Greenland.

One of the authors of the review, Dr John Church of the Antarctic Climate & Ecosystems CRC and CSIRO, noted that any (or all) of the modelled contributions could be underestimated but that there is most uncertainty about the contribution made by ice-sheet melts. “Models of the potential contribution of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets need to be improved to include the potential of a relatively dynamic response,” Dr Church said. This work is a component of the Wealth from Oceans Flagship, an initiative of CSIRO to more broadly understand the impact of marine climate change.

Lead author of the review was Dr Stefan Ramstorf, of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, Potsdam, Germany; with contributing authors: Dr Anny Cazenave, Toulouse France; Dr John Church, Antarctic Climate and Ecosystem CRC and CSIRO; Dr James Hansen at NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, USA; Drs Ralph E. Keeling and Richard C.J. Somerville, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UCSD, USA; and, Dr David E. Parker, Hadley Centre, Met Office, UK.

Craig Macaulay | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.csiro.au/csiro/content/standard/ps2q2.html

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Successful calculation of human and natural influence on cloud formation
04.11.2016 | Goethe-Universität Frankfurt am Main

nachricht Invasive Insects Cost the World Billions Per Year
04.10.2016 | University of Adelaide

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Significantly more productivity in USP lasers

In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.

Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...

Im Focus: Shape matters when light meets atom

Mapping the interaction of a single atom with a single photon may inform design of quantum devices

Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

Simple processing technique could cut cost of organic PV and wearable electronics

06.12.2016 | Materials Sciences

3-D printed kidney phantoms aid nuclear medicine dosing calibration

06.12.2016 | Medical Engineering

Robot on demand: Mobile machining of aircraft components with high precision

06.12.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>