If Sea Level Was Rising, Wouldn’t Someone Have Noticed?

Images spanning 130 years show non-effects of sea level rise

By Steve Goddard

https://i2.wp.com/news.bbc.co.uk/nol/shared/spl/hi/pop_ups/07/uk_enl_1185603003/img/1.jpg

Above, imaginary alarmist imagery: London Drowning from the BBC

One of my favorite CAGW climochondrias is worry about sea level.  From Wikipedia:

Hypochondriasis (or hypochondria, often referred to as health phobia or health anxiety) refers to an excessive preoccupation or worry about having a serious illness. Often, hypochondria persists even after a physician has evaluated a person and reassured them that their concerns about symptoms do not have an underlying medical basis or, if there is a medical illness, the concerns are far in excess of what is appropriate for the level of disease.

From National Geographic :

Warming to Cause Catastrophic Rise in Sea Level?
Stefan Lovgren for National Geographic News
Updated April 26, 2004
Most scientists agree that global warming presents the greatest threat to the environment. There is little doubt that the Earth is heating up. From the melting of the ice cap on Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa’s tallest peak, to the loss of coral reefs as oceans become warmer, the effects of global warming are often clear.  However, the biggest danger, many experts warn, is that global warming will cause sea levels to rise dramatically.

The esteemed Dr. Hansen has made the threat clear :

a study led by James Hansen, the head of the climate science program at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York and a professor at Columbia University, suggests that current estimates for how high the seas could rise are way off the mark – and that in the next 100 years melting ice could sink cities in the United States to Bangladesh.

That sounds serious.  New Year’s Eve in Manhattan could be rough if Times Square was underwater.

But I keep thinking that if sea level was rising significantly, some of the billions of people who live along the coasts might have noticed?  My favorite snorkeling beach in California is The Cove in La Jolla.  I first went there around 1960, when Raquel Welch (Tejada at the time) was named Homecoming Queen at La Jolla High School.  I went snorkeling there again last summer.  The beach is still there and hasn’t changed.  Below is a photo of The Cove from 1871.

https://www.sandiegohistory.org/timeline/images/80-2860.jpg

And a recent photo :

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/da/090207-LaJollaCove.jpg

And here is the animation with the two images matched to scale and overlaid:
(click on the image to see animation if is is not visible)

A lot of erosion has occurred over the last 130 years.  In the blink animation above (click on the image to see animation) note that the rock under the three people standing on the right in the 1871 image is gone, and has formed a small island of boulders with three people sitting on it in the recent image. There is no evidence that sea level has risen.

A few Palm Trees have been planted, but the sea appears to be in exactly the same place it was 130 years ago.  In fact the rocks on the upper right are higher above the water now than in the earlier picture (high tide.)  There is no glacial rebound in San Diego, and the faults in the region are strike-slip (horizontal) faults.  They don’t cause vertical movement.  Prior to the March quake this year, the last large quake to hit the region was in 1862.

Earthquake map for La Jolla and La Jolla Shores

http://quake.usgs.gov/recenteqs/FaultMaps/117-33.gif

The land in La Jolla hasn’t moved up or down in the last 130 years.  Neither has the ocean.  Where is this sea level catastrophe happening?  On a sandbar?   At current melt rates, it will take 300,000 years for Antarctica to melt.

Often, hypochondria persists even after a physician has evaluated a person and reassured them that their concerns about symptoms do not have an underlying medical basis or, if there is a medical illness, the concerns are far in excess of what is appropriate for the level of disease.

WUWT has hundreds of thousands of readers around the world.  If any of you have personally seen sea level rise at your favorite beach over the last few decades, please speak up!


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289 thoughts on “If Sea Level Was Rising, Wouldn’t Someone Have Noticed?

  1. If a single cool day/month/year/decade doesn’t invalidate AGW, can we also be told that a single site where the sea didn’t rise doesn’t invalidate the rising of the oceans? Or did the president keep his campaign promise to stop the seas from rising?

  2. Bridges and wharves are a good reference point.

    I go a bridge out on an estuary fairly regularly (Raglan, NZ). I caught fish off it nearly 40 years ago. If the sea level has risen in that time, it has been very minor.

  3. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Current_sea_level_rise

    “Current sea level rise has occurred at a mean rate of 1.8 mm per year for the past century.” This explains why people haven’t noticed it. The concern is for the future. If this rate remains constant there is indeed little to fear. But, it is not constant. Hansen’s views are extreme however, but that does not mean he is wrong.

    REPLY: Actually he’s dead wronger than wrong about sea level rise prediction, at least in his own back yard. See this prediction from the good doctor twenty years ago that we covered last year. It was a prediction about New York City, just a couple of blocks from his office. Hansen said:

    “Then he explained, “The West Side Highway [which runs along the Hudson River] will be under water.”

    See this: A little known 20 year old climate change prediction by Dr. James Hansen – that failed badly

    Of course you won’t see the NYT or the Guardian mention his big dead wrong prediction. Only here – Anthony

  4. Why are you confusing the issue with the facts? LOL – Great animation! Looks like the cove actually gained some real estate since the 1800’s.

    Wonder if Gore’s new ocean front digs are going to suffer the same fate?

  5. In South Bethany Beach, Delaware there is a network of canals that are connected to the ocean through a series of bays and channels. These filter out the tidal variation like RC low-pass circuits — the daily tides do not impact these canals at all. Thus, no one builds floating docks and everyone knows that sea level hasn’t changed appreciably in decades.

    This only goes back far enough but it’s a start.

    Then there’s this:

    http://www.john-daly.com/deadisle/index.htm

  6. The problem really is that the sea level signals is so small in reality, that you’d be unable to detect it without careful monitoring.

    And of course, where there are large signals, it isn’t due to global warming (whether catastrophic and man-made or not) but geological processes.

  7. Dunster Castle

    Dunster Castle is the historical home of the Luttrell family located in the small town of Dunster, Somerset, England There has been a castle at the top of the hill at Dunster for more than 1,000 years. The Domesday Book records one on this location before 1066. During the early medieval period the sea reached the base of the hill offering a natural defence, and strong walls, towers, ramparts and outworks protected the other sides. By the 15th century the sea had receded and the Luttrells created the deer park.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dunster_Castle

    Dunster Castle is now about a mile from the sea:
    http://maps.google.co.uk/maps?hl=en&q=dunster%20somerset

  8. “But, it is not constant.”

    Ah, the myth of increasing sea level rise – yet another measurement artifact from stitching together two data series from different systems. Use the same series over the entire record, and the increase goes away. See, eg, here

  9. I’ve been following the CAGW story for about 30 years. At some point even a true believer might expect to see some actual evidence. A claimed global temperature rise of a few tenths of a degree somehow doesn’t keep me awake at night.

    Oh yea, I forgot about the Arctic death spiral.

  10. Mike,
    1.8mm/yr over 130 years translates to 234 mm, about 9.2 inches. Most places that swing will get blurred by the tidal swings, but the evidence for even this amount of increase is not that good.
    Coastal silting and post glacial rebound complicate the trustworthiness of the older measurements, but in Europe, many formerly great ports are now landlocked cities, not harbors.
    The late John Daly used a mean low water mark on the Tasmanian shore chiseled into the rock in 1854 as the frontispiece of his website http://www.john-daly.com/
    It indicates the sea level has fallen about one meter since the mark has set, or the island has risen as much.

  11. This is the daily MSL from Halifax, Nova Scotia from 1920-2009. It looks like sea-level rise to me.

  12. Couldn’t we begin reclaiming some of the topsoil from the Mississippi River delta by dredging the sediment, putting it on the empty unit trains that haul coal down from Montana and Wyoming to powerplants in the South, and thereby reduce this startling rise in sea level? I bet we could dig fast enougth to offset the increase. Sounds like a win-win to me; I don’t want to see New York City or London flooded for that matter. Name the project Urgent Sea Soil Reclamation (USSR). Plant some trees; sequester some carbon; charge the taypayer.

  13. 44 years ago, when I was about 12 my parents used to take me to King Island off Wellington point (search for “king island conservation park” on Google maps). We walked along the sandbar to the island at low tide but had to get back before high tide when the water would be waste deep on an adult. I took my son there and it was the same. I’ve been there recently and there’s no noticeable difference. The steps down to the sand and the rock wall are unchanged.

    The only examples I’ve read about of significant sea level rises are coral atolls and mud islands in estuaries.

    We’ve been trying to buy waterfront land near Wellington Point, but despite Global Warming, it’s all too expensive. Obviously most people around here don’t believe Gore.

  14. Ken Gotski

    Water is extremely fluid. It isn’t very good at forming hills.

    If the volume of the ocean is increasing, it has to be a global phenomena.

  15. Popoia Island (Flat Island) off Kailua beach on the Island of Oahu in Hawaii is a flat island. It does not look different now than it did when I lived there in 1956. If ever there were a bit of world at risk by sea level rise it would be this spot. Yet it is still a nesting spot for sea birds and will be for a long time to come.

    On the other hand, the sea walls built along Lanikai have created a mess – the sandy beaches are gone, not because of sea level rise, but because sea walls cause the ocean to scrub away the beach leaving nothing behind but the wall.

    Take the tour with Rabb: http://www.hotspotshawaii.com/irhpages/whereslanikaibeach/index.html (DSL connection – can be slow!)

  16. The ice that’s melting in Canada must be letting the entire North American continent rise by the exact same amount to compensate… either that or North America is floating in the ocean.

    [:)]

  17. Don’t the La Jolla photos need to have been taken at the same tidal phase to make a meaningful comparison?

    REPLY: We don’t know that they are or are not. Large changes, such as the oft cited “catastrophic sea level rise” are not evident. -A

  18. I’ve been going to beaches in the Florida Keys to snorkel since 1972. One in particular, Little Duck Key, is a very low-lying beach with a very gradual incline from the shoreline. Even 2.7 inches of sea level rise (1.8mm * 38 years) should cause a significant decrease in the land area, yet the beach is no smaller than when I first went there.

  19. “If any of you have personally seen sea level rise at your favorite beach over the last few decades, please speak up!”

    Anthony: Check with the Newshour’s Heidi Cullen. She put Laura Devendorf on national TV May 19 of last year with the following unrebutted statement:

    LAURA DEVENDORF, Sunbury, Georgia: We’re worried about sea level rise, indeed. I think everyone on the coast is. You can just sit there and see the tides getting bigger.

    Complete text at:
    http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/environment/jan-june09/georgiacoal_05-19.html

    Laura must have pretty good eyes…. : > !

  20. Many times erosion or subsidence is taken to be proof of sea level rise. Consider how we’re wrecking the Mississippi delta with levees for flood control. The Chesapeake bay has numerous islands some of which are disappearing more from simple erosion than anything else. Same thing with barrier islands (sand bars) which use to move but because we’ve built on them we’ve attempted to stabilize the unstable.

  21. GeoFlynx

    If sea level rise has to be measured in millimeters, perhaps it is not so catastrophic after all?

    Perhaps the measured error is greater than the trend?

  22. In one lifetime I doubt anyone would notice, but there is the concern that future generations will suffer. But how many adults still live in the house where they were born, the same neighborhood, or even the same city? And even if the sea were to rise most infrastructure would need to be replaced long before the water got there.

  23. Saw the picture of a flooded (and, if I predict the predictions these days, probably doomed too) London and thought…

    London bridge is gonna drown
    Gonna drown, gonna drown…

    Anyway, if I see any sea level rises, I’ll let you know! :-)

  24. Sea level rise is not uniform around the world. In some places, like around the Maldives, the sea level is declining. This makes the claims about the Maldives being imperiled by sea level rise both a lie and a stunt. A large region of the Indian Ocean (where Maldives are situated) has shown a measurable decline over the period 1950-2000, and the rate of decline measured by satellite altimetry exceeds 10mm per year in places.

    Sea level all along the west coast of USA is stable or declining. At La Jolla it is very slightly declining. Check out the facts in paper by John A. Church et al (Journal of Climate, July 2004).

    Church shows that most regions of the oceans are stable or in slight decline, but there are some regions with steep increases, especially around Indonesia. So we have the same situation as ‘global temperature’ – we can have most of the globe with stable or declining temperatures, but the ‘global average’ can be record high due to a local hotspot, as we saw in Canada earlier this year. So it is with sea level – a relatively small region around Indonesia dominates to give a ‘global average’ sea level rise. But for most of the world – no change!

    Doubtless there are statistical artifacts, and then there is calibration by a tide gauge in Hong Kong which is subsiding. So we have the marine equivalent of UHI as well!

    See all this and more in my post here (which includes some figures):

    http://buythetruth.wordpress.com/2008/11/15/sea-level-scam/

  25. Who needs science when you can make fantasy photoshopped images of London drowning? The sort of creative and imaginary science one comes to expect of the full color Sunday newspaper supplements … or the comics. So much sexier than mundane facts. Meanwhile, photos from nearly 140 years ago aren’t very useful unless they show extensive fields of ice that have since melted. Images of an unchanging landscape (or seascape) just don’t drive scare stories (and print media circulation).

  26. pho99 says:
    May 1, 2010 at 4:30 pm

    The simple answer to the tides in the photos is to look at places where there was/is soil.
    If the sea were truly rising catastropically, then the soil/sand line would recede as ever higher sea levels led to storms/tides that continued to wash off more soil.
    Look at the horse & carraige in Steve’s photos. Is that land is still there?

  27. I thought that the issue of sea level rise was global average. Can you tell me why a single spot matters in that context?

  28. The U.S. Gulf Coast has rising sea levels, but not from global warming and ocean volume expansion. It’s due to land subsidence, defined as “the lowering of the surface of the Earth with respect to a datum or point of reference.”

    From the American Geophysical Union (2006): http://www.agu.org/report/hurricanes/subsidence.html

    “An enormous volume of debris eroded from the Rocky Mountains and the Appalachians is carried by the waters of the Mississippi [River]. Upon entering the Gulf of Mexico, the river slows to a stop and the sediments come to rest, forming the Mississippi River delta. Over time, the Gulf of Mexico basin has accumulated an aggregate thickness of sedimentary deposits of nearly 60,000 feet (more than 10 miles). This massive pile of sediments at the edge of the continent has two characteristics. First, its colossal weight has depressed and continues to depress the Earth’s crust. Second, the pile of sediment is weak and unable to support itself laterally. Over time, large tracts of the unstable pile have been displaced southward along sloping faults.

    Geological and geophysical investigations have shown that subsidence is widespread, extending beyond the Mississippi River delta and coast, and is occurring more rapidly than previously thought. Several natural and human-related processes are known to be causing subsidence in the Gulf Coast today.”

    Also, regarding the before-and-after La Jolla cove photos, I urge caution on drawing conclusions. The impact of the local tide at the time of each photo can give erroneous results. For example, if the earlier photo was taken at high tide, and the more recent photo taken at low tide, there would have been considerable overall sea level rise. On May 13th – 14th of this year, the difference between high tide and low tide will be 7 feet at La Jolla, at the new moon. (high tide of 6 feet on 4/13 at 9:14 p.m., and low tide of -1 feet on 4/14 at 4:17 a.m.) The high-low tide difference will be 7.5 feet two weeks later, when the moon is full.

  29. The assertion that LaJolla seems stable (strike slip don’t cause uplift? (not so)) and a good proxy for sea level NOT rising doesn’t seem quite right to me. Is that what you are saying?

    Matching photos (not referenced to tides?) doesn’t seem to be proof to me. Sorry – I’m skeptical – lots of evidence to the contrary in other places (stable and with continuous measure).

    Further, one shouldn’t confuse relative sea level rise with absolute sea level rise.

    Changes in relative sea level might occur due changes in subsidence (due to ground water withdrawal, faulting, etc), sediment supply and land use / cover changes (stabilization and deforestation).

    These are not proof of sea level rise.

  30. Hush! I’m hoping that the hype will cause seaside real estate to drop to the level where I can buy my own shoreline!

  31. The seawalls and improvements at Nawiliwili and Ahukini Harbors , Kauai ,remain exactly at the level they were constructed by eye measure. The former 90 years in place, the latternow a park, well over a hundred.

  32. Been saying this for years has anyone noticed it getting hotter or colder over the past 20 years?. More storms less storms?, more rain less rain?, No, you haven’t and you never will because you will not live long enough to notice climate change which occurs over 1000’s of years and reverts to default status every time anyway until the sun explodes LOL.

  33. Are we arguing that sea levels are not rising now? Because they most certainly are.

    Better arguments might be that sea levels have been rising for at least 150 years (probably much longer), that the rate of sea level rise has slightly decreased over the last few year and was rising much, much faster in the distant pass, and that the amount of sea level rise is dwarfed by other natural factors we already deal with, such as tides.

  34. Two things to note in your photos. The modern picture was taken at low tide by the look of the rocks in the foreground. Second is that people in the past appear to be a lot taller. Clearly there is some distortion in the photos and they may have been taken from different vantage points. Tidal gauge readings and records in this area of California are available would give a much more convincing record of sea level changes.

  35. Unfortunately Anthony has stopped inline images from being put into comments. Here goes another attempt

    This is the daily MSL from Halifax, Nova Scotia from 1920-2009. It looks like sea-level rise to me.

    REPLY: Unfortunately JohnA is blaming me for something I didn’t do and have no control over since this blog is hosted on wordpress.com, who control how blogs and content are viewed. Also – I never had the feature for commenters, though administrators and editors (like Willis) can put inline images in. – Anthony

  36. @ stevengoddard says: “Water is extremely fluid. It isn’t very good at forming hills.”

    I believe the Maldives is below Mean Sea Level, so I guess sailing outta there is uphill ;-) Mind you, local sea level in the Maldives was higher during the Little Ice Age.

  37. Steve Goddard said

    Water is extremely fluid. It isn’t very good at forming hills.

    Actually, that’s not quite true. Water levels react to air pressure as well as tidal forces. If you have a low pressure cell then the water will ramp up a bit higher under it. In the same way, a high pressure cell will depress the ocean surface.

    You can and do get regions with different mean air pressures and the water levels behave accordingly.

    In the extreme case of hurricanes the low pressure causes much higher water levels – the storm surge.

  38. GeoFlynx

    People wore hats in the 19th century.

    I carefully scaled the images from the rocks on the bottom to the top of the cliff. The recent picture was taken from slightly higher on the same hill.

    My best friend’s family owned all of that property 100 years ago.

  39. The beach I am most famialiar with is on Port Phillip Bay, Mebourne, Australia. I have been going to Altona beach for over 50 years and sea levels do not appear to have altered. The high water mark on the pier is as it has always been. Admittingly I probably would not have noticed 0.9mm rise.

  40. Has anyone attempted to compute sea level rise due to freshwater sedimentation and/or the planetary accretion of extraterrestrial material? -add another stone to the soup!

  41. Steve,
    I’m absolutely with you on this.
    I live on the east coast of Australia and 47 years ago I helped build a reinforced concrete sea wall about about four chains [80 metres, 264 feet] long in a coastal estuary on alluvial sand. It was on a family property and we built the bottom step of this wall at the then well known king tide level. This step is also four chains long and today it is all still straight and true so there has been little or no movement.
    I have checked the twice-yearly king tides [as well as many others] over that near half century and the only ones that have come above that step are when they coincide with a cyclone and/or a flood .
    They often do not reach that step.
    The last king tide in midsummer [which was also rated as a HAT {highest astronomical tide}] was 20 cms [about 8 inches] below that step.
    Various harbour improvements over that half century hav increased the tidal flow and this has reduced the low tides, increased the mean tides but has not affected the high tides except to possibly make them higher due to possible surge.
    It has not made them lower yet they are lower.

    Not too much SLR here!

  42. magicjava says:
    May 1, 2010 at 5:25 pm
    Are we arguing that sea levels are not rising now? Because they most certainly are.

    Better arguments might be that sea levels have been rising for at least 150 years (probably much longer), that the rate of sea level rise has slightly decreased over the last few year and was rising much, much faster in the distant pass, and that the amount of sea level rise is dwarfed by other natural factors we already deal with, such as tides.”

    OK
    So one of the main arguments was that low-lying countries such as Bangladesh would be inundated within a very short period. Yet Bangladesh has been GROWING in land area.

    Similarly, London, Amsterdam and Venice are all very close to sea level – yet have not been inundated. Nor were they inundated in the medieval warm period or Roman optimum. Perhaps the AGW proponents are too close to Holywood calamity film makers?

  43. The data I have seen say that the 20’th. century saw an 8-inch rise in sea level. The two centuries before that saw a rise of roughly 12 inches each. More significantly, sea level rise for the past 12,000 years, since the end of the last glaciation, has been about 360 feet. That equates to an average rise of 3-feet per century. Most likely, the rate of rise was even faster initially, then slowing to the more recent rates. It would appear that the rate of rise is trending toward zero. In past warm interglacials, sea level has been 20-feet higher than at present.

  44. The water level is lower in the recent picture. The best point of reference is the small rock island on the right side.

    Subsidence would have the opposite effect of making sea level appear to rise. The Cove is protected and gets very small waves. That is one reason why it is good for snorkeling.

    (Posting from my Droid.)

  45. Well, I for one, have seen an alarming rise of water near where I live.

    The water level in my water feature (in the back yard) has risen 6 inches just this winter!

    At this rate, my entire neighborhood will be part of my water feature in only 20 years!

    ….. or… I could open the drain.

  46. [quote Ian W says:
    So one of the main arguments was that low-lying countries such as Bangladesh would be inundated within a very short period. Yet Bangladesh has been GROWING in land area.
    [/quote]

    All valid arguments, none of which require us to claim that sea levels are not rising when it’s demonstrable that they are.

    It’s one thing to say that rising sea levels are not a major, or even a minor, problem. It’s another to claim sea levels aren’t rising.

  47. Hoskibui

    If you know of a beach which is being drowned, please post the information.

  48. Another great reality check. But we’re probably just at the tipping point and things will kick in to catastrophic mode starting, say, next Tuesday.

    Love this from Willis: “every wave is much bigger than the change in sea level over the last 140 years.”

    So many crises per day. It must get tiring.

  49. Magicjava

    Some places sea level is rising a little. Other places it is falling a little. Hansen is talking about drowning cities.

  50. In the 70’s I lived for a while in the village of Bosham, in Sussex, England. This is the place where King Canute (Cnut) allegedly commanded the sea to go back. (I tried it too, but it didn’t work.)

    The houses on the southern side of the main street are directly exposed to the tide. From the back verandah, I could sit on the steps with my feet in the sea. The following painting is dated 1888, and the scene is remarkably similar to the present day.

    http://www.easyart.com/canvas-prints/Charles-William-Wyllie/All-On-A-Summers's-Day,-At-Bosham,-Sussex-215878.html

    Those houses have been there for at least 300 years, and the village has been there for more than 1000 years. The Saxon church (10th century) is built on the site of a previous Roman basilica.

    How fortunate we are that no one had the benefit of advice from the very wonderful James Hansen, otherwise none of this would exist.

  51. Glad to see this post, Steven. I was born in La Jolla and have surfed, swam, and snorkeled at various spots around town as a returning visitor. The Cove has a special magic for most who have spent a few hours in its waters — and is quite stable as you point out.

    I have written about similar firsthand knowledge of the coast in the past for any who are interested:

    http://talkingabouttheweather.wordpress.com/2009/03/21/sea-level-essentially-unchanged-yawn/

  52. Living memory is not enough to notice the amount of sea level rise.
    Not in the 50 years I have seen my favorite beaches has there been any.
    Sure is nice to see before/after comparisons.
    Puts the squash to catastrophic.

  53. Here’s the USGS definition of sea level change: “Sea-level change
    Variation in the relative vertical position of land and ocean waters. Caused globally by changes in the distribution of ice masses and the shape of the oceans, and locally by the rate of uplift or subsidence of the land surface. Includes both global (eustatic) and local (relative) sea-level variations.”

    I take from this that the term “sea level” in and of itself denotes absolutely nothing about the volume of water in the ocean. No local measurement is important at all, because one first has to determine whether the land is rising or falling. Also, I notice that continental drift also plays a factor, since they include “the shape of the oceans.” In addition, even this definition ignores possible shifts in the land level at the ocean floor. So even if we had a satellite that could monitor the distance from the center of the earth to the average surface of the ocean, this could not tell us whether the volume of water had changed. Finally, the volume of ocean water is affected by its temperature. Given all these complex variables, some of which we cannot yet measure (such as shifts in the floor of deep oceans), I doubt whether it’s possible even to measure changes in the volume (or, more importantly, the mass) of ocean water.

  54. This is what I’ve been arguing for years. I live in Florida on salt water, and the water has not rising in my entire lifetime. Long-term residents of Key West–the most obvious Florida canary in the coal mine–can also testify to the fact that the seas are not rising. Key West, just as where I live, is at sea level.

    Beach erosion, especially during tropical storms, sometimes requires beaches to be replenished with fresh sand (Key West doesn’t really have any beaches, unless one wants to define “beach” very generously), but this has been going on for a century, and in all that time the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic have not gained an inch in height.

    With all the scare stories, and the hundreds of millions of people who believe them, why have none come forward with evidence of local rising seas? All we get, instead, are charlatans in the Maldives pretending the water is rising in order to get millions of dollars from other governments, and stories about a sandbar in India swamped by overdevelopment along shores, but described by the AGW hucksters as an “island sinking as a result of global warming.” Meanwhile, Al Gore buys three salt waterfront properties for millions of dollars each, while telling the rest of the world that all coastal areas are doomed.

    Warmists ignore the empirical evidence and stick with their models. One even told me that homogenized and otherwise adjusted satellite data on sea level rise was far more reliable than what I could see with my own eyes and measure with my own stick. Many of these people do not live on the ocean and have no point of comparison, but what excuse do the others have?

  55. [quote Steve Goddard says:
    Some places sea level is rising a little. Other places it is falling a little.
    [/quote]

    True. And overall, sea levels are going up. Not much, but up none the less.

    [quote]
    Hansen is talking about drowning cities.
    [/quote]

    And the way to debunk that claim is with the facts, not with exaggerations in the opposite direction.

    REPLY: Wrong brackets

  56. Steve Goddard says: “Hansen is talking about drowning cities.”

    And he’s got photographic evidence from a documentary by Nobel prize winner.

  57. When winds, tides, barometric pressure, floods etc. mound up SLs in any part of the ocean a current of considerable speed quickly develops to return SLs to equilibrium.
    So levels are changing all the time but not for long.
    But I wonder how accurate are our measuring devices when the earth is a pear-shaped geoid with flat spots and the satellites would be hard pressed to maintain a parallel orbit.
    I suspect these SLs are only known to within a couple of inches and a good ol’ GCM takes over from there.
    IOW it’s a statistical exercise.
    Anybody know about the finer details of these measurements?

  58. I’m finding that the time between hitting the “Post Comment” button and the time the post shows up has increased greatly in the new format. It’s a disappointment.

  59. Typically, in the temperate zone, the tidal range is a couple of metres. In La Jolla, where the photos are, it is 1.8 metres. Jevrejeva estimates the change between the two pictures at around a quarter of a metre …

    Given that, you’d have to take the pictures at exactly the same stage of the tide, and even then it would be very tough to see the change, since every wave is much bigger than the change in sea level over the last 140 years.

    Which should tell people something … but hasn’t …

  60. I remember when I heard about the Glacier Bay glaciers having retreated since they were discovered. I was prompted to think like a warmest. I was dismayed.
    Forgot all about it when I was privileged to work on a ship in the Bay several years later. circa 1970
    btw, than tks for reminding me, 45 years ago I got to snorkel at that cove too.

    What is it that makes people so crazy about seeing things not change? Ah, were these people that naive. Afraid they have motivations more wicket than Shakespeare could express.

  61. Here in New Zealand on the news (t.v) a school is using the kids to raise money to move another school in Somoa because of the rising sea levels . A good way of getting a new school when the Samoan government cant afford it.

  62. My problem with almost all of the maps of sea surface height data is that they tend to display everything in terms of anomalies from some , usually not well defined mean surface height, rather than absolute elevations, For most purposes anomalies are probably more useful than absolute elevations, but they tend to implicitly disguise the true range of variability in sea level around the planet. After quite a number of false trails I finally managed to locate the type of map I was looking for.

    It shows the SSH as anomalies from the geoid rather than from local averages. You’ll note that the range of sea levels is variable over a range of nearly 3.5 meters and this is merely the latest image and in no way reflects the extremes of historical variation. When it comes to masses of water as large as the ocean’s of the world, water is definitely capable of forming rather substantial hills.

  63. Lay your hand and forearm flat on the desk. The back of your wrist is now about 50 mm off the surface. At the current rate of rise – 3.2 mm/year, says the U. of Colorado – it will take 16 years to cover your hand.

  64. The late John L Daly has a photo of the mean sea level mark left by Captn. Sir James Clark Ross at the Isle of the Dead in Tasmania Australia in 1841

    image
    Photo taken at low tide 20 Jan 2004.
    Mark is 50 cm across; tidal range is less than a metre. © John L. Daly.
    link here

  65. Even the university of Colorado only says the sea level rise is 3.2 MM per year or 1 cigarette length in 30 years.

    Dr. Nils-Axel Mörner claims that even this amount has been “adjusted” to match faulty tide gauges. He thinks 1.1 MM per year is more accurate.

    He also mentioned an interesting fact, that we should be able to measure a slowing down of the planet’s rotation proportional to the sea level rise.

    It is like a figure skater letting her arms go out and she slows down.

    With atomic clocks this effect should be measurable and any other source adjusted for.

    Has this been done?

  66. Anton,
    Very well said. I offer the same evidence for Daytona Beach, going back to the fifties. I would like to suggest that eyeball evidence is the most reliable. Daytona Beach slopes gently down from the dunes to the Atlantic. The sand on the beach moves all the time and ordinary storms move it considerably. Yet the overall beach, the beach stretching for miles, has a shape, a topology, that is unmistakable to the experienced and loving eye. As high tide climbs up the beach, its peak is very easy to measure because the foam spreads itself over surfaces that have become mostly flat. On these flat or nearly flat surfaces, a rise in sea level of one inch would cause the foam to extend another ten or twenty feet. It has not happened. Nothing like that has happened. If it had happened, I would be beside myself with grief.

  67. Leon Brozyna says:
    May 1, 2010 at 4:57 pm

    Who needs science when you can make fantasy photoshopped images of London drowning?

    The same people who need dodgy models to tell that we are all gonna broil?

  68. magicjava writes:

    “All valid arguments, none of which require us to claim that sea levels are not rising when it’s demonstrable that they are.”

    Can you demonstrate it without using statistics? Without using contrived bundles of measurements rather than actual empirical measurements? I didn’t think so.

  69. Oh dear, Anthony, you have inflamed my premiere pet peeve. “… if sea level was rising …” is a subjunctive phrase. “If sea level were rising” is the correct English.

  70. Wet Blanket Larry’s stoopid question of the day:
    In the not-too-distant past, there were oil wells in the Long Beach area. What about the San Diego area? If yes, then compaction could have canceled out sea-level rise.

  71. Steve:
    I used to take my vacations during either high of preferably low tide events to walk the beaches along the California coast. I was able tho see the tides come in (sea level rise) and the tides go out (sea level retreat). Studying tide tables to find extreme events provided an understanding of natural variability.

  72. I’ve just been idling away some time on the site where I found the map I referenced in my comment above. They have an app called Sea Views
    http://bulletin.aviso.oceanobs.com/html/produits/aviso/welcome_uk.php3

    It’s an archive of daily SSH maps from 1992 to the present. Each map has daily max., min., and average noted. Clicking back and forth between various dates throughout the year from 1992 and 2009 and 2010, the difference of the avg. numbers was mostly about 3-4mm and in a not insignificant number of cases ’92 was actually higher than ’09 or ’10. Admittedly the averaging for these maps is probably less rigorous than the methodology used to calculate MSL, but 3mm vs 50+mm for the 3mm/yr supposed trend seems like an unusual large jump to me.

  73. I was pondering the suggestive image of London submerged by the relentlessly encroaching sea when it dawned on me that for that to happen the Brits would have to be stump stupid. There is a nation that has not only faced this problem, but created it from whole cloth.

    I give you Amsterdam – a city built on a seafloor by design and intent. And successfully.
    http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Aerial_photographs_of_Amsterdam

    At 1.8mm/year sea level rise, this is not a problem that is going to come slamming home next week. The photo should be seen as a significant insult to British pluck if not a complete in-your-face declaration of national incompetence. The Brits are every bit as capable of managing this as anyone. Here’s what the forward thinking Dutch are looking at:

    http://www.wired.com/science/planetearth/magazine/17-01/ff_dutch_delta?currentPage=all

    This is not a problem – yes, we have to, at some point, deal with it, but we always would have. It’s the recent and foreseeable trend: http://www.globalwarmingart.com/wiki/File:Recent_Sea_Level_Rise_png

    This would be a problem: http://www.globalwarmingart.com/wiki/File:Post-Glacial_Sea_Level_png

    This is what flooded the Cosquer cave, for example. Nobody’s predicting this as a possibility. In fact I would bet my entire year 2090 wages that the Cosquer cave entrance is exposed by nature long before the sea level rises another 40 meters.

    http://www.culture.gouv.fr/fr/archeosm/en/fr-cosqu1.htm

    Summary: Nothing to see here – move along.

  74. Bought our property on the Pacific Ocean (Ganges Harbour, Salt Spring Island BC CAN ) in 1988. Have not noticed any long term sea level change. Rip Rapped the waterfront to stop bank errosion from boat wash and got beach errosion (as expected). Have noticed some variation in extreme high tide height due to changes in ocean temperature. ( I’m a geologist and thus I notice changes in my physical environment)

  75. Squidly,

    Thanks for that link.
    The late John Daly’s view on Aust SLs tie in with what I have been observing all my life.

  76. Phil M says:

    I normally don’t bother commenting on such ridiculous entries, but since you asked so nicely for someone to give you an example, here ya go:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/03/24/new-moore-island-disappea_n_511162.html

    We’re using distorted, undocumented photographs to do science now? This is a new low (pun intended).

    I don’t know how ironic you were trying to be with this comment,but New Moore Island was a river delta sandbar whose disappearance had nothing to do with rising sea levels.

  77. Good Lord, I’ve been saying this for years! As soon as I hear (and I’ve been hearing it for a long time), that the sea levels are going to drown our cities, I ask for one – just one city to be named where the rising seas have already created problems. The answer I get (lately), is “Well, Palin is dumb!”

    Stupid worthless environmentalist wackos.

  78. Those doubting the scaling in the animation, watch the person in front of the left horse.

    As the images morph, you will see a person appear next to him who is almost exactly the same height.

  79. I live right next to the sea on the South Africa coast of South Africa and have done so on and off for fifty years, since I was a child. I know every rock on the beach like like the back of my hand. If there’s been any rise in sea level in these parts, it certainly hasn’t been obvious to me.

  80. I’m living in Ravenna, Italy and here there are several structures that were built around 500 AD and are currently around 1 -3 meters below grown level. This was part of a river delta and the rivers prograded out towards the sea, so that the nearby port of Classe was on the sea is now landlocked by several miles.

    I would bet that the change in ground level from the 5th to now would be a pretty good proxy for sea level rise over 1500 years, and since the ancient structures here are 1-3 meters gl, sea level rise would be around 1.5 m/1500 years. With almost all of that before present day ravenna (downtown has been pretty static for 200 years)

    http://farsouthofi-10.blogspot.com/2009/10/theodorics-tomb-and-sea-level.html

  81. noaaprogrammer says:
    May 1, 2010 at 5:55 pm

    Has anyone attempted to compute sea level rise due to freshwater sedimentation and/or the planetary accretion of extraterrestrial material? -add another stone to the soup!

    I was curious about this once too. Accounting for the sediment load of the worlds rivers yields an annual sea level rise of about .02 mm per year-not very much.

  82. The word dramatic is being overused dramatically for dramatic effect and yet we’re seeing nothing dramatic in the real world except the dramas of overdramatic journalists, politicians and activists behaving like drama queens.

  83. If anything Steve, there’s more grass and trees in the latter images. What’s up with that? Why are humans turning the world prettier when they are dramatic world destroying monsters?

  84. There are paintings of the various bays, canals and rivers of the world which date back to before the invention of photography. Compare them to their modern equivalents too.

  85. joe,

    Thanks for the information about Ravenna, Italy.

    I’ve never been there, but I am guessing that the sea level rise since 500 AD was probably not associated with generating electricity or driving automobiles!

  86. Steven, do you surf? Cause you seem to have caught the tide just right in the two pictures. :)

  87. John A says:
    May 1, 2010 at 5:34 pmThis is the daily MSL from Halifax, Nova Scotia from 1920-2009. It looks like sea-level rise to me.

    It also looks like it’s slowing down, to me. So much for “accelerating” SL rise.

    But apocalypticism is a time-honored fave—especially when it’s all our fault!

  88. I found another interesting map at the AVISO website. I can’t imbed the image because it doesn’t have a URL, but it’s on this page below the rising sea level graph.
    http://www.aviso.oceanobs.com/en/news/ocean-indicators/mean-sea-level/

    It’s called Regional MSL from Oct-1992 to Jul 2009. It seems to show that the global trend has been driven by a high trend area in the eastern Pacific north and east of Australia. There is also a very intriguing band of globular high trend hotspots in a back round swath of low trend waters across the southern ocean. It would be interesting to know if anyone has a theory about what could generate such a pattern.

  89. Glenn,

    I’m not a surfer, but I am pretty good at breaking Wal-Mart stryofoam boogie boards. My main sport these days is trying to stay upright on my bicycle in the Colorado wind.

  90. Al Gore’s Holy Hologram

    No doubt the world was better off before we had parks, grass, restaurants, electricity and flushing toilets. I think it would have been fun growing up in a world full of Smallpox, Typhoid, Polio, rats, and TB.

    It is simply awful what man has done to this planet.

  91. Everyone, the SL rise has been masked by the syphoning of oil. The two have balanced out. Good thing we stopped drilling recently. Whew, that was a close one, …..

  92. [quote netdr says:]
    He also mentioned an interesting fact, that we should be able to measure a slowing down of the planet’s rotation proportional to the sea level rise. It is like a figure skater letting her arms go out and she slows down.
    Has this been done?
    [/quote]

    Yes. There’s no correlation to sea level rise and Length of Day Delta (LODD). See:
    http://magicjava.blogspot.com/2010/02/more-on-water-vapor-length-of-day-delta.html

    [quote Theo Goodwin says:]
    magicjava writes:

    “All valid arguments, none of which require us to claim that sea levels are not rising when it’s demonstrable that they are.”

    Can you demonstrate it without using statistics? Without using contrived bundles of measurements rather than actual empirical measurements? I didn’t think so.
    [/quote]

    It’s been demonstrated. There really is no valid debate that sea levels are rising.

  93. I hear Al Gore just bought an ocean-view villa on 1.5 acres with a swimming pool at Montecito.

    If he’s not worried, I’m not worried. :-)

  94. GeoFlynx says:
    May 1, 2010 at 4:24 pm
    Real scientists use many precise ways of measuring sea level. Yours is not one of them.

    What are you going to believe – your own eyes (and that of many others posting here) – or “precise” ways of measuring?

    Those disputing the validity of matching the two La Jolla photos might want to look a bit closer. The high water mark is clearly visible on the black and white one. I would suggest that if the water has risen by much since then that the beach is effectively unusable at high tide. I would bet, however, that the high water mark is in the same basic spot.

    Given the shallow slopes of many beaches, any rise in high tide is very noticeable.

  95. Anyone can check sea level rise for themselves by buying an old atlas and comparing the maps of coastlines shown there with the current views available on Google Earth. Even allegedly ‘vulnerable’ locations like the Maldives and Nauru show no visible sea level rise when examined in this way.

  96. Sea levels are rising but not currently enough for anyone to really notice over an average lifetime. On the list of issues that may be of concern related to AGW, sea level rise is probably very low on that list.

    Meanwhile, based on final JAXA data for May 1, current 2010 arctic sea ice is now slightly less than for the same date in 2009 (and doing so a few days earlier than I thought it would). This is still within all margins of error on this data and is only interesting from a statistical persepctive, but I think will get more interesting later in the summer as the summer minimum drops back near (but not quite) to the levels we saw in 2007– around 4.5 Million sq. km. based on JAXA data. The thinner first year ice seems to be melting fast…

  97. I have a sea level anomaly map from NASA on my site, but can no longer find the map on NASA’s site. Does anyone know if this map exists at NASA, and where I can find it?

    http://sowellslawblog.blogspot.com/2009/04/sea-level-decreases-since-1993.html

    The map also shows sea levels decreasing just west of North and South America, and rising to the north of Indonesia. There is also a very curious spot just south of Cape Town, where it appears the water is stacking up then falls off into a hole to the south. If this continues it should be interesting.

  98. Pointe du Hoc, Normandy in 1944 (see the cliff behind)

    Pointe du Hoc in 200X

    Iwo Jima, 1945

    Iwo Jima, 2010

    View from Mount Suribachi on invasion beach, 1945

    and again, 2010

  99. magicjava says:
    May 1, 2010 at 10:52 pm

    [quote netdr says:]

    He also mentioned an interesting fact, that we should be able to measure a slowing down of the planet’s rotation proportional to the sea level rise. It is like a figure skater letting her arms go out and she slows down.
    Has this been done?

    [/quote]
    Yes. There’s no correlation to sea level rise and Length of Day Delta (LODD). See:
    http://magicjava.blogspot.com/2010/02/more-on-water-vapor-length-of-day-delta.html

    Not true. The length of day is often used in sea level calculations, and there’s a heap of scientific papers about it. To pick just one, see here. The abstract says:

    ABSTRACT: About 30-year time series of the length of day (LOD) and the Pacific sea level are analysed in the paper. The close correlation between Earth rotation and sea level is discussed.

    There’s lots of other papers, here’s one.

    “All valid arguments, none of which require us to claim that sea levels are not rising when it’s demonstrable that they are.”

    Can you demonstrate it without using statistics? Without using contrived bundles of measurements rather than actual empirical measurements? I didn’t think so.

    It’s been demonstrated. There really is no valid debate that sea levels are rising.

    While it certainly may have been demonstrated, merely stating so doesn’t get much traction. If you could point to such a demonstration, netdr would have something to chew on.

  100. Thank God for James Hansen. Every other alarmist talks in generalities and imply that a few cm of sea rise will eventually spell the end of civilization. But Dr. Hansen, on the other hand, he’s willing to predict the drowning of whole nations like Bangladesh within a 100 years. Of course, his record of correctly predicting thing over the last 30 years hasn’t been stellar… in fact, it’s been bloody awful, but it’s still very refreshing to have an activist make a solid falsifiable prediction. Which, like the others, proves to be wrong year after year.

    What’s truly wonderful about his predictions is this: Alarmist activists can’t help but defend him, even as they recognize his increasing penchant for the fabulous. They’re in a bit of a monkey trap that way. I delight in their squirming discomfort. I needn’t address their arguments or propositions, no, merely the indefensible flights of fancy authored by the good Doctor. Dr. Hansen, you are the wind beneath my wings.

  101. I wonder if anyone has attempted to determine if there might be natural negative feedback effects governing sea level rise. This might be the case if the average near-shore slope gradient, especially in the tropics, becomes more level away from the sea so that any small increase in sea-level exposes a progressively larger water surface area to rapid evaporation.

    It might be interesting to see a plot of world-wide average land slope near sea level. Perhaps such a graph could be made from a high-resolution global contour map database.

  102. Who needs tidal gauges, sediment cores, and satellite measurements to measure the sea levels (fallible) when one can rely solely on photographs (infallible). There is no finer instrument than the human eye, afterall.

  103. What strikes me funny is that the undersea volcanic chains (ie Hawaii) build tall mtns under the surface of the ocean.. it would seem to me that rock would displace more water then ice already floating.. well wouldnt it?

  104. Surely one of the greatest examples of disappearing sea levels is the Ancient City of Ephesus which was once a thriving port on the Aegean Sea and now is 8 kilometres inland. You can still see the ramp where arriving sea farers would walk into the city after mooring their ships.

    Time will tell whether rising sea levels caused by global warming will overcome the rising silt from the river where Ephesus was built and if ships will once more be able to sail into the city. But I wouldn’t be betting on it anytime in the next few thousand years:

    http://www.archaeologyexpert.co.uk/Ephesus.html

  105. Some of the Cinque ports on the southern coast of Britain are a long way from the sea.
    The Roman port of Chichester is so far inland that you can just see its spire from the coast with binoculars.
    The local empirical evidence then points the other way,
    Thus do I refute thee Wiki………….

  106. Thanks Theo Goodwin. Surely there are a lot of other WUWT readers who live on sea water who can provide their own eyewitness testimonies?

    I was one of those innocent gullible people who fell for Al Gore’s movie (I was horrified by it), until I stepped out of my front door and walked over to the water and looked at the tide gauge, and realized I’d been hoodwinked. And the fact that he has invested millions in luxury waterfront properties since making the mockumentary, and leaves a bigger carbon footprint than almost any other human being on Earth, tells me that either (a) he doesn’t believe a word he says, or (b) he is a sociopath, willing to contribute to the planet’s destruction for his own profit and comfort. Maybe he’s a bit of both.

    How many of his group behave the same way? We saw in Copenhagen the astounding display of private jets and limos by people telling the rest of us we had to ride bicycles and read by candlelight. If any of them really believed in their CO2 dogma, their extraordinary “polluting” would be genuinely evil. And that goes for Sting, given that he had all the grand ancient trees in front of his mansion chopped down quite a few years ago, much to the dismay of his Green neighbors.

    Does Michael Mann walk to work and avoid air-conditioning and heating? What about James Hansen et al? Since, seemingly, none of the leaders of the AGW counterinsurgency practice what they preach, I assume that what they preach is as worthless as they treat it.

  107. 1. The sea level is sinking in Scandinavia – the highest rise of the land is in the middle of the bay between Sweden and Finland, more than 1 cm pr year. At the coast of northern Norway where I come from, the oldest farms have names telling about these things too, and it has been researched for many years. The beach where I played as a kid 50 years ago, was at that time sand only, and now, trees grow at some of the places, as it is obvious the high tide doesn’t reach up to those highest points and cover them any longer.
    2. The age of buildings made out of concrete is set to 20 years, after which they can be torn down rather than renovated, in urban areas. In Norway we often see buildings torn down after 50 years of use, also because the community itself has changed, making it better to tear down and build anew. This means that even if there should be a sea level rise anywhere, the community alongside the rising sea level has enough time to move inland, abandon old buildings which would have been abandoned anyway, and build new buildings, which they would have done anyway.

  108. Surely many ports around the world has detailed records on sea levels several hundred years back in time?

  109. John Daly is recalled in several comments here and deservedly so. His contribution to the climate debate was vast. A fitting tribute, I suggest, would be a review on this site of his historical analysis of sea levels in particular. Clarification of several issues would be most welcome.

    Following are examples referred to by etudiant (May 1, 2010 at 4:14 pm). (Corrected values are given). They are based on a mark chiselled into a rock face on the Isle of the Dead in 1841. Daly established that the mark corresponded to the Mean Sea Level (MSL) back then and that
    MSL in 1888 was about 340 mm lower than the 1841 mark and
    MSL to-day is about 315 mm lower than the 1841 mark
    indicating that
    (1) MSL has risen just 25 mm since 1888 (0.22 mm/year)
    (2) MSL dropped 340 mm between 1841 and 1888

    Item (1) is consistent with the photos of The Cove given in the story but, of course, only a small fraction of official estimates.
    To what extent can item (2) be attributed to land uplift? Apparently, the Tasmanian site was chosen for the mark because of its reputation for geological stability.
    http://www.john-daly.com/deadisle/index.htm

  110. magicjava says:
    May 1, 2010 at 6:18 pm
    [quote Ian W says:
    So one of the main arguments was that low-lying countries such as Bangladesh would be inundated within a very short period. Yet Bangladesh has been GROWING in land area.
    [/quote]

    All valid arguments, none of which require us to claim that sea levels are not rising when it’s demonstrable that they are.

    It’s one thing to say that rising sea levels are not a major, or even a minor, problem. It’s another to claim sea levels aren’t rising.

    I look forward to the demonstration that sea levels are rising.

  111. The Global Warmers are at it all the time in Norway.

    Here is a Google translation from NRK, the BBC of Norway. Drange is working for Bjerknes Center, which will have lead authors for the next IPCC report.

    So dont expect any change from the IPCC.

    http://translate.google.no/translate?js=y&prev=_t&hl=no&ie=UTF-8&layout=1&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.nrk.no%2Fnyheter%2Fdistrikt%2Fsorlandet%2F1.6727286&sl=no&tl=en

    As usual they say NOTHING about the fact that their source is ….models ( !! )

    It is presented as scientific facts.

  112. The Baltic sea has very little in the way of tides. The same is true of the Kattegat, the sea between the north of the Jutland peninsula in Denmark and Sweden. (The Kattegat connects the Baltic to the Skaggerak and hence to the North Sea). The absence of tides means that any changes in sea level in the Kattegat should be relatively easy to spot in photographs and paintings.

    At the mouth of Giberåen (the River Giber) south of Aarhus in Denmark there is a house called Fiskerhuset (Danish for “Fisherman’s House”) that was built in 1856, almost on the beach. The first people to live there were my great great grandparents.

    Fiskerhuset’s location would cause it to be extremely vulnerable to any rise in sea level. Because of its picturesque location many artists have painted it over the years and many photographers have taken pictures of it. There are links to three of those photos, taken about 100 years apart, below.

    http://www.dialog09.dk/custom/site/stiftenimg.asp?id=40676

    The second photo was taken in 1908. The first is about the same age or slightly older and the third was taken last year.

    There is no obvious sign of a change in sea level, but I admit a century might be too short a period for any rise to show up.

  113. Bob Highland: Your URL doesn’t work because it contains a comma. Here’s the corrected URL:
    http://www.easyart.com/canvas-prints/Charles-William-Wyllie/All-On-A-Summers‘s-Day,-At-Bosham,-Sussex-215878.html

    etudiant says:
    May 1, 2010 at 4:14 pm

    The late John Daly used a mean low water mark on the Tasmanian shore chiseled into the rock in 1854 as the frontispiece of his website http://www.john-daly.com/
    It indicates the sea level has fallen about one meter since the mark has set, or the island has risen as much.

    But the photo was taken at low tide, and the tidal swing is a meter. The actual sea level fall is much less than a meter — it looked about half a foot in an apples-to-apples photo I saw on his site a year ago.

  114. I like the Google Earth plugin giving the location and data of PSMSL stations.

    Google Earth can be used to give detailed views of the areas around PSMSL Revised Local Reference (RLR) tide gauges. Detailed information about the sites such as RLR monthly data and plots can be accessed.

    And until now I could not find a single station, which shows anything like an unprecedented sea level rise.

  115. What does Hansen have to say for himself now. The westside highway should have been under water since 2009 according to his prediction. How many false predictions is he allowed btw?

  116. People in London shouldn’t worry too much. The average street level rises by a couple of feet or so per century, as evidenced by centuries-old now-cellars with brick windows because the street rose up outside and buried them, and street-side monuments that you now have to view down through a grill in the ground, as well as lost steps to old buildings and half-underground windows. Ever wonder why it is you always look down on the Tower of London? It’s because the roads continue their rise, ever upwards. A resurface here, new materials there, it all adds up over time.

    Street level change exceeds sea level change by orders of magnitude.

  117. I can relate that a favourite beach of my youth was Holkham on the North Norfolk (East UK) coast. It had miles of flat sand which was washed by the tide twice a day (it was never more than a foot deep within hundreds of yards of the high water mark) in the sixties. Now it appears to be becoming a salt marsh. Not a lot of evidence of rising sea levels here, but to be fair I do believe Britain is tilting with the East side rising.

    You may be interested to know that this beach was used to represent the V1 (buzzbomb) testing site on the Baltic coast in the film Operation Crossbow (1965), so if you have access to the film you can judge the condition of the beach in the sixties.

  118. I’m now in Sarawak Malaysia sitting at a boat club that I forst visited in 1980. The frontage suffered badly during king tides and I organised piling and rocks to cater fro the worst of it and to stop losing the club front. In 1981 the local village flooded so badly that we couldn’t get through for 4 days. It used to happen every 10 years 61, 71, 81, etc. The situation is far less severe than it was then, the front of the club is absolutely stable and there has been no flooding since 1991. I row on the river and sail in the sea there and there hase been no rise in sea levels. I keep a boat on the south coast of england where it has been for 30 years, yes you’ve got it, no change in sea levels. Where does this catastrophic rise come from?

  119. The thing that struck me the most about the two photos was the marked increase in greenery, i.e. growing plants.

    The “Greens” want the earth to be greener, but they simultaneously want to severely reduce the primary factor that is making the earth greener, which is increased CO2 in the atmosphere.

    I guess that someone should let them in on the secret that plants need CO2 (and that we need plants).

  120. [quote Willis Eschenbach says:]
    Not true. The length of day is often used in sea level calculations, and there’s a heap of scientific papers about it. To pick just one, see here. The abstract says:
    [/quote]

    Yes, I should have pointed out that nearly everything on the planet has been claimed to related to the LODD.

    LODD Caused By Global Warming, Making Days Shorter:
    http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/234089/studies_show_global_warming_could_change.html?cat=58

    LODD Caused By Global Warming, Making Days Longer (From _same_ web site as previous link):
    http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/242658/length_of_day_may_change_for_global.html?cat=58

    LODD Caused By Atmosphere:
    http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/features.cfm?feature=15

    LODD Cause By Atmosphere, Land, And Oceans (which is _literally_ everything on the planet):
    http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2005JGRB..11008404C

    And the list goes on.

    But at the end of the day, the LODD curve doesn’t match the sea level rise curve.

  121. Is it hard to measure the sea level because of tides? Like even if you measured the highest tide each day, wouldn’t that be a different height each day? Sometimes you get a really big tide when everything lines up right, I’m sure.

    How did you take that into account when comparing the photos?

  122. [quote stevengoddard says:]
    Is it time to start evacuating all the coastal cities?
    [/quote]

    Just present the facts as they are. Sea levels are rising but at no where near the rate claimed by Gore. Instead, they’re rising at the same rate they’ve been rising since before the industrial revolution. And in the last few years, the rate of the rise has actually decreased.

  123. But the recent photo shows the ocean’s horizon height, relative to the old photo, to be much taller! That must mean we have visual evidence of much more sea level rise in the “pipeline”!! Must be the moon’s gravity is holding on to this sea level rise, preventing it from being measured at the shoreline and when CO2 levels get high enough, will interfere with the moon’s ability to hold back the flood (just kidding). Remember, they recently reported on NPR (no kidding, I heard this report) that all the oil drilling/oil extraction may be causing the increased volcanic activity!

  124. pwl says:
    May 1, 2010 at 4:27 pm

    The ice that’s melting in Canada must be letting the entire North American continent rise by the exact same amount to compensate… either that or North America is floating in the ocean.
    ______________________________________________________________________
    You are correct the North American continent is rising. It is called rebound.

    “…”We already knew that parts of North America are slowly rising due to an effect we call post-glacial rebound…” Ancient Glaciers Still Affect The Shape Of North America

  125. Dave Wendt says:
    May 1, 2010 at 10:04 pm
    I found another interesting map at the AVISO website. I can’t imbed the image because it doesn’t have a URL, but it’s on this page below the rising sea level graph.
    http://www.aviso.oceanobs.com/en/news/ocean-indicators/mean-sea-level/

    It’s called Regional MSL from Oct-1992 to Jul 2009. It seems to show that the global trend has been driven by a high trend area in the eastern Pacific north and east of Australia. There is also a very intriguing band of globular high trend hotspots in a back round swath of low trend waters across the southern ocean. It would be interesting to know if anyone has a theory about what could generate such a pattern.

    It looks to be related to the PWP. Since we’ve had more El Ninos in the past 30 years that area has likely been warmer. Thus, thermal expansion would be the greatest in that area.

  126. I have been salmon fishing on a stretch of tide affected river since 1983. Their is a weir upstream that in 1984 the furthermost spring tide reach backed up the flow and caused a 2″ rise on the marker.
    26 years later this is still just as rare an occurance and the mean high water mark has not moved upsream one iota.
    The bottoms of the tide affected pools remain the same and I wade them at night, sea trout fishing, with a confidence that belies my aging aching knees.
    I do not suggest that we should deprive children of lesser intellect the right to a University education, but depriving them of the means to take measurements in any form could spare them the need to exercise their inadequate capacity for reason and at the same time spare us from the attacks on our wallets by their peers, produced by the equally worthless political faculty.
    A period of sustained economic growth has always been topped with froth, in the austerity that awaits UK and Euroland there will be no room for the nonsense that was CCAGW. The multitudinous green jobs predicated by the carbon free economy will not happen and will join Gordon Brown in his footnote in History.

  127. magicjava says:
    May 1, 2010 at 5:25 pm

    Are we arguing that sea levels are not rising now? Because they most certainly are.

    Better arguments might be that sea levels have been rising for at least 150 years (probably much longer), that the rate of sea level rise has slightly decreased over the last few year and was rising much, much faster in the distant pass, and that the amount of sea level rise is dwarfed by other natural factors we already deal with, such as tides.
    _________________________________________________________________________

    The article is addressing “Warming to Cause Catastrophic Rise in Sea Level” There has been over a half a decade of industrialization. We are told we are at the tipping point, if the Arctic and glaciers have thawed then we old fogies should be able to see with our own eyeball evidence a Catastrophic Rise in Sea Level over that half decade.

    A couple of inches of rise or fall ain’t a Catastrophic Rise in Sea Level

  128. Sea level in the NYC area has been rising at about one foot per century. This has been well documented for at least the last eighty years. Of course, it is also well documented that the land is sinking. [The end of the ice age released pressure inland, and the whole plate is tipping down into the sea as the inland portion rebounds.]

    They claim that the rate has accelerated, but the data I’ve seen seems awfully fuzzy and inconclusive.

    I’m all for climate change mitigation if it will make people address the very real changes going on that have nothing to do with AWG! Stop building infrastructure in NYC as if the MSL were unchanged from 100 years ago!!

  129. magicjava

    During the Middle Ages some people argued about how many angels could dance on the head of a pin.

    In some places sea level is going up slightly due to warming of the oceans. In other places it is going down slightly. None of these even vaguely indicate a meltdown or metres of rise as quoted from National Geographic or Hansen.

    Can you please stop arguing about tiny angels?

  130. pkatt

    The volume of the earth’s rock matter is fairly constant, so an increase in land height one place would have to be associated with a decrease somewhere else.

  131. “I thought that the issue of sea level rise was global average. Can you tell me why a single spot matters in that context?”

    Are you actually implying that I can stand a barrel on end, and fill it with water. Then on your side the level could be 0.5 m higher than mine? Physics doesn’t work that way. Unless the ground is sinking or rising it shouldn’t matter.

    Another point to be made is that this claim of “catastrophic” seal level rise in the next 100 years has been around for at least 10 years. There are only 10 decades in 100 years. 1 is gone that leaves 9. If we were in fact experiencing this rise it better start causing problems soon or James Hansen better start giving back the money he has been paid for his phony research.

  132. In the (very) small Swedish village of Ratan at 64 deg North, there is a Water level mark, from 1749. That mark is now, 261 years later, several meters above sea level.
    The reason is that the land is rising from the latest glacial period, with some 10 mm per year.
    Some of us could really use some sea level rise. The walk to the boat gets longer and longer.

  133. I am curious about one thing that I have not seen mentioned regarding sea level rise. How much displacement would cause a noticable, say 1-2 mm, rise in sea level? Everything that we put in the water causes some ammout of displacement.

    I just watched a “How It’s Made” episode which showed Singaore burning all of their waste and tunring into ash and making a habital island out of it. Every single boat, submarine, and oil rig causes some small ammount of displacement. Add to that, the large amount of undersea volcanic activity, magma flows and ash from surface volcanos, rockslides, and sediments washed out by flooding rivers. I can imagine that there might be enough displacement caused by all of these factors together to account for most of, it not all, any perceptable sea level rise.

    Has anyone given these items any consideration in any reports or papers that discuss rising sea levels? It would be interesting to know how many cubic meters of displacement it would take to raise the sea level 1 mm and to get a fairly accurate estimate of how much displacement is directly caused by man, and how much is caused by nature excluding ice melt.

  134. stevengoddard says:
    May 1, 2010 at 10:19 pm

    Al Gore’s Holy Hologram

    No doubt the world was better off before we had parks, grass, restaurants, electricity and flushing toilets. I think it would have been fun growing up in a world full of Smallpox, Typhoid, Polio, rats, and TB.

    It is simply awful what man has done to this planet.

    Exactly Steve, my Pop had his heart wrecked by scarlet fever, ran over by a buckboard, peeled spuds in the ranch house until his broken leg healed -no doc for either one, just Granma’s Mountain/Cherokee medicine-which may have been
    better in some respects, Pop had TB and survived, unlike some of his family,
    and lived to see me as a man. Which was his goal in life. I for one do not want the 1860’s again.

  135. re: Halifax sea level rise

    And some portion of this would be due to land rebound.

  136. One other thing- my Wife’s mother had smallpox and survived, with little scarring,
    and who can forget Iron Lungs…

  137. i’ve been living by the sea in greece for much of the past 16 years. no noticable change to report.

  138. Often, climachondrias, such as the fear of rising oceans are a symptom of climatehausen syndrome, a mental disorder wherein the person makes up various and sundry climatological “symptoms” having little to do with reality. This causes them to do strange things, such as putting gas masks on cows to “show” how “bad” cows and methane are.
    These climate mental disorders are remarkably resistant to the only known cure, which is actual science, facts, and reason. For now, powerful anti-psychotic drugs have been shown to be useful.

  139. Is “sea level” just another of those convenient numbers that attempt to describe a whole batch of other measurements and assumptions? Is it used like “average global temperature” is to describe a wide variety of (often tenuously related) weather and climatological phenomena? Or maybe sea level is measured in the same sloppy way that temperature data is gathered? Maybe we need a “surfacestations.org” project to examine those widely scattered sea level measuring stations.

  140. Actually when you are dealing with mass and rotation on a planetary level, sea level is not uniform. One reason why there is consensus on a global measure. The best evidence should be from a stable deep water island near the equator. And there are none. So New Guinea or Zanzibar would be my guess as to a choice location for an index.

  141. We live in an age of hysteria. That said, the Warmists deserve special scorn for the evil they are perpetrating. They have taught our children and our simple-minded to fear the heat of Summer. I will be on Daytona Beach this summer and I will revel in the fact that it is hot as hell, as it has always been, and that the sunlight can burn you to a crisp in an hour, as it always has. I will not fear early Spring. I will not fear mild winters. I have these blessings because I have some age and a critical intelligence. But the psychological damage done by Warmists is absolutely unforgivable.

  142. I live near the coast of the Baltic, on a precambbrian shield that is extremely stable tectonically. We do have some glacial rebound here, something like 3 millimeters/years, from the ice that melted 12,000 years ago.
    Now in places with very flat shore, I can definitely see that the shoreline has advanced since I was a boy, so I can say with confidence that the sea-level has risen significantly slower than 3 mm/yr during the last 40 years.

  143. pkatt says:
    May 2, 2010 at 12:32 am
    What strikes me funny is that the undersea volcanic chains (ie Hawaii) build tall mtns under the surface of the ocean.. it would seem to me that rock would displace more water then ice already floating.. well wouldnt it?
    ———————
    Reply:
    Since the ocean basins are made of rock predominanatly heavier than the continents, they tend to be below sea level. That being said, the process of throwing up material onto a volcano (ie Hawaii) would tend to remove it from the underlying basement, so initially one would think the basin would sink and sea level along with it. However, isostacism operates in this case, with the heavier volcanic mountain now settling deeper into the basement material, making it bulge upward until equilibrium is achieved. Sealevel would be unaffected except for the disequalibrium caused by the immediate eruption, and perhaps local changes in basin shape.

    Another way of putting it would be the situation where one takes a bucket of seawater and dumps it on the top of a very cold iceberg–cold enough that the water freezes, adding to the mass of the iceberg, but at the same time the iceberg settles lower in the water from which this additional water was fetched, thereby resulting in no change in overall sealevel (even though the iceberg will show a settling to offset the additional mass added to its top).

  144. Dave Wendt
    May 1, 2010 at 10:04 pm

    That map is junk. Have a look at the bay of Bothnia (northern end of the Baltic sea), where it indicates a sea level *rise* of c. 10 mm/year, and compare with Bengt Abelson’s post from the same area above.

  145. ” pat says:
    The best evidence should be from a stable deep water island near the equator. And there are none.”

    What about Jarvis island in the Pacific?
    They did a full survay in the 30’s before they build the lighthouse and settled it.

  146. It is very interesting that we get comments from around the world. This kind of “empirical observation” is hard to discount. There are also those who state that “the sea has been rising for 150 years, but the increase has declined, which flies in the face of the observations stated here. Who to believe. My money would be on the empirical evidence, mainly due to the fact that global SL would be very hard to measure without huge error bars and other variables included. It has been shown that gravitational effects can vary and thus change the “height” of sea level. The oceans are not “smooth”, but you still need a boat to water-ski !! http://ocw.mit.edu/NR/rdonlyres/Earth–Atmospheric–and-Planetary-Sciences/12-808Fall-2004/A740D69D-9E59-401D-89E9-BE2F0EFD0194/0/course_notes_3b.pdf

  147. Sea level rise is regional and the effect of sea level rise is often negated by rebounding continents and wind. Come on already.

  148. Doc, isn’t Jarvis a coral island. Coral islands by definition seem historically subject to their own height movements, independent of the sea.

  149. How about differences in tide between the two photos? If we are looking at high tide in one and low tide in the other, then maybe there is indeed a change in sea level.

  150. Data collected from the La Jolla Tidal Gauge from 1925 to 2006 was analysed by the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, La Jolla, California. The average sea level change at La Jolla, where these photos were taken, was an INCREASE IN SEA LEVEL of .725 feet/century or an increase of 2.2mm per year. This figure is near the 1.8mm/yr worldwide increase for this period given in the scientific literature and recently supported by satellite data. Certainly, data is this form in more reliable when measuring sea level rises of around 9 inches than attempting to match tidal times and perspectives from old photos.

    REPLY: Perhaps, but is there any study to show that the gauge has remained static? -A

  151. What no one seems to have mentioned is tectonic plate movement, surely that also has an effect on Sea Levels?
    I know it is slow, but they are very large.
    It has been said for some time that in the UK the mainland is rising in the North and sinking in the South.

  152. etudiant says: (May 1, 2010 at 4:14 pm) Mike, 1.8mm/yr over 130 years translates to 234 mm, about 9.2 inches. Most places that swing will get blurred by the tidal swings, but the evidence for even this amount of increase is not that good.

    This Wikipedia article on this topic also says that sea level has been rising at 1.8mm/yr for the past century and data from 23 long tide gauge records in ‘geologically stable environments’ indicate a sea level increase of about 8 inches per century. The article also says that recent satellite measurements are indicating rates between 2.8 and 3.1 mm/yr attributed primarily to thermal expansion. Yes, it is conceivable that these measurements could be corrupted by systematic errors such as long-term wear an aging effects or satellite orbital decay and calibration problems.

    At one time, a decade or two ago, I recall hearing urgent appeals for donations to save the city of Venice from the inexorable rise of the sea which was then threatening to engulf the classic city. Perhaps that problem was fixed as the city seems to be doing fine as far as I know.

  153. LearDog says:
    May 1, 2010 at 5:14 pm,
    And Flynx and others.

    Splitting hairs is a desperate form of debate. Try to keep the scale of the idea in mind. The issue of little change in La Jolla plus, with the wonders of modern electronic communication, which allows a worldwide survey of sea level observations to generate itself in minutes, is valid rejection of CATASTROPHIC sealevel rise. The same is true of brimstone fires of hell allegedly awaiting us in 2100. What on earth is it going to take to get the faithful to begin to question the hysteria of CAGW. Please tell me that you are at least a little less fearful of the AGW armageddon than you were in the heady fresh-faced days of the early words of the prophets. Please admit, that although hell and highwater still disturbs your sleep, that it seems that it is going to take longer than your were led to believe. Please tell me that, gee, we are going to have to wait maybe a few decades longer than our thought mentors and ourselves had expected for the arctic to be ice free and balmy. Please tell me that, gosh, it is disappointing that the consensus overhyped and cooked data on GW and that their predictions are more than a little off the mark in time and intensity. Lets at least revise downward a bit the uptrend to the end of the world. Can we reach a middle ground like this in the debate, which indeed has only really started in earnest since the dissenting crowd has been allowed in to the party? There is no disgrace in changing your mind, at least in part.

  154. Actually, I always believed that sea levels do rise. About twice a day at the last count.!!

  155. They are funded to research many things other than global warming. I do not agree with everything from NASA ( especially GISS ) and my point was to demonstrate the difficulty in measuring sea level and sea level change ( much like global average temperatures or snowfall depths ). Curiously, the gravitational variations are very similar to the maps that show cosmic microwave background variations. Read nothing into that other than the similarity in appearance.

  156. Some years ago I was involved in a situation in which a 60,000 ton tanker suddenly nose-dived when proceeding, with a pilot, in a buoyed channel off the Louisiana coast. An oil pollution resulted (nothing new under the sun!).
    In court it was shown that the channel had become 5 feet lower than normal! Apparently on that section of coast there had been a sustained offshore wind, for several weeks, and this contributed to the decline (in the sea level, not, you know what!).
    Large ships can nose-dive if running at a depth too close to the sea-bed and the reduced sea level brought the ship into it’s shallow water effect zone aka “squat”, and it, well, squatted down. It was pretty hot out there that summer.
    My question is, “How does this relate to sea water rising”?

  157. Just an idea that I had today ,when we observe that nothing has changed on the earth it could be because nothing has changed, if this was accepted this could lead to a revolution in the study of climate.We would not have to assume that certain factors were masking the changes that we were expecting to see due to global warming.

  158. tty says:
    May 2, 2010 at 9:03 am
    Dave Wendt
    May 1, 2010 at 10:04 pm

    That map is junk. Have a look at the bay of Bothnia (northern end of the Baltic sea), where it indicates a sea level *rise* of c. 10 mm/year, and compare with Bengt Abelson’s post from the same area above.

    I said it was interesting, not that it was accurate, although I do think it is probably an accurate representation of the much touted and supposedly superior satellite record. For my current view on that record I would refer you to this comment from a previous thread.

    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/04/30/climate-craziness-of-the-week-msm-jumps-on-alarming-headline/#comment-380896

    It’s a bit redundant, as I have posted very similar comments a number of times over that last couple years. Someone actually chimed in to agree with me on this one, which is a bit unusual, since my evident brilliance is most often overlooked around here.[For you very literal minded types around here who generally fail to get my sense of humor, that was an attempt at a self deprecatory joke] Though having someone agree with me is modestly exceptional, what would be more exceptional would be if someone jumped in to challenge my argument. Despite there being, as there almost always is, several ardent AGW supporters active on the threads where I’ve posted this in the past, no one has ever bothered to set me straight. Whether this is due to the exceptional brilliance of my logic or to my incoherent blatherings being rightfully ignored, I will leave for others to decide.

  159. >>A few Palm Trees have been planted, but the sea appears to be in
    >>exactly the same place it was 130 years ago

    And likewise in the Mediterranean, and that is a better example because it has no tides to alter the situation.

    And this is not simply photos from the 1800s, but also ports built in the Roman era. Not much change as far as I can see (well, a max 30cm increase in the last 1500 yrs).

  160. speculativebs says:
    May 2, 2010 at 11:40 am: If you look at the sources for that paper, you will find all the usual suspects in the climate issue. Hansen, Santer, Wigley, a discredited model (E.M.Smith just loves the fortran, don’t ya know, /sarc) just to name a few. Have you not been paying attention?

  161. Sea levels rising is supposed to be a consequence of polar ice caps melting right which are largely lumps of ice floating on water? So by the basic theories of physics and displacement if the temp was to rise in these areas and cause the ice to melt then it would only start to cause the sea levels to rise if the ice was running from the land into the sea and not just metling into the water below which it had previously been displacing? But how about this for another theory. If the temperatures were to rise around the world generally then more evaporation would occur so could the water level not in fact drop? as with higher air temperature less of that water would come back down as rain!?
    I think 90% of global/enviromental issues are just the governments way of getting a level of control on everyone.
    We having been monitoring the world for a very insignificant amount of time compared to it’s existance. It’s been hit by a giant meteor and frazzled, had cold spells . What’s to say everything happening to the world is all an entirely natural cycle that it goes through and nothing or little to do with us?

  162. I just don’t want to hear anymore stories from Virginia or South Carolina about sea leve rise taking over the land. They already know that the land is sinking! It’s not the sea level rising!

  163. The only thing I ever notice at the beach anymore is erosion and since I live above sea level, I don’t notice, won’t notice, and don’t care if the sea is rising

  164. Dave Wendt:
    May 2, 2010 at 12:19 pm: Response: Do not be troubled, Mr. Wendt. I get the chirping crickets more often than not. I can only speak for myself, but I usually do not respond to posters whom I agree with. Suffice to say that I do enjoy your posts. All posts are important, pro or con. At least people here can decide for themselves which are more important. The crux of the matter is that people have the freedom to decide for themselves whether a post has validity or not.>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> >I do not see that freedom on unrealclimate or DepropagandaBlog. When Andrew Weaver’s lawyer ( funded by Jim Hoggan and company, big surprise there) subpoenas my father to appear in court, I suggested to father that he present all the vitriol written about him on DepropagandaBlog (hey, funded by Jim Hoggan, too. Isn’t that strange?). Weaver is such a baby. “Wahhhh, they said bad things about me and my work. wahhh.” It is a harsh world, especially for an invertebrate.

  165. magicjava says:
    May 2, 2010 at 5:33 am

    [quote Willis Eschenbach says:]

    Not true. The length of day is often used in sea level calculations, and there’s a heap of scientific papers about it. To pick just one, see here. The abstract says:

    [/quote]
    Yes, I should have pointed out that nearly everything on the planet has been claimed to related to the LODD.

    You are missing the point. A number of things in fact ARE related to the LODD. The main organization in this field is the IERSS, the International Earth Rotation and Reference Systems Service. From their web site:

    Global geophysical fluids data provide information related to Earth rotation variation, gravity field variation and geocenter motion that are caused by mass transports in the global geophysical fluids (atmosphere, oceans, hydrology, tides, mantle, core).

    As you can see, the motion of the various fluids of the earth are in fact related to the length of day. There is a constant exchange of momentum between the rigid surface and the various fluids (ocean, atmosphere, etc.), which changes the LOD. It’s not just people making absurd claims as you suggest. It is hard science.

    Being a suspicious fellow, my general practice is to download the data and run the numbers myself. The sea level data is available here. The LOD data is available here.

    I calculate that the correlation between the sea level data and the LOD data is -.66. Including the expected delay increases the correlation to -0.75. This is a very significant correlation. The fact that it is negative is what we’d expect. Like spreading out a skater’s arms, the increasing sea level slows down the earth’s rotation (negative correlation).

    This is very well understood physics. As I mentioned, LOD is used to diagnose what is called the “sea level budget”, and this has been the subject of numerous scientific papers.

  166. Theo Goodwin says:
    May 2, 2010 at 8:51 am

    We live in an age of hysteria. That said, the Warmists deserve special scorn for the evil they are perpetrating. … But the psychological damage done by Warmists is absolutely unforgivable.
    _________________________________________________________________________

    It is especially unforgivable to frighten children on a world wide level in an effort to extract money from their parents and deprive everyone of their freedom. I prefer the extortion of the mob, at least they were honest about their motives and leave you with enough to live on. These economic vampires seem to be determined to slowly kill us extracting the last ounce of blood as they do.

    I love the age of hysteria, by the way. A very good description.

  167. I live in Southport, on the NW coast of England, about 17 miles North of Liverpool. My house sits 500 yards from the Irish Sea. The very long, very flat sandy beach at this sea-side resort is famous for high tides that can be as far out as a mile or more. Visitors often bemoan: “What’s happened to the sea!” The very shallow approach of this shoreline renders it very susceptible to any rapid rise/fall in sea levels. Over a period of several decades, such changes would have a notable impact on tidal movement and even the town, parts of which are only 3 foot asl. I have known this town and its beach since childhood (over 50 years) and there has been no discernable change to the pattern of sea movements in that time. The last time the town experience flooding was in the 1930’s, following a prolonged period of heavy rain, combined with a very high spring tide and a strong off-shore storm. A partial seawall defence was installed 10 years ago, which had litte difficulty withstanding a similarly severe weather conditions 3 years ago. On the shoreline a few miles South of the town, human and animal remains that date from 5000 to 6000 years ago can be readily found. At that time the sea was much further out and folks could have walked almost “across the sea to Ireland”, as the sea level was ~ 50 ft lower than today. Climate change? What climate change? We don’t know we’re born!

  168. London inundated, this prediction has quite a tradition: “A still more singuilar instance of the faith in predictions occured in London in the year 1524. (…) As early as the month of June 1523, several of them concurred in predicting that, on the 1st day of February, 1524, the waters of the Thames would swell to such a height as to overflow the whole city of London, and wash away ten thousands of houses. The prophecy met implicit belief. (…)”, writes Charles Mackay in Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds

  169. rsprojects says:
    May 2, 2010 at 12:28 pm

    Sea levels rising is supposed to be a consequence of polar ice caps melting right which are largely lumps of ice floating on water?

    This is a common misunderstanding. Rising sea levels are due to a couple of things. One is “steric” sea level rise, due to the fact that when water is heated, it expands. Another is the melting of ice, but not floating ice. It is from melting land-based glaciers and ice caps. However, the total sea level budget is not well understood. There is a good article on this here.

  170. Gail Combs says:
    May 2, 2010 at 1:30 pm

    I love the age of hysteria, by the way. A very good description.

    Yeah, we used to live in the Holocene, but now we live in the Hysteriacene …

  171. speculativebs said:

    “Showing images of regions that have been selected for the specific purpose of trying to make a spurious claim isn’t an argument. Most of these are probably at low tide anyways.”

    The example I gave was from the Kattegat where the maximum tidal range is very small. I have a painting from early in the 20th century which shows the height of the water in much more detail than in the old photos in the links I mentioned. The sea level looks just as high in the painting as in the photograph from last year. I also have other photos taken in the same area in the past 100 years that suggest there has been no change.

    The very low tidal ranges of the Kattegat, Baltic, Mediterranean and Black Seas mean that those are the areas where any significant rise in sea level would first become noticable to observers without specialist equipment.

  172. Bob(ScepticalRedcoat),
    Thanks for your wonderful description of the tide at Southport. I am really enjoying the many personal descriptions of nature found in this post. And thanks to all others who have done the same.

  173. GeoFlynx says:
    May 2, 2010 at 10:42 am

    Data collected from the La Jolla Tidal Gauge from 1925 to 2006 was analysed by the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, La Jolla, California. The average sea level change at La Jolla, where these photos were taken, was an INCREASE IN SEA LEVEL of .725 feet/century or an increase of 2.2mm per year. This figure is near the 1.8mm/yr worldwide increase for this period given in the scientific literature and recently supported by satellite data. Certainly, data is this form in more reliable when measuring sea level rises of around 9 inches than attempting to match tidal times and perspectives from old photos.

    REPLY: Perhaps, but is there any study to show that the gauge has remained static? -A

    There appears to be a very small Post Glacial Rebound (PGR) of 0.09 ± 0.03 mm/yr in La Jolla, as determined by GPS. Details here.

  174. Willis Eschenbach says:
    May 2, 2010 at 1:58 pm ; Response: Wish it was Hysteriacene and not heard, …

  175. Spector writes:
    “etudiant says: (May 1, 2010 at 4:14 pm) Mike, 1.8mm/yr over 130 years translates to 234 mm, about 9.2 inches. Most places that swing will get blurred by the tidal swings, but the evidence for even this amount of increase is not that good.”

    “This Wikipedia article on this topic also says that sea level has been rising at 1.8mm/yr for the past century and data from 23 long tide gauge records in ‘geologically stable environments’ indicate a sea level increase of about 8 inches per century.”

    Do we have no common sense at all. My mother is 94 years old and as spry as a fifty year old. If sea level rose 6, 7, or 8 inches a century, she would be able to show us where the Atlantic “used to be” at Daytona Beach.

  176. DocMartyn (May 2, 2010 at 8:31 am)

    Thanks for those links. No problem using the 1891 and 2009 pics of the lighthouse to show that SL is lower now!.

  177. [quote Willis Eschenbach says:]
    As you can see, the motion of the various fluids of the earth are in fact related to the length of day. There is a constant exchange of momentum between the rigid surface and the various fluids (ocean, atmosphere, etc.), which changes the LOD. It’s not just people making absurd claims as you suggest. It is hard science.
    [/quote]

    Never said folks were making absurd claims. I said they’re were lots of contradictory claims.

    And I think if you smooth out the data to get rid of the the annual “buzzsaw” effect of the solar ephemeris and extend the comparison back earlier than 1992, the correlation isn’t so good. LODD goes up and down and up and down. Sea levels go up.

  178. I like the comments about Dunster & the Cinque ports. This makes me think of how some coastines are eroding, others are ‘growing’ dues to sedimentation.
    In order to make a convincing case that temperature increase is causing a rise in sea level, one would have to make a convincing case that the shape of all the ocean basins is static & stable. It seems to me that there would have to be some analysis of sedimentation mass from all the rivers, undersea volcanic growth, and any deepening or widening of undersea trenches.
    We do not live in a stable world.

  179. Re: Willis Eschenbach on May 2, 2010 at 1:17 pm
    (to grab a comment where LOD is discussed…)

    But big earthquakes are making the planet spin faster (shorter days). Here is a NASA article. The recent Chilean 8.8 quake took off 1.26 microseconds, the 2004 Sumatran 9.1 quake took off 6.8 microseconds. Is this getting figured in for such “sea level budget” calculations?

  180. [quote Steve Goddard says:]
    Can you please stop arguing about tiny angels?
    [/quote]

    It’s more about strong arguments vs. weak arguments. We already have strong arguments that sea level rise isn’t a significant problem. There’s no need to put effort into replacing those strong arguments with weak arguments involving old photographs with a title that questions if sea level rise is even occurring.

  181. REPLY: Actually he’s dead wronger than wrong about sea level rise prediction, at least in his own back yard. See this prediction from the good doctor twenty years ago that we covered last year. It was a prediction about New York City, just a couple of blocks from his office. Hansen said:

    “Then he explained, “The West Side Highway [which runs along the Hudson River] will be under water.”

    See this: A little known 20 year old climate change prediction by Dr. James Hansen – that failed badly

    Of course you won’t see the NYT or the Guardian mention his big dead wrong prediction. Only here – Anthony

    —————–

    That is not a creditable source. If you had a published article by Hansen, that would be credible. If the author here had published that quote back when he talked to Hansen that would be fairly credible. But a quote taken from memory from over ten years ago is not. I am not saying Hansen is correct, just that his views should not be dismissed.

    The main factor that could cause catastrophic sea level rise is whether or not major glaciers melt rapidly. There is no consensus on this. I assume you’ve seen this discussion:
    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2010/03/ippc-sealevel-gate/

    REPLY: Hansen has not refuted it, and he (and his RC buds) know about it. If it was wrong, taken out of context, fabricated, whatever, you’d think he’d be screaming bloody murder about it. He isn’t, and he isn’t because he knows he’ll be taken to task. So its credible whether you like it or not. -A

  182. stevengoddard says:
    May 2, 2010 at 3:20 pm

    Willis

    The most common cause of apparent sea level rise may well be subsidence of the land relative to the ocean.

    Thanks, Steve. In some areas the subsidence is quite significant. In others (see my cite above about La Jolla) it is not.

    Presumably, however, if the land is sinking in one place it is rising in another, so you’d think they would somewhat average out.

  183. Those who have participated in this discussion and who believe that sea level has risen in the last century are now talking about “apparent sea level” rise. As with all Warmists or fellow travelers, when confronted with first person testimony about observable facts of sea level rise, they respond by saying that they were not actually talking about those observable facts at all. They were not talking about where the Atlantic lies on Daytona Beach or any other beach in the world. Rather they were talking about a multiplicity of factors covering all conceivable changes of land and sea that might have some bearing on where the sea lies on the beach.

    Sorry, that strategem will not work. If your topic was not “observable change in sea level at particular places and times around the world” then it is up to you to say so. If your topic is not observable changes in where the oceans lie on the beaches then please choose another name and please choose a descriptive one. Please specify what observable phenomena are relevant to your hypotheses. I demand this because I know that you cannot do it. You have no interest in the observable phenomena whatsoever. It strikes me as the very height of irony that someone would treat natural history as not being about observable phenomena.

  184. Almost exactly for the period spanned by the pictures, a study by Church, John & Neil White, 2006. A 20th century acceleration in global sea-level rise. Geophysical Research Letters 33: L01602, taking account of all relevant factors (land subsidence, regional differences, oceanic currents change, and so on) conclude that the worldwide average sea level (please underline the words “worldwide average”) increased by 19.5 cm between 1870 and 2004, what boils down to an average speed of 1.45 mm per year. The speed accelerated in , but not by much: the 2007 IPCC reports (hardly known for understating the effects of climate change) reckons that sea level has been rising at pro¬gres¬sed at 1.8 mm/yr in 1961 to 2003 and accelerated to 3.1 mm/yr in 1993-2003, although the latter is too short a period to base long-term projections on (IPCC Fourth Assessment Report, The Physical Science Basis, 2007:419). IPCC projections of cumulative rise from 1980-99 to 2090-99 (i.e. 105 years between midpoints) range from 28 ±10 cm in the most benign scenario (B1) to 42.5±16 cm in the most pessimist (A1F1), therefore with annual speeds from 2.66 to 4.04 mm/yr (give and take margins of error). Certainly an acceleration from 1870-2004 though in line with recent speed observed in 1993-2003. Not quite catastrophic. A very flat coast land with a 1% slope (one meter over sea level at 100 metres inland) would lose some 30 metres of beach or mangrove along a century, over the 20 metres or so that were lost in the preceding century. Very few coastal areas are that flat, and many are uninhabited. Some polders in Holland, and perhaps the low wall on the seaside at Piazza San Marco in Venice as well as the famously uneffective defences in N.Orleans would have to be topped-up by about 30-50 cm to keep up with the rising seas. May be tough in some places, but I bet we’ll survive.

  185. Willis

    Generally there is some averaging going on between land rising and falling, but people will always point to places where the land is falling as support for taxing CO2.

    I’m not sure how raising taxes will change the motion of the earth’s crust, but apparently human sacrifice is an important part of human psyche.

  186. So then, just where is the magic benchmark (fixed elevation point) against which all this is being compared to? The fact is, land surfaces (and the ocean beds) are in a constant state of flux where elevations are concerned. Build on a river delta, expect subsidence over time. Even buildings constructed on well compacted fill suffer from subsidence over time.

    Much ado about damn little, if anything, it is. The world turns, and things change, as things always have changed. There is no way for humans to cause any significant modifications as to how the world changes, and it is a waste of resources to attempt to try and modify this.

    Best save the resources so as to better cope with whatever changes nature has in store for us.

    I get particularly annoyed with those who say things such as “It may not happen in my lifetime, but I am very concerned for people in the (distant) future.” Those “future” people will just have to figure out for themselves how to best deal with whatever comes along, as humans have always had to do.

    Impoverishing the great majority now, with futile attempts, will cause those “future” (as well as the present) people far more grief than what nature dishes out as a matter of course.

  187. A few questions…

    According to data from GRACE satellites Greenland is losing ~180 cubic kilometres of ice per year. Where does this ice go? How much is lost from continental glaciers in total? How much from Antarctica? If it all ended up in the ocean how much would it make it rise if evenly distributed?

    Their is evidence that the ocean is warming. Warmer water swells the ocean. How much per year across the last decade?

    Man-made dams and lakes prevent water reaching the ocean. This lowers the mean ocean level. If all such were emptied into the ocean how much would it rise?

    If you have an interest it is worth searching widely for the answers to the above. We can collectivley stick our heads in beach sand if we choose, but prepare to get wet.

  188. @David Ball
    That’s what you call an ad hominem; it’s a logical fallacy. Find an actual error in the paper if you’re going to claim it’s invalid.

    @Roy
    Given that sea level rise is occurring at ~ 3 mm/year and has averaged ~2 mm/year over the last century, how realistic is it to believe that this would be visible in any photograph? Would a change of 2 cm at that distance even show up in an image of this resolution?

    The fact is that you can’t realistically eyeball sea level rise. If it were that simple, why would we bother with actually measuring the change?

  189. stevengoddard says:
    May 1, 2010 at 9:27 pm

    “Larry Fields

    La Jolla is nowhere near Long Beach, and if there was subsidence – it would increase sea level rise, not decrease it.”

    Even Wet Blanket Larry is entitled to an occasional senior moment. Great article, Steve.

  190. “Sea levels are rising but at no where near the rate claimed by Gore. Instead, they’re rising at the same rate they’ve been rising since before the industrial revolution. And in the last few years, the rate of the rise has actually decreased.”

    … okay, so unlike Mr. Gore and Dr. Hansen, you’re not blaming this on man’s actions; more specifically, on the commencement of his use of fossil fuels during the industrial revolution. Is that correct?

  191. magicjava says:
    May 2, 2010 at 2:27 pm

    [quote Willis Eschenbach says:]

    As you can see, the motion of the various fluids of the earth are in fact related to the length of day. There is a constant exchange of momentum between the rigid surface and the various fluids (ocean, atmosphere, etc.), which changes the LOD. It’s not just people making absurd claims as you suggest. It is hard science.

    [/quote]
    Never said folks were making absurd claims. I said they’re were lots of contradictory claims.

    Thanks, Magicjava, sorry I misunderstood you. Contradictory claims are not uncommon in climate science …

    And I think if you smooth out the data to get rid of the the annual “buzzsaw” effect of the solar ephemeris and extend the comparison back earlier than 1992, the correlation isn’t so good. LODD goes up and down and up and down. Sea levels go up.

    Two points about that.

    First, we only have satellite data since 1992. So it’s very hard to look back further, because the data isn’t very good.

    Second, what you call the “buzzsaw effect” are the seasonal changes in the LOD which are driven by the seal level. As a result, they fit very well to the “buzzsaw effect” of the seasonal changes in sea level, which in part is why the correlation is so good. When the sea level goes up and down with the seasons, the LOD goes down and up in the same way and with the same timing. Given the theoretical physical connection between the two, this makes perfect sense. So I don’t think you can just “remove the buzzsaw effect” from one and not the other.

  192. Ammonite says: [ … ]
    May 2, 2010 at 5:16 pm

    The obvious answer is that the ocean isn’t warming. In fact, the 3,351 ARGO buoy network indicates a slight deep sea cooling, which explains why there is no appreciable sea level rise.

    Also, the Greenland ice cap contains almost 3,000,000 cubic kilometers of ice. A temporary loss of 180 cubic kilometers per year is such a trivial fraction of 3 million cu km that it is statistically irrelevant. [And remember, the Arctic is currently losing a small amount of ice, but the Antarctic is growing slightly. Thus, none of this is global. It is due to regional climate variability.]

    And a 2009 study [Velicogna, et al.] published in Geophysical Research Letters estimates that between 2002 and 2009 the Greenland ice cap lost about 1,600 cubic kilometers of ice. That loss is equivalent to about 0.5 millimeter [0.02 inches] of global sea-level rise per year. So if the cycle does not revert to the mean, and the current ice loss continues unabated for the next century, the Greenland ice loss will raise sea levels by just two inches over the next hundred years. More info here.

    Finally, regarding your concern that dams and lakes keep water from flowing to the oceans: they don’t.

  193. speculativebs says:
    May 2, 2010 at 5:17 pm

    The fact is that you can’t realistically eyeball sea level rise. If it were that simple, why would we bother with actually measuring the change?

    Isn’t that the basic point of Steve’s post? If 8 inches of sea level rise was barely discernible over the last century, why on earth would the prospect of a rise 12 inches over the next century justify all the hysterical hyperbole that has been spewed forth on this topic?

    David Ball says:
    May 2, 2010 at 1:14 pm
    Dave Wendt:
    May 2, 2010 at 12:19 pm: Response: Do not be troubled, Mr. Wendt. I get the chirping crickets more often than not.

    Thanks for your comment. I hadn’t really intended for my comment to come off quite as whiny as it did. The size of my ego allows me to consider the relative silence my comments usually incur to be merely a sign of abject surrender on the part those who might challenge me. Actually by having the ability to post a comment at site like this, I have an opportunity to place my thoughts before an audience whose size dwarfs anything I’d ever hoped for. It would be foolish to get too out of sorts about the lack of response, when the opportunity itself is such a gift.

    I hope your father fares well in his dealings with the courts, the methods and means used by the climate establishment to try to silence those that they feel threatened by, have always lead me to distrust them. Even if I was to find their science convincing, I don’t think I could associate myself with them.

  194. @Dave
    It’s an accelerating process. Current trends follow the upper bounds of IPCC projections, and the current increase is closer to 3.3 mm/year, well above the average for the past century. This is why the projected increase in sea level is closer to 0.1-0.7 meters rather than 8 inches.

    If you throw a ball downwards at a rate of 0.02 m/s and it’s 2 meters off the ground, will it hit the ground in 100 seconds, or will it be considerably sooner? Approximating an accelerating process as if it’s linear over long time frames yields hopelessly unrealistic results.

  195. Wow I find it amazing how in our modern era an with a web page can successfully warp disprove millions of scientist that have for the most part come to agree that the sea levels are rising due an increase in global temperature. I mean come on people global warming is a proven scientific theory. For anyone to pull a blind fold over there eyes and choose to ignore this fact, or argue the credibility of global warming is preposterous. You have just as good a chance of proving that gravity doesn’t exist as you do in disproving global warming.

    I would like to point out the absurdity of the animation posted. The image first image of the cove that the current water level is being compare to is completely irrelevant to the issue of rising sea levels. The first image is so old that it is not even in color. The reason that this makes the image irrelevant to this argument is that global warming is a fairly recent issue. Though it is true that the earth has previously gone through cycles of warmer and colder global temperatures, this is the first time that it has been caused by humans. An yes the current increase in global temperature has been caused by humans, starting around the industrial revolution, and increasing since then as world population has exponentially exploded (World Population Chart). The global temperature link the world population is not increasing at a linear rate. The global temperature is increasing at an exponential rate and with this increase comes an increased rate of melting polar ice caps.

    The polar ice caps are melting and thanks to science we know that nothing can disappear into nothingness. Therefore all of this melted ice has to go somewhere, and you guessed it the ocean! Wow what do you know there is a reason behind rising sea levels. As this image here show the polar ice caps have melted a lot in recent years (Melting Ice). The key word here being recent, which is what makes the animation at the top of this blog irrelevant.

  196. speculativebs says:
    May 2, 2010 at 5:17 pm: Response: I find it interesting that the screen name you used is denigrating to those who post on this site. But it is ok for you to engage in such activity, as your goal is to save the planet for our children and grandchildren. Cognitive dissonance at its finest.

  197. [quote Willis Eschenbach says:]
    First, we only have satellite data since 1992. So it’s very hard to look back further, because the data isn’t very good.

    Second, what you call the “buzzsaw effect” are the seasonal changes in the LOD which are driven by the seal level. As a result, they fit very well to the “buzzsaw effect” of the seasonal changes in sea level, which in part is why the correlation is so good. When the sea level goes up and down with the seasons, the LOD goes down and up in the same way and with the same timing. Given the theoretical physical connection between the two, this makes perfect sense. So I don’t think you can just “remove the buzzsaw effect” from one and not the other.
    [/quote]

    Thanks for the reply. How often does one get to talk about the Length Of Day Delta. ;)

    On the first point, I’m not sure I’m following you. We have sea level data going back hundreds of years and LODD going back at least to the 1960s (that’s what I have on my computer). As far as I know, there’s no quality concerns with the data.

    On the second point, I think you have to remove the annual signal from the LODD. Nearly all climate data has that signal and if you’re doing correlations than almost any data set correlates (or anti-corelates) with any other data set with that annual signal in it to some degree. I think this is _why_ you have so many contradictory claims about what’s causing the LODD.

    If you take out that signal, you’re left with a much lower frequency wave that doesn’t match the sea level curve at all. Not even close. See:

    So at the very least, even if we were to say that sea levels were causing that high frequency annual signal (and I’m not really convinced they are), there’s still something else causing that stronger lower frequency signal.

    And because of that, you can’t use one signal to calculate the other.

  198. [quote Willis Eschenbach says:]
    First, we only have satellite data since 1992. So it’s very hard to look back further, because the data isn’t very good.

    Second, what you call the “buzzsaw effect” are the seasonal changes in the LOD which are driven by the seal level. As a result, they fit very well to the “buzzsaw effect” of the seasonal changes in sea level, which in part is why the correlation is so good. When the sea level goes up and down with the seasons, the LOD goes down and up in the same way and with the same timing. Given the theoretical physical connection between the two, this makes perfect sense. So I don’t think you can just “remove the buzzsaw effect” from one and not the other.
    [/quote]

    Thanks for the reply. How often does one get to talk about the Length Of Day Delta. ;)

    On the first point, I’m not sure I’m following you. We have sea level data going back hundreds of years and LODD going back at least to the 1960s (that’s what I have on my computer). As far as I know, there’s no quality concerns with the data.

    On the second point, I think you have to remove the annual signal from the LODD. Nearly all climate data has that signal and if you’re doing correlations than almost any data set correlates (or anti-corelates) with any other data set with that annual signal in it to some degree. I think this is _why_ you have so many contradictory claims about what’s causing the LODD.

    If you take out that signal, you’re left with a much lower frequency wave that doesn’t match the sea level curve at all. Not even close. See:

    So at the very least, even if we were to say that sea levels were causing that high frequency annual signal (and I’m not really convinced they are), there’s still something else causing that stronger lower frequency signal.

    And because of that, you can’t use one signal to calculate the other

  199. speculativebs says:
    May 2, 2010 at 7:06 pm
    @Dave
    It’s an accelerating process. Current trends follow the upper bounds of IPCC projections, and the current increase is closer to 3.3 mm/year, well above the average for the past century.

    What would you suggest is going to provide this acceleration?

  200. zfoxcis says:
    May 2, 2010 at 7:25 pm

    Well, I’m not really sure what is being said here, other than that WUWT, The Air Vent, Climate Audit, and similar sites are all obviously wrong.

    How could this have happened, surely not by requesting proof, data to check, facts to verify? When all we needed to do was agree with Mann, Jones et al and become True Believers.

    Are you on Monbiots list for AGW supporters?

    When you can come up with actual facts, verifiable, and able to pass a true/false test, call back in. We’re always interested in actual science, not faith based assertions though, so I guess you won’t be back for a while.

  201. RE: zfoxcis’s post

    WOW! This is going to be great. Who’s makin’ popcorn?

    Clive

  202. #
    #
    zfoxcis says:
    May 2, 2010 at 7:25 pm

    Wow I find it amazing how in our modern era an with a web page can successfully warp disprove millions of scientist that have for the most part come to agree that the sea levels are rising due an increase in global temperature. ….
    _________________________________________________________________________
    You were being sarcastic weren’t you? If not I suggest you start reading here: Popular Technology: 700 Peer-Reviewed Papers Supporting Skepticism of “Man-Made” Global Warming

    Millions of scientists are willing to keep their mouths shut to keep their jobs is a more accurate description of the current situation. If you do not bow to the Global warming agenda and insert the required “prayer” your paper will not be published. Even World Market Media, a bunch of economists saw that: http://www.worldmarketmedia.com/801/section.aspx/527/hacked-emails-reveal-an-inconvienent-truth

  203. #
    #
    Willis Eschenbach says:
    May 2, 2010 at 4:10 pm

    stevengoddard says:
    May 2, 2010 at 3:20 pm

    Willis

    ” …..Presumably, however, if the land is sinking in one place it is rising in another, so you’d think they would somewhat average out.”

    I would think it depends on how you choose your data sort of like the “adjusting” of the Darwin Temperature data depended on how it was “processed”

  204. Bob(Sceptical Redcoat) says:
    May 2, 2010 at 1:36 pm

    I live in Southport, on the NW coast of England, about 17 miles North of Liverpool. My house sits 500 yards from the Irish Sea. The very long, very flat sandy beach at this sea-side resort is famous for high tides that can be as far out as a mile or more.

    I think you meant low tides.

  205. @David Ball
    My screen name is self-mockery; too many people take themselves way too seriously. I’m not an expert, and unlike some, I won’t pretend to be.

  206. Hi Smokey: May 2, 2010 at 6:10 pm

    Once again, it is important for everyone to read around a topic for a while to determine where the weight of evidence lies. Ask the question “what would make scientists think the ocean is rising?” and search amongst the many papers out there. Just reading abstracts gives a reasonable indication.

    From Wikipedia: Data results from year 2006 with undetected errors: The Argo Network has shown a continuous declining trend in ocean temperatures. The trend was overstated in media reports because of published data with undetected errors in year 2006. In March 2008, Josh Willis of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory did report that the Argo system show no ocean warming since it started in 2003. “There has been a very slight cooling, but not anything really significant,” Willis has stated. A lot of media has reported the uncorrected data results and even though the revised corrected data appeared in 2008, many articles and arguments still use and promote the uncorrected data results from 2006. In an article from November 5, 2008, Josh Willis states that the world ocean actually has been warming since 2003 after removing Argo measurement errors from the data and adjusting the measured temperatures with a computer model his team developed.

    Chen et al 2009 using GRACE satelite data estimate the recent total ice loss for Antarctica as a whole is estimated at 220 giga tonnes per year.

  207. I wonder how much influence the sci-fi novel “The Drowned World” by J. G. Ballard (who was also the author of the semi-autobiographical novel “Empire of the Sun” that was made into the 1987 film of the same name by Stephen Spielberg) may have had over the development of the CAGW movement. First published in 1962 (before even the global cooling / new ice-age scare of the 1970s) it describes a world where global warming (due to increased radiation from an unstable sun rather than to an anthropogenic cause) has, over a period of 60-70 years, melted the polar ice and permafrost and turned much of the earth into lands of tropical lagoons with drowned and half-drowned cities. See:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Drowned_World

    Could there possibly be a copy on one of Dr Hansen’s shelves, I wonder.

  208. speculativebs says:
    May 2, 2010 at 10:42 pm: Response: I guess I need to work on my communication skills, cause I did not get self-deprecating from your screen name at all.

  209. Actually, the picture of a flooded London at the beginning of the post is not impossibly alarmist, for one thing because it has happened before. See:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1928_Thames_flood

    In 1928 a combination of a number of adverse factors caused the Thames river to rise to the highest level ever recorded and overflow the London Embankments, causing flooding that drowned 14 people and made thousands homeless. Steps were subsequently taken to try to defend London against the danger of future flooding which culminated in the building of the Thames Barrier (to prevent tidal surges reaching the city) in the 1970s.

    One of the problems that London is up against is the fact that it is built on clay, and because of this and also due to the tilting downwards of South East England where it is located, it is sinking at a rate of about 30 cm per century. Consequently, possible rises in sea level are a genuine concern for the future of the city.

  210. When zfoxcis writes of “millions of scientists” supporting the AGW story you just know that he has a grasp of this subject that is going to put the rest of us to shame.

    (Hey, Clive, get some popcorn for me too, please.)

  211. Sedimentation and increased water usage by farming, industry and consumers does not exist in computer models.

  212. speculativebs says:
    May 2, 2010 at 7:06 pm

    @Dave
    It’s an accelerating process. Current trends follow the upper bounds of IPCC projections, and the current increase is closer to 3.3 mm/year, well above the average for the past century. This is why the projected increase in sea level is closer to 0.1-0.7 meters rather than 8 inches.

    Not true. What you are calling the “current increase” is solely the satellite record. The tide gauge records alone show no such increase. Nor does the satellite record alone. Your error is, the satellite record cannot be compared to the tide gauge record, because (for unknown reasons) it reads higher than the increase measured by the tide gauges. So your claim of an “increase” doesn’t hold water.

    Nor does the satellite record show any signs of acceleration. In fact, it has decelerated in recent years. Here’s the record:

    Will it start rising again at the earlier rate? Quite possibly. Is it accelerating? No way.

    If you throw a ball downwards at a rate of 0.02 m/s and it’s 2 meters off the ground, will it hit the ground in 100 seconds, or will it be considerably sooner? Approximating an accelerating process as if it’s linear over long time frames yields hopelessly unrealistic results.

    Ummm … well … first you have to show, not claim but show, that sea level rise is accelerating. Come back when you’ve done that, and we can talk about throwing balls downwards and the like. Here’s two different analyses of the tide gauge records, one by Church and White, and one by Jevrejeva

    See any acceleration there? Well, until you do …

  213. zfoxcis says:
    May 2, 2010 at 7:25 pm

    Curious. His name is linked to a wordpress blog that is “Protected” thus not for public viewing. Google does have a cached copy snapshotted April 22 of the latest post from April 18, thus it used to be public. Blog is titled “CIS 211” with this post being “Lab 3.2” and outlining a computer science project. Other recent posts are: Observer/Observable, Ships and Movement, LAB 2.2, and LAB 2.1. There are two recent comments, one indicates another post “Inanimate Object Hierarchy” which is also cached. Both posts have a single tag, “CIS GAME”, and wordpress insists there are no posts with that tag which to me indicates those posts may have been deleted.

    Conclusions:
    1. There is likely a crazed CompSci student out there who stopped here to post a rant, although it may be an instructor (rigid layout of posts, like presenting an exercise).

    2. I will trade sleep for an opportunity to search for interesting knowledge, even trivial facts, and the pursuit itself is the most rewarding part for me. I live for the hunt. :-)

  214. magicjava says:
    May 2, 2010 at 8:28 pm


    Thanks for the reply. How often does one get to talk about the Length Of Day Delta. ;)

    True, the web is an amazing place.

    On the first point, I’m not sure I’m following you. We have sea level data going back hundreds of years and LODD going back at least to the 1960s (that’s what I have on my computer). As far as I know, there’s no quality concerns with the data.

    My bad, I meant high quality data. There is data going back before that, but it shows none of the detailed changes shown by the satellite data.

    On the second point, I think you have to remove the annual signal from the LODD. Nearly all climate data has that signal and if you’re doing correlations than almost any data set correlates (or anti-corelates) with any other data set with that annual signal in it to some degree. I think this is _why_ you have so many contradictory claims about what’s causing the LODD.

    The sea level data actually has a funny shape, it’s not a simple sinusoidal wave over the seasons. It’s an odd jagged shape, and one which matches the LOD variations quite well. This is unlike say the annual temperature variation, which is a much poorer fit.

    If you take out that signal, you’re left with a much lower frequency wave that doesn’t match the sea level curve at all. Not even close. See:
    http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_1NlR71q69vA/S2rvO2pv0PI/AAAAAAAAAQs/kHdGV5JcHkw/s1600/Norm2.png

    Your graph doesn’t show sea level. The correlation between annually resolved LOD and sea level (Church and White) from 1962 to present is -0.69 (p = .025). However, that correlation is likely high, due to autocorrelation and due to the fact that the sea level rise is nearly linear.. But there is a clear relationship even at the longer time scale.

    So at the very least, even if we were to say that sea levels were causing that high frequency annual signal (and I’m not really convinced they are), there’s still something else causing that stronger lower frequency signal.

    And because of that, you can’t use one signal to calculate the other.

    I’ve never said that it is only the sea level that determines the LOD. I have said it affects the LOD. Remember my quote from before, from the guys that measure LOD:

    Global geophysical fluids data provide information related to Earth rotation variation, gravity field variation and geocenter motion that are caused by mass transports in the global geophysical fluids (atmosphere, oceans, hydrology, tides, mantle, core).

    So you are correct, not all of the change in LOD is due to sea level. But when sea level rises, the earth slows down. It has to, due to conservation of momentum.

    Thanks,

    w.

  215. brc:

    Sorry, but you are plain wrong when you say (at May 2, 2010 at 3:47 am).

    “People in London shouldn’t worry too much. The average street level rises by a couple of feet or so per century, as evidenced by centuries-old now-cellars with brick windows because the street rose up outside and buried them, and street-side monuments that you now have to view down through a grill in the ground, as well as lost steps to old buildings and half-underground windows. Ever wonder why it is you always look down on the Tower of London? It’s because the roads continue their rise, ever upwards. A resurface here, new materials there, it all adds up over time.

    Street level change exceeds sea level change by orders of magnitude.”

    The South East of England – including London – is sinking at a rate much faster than any possibly existing sea level rise. And Scotland is rising from the sea at similar rapid rate. This is a result of eustatic rebound from loss of the ice over Scotland at the end of the last age (it ended ~10,000 years ago).

    The weight of ice pushed Scotland down and the South Eat of England bulged up. So, the loss of the ice is now resulting in recovery that is the eustatic rebound.

    The London Barrage was built to defend against the resulting rise of the sea relative to the level of London. The barrage has to be closed to high spring tides rising the Thames . London would have flooded (as shown in the image in the above article) several times except that the London Barrage has prevented this.

    The eustatitic rebound is a result of global warming that happened ~10,000 years ago. Humans are not capable of causing global warming of similar magnitude.

    All estimates of global sea level rise are dubious because the land is rising and falling in various places. But, overall, there probably is global sea level rise as an effect of continuing recovery from the last ice age.

    Richard

  216. You’re right, I hadn’t looked into it before. It doesn’t appear to be linear, either, though; indeed, if you look at it alongside global temperature anomaly data, they appear to relate to each other quite well, so sea level changes realistically will vary in accordance with changes in temperature, something that, if I recall correctly, you don’t believe in. So if warming accelerates, sea level rise will accelerate as well. This connection probably doesn’t matter to you, but as someone generally convinced by the evidence for AGW, this does concern me.

    For the sake of completeness, you should probably draw in the little bit past 2008, where it appears that the change is increasing again. Of course, over such a short timespan, it’s unrealistic to claim that any trend can be drawn, but I spent about two minutes wondering why my chart in Excel looked different from yours.

    Thanks for correcting my misconception.

    As for the ball thing, it’s still illustrative in a general sense; people frequently try to approximate non-linear relationships as linear relationships. The point was to show that the difference can be quite large; 0.64 seconds and 100 seconds are very far apart. One example of this is technological progress; the future is always closer than we think it is, because our brains approximate advances as if they’ll proceed linearly, so something that feels like it’s 100 years off might be 15-20 years off.

    Or something.

  217. Anyone care to calculate the mass of a city like New York, and it’s effect on local sea level readings? Land is rebounding from glacier receding, why wouldn’t it sink with that kind of mass change as well?

  218. It’s been observed that more than one person crowing hysterically about man-made global warming and rising sea levels owns property at or near the coast.

    Al Gore has a condo in San Francisco, for example, near the bay. If he really believed sea level was going to rise catastrophically, would he have bought it? Or does he believe his actions will save it?

  219. Don E.

    It is hightly likely that errosion will cause problems long before “sea level rise” for the people who have been living in the same coastal homes for generations.

    If you compare sea-level rise to a hill of beans, the hill of beans wins.

  220. pwl, if the ‘States are floating, we better get that immigration situation under control. You know, the whole thing could tip over if we get too many people ;-)

  221. Francisco says:
    May 1, 2010 at 6:10 pm
    In a recent post on this topic, there is an excellent comment by a David Middleton showing sea level trends for the last few years, decades, centuries, millenia and so on from the available literature, and showing that nothing unusual at all is going on. I believe that comment merits being a post all by itself.

    Look for:
    David Middleton
    April 14, 2010 at 4:45 am

    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/04/13/ipcc-sea-level-prediction-not-scary-enough/#comments

    Oh say can you see”… 20th Century Sea Level Changes, When Viewed in a Geological Perspective?

    The answer is, “No.”

    Willis and several other commentators have also pointed out the fact that the sea level rise of the 20th century is far less than the typical tidal amplitude. The total isostatically corrected MSL rise since 1700 is about 30 cm – About half of the ideal lunar tidal amplitude (54 cm) or about equal to the ideal solar tidal amplitude (ideal tidal amplitude assumes no land masses and a uniform ocean depth).

    The Earth began to warm up from the Little Ice Age in the early 1600’s; sea level started its most recent rise about 180 years later (~1780). Since 1900 sea level has exhibited alternating ~30-yr periods of ~3 mm/yr rise and hiatus. Since 2003, sea level rise has been decelerating into a hiatus phase. If no for the strength of the current El Niño the d-MSL since 2003 would be less than 2 mm/yr and flattening.

  222. RE: Theo Goodwin: (May 2, 2010 at 4:15 pm) It strikes me as the very height of irony that someone would treat natural history as not being about observable phenomena.

    I believe the issue here is there can be a difference between observable and measurable. You may not be able to observe the long-term average sea level in a single picture or set of pictures even if taken over a long period of time, but you may be able to measure it by averaging a continuous set of tide gauge readings.

    I personally do not regard these minor documented sea level fluctuations as particularly threatening because in the end, what goes up must come down. There is no evidence, as far as I can see, that our overall climate is demonstrably abnormal.

  223. There was a little noticed posting on the site “climate sanity” suggesting that “sea level rate rise leads global temperature”:

    http://climatesanity.wordpress.com/2009/10/19/sea-level-rise-rate-leads-global-temperature/

    albeit from a limited recent period. There is a plausible (speculative) basis for this – sea level rise rate (not sea level per se) could be an index of the rate of energy flow into the upper ocean. Thus the current slowdown in rate of sea level increase could reflect decreased heat input into the upper ocean. This in turn could be predictive of a downturn in tropospheric temperatures and a cooler climate. Anyway – we will find out in due course.

  224. phlogiston says:
    May 3, 2010 at 12:33 pm
    There was a little noticed posting on the site “climate sanity” suggesting that “sea level rate rise leads global temperature…

    […]

    Well that makes sense because the delta-CO2 lags behind the warming.

    The oceans expand as they warm, causing sea level to rise.
    The warming oceans cause the atmosphere to warm.
    The warming oceans de-gas and release CO2 to the atmosphere.

    Now… What could possibly warm the oceans?

  225. Willis Eschenbach says: May 3, 2010 at 1:38 am “See any acceleration there? Well, until you do …” But that is the Church and White data, which the IPCC says DOES show acceleration (see Figure 5.13 in AR4 WG1 p510). “Church and White (2006) determined a change of 1.7 ±0.3 mm yr–1 for the 20th century. Changes in global sea level as derived from analyses of tide gauges are displayed in Figure 5.13. Considering the above results, and allowing for the ongoing higher trend in recent years shown by altimetry (see Section 5.5.2.2), we assess the rate for 1961 to 2003 as 1.8 ± 0.5 mm yr–1 and for the 20th century as 1.7 ± 0.5 mm yr–1.”
    Now can you see it?

  226. Space dust lands on the Earth continually according to Ian Plimer in his book. “Heaven + Earth : global warming : the missing science.”
    Depending on which regions this dust accumulates, this must have some impact on the relationship of land and sea levels?
    Also as the Earth has tectonic plates which are moving continually, this must affect land levels as plates bump into each other.
    Neither of these two effects have anything to do with supposed climate change from CO2. Are they taken into effect by the computer models?

  227. John Galt says:
    May 3, 2010 at 1:12 pm

    @Digsby:

    You’re not talking about Water World, are you? http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0114898/

    _____________________________________________________________

    No, Water World was a not very intelligent Hollywood ripoff of Ballard’s The Drowned World. It was full of illogicalities, although it was a good enough sci-fi romp, I guess.

  228. John Galt says:
    May 3, 2010 at 1:12 pm

    @Digsby:

    You’re not talking about Water World, are you? http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0114898/

    =======================================================

    No, Water World was a not very intelligent Hollywood ripoff of Ballard’s The Drowned World. It was full of illogicalities, although it was a good enough sci-fi romp, I guess.

  229. Last year we visited friends in Wales and one of the sites we saw was Harlech Castle in Gwynedd. It was built in the 1200s on the Irish sea.

    From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harlech_Castle

    “Harlech is also notable for an unusual feature: the “way from the sea”. Edward’s forces were often in danger from land-based attack, but he enjoyed total supremacy on water. Many of his castles included sally ports which allowed resupply from the sea, but Harlech’s is far more elaborate. Here, a fortified stairway hugs the rock and runs almost 200 feet (61 m) down to the foot of the cliffs, where (at the time of construction) the sea reached. Today, the sea has retreated several miles, making it more difficult to envisage the concept in its original setting. James of St. George’s plan was a triumph; when the castle was besieged during Madoc ap Llywelyn’s campaign, this stairway was used to supply the castle.”

    Sea rise, ummm not so much.

  230. The Iceman Cometh says:
    May 3, 2010 at 2:34 pm

    Willis Eschenbach says: May 3, 2010 at 1:38 am “See any acceleration there? Well, until you do …” But that is the Church and White data, which the IPCC says DOES show acceleration (see Figure 5.13 in AR4 WG1 p510). “Church and White (2006) determined a change of 1.7 ±0.3 mm yr–1 for the 20th century. Changes in global sea level as derived from analyses of tide gauges are displayed in Figure 5.13. Considering the above results, and allowing for the ongoing higher trend in recent years shown by altimetry (see Section 5.5.2.2), we assess the rate for 1961 to 2003 as 1.8 ± 0.5 mm yr–1 and for the 20th century as 1.7 ± 0.5 mm yr–1.”
    Now can you see it?

    Nope, I still can’t see it. Like Groucho Marx said, “Who are you gonna trust, the IPCC or your own lying eyes?”

    If you look at their numbers, there is absolutely no statistical difference between the entire century (1.7 ±0.5 mm) and the latter forty years of the century (1.8 ±0.5 mm). Look at the graph I showed above, which is showing the Church and White numbers that the IPCC is talking about … then point out to me the acceleration.

    Note also that to get even that tiny “acceleration” the IPCC is combining the satellite record and the tidal gauge record … bad IPCC, no cookies.

  231. I don’t in any way see an isolated example as indicative of a larger trend; cherry-picking is a stupid way of going about such things. Even so, I couldn’t help but let out a chuckle just because of the proximity of this story to stories of massive flooding in the South-Eastern United States. Just one of those odd timing things.

  232. speculativebs

    Please explain how the volume of the oceans can increase, and have that not affect sea level in California. Can you add water to a swimming pool, and raise the level at only one end? That would be a good trick.

  233. stevengoddard says:
    May 3, 2010 at 2:48 pm
    David Middleton

    What warms the oceans is sunshine and clear skies, something which GCMs have very little skill at modeling.

    Next thing, you’ll be saying that increasing low cloud cover might actually cool the oceans.

    I think it was Nir Shaviz (or was it Tom Segalstad?) who said that, “The climate modelers are doing the equivalent of looiking for their car keys at night by only looking under the street lights, because that’s where they can see.”

    The lack of GCM modeling skill explains this chart.

  234. @stevengoddard

    I’m reasonably certain that I never made such a claim.

    As for the swimming pool, if I could construct it in a rotating system that isn’t about the center of the pool, you couldn’t raise the level on one side and not the other, but you could increase the level much more on one end than the other. Insanely silly example, and I’m sure that with a strange enough swimming pool where the center of rotation can somehow shift in response to the total mass of water in the pool, we could construct a magical swimming pool in which you could add water and raise the level at only one end.

    If you meant in a real swimming pool, then that would indeed be quite a trick.

  235. I believe the accepted sea level rise measurements cannot be rejected on the basis of simple observations. Before this can be done, I think real evidence is required showing that the actual data collection process for those readings was flawed.

    If one could, for example, demonstrate that the apparent sea level rise might be the result of the typical tide gauges in use gradually sinking into the sand, then these readings might be discounted. So far, I have not heard anybody say this is even possible.

    I do not consider the current established sea level increase rates to be a threat or any portent of a global catastrophe.

  236. stevengoddard says:
    May 4, 2010 at 5:12 am

    speculativebs says:
    May 4, 2010 at 8:35 am

    The oceans of the world are not a swimming pool. When measured from a fixed reference, such as the reference ellipsoid, the “levels” of the oceans vary by 100 meters or more. See the map on page 3 of this PDF linked by David Ball above

    http://ocw.mit.edu/NR/rdonlyres/Earth–Atmospheric–and-Planetary-Sciences/12-808Fall-2004/A740D69D-9E59-401D-89E9-BE2F0EFD0194/0/course_notes_3b.pdf

    Some of that variation is persistent based on variations in the gravitational field of the planet, but enough of it is random and chaotic that predicting how,what, or where the effects of relatively insignificant changes in the MSL will be evidenced is a fruitless task.

  237. Spector said on May 4, 2010 at 11:46 am:

    I believe the accepted sea level rise measurements cannot be rejected on the basis of simple observations. Before this can be done, I think real evidence is required showing that the actual data collection process for those readings was flawed.

    If one could, for example, demonstrate that the apparent sea level rise might be the result of the typical tide gauges in use gradually sinking into the sand, then these readings might be discounted. So far, I have not heard anybody say this is even possible.
    (…)

    *ahem*

    Back at the comment by GeoFlynx on May 1, 2010 at 4:24 pm was:

    REPLY: Ah but see you are projecting there, nobody suggested that it was precise, simply not noticable. OTOH tides gauges have their problems too.

    http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/GRD/GPS/Projects/CB/SEALEVEL/sealevel.html

    Which is interesting reading BTW.

  238. kadaka (KD Knoebel) [May 4, 2010 at 2:09 pm] “…you are projecting there, nobody suggested that it was precise, simply not noticable”

    Perhaps this is true if the word ‘precise’ is replaced by the phrase ‘not happening.’

    I believe it is reasonable to expect sea level changes to follow global surface temperature anomaly changes. When one thinks back over time, it is hard to notice changes in either parameter. I suppose if we were now in the middle of the Little Ice-Age, some people might be worried about slowly falling sea levels cutting off navigation to coastal cities and expanding mountain glaciers engulfing the continent.

  239. Here are two photos of Wilson’s Beach (Auckland NZ) taken at high tide 92 years apart, showing that the sea level has not risen.
    This one was taken in 1918:

    I took this photo at high tide this morning:

    In the background is a large sewer pipe supported on concrete legs.
    At high tide the sea laps just under the pipe. Today the high tide was not as high as in 1918. Of course there will be slight daily variations in height.

    The sewer pipe is about to be removed so a temporary roadway for that purpose has been built on this side of the pipe.

  240. I have found one paper by John Hannah of New Zealand, “The Difficulties in Using Tide Gauges to Monitor Long-Term Sea Level Change” that indicates pre-1980 tide gauges were susceptible to mud building up in the float stilling well. Over time, this could gradually limit the maximum downward excursions of the float and bias the instrument to yield higher than true average readings. I presume this is a maintenance issue.

    http://www.fig.net/pub/fig2010/papers/ts10i%5Cts10i_hannah_3786.pdf

    Over the past 100 years, the estimate global sea level rise is estimated to be only about 8 inches or 20 cm. I would think that any observation set attempting to disprove this would need to be accurate to within at least a third of this value.

    I have not, as yet, found a standard reference defined for measuring absolute sea level. One standard, the geoid, actually appears to be based on current mean sea level. If one uses the center of the Earth, then thermal expansion/contraction of the Earth as a whole would affect both sea level and land levels.

  241. David Middleton says:
    May 3, 2010 at 1:17 pm

    Now… What could possibly warm the oceans?

    stevengoddard says:
    May 3, 2010 at 2:48 pm
    David Middleton

    What warms the oceans is sunshine and clear skies, something which GCMs have very little skill at modeling.

    Less cooling by upwelling can count as warming, combined with – as Steve says – sunshine and clear skies. Take the east Pacific and the ENSO system as an example. Note that deep water below the thermocline is 0-3C in termperature, above the thremocline (by definition) water is a hot-tub by comparison, especially near the tropics. In a La Nina year, you get big-time upwelling of deep ocean water off the Peruvian coast – it fuels plankton blooms and a massive anchovy fishery. But in an el Nino year, the trade winds which pull the upwelling in a La Nina year are absent, so no cold upwelling and increased unemployment among Peruvian fishermen. The big warm patches on the pacific that everyone gets excited about are due to the absence of the “normal” upwelling. As Pamela Gray once pointed out, the sub-tropical sea surface in the doldrums can heat up very fast under the tropical sun.

    So the balance of downwelling and upwelling tied to the THC can cause changes in heat exchange between deep and surface ocean water, with the possibility of century-scale oscillation in this exchange due to the timescale of THC.

  242. @phlogiston says:
    May 5, 2010 at 1:02 am

    The upwelling rate in the Eastern Pacific definitely is cyclical and it did show an anomalous jump in 2003 at several measuring stations.

  243. David Middleton says:
    May 5, 2010 at 6:54 am
    @phlogiston says:
    May 5, 2010 at 1:02 am

    The upwelling rate in the Eastern Pacific definitely is cyclical and it did show an anomalous jump in 2003 at several measuring stations.

    How do they measure upwelling?

  244. phlogiston says:
    May 7, 2010 at 1:54 am
    […]

    How do they measure upwelling?

    In metric tons per second per 100 m of coastline…

    PFEL Coastal Upwelling Indices

    How PFEL Determines the Upwelling Indices

    PFEL coastal upwelling indices are calculated based upon Ekman’s theory of mass transport due to wind stress. Assuming homogeneity, uniform wind and steady state conditions, the mass transport of the surface water due to wind stress is 90° to the right of the wind direction in the Northern Hemisphere. Ekman mass transport is defined as the wind stress divided by the Coriolis parameter (a function of the earth’s rotation and latitude). The depth to which an appreciable amount of this offshore transport occurs is termed the surface Ekman layer, and is generally 50 to 100 meters deep.

    Ekman transports are resolved into components parallel and normal to the local coastline orientation. The magnitude of the offshore component is considered to be an index of the amount of water upwelled from the base of the Ekman layer. Positive values are, in general, the result of equatorward wind stress. Negative values imply downwelling, the onshore advection of surface waters accompanied by a downward displacement of water.

    Historically, the indices were computed from monthly mean pressure fields prepared by FNMOC on a 3° mesh grid. After providing PFEL with several alternate pressure field grids over time, FNMOC currently produces six-hourly fields of surface pressure on a global spherical 1° mesh (a 180 x 360 grid). The standard west coast six-hourly upwelling indices are a product of the 3° pressure field interpolated from the 1° grid. Monthly indices are derived from a 3° mesh that is interpolated from the monthly-averages of the six-hourly 1° pressures.

    Pacific Fisheries Environmental Laboratory

    Now if I can only find my copy of Sverdrup, Johnson & Flemming, I might understand what I just posted.

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