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Water 2017, 9(7), 480; doi:10.3390/w9070480

Impact of Geophysical and Datum Corrections on Absolute Sea-Level Trends from Tide Gauges around Taiwan, 1993–2015

Department of Geomatics, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan 70101, Taiwan
Research Center for Environmental Changes, Academia Sinica, Taipei 11529, Taiwan
Division of Geodetic Science, School of Earth Sciences, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210, USA
State Key Laboratory of Geodesy and Earth’s Dynamics, Institute of Geodesy and Geophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Wuhan 430077, China
Center for Space and Remote Sensing Research, National Central University, Taoyuan 32001, Taiwan
Department of Soil and Water Conservation, National Chung Hsing University, Taichung 402, Taiwan
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 April 2017 / Revised: 14 June 2017 / Accepted: 28 June 2017 / Published: 1 July 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sea Level Changes)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [2183 KB, uploaded 1 July 2017]   |  


The Taiwanese government has established a complete tide gauge network along the coastline for accurate sea-level monitoring. In this study, we analyze several factors impacting the determination of absolute or geocentric sea-level trends—including ocean tides, inverted barometer effect, datum shift, and vertical land motion—using tide gauge records near Taiwan, from 1993–2015. The results show that datum shifts and vertical land motion have a significant impact on sea-level trends with a respective average contribution of 7.3 and 8.0 mm/yr, whereas ocean tides and inverted barometer effects have a relatively minor impact, representing 9% and 14% of the observed trend, respectively. These results indicate that datum shifts and vertical land motion effects have to be removed in the tide gauge records for accurate sea-level estimates. Meanwhile, the estimated land motions show that the southwestern plain has larger subsidence rates, for example, the Boziliao, Dongshi, and Wengang tide gauge stations exhibit a rate of 24–31 mm/yr as a result of groundwater pumping. We find that the absolute sea-level trends around Taiwan derived from tide gauges or satellite altimetry agree well with each other, and are estimated to be 2.2 mm/yr for 1993–2015, which is significantly slower than the global average sea-level rise trend of 3.2 mm/yr from satellite altimeters. Finally, a recent hiatus in sea-level rise in this region exhibits good agreement with the interannual and decadal variabilities associated with the El Niño-Southern Oscillation and Pacific Decadal Oscillation. View Full-Text
Keywords: sea-level rise; satellite altimetry; tide gauge; vertical land motion sea-level rise; satellite altimetry; tide gauge; vertical land motion

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Lan, W.-H.; Kuo, C.-Y.; Kao, H.-C.; Lin, L.-C.; Shum, C.K.; Tseng, K.-H.; Chang, J.-C. Impact of Geophysical and Datum Corrections on Absolute Sea-Level Trends from Tide Gauges around Taiwan, 1993–2015. Water 2017, 9, 480.

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