Next Article in Journal / Special Issue
Halosteric Sea Level Changes during the Argo Era
Previous Article in Journal
Kinetic Modelling of the Removal of Multiple Heavy Metallic Ions from Mine Waste by Natural Zeolite Sorption
Previous Article in Special Issue
Impact of Geophysical and Datum Corrections on Absolute Sea-Level Trends from Tide Gauges around Taiwan, 1993–2015
Article Menu
Issue 7 (July) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Water 2017, 9(7), 483; doi:10.3390/w9070483

Analyzing the Effect of Ocean Internal Variability on Depth-Integrated Steric Sea-Level Rise Trends Using a Low-Resolution CESM Ensemble

Department of Atmospheric Sciences, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Champaign-Urbana, IL 61801, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 14 March 2017 / Revised: 8 May 2017 / Accepted: 27 June 2017 / Published: 1 July 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sea Level Changes)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [1774 KB, uploaded 1 July 2017]   |  


Ocean heat uptake is a key indicator of climate change, in part because it contributes to sea-level rise. Quantifying the uncertainties surrounding ocean heat uptake and sea-level rise are important in assessing climate-related risks. Here, comprehensive global climate model ensembles are used to evaluate uncertainties surrounding decadal trends in depth-integrated global steric sea-level rise due to thermal expansion of the ocean. Results are presented against observational estimates, which are used as a guide to the state of recent literature. The first ensemble uses the Community Earth System Model (CESM), which samples the effects of internal variability within the coupled Earth system including contributions from the sub-surface ocean. We compare and contrast these results with an ensemble based on the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5), which samples the combined effects of structural model differences and internal variability. The effects of both internal variability and structural model differences contribute substantially to uncertainties in modeled steric sea-level trends for recent decades, and the magnitude of these effects varies with depth. The 95% range in total sea-level rise trends across the CESM ensemble is 0.151 mm·year−1 for 1957–2013, while this range is 0.895 mm·year−1 for CMIP5. These ranges increase during the more recent decade of 2005–2015 to 0.509 mm·year−1 and 1.096 mm·year−1 for CESM and CMIP5, respectively. The uncertainties are amplified for regional assessments, highlighting the importance of both internal variability and structural model differences when considering uncertainties surrounding modeled sea-level trends. Results can potentially provide useful constraints on estimations of global and regional sea-level variability, in particular for areas with few observations such as the deep ocean and Southern Hemisphere. View Full-Text
Keywords: climate variability; Earth System Modeling; sea-level rise climate variability; Earth System Modeling; sea-level rise

Figure 1

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).

Scifeed alert for new publications

Never miss any articles matching your research from any publisher
  • Get alerts for new papers matching your research
  • Find out the new papers from selected authors
  • Updated daily for 49'000+ journals and 6000+ publishers
  • Define your Scifeed now

SciFeed Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Hogan, E.; Sriver, R. Analyzing the Effect of Ocean Internal Variability on Depth-Integrated Steric Sea-Level Rise Trends Using a Low-Resolution CESM Ensemble. Water 2017, 9, 483.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics



[Return to top]
Water EISSN 2073-4441 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top