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Assessment of Sea Level Rise at West Coast of Portugal Mainland and Its Projection for the 21st Century

Instituto Dom Luiz, Faculdade de Ciências, Universidade de Lisboa, 1794-016 Lisboa, Portugal
J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2019, 7(3), 61; https://doi.org/10.3390/jmse7030061
Received: 11 February 2019 / Revised: 27 February 2019 / Accepted: 1 March 2019 / Published: 7 March 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Numerical Models in Coastal Hazards and Coastal Environment)
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Abstract

Based on the updated relative sea level rise rates, 21st-century projections are made for the west coast of Portugal Mainland. The mean sea level from Cascais tide gauge and North Atlantic satellite altimetry data have been analyzed. Through bootstrapping linear regression and polynomial adjustments, mean sea level time series were used to calculate different empirical projections for sea level rise, by estimating the initial velocity and its corresponding acceleration. The results are consistent with an accelerated sea level rise, showing evidence of a faster rise than previous century estimates. Based on different numerical methods of second order polynomial fitting, it is possible to build a set of projection models of relative sea level rise. Applying the same methods to regional sea level anomaly from satellite altimetry, additional projections are also built with good consistency. Both data sets, tide gauge and satellite altimetry data, enabled the development of an ensemble of projection models. The relative sea level rise projections are crucial for national coastal planning and management since extreme sea level scenarios can potentially cause erosion and flooding. Based on absolute vertical velocities obtained by integrating global sea level models, neo-tectonic studies, and permanent Global Positioning System (GPS) station time series, it is possible to transform relative into absolute sea level rise scenarios, and vice-versa, allowing the generation of absolute sea level rise projection curves and its comparison with already established global projections. The sea level rise observed at the Cascais tide gauge has always shown a significant correlation with global sea level rise observations, evidencing relatively low rates of vertical land velocity and residual synoptic regional dynamic effects. An ensemble of sea level projection models for the 21st century is proposed with its corresponding probability density function, both for relative and absolute sea level rise for the west coast of Portugal Mainland. A mean sea level rise of 1.14 m was obtained for the epoch of 2100, with a likely range of 95% of probability between 0.39 m and 1.89 m. View Full-Text
Keywords: Cascais tide gauge; sea level rise; sea level acceleration; sea level projection; SLR probability density function; uplift derived from SLR Cascais tide gauge; sea level rise; sea level acceleration; sea level projection; SLR probability density function; uplift derived from SLR
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Antunes, C. Assessment of Sea Level Rise at West Coast of Portugal Mainland and Its Projection for the 21st Century. J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2019, 7, 61.

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