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Uploaded on Tuesday 21 Feb 2012 by GRID-Arendal

Change in sea level as a result of changes in ocean density and circulation

Year: 2010 Author: Nieves López Izquierdo, Associate Consultant UNEP/GRID-Arendal
Changes in sea levels resulting exclusively from changes in ocean density and circulation patterns, results of atmosphere-ocean general circulation models (AOGCM) for climate change scenario A1B (this scenario assumes future rapid demographic and economic growth, introduction of new and more efficient technologies, accompanied by a balanced use of all types of energy sources) show that there will be significant spatial variability, i.e., changes in sea levels will not be uniform. Thus, it is expected that by the end of the century (2090-2099) there will be major rises in sea levels in the Caribbean and the Atlantic compared to 1980-1999 levels – attributable to the change in density and ocean circulation patterns – which, with the exception of the southeastern coast of Argentina and the eastern coast of Brazil, are expected to be as much as 5 cm greater than the projected world average of between 0.21 meters and 0.48 meters. These same models predict that increases in Pacific sea levels will be less than the world average of 5 cm.
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