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The University of Massachusetts Amherst

Sea level rise projections for current generation CGCMs based on the semi-empirical method

Authors:

Radley Horton

Celine Herweijer

Cynthia Rosenzweig

Jiping Liu

Vivien Gornitz

Alex Ruane

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Year of Publication:
2008
Secondary Title:
Geophysical Research Letters
Volume:
35
Year:
2008
Date:
2008

Abstract

The semi-empirical relationship between global surface air temperature and mean sea level first developed by Rahmstorf is here applied to the latest generation of Coupled Global Climate Models (CGCMs) used for the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report (AR4). Our results produce a broader range of sea level rise projections, especially at the higher end, than outlined in IPCC AR4. The range of sea level rise results is CGCM and emissions-scenario dependent, and not sensitive to initial conditions or how the data are filtered temporally. Both the IPCC AR4 and the semi-empirical sea level rise projections described here are likely to underestimate future sea level rise if recent trends in the polar regions accelerate.