Renowned Sea Level Expert: “NO TRACES OF A PRESENT RISE IN SEA LEVEL; On The Contrary: Full Stability”

A new paper by renowned Swedish sea level expert Prof. Axel Mörmer published in the International Journal of Earth & Environmental Sciences dumps lots of cold water on the premise that today’s sea level rise is caused by man and is unusual.

Mörner’s paper looks back at the last 500 years of sea level rise and shows that natural variables are the major drivers, and not man-made CO2-driven global warming.

Previously no study in the Fiji Islands had been devoted to the sea level changes of the last 500 years and so no serious prediction can be made. What was needed was a good understanding of the sea level changes today and in the past centuries. Mörner’s study helps to fill that gap and to answer questions concerning today’s sea level rise.

The Swedish scientist summarizes in the paper’s abstract that there is a total absence of data supporting the notion of a present sea level rise; on the contrary all available facts indicate present sea level stability.

Source: Mörner, Int J Earth Environ Sci 2017, 2: 137, https://doi.org/10.15344/2456-351X/2017/137

Sea level changes over the past 500 years at Ysawa Islands, Fiji, show that sea level was +70 cm high in the 16th and 17th centuries, -50 cm low in the 18th century and that stability (with some oscillations) prevailed in the 19th, 20th and early 21st centuries.

This, Mörner writes, is almost identical to the sea level change documented in the Maldives, Bangladesh and Goa (India), and thus would point to a mutual driving force.

The pattern is the same at other locations:

Source: Mörner, Int J Earth Environ Sci 2017, 2: 137, https://doi.org/10.15344/2456-351X/2017/137

The paper also states that the recorded sea level changes are anti-correlated with the major changes in climate during the last 600 years. Therefore, Mörner concludes that glacial eustasy cannot be the driving force.

The explanation behind the sea level changes, Mörner believes, seems to be rotational eustasy with speeding-up phases during Grand Solar Minima forcing ocean water masses to the equatorial region, and slowing-down phases during Grand Solar Maxima forcing ocean waster massed from the equator towards the poles.

The paper summarizes:

This means there are no traces of a present rise in sea level; on the contrary: full stability.”

About the author:

Nils-Axel (”Niklas”) Mörner took his Ph.D. in Quaternary Geology at Stockholm University in 1969. Head of the institute of Paleogeophysics & Geodynamics (P&G) at Stockholm University from 1991 up to his retirement in 2005. He has written many hundreds of research papers and several books. He has presented more than 500 papers at major international conferences. He has undertaking field studies in 59 different countries. The P&G institute became an international center for global sea level change, paleoclimate, paleoseismics, neotectonics, paleomagnetism, Earth rotation, planetary-solar-terrestrial interaction, etc.  Among his books; Earth Rheology, Isostasy and Eustasy (Wiley, 1984), Climate Change on a Yearly to Millennial Basis (Reidel, 1984), Paleoseismicity of Sweden: a novel paradigm (P&G-print, 2003), The Greatest Lie Ever Told (P&G-print, 2007), The Tsunami Threat: Research & Technology (InTech, 2011), Geochronology: Methods and Case Studies (InTech, 2014), Planetary Influence on the Sun and the Earth, and a Modern Book-Burning (Nova, 2015).

 

23 responses to “Renowned Sea Level Expert: “NO TRACES OF A PRESENT RISE IN SEA LEVEL; On The Contrary: Full Stability””

  1. Bitter&twisted

    So Sebastian what is your explanation of these results?
    Note that they are based on real observations, not models and not anecdotal stories from rent-seekers and scamsters.

    1. SebastianH

      Do you think measuring the current (global) sea level rise is based on a model and not “real observations”?

      1. SebastianH

        Oh, and can the author please quantify how much Earth’s rotation slowed down / accelerated to achieve these kinds of sea level changes near the equator? And shouldn’t sea level decrease from the “recent” slow down of the rotation speed then? https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/5/5b/Deviation_of_day_length_from_SI_day.svg/1200px-Deviation_of_day_length_from_SI_day.svg.png

        1. David Johnson

          Spouting rubbish again I see. Well done Seb

      2. Kenneth Richard

        Do you think measuring the current (global) sea level rise is based on a model and not “real observations”?

        Satellite altimetry is rooted in models. Long-term tide gauge measurements are real observations.

        http://www.sealevel.info/avgslr.html
        Synopsis: Sea-level is not rising everywhere. The measured rate of coastal sea-level change varies from -17.59 mm/yr at Skagway, Alaska to +9.39 mm/yr at Kushiro, Japan. The average, as measured by the world’s best long-term coastal tide gauges, is just under +1.5 mm/yr (about 6 inches per century).

        Satellite altimetry
        Some sources quote much higher rates, sometimes as high as 3.3 mm/yr (13 inches per century), based on satellite altimetry measurements of sea-level, rather than coastal sea-level measured by tide gauges. That is a mistake.

        Most fundamentally, satellite altimeters measure the wrong thing. Their measurements are distorted by “sea-level rise” caused by thermal expansion when the upper layer of the ocean warms. But that is a strictly local effect, that doesn’t affect the quantity of water in the oceans, and doesn’t affect sea-level elsewhere (e.g., at the coasts).

        Sea-level rise only matters at the coasts, but satellite altimeters are incapable of measuring sea-level at the coasts. They can only measure sea-level in the open ocean. Tide gauges measure sea-level at the coasts, where it matters.

        Also, tide gauge measurements of sea-level are much higher quality than satellite altimetry measurements. The satellite measurements of sea-level are of questionable reliability, and vary considerably from one satellite to another.

        Also, some of the tide-gauge records of sea-level measurements are nearly ten times as long as the combined satellite measurement record, and twenty times as long as any single satellite measurement record.

        Tide Gauges
        NOAA has done linear regression analysis on sea-level measurements (relative sea-level) from 225 long term tide gauges around the world, which have data spanning at least 50 years. (Note: the literature indicates that at least 50-60 years of data are required to determine a robust long term sea-level trend from a tide gauge record.) It is important to realize that there’s been no sign of any acceleration (increase in rate) in most of those tide-gauge records, in over three-quarters of a century.

        The rate of measured sea-level rise (SLR) varies from -17.59 mm/yr at Skagway, Alaska, to +9.39 mm/yr at Kushiro, Japan. 197 of 225 stations (87.6%) have recorded less than 3.3 mm/yr sea-level rise. At 47 of 225 stations (20.9%) sea level is falling, rather than rising. Just 28 of 225 stations (12.4%) have recorded more than 3.3 mm/yr sea-level rise. The average SLR at those 225 gauges is +0.90 mm/yr. The median is +1.41 mm/yr.

        1. yonason

          Sea level nonsense is debunked here by the guy who set me straight on the scam the IPCC was/is perpetrating.
          https://www.john-daly.com/ges/msl-rept.htm

          There really is no reason to panic. And, if there ever is, it won’t be our fault and there’ll be nothing to do about it but move away from low lying areas.

        2. SebastianH

          Satellite altimetry is rooted in models.

          Out of curiosity, what “model” is used to calculate the sea level from the measurements of the satellites? Can you explain that in your own words?

          Monitoring Sea Level in the Coastal Zone with Satellite Altimetry and Tide Gauges:
          https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10712-016-9392-0

          It’s getting there, and it is not measuring the wrong thing. And how are tide gauges exempt from being influenced by thermal expansion again?

          Sea-level rise only matters at the coasts

          For the coasts, yes … but not if you want to know the global sea level rise due to thermal expansion and ice melt. Then the whole ocean suface matters.

          1. Kenneth Richard

            http://tsijournals.com/upload/ESAIJ_3873/Ereprint_ESAIJ_3873.pdf
            The nominal satellite altimeter-based determination of the absolute global mean sea level is actually a computational result rather than a direct observation. It is obtained by correcting the satellite altimeter raw signal with algorithms having many features in common with the climate models. Regardless of any modeling problems, Carter et al. (2014) pointed out that estimates of sea-level change from satellite-collected data remain problematic, because of the many uncertainties in data collection and processing. In particular, there is inconsistency between the results derived by different research groups, with all results depending upon the accuracy of complex adjustments, some of which lack in- dependent verification, plus the severe problem that the signal being sought may be less than the noise level of the data being used. Many corrections applied to all satellite altimeter measurements of sea-level since 2003 had the effect of changing a sea-level record that showed no trend or a gentle rise into one that projects high rates of rise. The trend 1992 to 2000 was +0 mm/year. This trend was increased by 2.3 mm/year in 2003 and then by another 0.8 mm/year introduced in 2008 to make the present 3.1 mm/year. … Even without the corrections, the satellite altimeter results are unreliable. Processing of all satellite altimeter data takes place against the background of known errors that at least match, if not exceed, the sea-level signal being sought.

            For the coasts, yes … but not if you want to know the global sea level rise due to thermal expansion and ice melt. Then the whole ocean suface matters.

            When adding thermal expansion estimates (~+0.65 mm/yr) and ice melt contributions to estimates of total sea level rise for recent decades, the result is about 1.5 mm/yr at most, consistent with tide gauge measurements. They don’t add up to 3.4 mm/yr, which are the up-justed results from satellite altimetry.

            Llovel et al., 2014
            http://www.nature.com/nclimate/journal/v4/n11/full/nclimate2387.html
            “Over the entire water column, independent estimates of ocean warming yield a contribution of 0.77 ± 0.28 mm yr−1 in sea-level rise … the deep ocean (below 2,000 m) contributes −0.13 ± 0.72 mm yr−1 to global sea-level rise [0.64 mm/yr total].”

          2. SebastianH

            Have you even read the paper I linked to?

            When adding thermal expansion estimates (~+0.65 mm/yr) and ice melt contributions to estimates of total sea level rise for recent decades, the result is about 1.5 mm/yr at most, consistent with tide gauge measurements. They don’t add up to 3.4 mm/yr, which are the up-justed results from satellite altimetry.

            This feels very much like groundhog day … I don’t know how many times we had this discussion. Yes, they add up. Table 13.1 https://www.ipcc.ch/pdf/assessment-report/ar5/wg1/WG1AR5_Chapter13_FINAL.pdf

          3. Kenneth Richard

            Yes, they add up.

            No, they don’t. The contributions from thermal expansion (+0.64 mm/yr), the GIS (+0.23 mm/yr), the AIS (+0.15 mm/yr), and the rest of the world’s glaciers and ice sheets (0.41 mm/yr) add up to the values much closer to the tide gauge measurements (1.4 mm/yr). They do not add up to the satellite altimetry values (3.4 mm/yr) during the last 1-2 decades.

            Now, considering land water storage removed -0.71 mm/yr from sea levels for 2002-2014, up from about -0.35 mm/yr for the 20th century (Cabanes et al., 2001, see below) the overall rate of sea level rise was more like 0.7 mm/yr (1.4 mm/yr – 0.71 mm/yr) when considering all the contributors. Interestingly, 0.7 mm/yr is also the median sea level change from all contributing factors for the 20th century, which means that the 21st century sea level rise as calculated from all the contributors is no different than what occurred in the 20th century. And, again, neither 1.4 mm/yr nor 0.7 mm/yr is even close to 3.4 mm/yr. This means that the contributors to sea level change are not supported by the satellite altimetry “measurements”.
            ——-
            Cabanes et al., 2001
            http://ruby.fgcu.edu/courses/twimberley/EnviroPhilo/Cabanes.pdf
            “The third assessment report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) estimates the various factors that have contributed to the 20th century sea level rise. The largest contribution (0.7 mm/year sea level rise) arises from thermal expansion due to warming of the oceans that mainly occurred since the 1950s. Melting of continental glaciers produces 0.2 to 0.4 mm/year sea level rise. Estimated Greenland and Antarctica mass imbalance contributes –0.2 to 0.6 mm/year. The least certain contribution is the change in terrestrial water storage that results partly from human activities, which is in the range of –1.1 to + 0.4 mm/year with a median value of −0.35 mm/year (i.e., corresponding to sea level drop).

            The sum of these contributions ranges from −0.8 to 2.2 mm/year, with a median value of 0.7 mm/year.”

            ——-
            Terrestrial Water Storage: -0.71 mm/yr (2002-2014)
            Reager et al., 2016
            http://science.sciencemag.org/content/351/6274/699
            “We found that between 2002 and 2014, climate variability resulted in an additional 3200 ± 900 gigatons of water being stored on land. This gain partially offset water losses from ice sheets, glaciers, and groundwater pumping, slowing the rate of sea level rise by -0.71 ± 0.20 millimeters per year. These findings highlight the importance of climate-driven changes in hydrology when assigning attribution to decadal changes in sea level.”
            ——-
            Thermal Expansion: 0.64 mm/yr (2005-2013)
            Llovel et al., 2014
            “Over the entire water column, independent estimates of ocean warming yield a contribution of 0.77 ± 0.28 mm yr−1 in sea-level rise … the deep ocean (below 2,000 m) contributes −0.13 ± 0.72 mm yr−1 to global sea-level rise [0.64 mm/yr total].”
            ——-
            Greenland Ice Sheet: 0.23 mm/yr (1993-2010)
            ——-
            Leeson et al., 2017: “Melt water from the Greenland ice sheet contributed 1.7–6.12 mm [median 3.9 mm, or 0.39 of a centimeter, or 0.23 mm/yr] to global sea level between 1993 and 2010″
            ——-
            Antarctic Ice Sheet: 0.1 to 0.19 mm/yr (1992-2010)
            ——-
            http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10712-011-9123-5
            “Overview and Assessment of Antarctic Ice-Sheet Mass Balance Estimates … Our preferred estimate for 1992–2001 is −47 Gt/year for West Antarctica, +16 Gt/year for East Antarctica, and −31 Gt/year overall (+0.1 mm/year SLE).”

            http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v491/n7425/full/nature11621.html
            “Lower satellite-gravimetry estimates of Antarctic sea-level contribution … After applying the model to 99 months (from August 2002 to December 2010) of GRACE data, we estimate a continent-wide ice-mass change of −69 ± 18 Gt yr−1 (+0.19 ± 0.05 mm yr−1 sea-level equivalent).”
            ——-
            Global Mountain Glaciers Excluding Greenland and Antarctica: 0.41 mm/yr (2003-2010)
            ——-
            Jacob et al., 2012
            “Here we show that GICs [glaciers and ice caps], excluding the Greenland and Antarctic peripheral GICs, lost mass at a rate of 148 ± 30 Gt yr−1 from January 2003 to December 2010, contributing 0.41 ± 0.08 mm yr−1 to sea level rise.”

          4. yonason

            News Flash!

            SebH rides dead horse. Loses race. Claims victory.

            I’ll take Nils-Axel Morner over the IPCC “boy scouts” any day of the week.
            https://www.eike-klima-energie.eu/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/MoernerCopenhag_01.pdf

            (IPCC pseudo-scientists (poiticians) getting a “merit badge” for their garbage is a sure sign the system is rigged.)

            See also here.
            http://jennifermarohasy.com/2014/05/sea-level-rise-and-fall-over-recent-decades-dr-nils-axel-morner/

          5. SebastianH

            Kenneth, why use the lowest numbers you can find? Do you think the IPCC got the wrong numbers in their report? Is it fake or manipulated data again?

            yonason, please … EIKE? It can’t get more pseudo-sciency. And Marohasy can’t be trusted either after the recent mistake (that hasn’t been correct yet, has it?)

          6. Kenneth Richard

            Kenneth, why use the lowest numbers you can find?

            Um, those definitely aren’t the lowest numbers I can find. For Antarctica, for example, Zwally et al. (2015) have the continent removing -0.23 mm/yr from sea levels during 1992-2008. I purposefully avoided using that due to your anticipated objections. Why do you have a problem with the values from these papers which were published in the journals Nature and Science?

            Do you think the IPCC got the wrong numbers in their report?

            Do you think those papers, which were all published between 2011 and 2017, are exceptions? The Jacob et al. (2012) paper, for example, has 541 citations.

            The IPCC, on the other hand, is known to cite phone conversations with WWF representatives as sources for their claims, as evidenced by their willingness to claim that the Himalayan glaciers will likely disappear by the year 2035 in AR4.

            Again, as supported by peer-reviewed papers from the journals Nature and Science, the contributions from the polar ice sheets and non-polar mountain glaciers, thermal expansion, and terrestrial water storage all add up to about 1 mm/yr of sea level rise, give or take about 0.4 mm/yr. That’s quite consistent with the measurements from tide gauges. It’s not even close to consistent with the modeled results from satellite altimetry. So you have a SLR value (3.4 mm/yr) that is not supportable by the sum of its contributors. Of course, inconsistencies like this are not a problem for you. As you believe that 3.4 mm/yr is true anyway…because you want it to be.

          7. yonason

            @SebastianH 16. November 2017 at 9:28 AM

            Unless you can back up your agitprop criticisms with facts, kindly zip it.

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  3. yonason

    Jennifer Marohasy points out that, despite the efforts of warmist activists, the Sydney Opera House hasn’t been scuttled yet.
    http://jennifermarohasy.com/2014/10/opera-house-still-above-sea-level-despite-homogenisation/

    1. Bitter&twisted

      And they are still building beach front property in the Maldives.
      Go figure…..

      1. yonason
  4. tom0mason

    If oceans were radically rising as the AGW infect ones claim, then the Navies, Port Authorities and owners of beach front properties would be in a panic of re-enforcing sea and flood defenses. This is not happening generally, only in areas of the world were natural effects such as subsidence and/or erosion have taken hold are such amelioration needed.
    However there are areas were the AGW infection nastily has caused brain-failure of the local dumb-downed inhabitants, and such needless time and money wasting efforts are happening.

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