GGOS Theme 3: Understanding and Forecasting Sea-Level Rise and Variability

Tilo Schöne (GFZ Potsdam, Germany)


CK Shum (Division of Geodetic Science, School of Earth Sciences, Ohio, USA); Mark Tamisiea (National Oceanography Centre, Liverpool, UK); Phil Woodworth (National Oceanography Centre, Liverpool, UK)

Event: 2014 Ocean Surface Topography Science Team Meeting

Session: Others (poster only)

Presentation type: Type Poster

Sea level and its change have been measured for more than a century. Especially for nations with long coastlines and important coastal industry, observations of tides, tidal extremes, storm surges, and sea level rise at the interannual or longer scales have substantial impacts on coastal vulnerability towards resilience and sustainability of world's coastal regions.

Today, the global average observed sea level rise is largely associated with climate related changes. To find the patterns and fingerprints of those changes, and to separate the land motion with sea level signals, different monitoring techniques have been developed. Some of them are local, e.g., tide gauges, while others are global, e.g., satellite altimetry. It is well known that sea level change and land vertical motion varies regionally, and both signals need to be measured in order to quantify relative sea level at the local scale.

The Global Geodetic Observing System (GGOS) and its services contribute in many ways to the monitoring of the sea level. These include tide gauge observations, estimation of gravity changes, GNSS control of tide gauges or the maintenance of the International Reference Frame.

Theme 3 (Understanding and Forecasting Sea-Level Rise and Variability) of GGOS establishes a platform and will be a forum to researchers and authorities for estimating and predicting global and local sea level changes in a 10- to 30-year time horizon. It presents an excellent opportunity to emphasize the global, through to regional and local, importance of GGOS to a wide range of sea-level related science and practical applications. Recently, a call for participation ( was issued, which seeks projects demonstrating the value of geodetic techniques to sea level science and applications.

The present status of GGOS Theme 3 will be highlighted.
Tilo Schöne
GFZ Potsdam