Bromirski, P. D., A. J. Miller, R. E Flick and G. Auad, 2011:

Dynamical suppression of sea level rise along the Pacific Coast of North America: Indications for imminent acceleration

Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans, 116, C07005, doi:10.1029/2010JC006759.

Abstract. Long-term changes in global mean sea level (MSL) rise have important practical implications for shoreline and beach erosion, coastal wetlands inundation, storm-surge flooding, and coastal development. Altimetry since 1993 indicates that global MSL rise has increased about 50% above the 20th century rise rate, from 2 to 3 mm/yr. At the same time, both tide gauge measurements and altimetry indicate virtually no increase along the Pacific coast of North America during the satellite epoch. Here we show that the dynamical steric response of North Pacific eastern boundary ocean circulation to a dramatic change in wind stress curl, tau_xy, that occurred after the mid-1970's regime shift, can account for the suppression of regional sea level rise along this coast since 1980. Alarmingly, mean tau_xy over the North Pacific recently reached levels not observed since before the mid-1970's regime shift. This change in wind stress patterns may be foreshadowing a PDO regime shift, causing an associated persistent change in tau_xy that will result in a concomitant resumption of sea level rise along the U.S. West Coast to global or even higher rates.

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