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Framework for high-end estimates of sea level rise for stakeholder applications

Framework for high-end estimates of sea level rise for stakeholder applications
Framework for high-end estimates of sea level rise for stakeholder applications

An approach to analyze high-end sea level rise is presented to provide a conceptual framework for high-end estimates as a function of time scale, thereby linking robust sea level science with stakeholder needs. Instead of developing and agreeing on a set of high-end sea level rise numbers or using an expert consultation, our effort is focused on the essential task of providing a generic conceptual framework for such discussions and demonstrating its feasibility to address this problem. In contrast, information about high-end sea level rise projections was derived previously either from a likely range emerging from the highest view of emissions in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change assessment (currently the Representative Concentration Pathway 8.5 scenario) or from independent ad hoc studies and expert solicitations. Ideally, users need high-end sea level information representing the upper tail of a single joint sea level frequency distribution, which considers all plausible yet unknown emission scenarios as well as involved physical mechanisms and natural variability of sea level, but this is not possible. In the absence of such information we propose a framework that would infer the required information from explicit conditional statements (lines of evidence) in combination with upper (plausible) physical bounds. This approach acknowledges the growing uncertainty in respective estimates with increasing time scale. It also allows consideration of the various levels of risk aversion of the diverse stakeholders who make coastal policy and adaptation decisions, while maintaining scientific rigor.

2328-4277
1-16
Stammer, D.
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van de Wal, R. S.W.
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Nicholls, R. J.
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Church, J. A.
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Le Cozannet, G.
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Lowe, J. A.
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Horton, B. P.
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White, K.
dfc8302e-1947-4c83-a67d-8dc3ef1b00a0
Behar, D.
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Hinkel, J.
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Stammer, D.
2ace512d-2e95-4ffe-9fcc-8af6c1b5fcf2
van de Wal, R. S.W.
541169da-bfec-4510-943c-bb114d9d7481
Nicholls, R. J.
4ce1e355-cc5d-4702-8124-820932c57076
Church, J. A.
808e97d4-860d-44c4-ab43-c71bd176d30b
Le Cozannet, G.
ea4b270c-e656-47e8-9016-5696f790e261
Lowe, J. A.
b98357fd-b878-4401-8570-6f9059898219
Horton, B. P.
8cc6f186-e141-4b26-af6f-e72b13eac062
White, K.
dfc8302e-1947-4c83-a67d-8dc3ef1b00a0
Behar, D.
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Hinkel, J.
ad8c8187-dcca-42f5-84e0-75d30a1e7875

Stammer, D., van de Wal, R. S.W., Nicholls, R. J., Church, J. A., Le Cozannet, G., Lowe, J. A., Horton, B. P., White, K., Behar, D. and Hinkel, J. (2019) Framework for high-end estimates of sea level rise for stakeholder applications. Earth's Future, 1-16. (doi:10.1029/2019EF001163).

Record type: Article

Abstract

An approach to analyze high-end sea level rise is presented to provide a conceptual framework for high-end estimates as a function of time scale, thereby linking robust sea level science with stakeholder needs. Instead of developing and agreeing on a set of high-end sea level rise numbers or using an expert consultation, our effort is focused on the essential task of providing a generic conceptual framework for such discussions and demonstrating its feasibility to address this problem. In contrast, information about high-end sea level rise projections was derived previously either from a likely range emerging from the highest view of emissions in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change assessment (currently the Representative Concentration Pathway 8.5 scenario) or from independent ad hoc studies and expert solicitations. Ideally, users need high-end sea level information representing the upper tail of a single joint sea level frequency distribution, which considers all plausible yet unknown emission scenarios as well as involved physical mechanisms and natural variability of sea level, but this is not possible. In the absence of such information we propose a framework that would infer the required information from explicit conditional statements (lines of evidence) in combination with upper (plausible) physical bounds. This approach acknowledges the growing uncertainty in respective estimates with increasing time scale. It also allows consideration of the various levels of risk aversion of the diverse stakeholders who make coastal policy and adaptation decisions, while maintaining scientific rigor.

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Accepted/In Press date: 12 June 2019
e-pub ahead of print date: 28 June 2019

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 433523
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/433523
ISSN: 2328-4277
PURE UUID: 76e61984-f6c9-4709-9118-329417db32a1
ORCID for R. J. Nicholls: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-9715-1109

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Date deposited: 27 Aug 2019 16:30
Last modified: 18 Feb 2021 17:02

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Contributors

Author: D. Stammer
Author: R. S.W. van de Wal
Author: R. J. Nicholls ORCID iD
Author: J. A. Church
Author: G. Le Cozannet
Author: J. A. Lowe
Author: B. P. Horton
Author: K. White
Author: D. Behar
Author: J. Hinkel

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