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Sea levels rose rapidly in past 150 years: study of Australian scientists

Oct 14, 2014 16:47 IST

Scientists from the Australian National University (ANU) based in Canberra found that the sea levels have risen more in past century as compared to any century in past 6000 years. The team came on the conclusion while looking at the fluctuation of ocean levels over the past 35000 years, based on ice volume changes around the world.

The team, in their study found that the sea levels saw 20 cm rise since the start of the 20th century, which was caused largely by global warming and the melting of polar ice. They claimed that sea levels have remained steady for thousands of years but saw rapid rises over past 150 years, since global industrialisation.


Professor Kurt Lambeck from ANU said that comparing the historical data with recent data from tidal gauges shows an increasing rate of sea level rise in recent times.

Basis of the research
The team of scientists came to their conclusion after studying about 1000 ancient sediment samples off Britain, North America, Greenland and the Seychelles. These sediments were collected in past two decades and in their study they picked submerged sediments that may include tree roots that suggested a previously lower sea level or mollusks, whose fossil records were measured to determine the previous sea level.  

The study was published on 12 September 2014 in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

 

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