Effects of future sea-level rise on tidal processes on the Patagonian Shelf

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The response of tidally driven processes on the Patagonian Shelf to sea-level rise (SLR) is revisited using large but realistic levels of change in a numerical tidal model. The results relate to previous studies through significant differences in the impact, depending on how SLR is implemented. This is true for how the boundary at the coastline is treated, i.e., if we allow for inundation of land or assume flood defences along the coast, but also for how the sea-level change itself is implemented. Simulations with uniform SLR provide a different, and slightly larger, response than do runs where SLR is based on observed trends. In all cases, the effect on the tidal amplitudes is patchy, with alternating increases and decreases in amplitude along the shelf. Furthermore, simulations with a realistic future change in vertical stratification, thus affecting tidal conversion rates, imply that there may be a small but significant decrease in the amplitudes along the coast. Associated processes, e.g., the location of mixing fronts and potential impacts on biogeochemical cycles on the shelf are also discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)113-124
JournalJournal of Marine Systems
Issue numberNovember 2016
Early online date14 Jul 2016
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2016

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