Rates and mechanisms of climate change: implications for ports and harbours

Alastair G. Dawson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The paper explores some of the key ocean-atmosphere processes relevant to the themes of ‘global warming“ and ‘sea level rise“ addressing some of issues that form the basis of the science. It is shown that both processes as well as the data used to characterise such processes demonstrate that a) there is no such thing as a single global sea level and b) changes in extreme storminess are not uniform worldwide. Instead, trends in storminess (including Asian typoon and Atlantic hurricane activity) exhibit marked regional variability with strong regional signature linked to episodes of major El Niño and La Niña activity. Similarly, satellite data demonstrates that whereas some ocean areas have recently experienced sea level rise caused principally by thermal expansion effects, other ocean areas have been subject to cooling and sea level lowering. This account provides an introductory account that discusses the rationale for understanding the regional variability in the nature of coastal flood risk to the world’s ports and harbours.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)469-478
Number of pages10
JournalWMU Journal of Maritime Affairs
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2008


  • climate change
  • storminess
  • sea level change
  • typhoons
  • hurricanes
  • coastal flood risk


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