Thursday, February 25, 2016

On The Evolution of Sea Level Change - 2

Toxic Road to SLR
I. First, A Few Quotes

"As the ocean warms, the density decreases and thus even at constant mass the volume of the ocean increases. This thermal expansion (or steric sea level rise) occurs at all ocean temperatures and is one of the major contributors to sea level changes during the 20th and 21st centuries" (IPCC).

"About half of the past century's rise in sea level is attributable to warmer oceans simply occupying more space" (National Geographic).

"Rising temperatures are warming ocean waters, which expand as the temperature increases. This thermal expansion was the main driver of global sea level rise for 75 - 100 years after the start of the Industrial Revolution" (Union of Concerned Scientists)..

" ... global sea level rises 0.26 m by 2100, and 0.56 m by 2199 through steric [thermal] expansion; " (Journal of Physical Oceanography, PDF).

II. The Commonality In Those Quotes

What is common about those ideas?
Fig. 2

For one thing, they are wrong!

That is why I put "so much effort" into showing just that (see "SEA LEVEL CHANGE", over 100 posts in four separate sections @ the Series Posts Tabs here or here (@ top of page).

One way to "see" sea level rise (SLR) when one is actually looking at sea level fall (SLF), such as in the centuries long record shown in Fig. 2, is to hold the graph upside down.

Time to flip it right side up folks.

There are many instances of long-kept records that show SLF in other locations (Proof of Concept - 35).

Magic thermal expansion has nothing to do with those 19th, 20th, and 21st century realities of SLF.

III. A Few Dredd Blog Quotes

"This is your last chance. After this, there is no turning back. You take the blue pill—the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill—you stay in Wonderland, and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes. Remember: all I'm offering is the truth. Nothing more" (Redpill - The Matrix).

Just kidding.

The focus here on Dredd Blog has been to point out why many researchers don't see what is in plain sight (The Ghost-Water Constant - 4).

IV. Graphic Portrayals

The quotes in Section I at the beginning of this post should make the academic reality absolutely obvious.

I mean the reality where researchers think that steric, thermal expansion has historically been the major factor in SLC, and the reality that some probably think it still is.

Fig. 3
In the post associated with Fig. 2, it was shown that Greenland has been disintegrating since about two decades after the onset of the Industrial Revolution circa 1750 (Weekend Rebel Science Excursion - 54, On The Evolution of Sea Level Change, Questionable "Scientific" Papers - 3).

Fig. 4
That disintegration, melting, and calving, not thermal expansion, is a major source of SLF (Fig. 2) as discussed in Proof of Concept - 3, just as Glacier Bay is a major source of SLF as discussed in Proof of Concept - 5.

Anyway, on to the graphs at Fig. 3 through Fig. 8.

Regular readers will recall that yesterday I posted some graphs concerning the historical record of temperatures and sea levels from tide gauge stations and weather stations around the globe (Proof of Concept - 8).

Fig. 5
Some readers may not have sufficiently grasped what was being displayed.

Fig. 6
So, in the interest of the Dredd Blog readership, I have gone over some of those graphs, adding comments on them.

Fig. 7

I did that to help further elaborate on the obviously important topic of thermal expansion, temperature history, and how it relates to SLC history.

If you did not fully grasp yesterday's graphs, review Fig. 3 though Fig. 8.

Fig. 8
Then, if need be, revisit yesterday's post because it is quite helpful in terms of showing the disparity gap between temperature change and SLC in a historical context.

It is so important that I am going to repeat data from a previous post.

It is a review of the basic concepts which are incorrectly stated in the quote in Section I of today's post.

That quote is "thermal expansion (or steric sea level rise) occurs at all ocean temperatures".

That is incorrect, so, we now review some basics from The Warming Science Commentariat - 2.

V. Conclusion

This post is getting long, so I will close for today.

I hope readers understand that I am only trying to shake some researchers out of a common trance we have all been in at one time or another (Choose Your Trances Carefully, 2, 3).

We all know that falling asleep at the wheel is not worthwhile.


  1. "H2O is H2O, and phase changes (melting, boiling, freezing, sublimination, deposition, etc.) are not chemical reactions" (link)

  2. Great work Dredd!
    Thanks for the lesson!

    "It is thought that in recent years changes in the rate of GrIS iceberg calving and meltwater runoff have been making roughly equal contributions to global sea level rise (Rignot et al., 2008; van den Broeke et al., 2009; Fürst et al., 2015), but that runoff is becoming the dominant process for mass loss (Hanna et al., 2013; Enderlin et al., 2014). "

    Judging by some of the warmer H20 temps that are being found at deep underwater levels that are in contact with the glacial seawater adjacent 'edges', 'runoff' may not just be what happens above the water line.

    1. Mark,


      The link you provided is interesting.

      I would have titled it "why don't we know that the sea level around Greenland and out for 2,000 km is falling, which is the one certain indication that the ice sheet is melting?"

      I could not find the phrase "sea level fall" in that piece, even though SLF is a well-documented reality for 3 centuries by now.

      Their effort is like talking about the 24 hour rotational dynamics of the Earth, without mentioning "day."

      Their exercise is to incessantly talk about "night".

      When asked "what is this" by a person during the day, they simply talk about the different degrees of night.

      The "bathtub model" has bent a lot of analysis out of shape.

      I have some questions for the "bathtub model" group.

      Those questions will be asked in today's post (working on it now).

      BTW, you mentioned the molecular dynamics a while back, and an anonymous commenter mentioned "sea watr is different" so I updated The Warming Science Commentariat - 2 with Sections IV. A and B.

    2. Hey !

      "Day" is the weakest degree of "night" Dredd.

  3. Lookin' forward to the Q's Dredd for the bathtub modellers. And, did see the update--the hourglass visual for temp / vol of H20 very clever.

    "It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it."

    1. Busted? LOL! I don't think so. With 'truth' as your attorney, you might have to occasionally listen to the Miranda, but you'll never spend a` night in the pokey.

      In the following 'bathtub' post and presentation you're wielding the laser like it's Excalibur and mercilessly debunking the 'bunk'.

      My song pik for those '(hy)steric(al)' SLR believers:

  4. Hello, just wanted to say, I loved this article. It was funny.
    Keep on posting!