Overestimation of marsh vulnerability to sea level rise

Nature Climate Change
By: , and 

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Abstract

Coastal marshes are considered to be among the most valuable and vulnerable ecosystems on Earth, where the imminent loss of ecosystem services is a feared consequence of sea level rise. However, we show with a meta-analysis that global measurements of marsh elevation change indicate that marshes are generally building at rates similar to or exceeding historical sea level rise, and that process-based models predict survival under a wide range of future sea level scenarios. We argue that marsh vulnerability tends to be overstated because assessment methods often fail to consider biophysical feedback processes known to accelerate soil building with sea level rise, and the potential for marshes to migrate inland.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Overestimation of marsh vulnerability to sea level rise
Series title Nature Climate Change
DOI 10.1038/nclimate2909
Volume 6
Year Published 2016
Language English
Publisher Nature Publishing Group
Contributing office(s) Patuxent Wildlife Research Center
Description 8 p.
First page 253
Last page 260
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N