Journal Article


Ellen K. Hartig
Kelsey Sanborn
Andrew C. Parnell
Stefan A. Talke
Philip M. Orton
Niamh Cahill
Christopher H. Vane
Troy D. Hill
Andrew C. Kemp



radiocarbon dating 21st century past city hierarchical model relative sea level land use new york

Relative sea-level trends in New York City during the past 1500 years (2017)

Abstract New York City (NYC) is threatened by 21st-century relative sea-level (RSL) rise because it will experience a trend that exceeds the global mean and has high concentrations of low-lying infrastructure and socioeconomic activity. To provide a long-term context for anticipated trends, we reconstructed RSL change during the past ~1500 years using a core of salt-marsh sediment from Pelham Bay in The Bronx. Foraminifera and bulk-sediment δ13C values were used as sea-level indicators. The history of sediment accumulation was established by radiocarbon dating and recognition of pollution and land-use trends of known age in down-core elemental, isotopic, and pollen profiles. The reconstruction was generated within a Bayesian hierarchical model to accommodate multiple proxies and to provide a unified statistical framework for quantifying uncertainty. We show that RSL in NYC rose by ~1.70 m since ~575 CE (including ~0.38 m since 1850 CE). The rate of RSL rise increased markedly at 1812–1913 CE from ~1.0 to ~2.5 mm/yr, which coincides with other reconstructions along the US Atlantic coast. We investigated the possible influence of tidal-range change in Long Island Sound on our reconstruction using a regional tidal model, and we demonstrate that this effect was likely small. However, future tidal-range change could exacerbate the impacts of RSL rise in communities bordering Long Island Sound. The current rate of RSL rise is the fastest that NYC has experienced for >1500 years, and its ongoing acceleration suggests that projections of 21st-century local RSL rise will be realized.
Collections Ireland -> Maynooth University -> Type = Article
Ireland -> Maynooth University -> Academic Unit = Faculty of Science and Engineering: Research Institutes: Hamilton Institute
Ireland -> Maynooth University -> Status = Published
Ireland -> Maynooth University -> Academic Unit = Faculty of Science and Engineering: Mathematics and Statistics

Full list of authors on original publication

Ellen K. Hartig, Kelsey Sanborn, Andrew C. Parnell, Stefan A. Talke, Philip M. Orton, Niamh Cahill, Christopher H. Vane, Troy D. Hill, Andrew C. Kemp

Experts in our system

Andrew Parnell
Maynooth University
Total Publications: 45
Niamh Cahill
Maynooth University
Total Publications: 16
Andrew C. Kemp
Maynooth University
Total Publications: 7