Sea Level Was Higher During The Medieval Warm Period

The Norman castle at Pevensey Bay is one of the most historic sites in Britain. It is built inside of a Roman wall, and was William the Conqueror’s headquarters. It was also used as a defense outpost by Brits and Americans in WWII

It is currently several miles from the sea, but at the time when the Romans and Normans built the structures, the water lapped right up to the edge of the stone. The map below shows the bay 900 years ago, and the current seashore as a dashed line.

ScreenHunter_9556 Jun. 18 17.55

The inner wall is the Norman castle, and the outer wall is Roman.


Climate experts say that that there was no Medieval Warm Period, because they are paid to lie for White House political purposes.

About stevengoddard

Just having fun
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

76 Responses to Sea Level Was Higher During The Medieval Warm Period

  1. Gail Combs says:

    It was not just in Europe either.

    BROWN, Erik T. and JOHNSON, Thomas C., Large Lakes Observatory, Univ of Minnesota, Duluth, MN 55812,
    We have extracted high resolution records of past climate conditions from varved sediments accumulating near 10o S in the north basin of Lake Malawi, the southernmost of the East African Rift lakes. Here we compare profiles of biogenic silica and Nb:Ti spanning nearly 25,000 years in Malawi with the Cariaco Basin high-resolution record of Haug et al. (2001), which is based primarily on sedimentary profiles of Fe and Ti. During the past 1000 years Nb:Ti and biogenic silica track one another in Malawi sediments, as observed for the Late Glacial (Johnson et al., 2002). These signals have been interpreted as a reflection of the intensity or frequency of north winds over the basin. Such winds carry Nb-rich volcaniclastic sediments into the lake and promote upwelling, favorable to diatom productivity. Johnson et al. (2002) attributed the greater frequency of north winds over the Malawi basin during “cold” episodes such as the Younger Dryas to southward shifts in the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ). Haug et al. (2001) have suggested that southward migration of the ITCZ over South America as such times caused decreased rainfall and delivery of terrigenous clastics rich in Fe and Ti to the Cariaco basin. During the Late Glacial, the trends in the African and South American records are remarkably similar. In addition, they both show evidence for the ITCZ being positioned more to the north during the Medieval Warm Period, more to the south during the Little Ice Age, and subsequently returning to the north. Both records also exhibit greater variability during the LIA, with distinct southerly ITCZ excursions. Twentieth Century climate records indicate that episodes of enhanced north winds over Malawi were dry over the Orinoco basin, suggesting that the mechanism of teleconnection developed from sedimentary evidence for 100 to 10,000 years timescales may also play a role in the modern climate.
    Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, Vol. 35, No. 6, September 2003, p. 62


    Extreme Nile floods and famines in Medieval Egypt (AD 930–1500) and their climatic implications
    Fekri A. Hassana, aInstitute of Archaeology, University College London
    Nile gauge records of variations in Nile floods from the 9th century to the 15th century AD reveal pronounced episodes of low Nile and high Nile flood discharge. Historical data reveal that this period was also characterized by the worst known famines on record. Exploratory comparisons of variations in Nile flood discharge with high-resolution data on sea surface temperature of the North Atlantic climate from three case studies suggest that rainfall at the source of the Nile was influenced by the North Atlantic Oscillation. However, there are apparently flip-flop reversals from periods when variations in Nile flood discharge are positively related to North Atlantic warming to periods where the opposite takes place. The key transitions occur atAD 900, 1010, 1070, 1180, 1350 and 1400. The putative flip-flop junctures, which require further confirmation, appear to be quite rapid and some seem to have had dramatic effects on Nile flood discharge, especially if they recurred at short intervals, characteristic of the period from the 9th to the 14th century, coincident with the so-called Medieval Warm Period. The transition from one state to the other was characterized by incidents of low, high or a succession of both low and high extreme floods. The cluster of extreme floods was detrimental causing famines and economic disasters that are unmatched over the last 2000 years.

  2. Gail Combs says:

    Also the MWP may have been hotter than previously thought according to tree rings.

    Torneträsk tree-ring width and density ad 500–2004: a test of climatic sensitivity and a new 1500-year reconstruction of north Fennoscandian summers
    Abstract: This paper presents updated tree-ring width (TRW) and maximum density (MXD) from Torneträsk in northern Sweden, now covering the period ad 500–2004. By including data from relatively young trees for the most recent period, a previously noted decline in recent MXD is eliminated. Non-climatological growth trends in the data are removed using Regional Curve Standardization (RCS), thus producing TRW and MXD chronologies with preserved low-frequency variability. The chronologies are calibrated using local and regional instrumental climate records. A bootstrapped response function analysis using regional climate data shows that tree growth is forced by April–August temperatures and that the regression weights for MXD are much stronger than for TRW. The robustness of the reconstruction equation is verified by independent temperature data and shows that 63–64% of the instrumental inter-annual variation is captured by the tree-ring data. This is a significant improvement compared to previously published reconstructions based on tree-ring data from Torneträsk. A divergence phenomenon around ad 1800, expressed as an increase in TRW that is not paralleled by temperature and MXD, is most likely an effect of major changes in the density of the pine population at this northern tree-line site. The bias introduced by this TRW phenomenon is assessed by producing a summer temperature reconstruction based on MXD exclusively. The new data show generally higher temperature estimates than previous reconstructions based on Torneträsk tree-ring data. The late-twentieth century, however, is not exceptionally warm in the new record: On decadal-to-centennial timescales, periods around ad 750, 1000, 1400, and 1750 were equally warm, or warmer. The 200-year long warm period centered on ad 1000 was significantly warmer than the late-twentieth century (p < 0.05) and is supported by other local and regional paleoclimate data. The new tree-ring evidence from Torneträsk suggests that this “Medieval Warm Period” in northern Fennoscandia was much warmer than previously recognized.

    And also from oxygen and carbon isotope data.

    The Little Ice Age and Medieval Warming in South Africa
    P. D. Tyson1, W. Karlén2, K. Holmgren2 and G. A. Heiss3

    The Little Ice Age, from around 1300 to 1800, and medieval warming, from before 1000 to around 1300 in South Africa, are shown to be distinctive features of the regional climate of the last millennium. The proxy climate record has been constituted from oxygen and carbon isotope and colour density data obtained from a well-dated stalagmite derived from Cold Air Cave in the Makapansgat Valley.
    The climate of the interior of South Africa was around 1oC cooler in the Little Ice Age and may have been over 3°C higher than at present during the extremes of the medieval warm period. It was variable throughout the millennium, but considerably more so during the warming of the eleventh to thirteenth centuries. Extreme events in the record show distinct teleconnections with similar events in other parts of the world, in both the northern and southern hemispheres. The lowest temperature events recorded during the Little Ice Age in South Africa are shown to be coeval with the Maunder and Sporer Minima in solar irradiance. The medieval warming is shown to have been coincided with the cosmogenic 10Be and 14C isotopic maxima recorded in tree rings elsewhere in the world during the Medieval Maximum in solar radiation. P. D. Tyson, W. Karlén, K. Holmgren and G. A. Heiss (in press) The Little Ice Age and Medieval Warming in South Africa. South African Journal of Science.

    Asian monsoon oscillations in the northeastern Qinghai–Tibet Plateau since the late glacial as interpreted from visible reflectance of Qinghai Lake sediments

    Junfeng Jia, , , Ji Shenb, 1, , William Balsamc, 2, , Jun Chena, 3, , Lianwen Liua, 4, and Xingqi Liub, 5,
    Qinghai Lake is a large saline lake on the Qinghai–Tibetan Plateau of central Asia that is effected by both the Indian and Asian monsoons. We used reflectance spectroscopy to characterize the sediments in a 795-cm long core taken from the southeastern part of the lake. Sediment redness, which is related to iron oxide content, seems to monitor paleoclimatic changes in the core. Iron oxides appear to be eroded from nearby red beds or loess deposits and are transported by fluvial means into the lake. Thus, redness increases at times of increased precipitation, that is, as monsoon strength increases. Our redness monsoon proxy shows climate changes on several times scales. On a millennial scale, it records humid conditions during the Early and Mid-Holocene. From about 4200 to 2300 yr BP, low redness values suggest a two-millennial long dry period, which in the Late Holocene is followed by a more humid period. On a centennial scale, the redness proxy records not only the Little Ice Age, but also the Medieval Warm Period, the Dark Ages Cool Period and the Roman Warm Period. Time series analysis of the redness record indicates a 200 yr frequency, which corresponds to the de Vries solar cycle suggesting that, in addition to insolation changes resulting from orbital variations, solar forcing also results from cyclic changes in the suns luminosity.

  3. Grim says:

    But the Pope says there is catastrophic man-caused global warming… who do you believe, a bunch of uninformed anti-warmists, or the right hand man of God?

  4. petkov says:

    SO what if it was? How does that change the fact that sea levels ARE rising and land will be lost? You just want to play Devil’s advocate.

    • Marsh says:

      petkov , Sea levels have Not shown any appreciable rise ; this has been the case for some years. Gail has shown natural variability existed before any CAGW nonsense.

    • AndyG55 says:

      Stable tide gauges show a rise of 1.2mm/year.

      That is 12cm in 100 years.

      Are you s.s.s.s.SCARED yet ?

      The Maldives obvious aren’t .. here is their latest airport.

      • Ted says:

        With all that asphalt on one side, aren’t they worried about the island tipping over? Was Hank Johnson consulted on this?

    • Petkov, it doesn’t matter whether sea levels are rising, what matters is whether human CO2 production is changing (accelerating) the rate of rise. It’s not. Sea level rise is linear and pre-dates human production of CO2:

      • David A says:

        Morgan, back n the calif drought thread I could not find the date of the graph you linked showing only five inches of calif rain YTD. At any rate it is apparently very wrong and 15 inches is far closer per the links I left there.

        • That’s an old graph. It was a scam to include a partial year on a graph of complete years. And they put it in red to boot. Climate douche bags.

          It says on the graph that rain year 2014 goes from October 1, 2014 to September 30, 2015 so 2014 isn’t over yet. It makes sense because rain in California basically stops in the summer. If it’s up to 15 inches already, is that calendar year 2015 or rain year 2014/15?

        • David A says:

          I believe my link was to rain year 2014, 2015 starting Oct 1st. The 15 inch was a WAG from eyeballing Southern Calif at about 8 inches and NC at closer to 25″.

    • Enviro mental says:

      “SO what if it was? How does that change the fact that sea levels ARE rising and land will be lost? You just want to play Devil’s advocate.”

      SO what if the sea levels ARE rising?

      Without an understanding of the measure of how climate changes all on it’s own, it is impossible and dishonest to attribute any change to man’s activity, and therefore foolish to conclude that a minuscule tweaking of the concentration of a trace gas at great expense will stop or reverse a long term trend. It is the alarmists and the IPCC executive that deny natural climate change, they deny the medieval warm period and other cyclical warm periods over the last 10,000 years in order to claim the modern warm period is unnatural and unprecedented. remember the IPCC has decreed that all modern warming is due to man which is equivalent to making the claim that the climate does not change naturally. if the sea levels were higher during the medieval warm period (if this map is not just a local effect) then the alarmist position is discredited. that’s why it matters.

      • AndyG55 says:

        “all modern warming is due to man ”

        If that were the case we should be congratulating ourselves.

        Still LOTS more to do to get anywhere near the temps of the MWP, RWP and the rest of the much warmer Holocene optimum. 🙂

        Pity its not the case. 😦

        We are still very much at the cold end of what is termed the Holocene Neoglacial Period of cooling and increasing glacial and Arctic sea ice,

        Just fractionally above the coldest period in the last 10,000 years.

      • Brian H says:

        That is all they were mandated to study, so naturally they try to embiggen it to the max, in order to do the same to their own importance.

        • gator69 says:

          Correct. The IPCC charter…

          “ … to assess on a comprehensive, objective, open and transparent basis the scientific, technical and socio-economic information relevant to understanding the scientific basis of risk of human-induced climate change, its potential impacts and options for adaptation and mitigation.”

          They were never asked to investigate natural variabilty, it was a kangaroo court from the start, a lynching.

    • The point is that the climate is cyclical and man has nowhere near the influence on it that we’re being told. The sea level was higher before during the very perio9d which Dr. Mann and his cohorts tried to wipe out of the record with his “hockey stick”
      graph. The higher seas confirm other evidence, such as the mild climate in Greenland at the time, so we know it’s been warmer before, the seas were higher, and they’ll be that way again sooner or later without our influence.

    • Mike Bromley the Kurd says:

      petkov….a fine example of circular reasoning if ever I saw it. Sea goes up, sea goes down. Get over it.

  5. Moors710 says:

    The sea levels are rising and falling at about one foot per century,(less subsidence and more for geological up-thrusting) as it has for the last 10,000 years. If you cannot outrun the oceans movements in this time scale you are truly pitiful.

    • Gail Combs says:

      You beat me to it.
      Sea level Rise has to be the ultimate example ofn making a molehill into a mountain.

      One good storm can do a lot more to change the coastline than a pitiful few millimeters of sea level rise a year (if that). A millimeter is about the thickness of a plastic credit card but you would think, from the hand wringing of the Alarmists and politicians, it was a hip deep (one meter) rise in sea level every year.

      Heck the trade winds change the sea level by a couple of feet and so do various positions of the moon.

      The lunar effects on the sea are an interesting point that has not had much investigation. There is a north south component that has about a 1500 year and may explain the D-O events. E.M. Smith has gathered several of the papers:


    • Brian H says:

      Clever Warmists buy up shore and ocean property at flood-sale prices after creating a sufficient down-market.

  6. sabretoothed says:

    Ephesus Turkey is now 4km from the sea! LOLOL It was a port!

    • daveburton says:

      Yes, I visited there, and the port city of Ephesus (from the time of the Book of Ephesians) is now a long way from the coast. I was told by the tour guide that because of the receding coastline the people of Ephesus had packed up and moved and rebuilt their town on the coast more than once.

      However, I was told that a major part of the cause was silt buildup from the Cayster River.

      • Latitude says:

        How does silt buildup 4km above sea level?

        • Maybe the silt added 4 km of land. Happens all the time.

        • Gail Combs says:

          “How does silt buildup 4km above sea level?”

          By H2O eroding mountains and washing the material into the sea. I read somewhere that at one time the Appalachians were higher than the Rockies. Material from the Appalachians is deposited all across NC

        • daveburton says:

          Not “above.” It’s horizontal distance, not vertical. (Actually, I think it’s even more than 4km.)

      • rah says:

        They said the same thing about the port of Pisa being silted in by the Arno river. But silt build up in estuaries generally occurs in rivers that are near grade and thus have significant meanders and a relatively slow flow. Rivers that have a stronger flow due to greater drop in elevation generally have a straighter path and the stronger flow suspends the fine particulates and carries the well away from shore. At Pisa the claim of silting just does not stand up. The path of the Arno meanders above the city but straightens out as it nears the coast. At Ephesus the claim of silting certainly does because it is recorded historic fact backed by geologic evidence but to say that silting alone caused the city to move 8 km from it’s original location on the Aegean seems a bit much

  7. not sure says:

    the same in Japan. The “Keisei sen” train line follows the old coastline and goes through many towns that were on the edge of tokyo bay, but are now many kilometers from the water.

  8. Warren D. Walker says:

    Seashell fossils on Mt Everest – something happened and not because of CO2.

  9. not sure says:

    oh, and on a geological time-frame, the tide is steadily going out, because the earth (and all the other planets) are swelling in size as they collect high-speed nutrinos that get stuck under our feet. search “earth is growing” on youchoob for a simple graphic representation. love your site, by the way. AVE PALESTINA!

  10. R. Schulz says:

    The British cinque ports are now landlocked except for Dover which is only kept open by constant dredging. The ocean has fallen 9 feet since Roman times.

    • cfgj says:

      Got a reference for that 9 feet (presumably globally)? Did you factor in postglacial rebound and possible tectonic movements?

      • Billy Liar says:

        Oh yeah. Dover in the UK is very tectonically active, it is surrounded by volcanos and earthquake insurance is impossible to get.

      • rah says:

        You don’t need a reference. The structures all over the world which once were sea side and now are inland are the “reference”. Pisa Italy was once one of the four Maritime Republics of Italy made rich so it could build it great cathedral and what we know as the leaning tower by it’s port. Now it is seven miles from the Tyrrhenian Sea.

        Pevensey Castle is now a mile from the coast even though it is best known for the bodies of executed prisoners being thrown into the ocean from it’s ramparts and draw bridge.

        There are many more former great ports or cities that are now far from the seas that made them a prime location for settlement in the first place. At least a dozen ports for Roman days are now inland ruins. If you were really interested in that kind of thing. Archeology that falsifies the claims that current sea level rise is unprecedented in history, you would know that already.

        You would know that Ephesus in Turkey is 5 km from the Mediterranean but during Roman times it was right on the shore. etc, etc, etc….

  11. Gail Combs says:

    Here is another paper:
    Glacial geological evidence for the medieval warm period


    It is hypothesised that the Medieval Warm Period was preceded and followed by periods of moraine deposition associated with glacier expansion. Improvements in the methodology of radiocarbon calibration make it possible to convert radiocarbon ages to calendar dates with greater precision than was previously possible. Dating of organic material closely associated with moraines in many montane regions has reached the point where it is possible to survey available information concerning the timing of the medieval warm period. The results suggest that it was a global event occurring between about 900 and 1250 A.D., possibly interrupted by a minor readvance of ice between about 1050 and 1150 A.D

  12. Douglas Hoyt says:

    The ancient port of Athens was recently uncovered and it is about a mile from the present day ocean.

    • cfgj says:

      Greece is earthquake-prone and therefore the ground level is far from stable.

    • Gail Combs says:

      Late Quaternary highstand deposits of the southern Arabian Gulf: a record of sea-level and climate change

      …..It has therefore been necessary to infer the ages of these sediments by a comparison of their stratigraphy and elevation with deposits known from other parts of the world. We regard this approach as valid because the southern Gulf coastline lacks evidence for significant widespread neotectonic uplift,…….
      …..Widespread evidence exists for a Holocene sea level higher than at present in the southern Arabian Gulf, indicating that it peaked at 1–2 m above present level, c. 5.5 ka bp…….

      This study shows a sea level highstand ~1 to 2 meters above the present level about ~5500 years ago not all that far from Greece in a relatively stable area.

      Mid to late Holocene sea-level reconstruction of Southeast Vietnam using beachrock and beach-ridge deposits

      ….backshore deposits along the tectonically stable south-eastern Vietnamese coast document Holocene sea level changes…..reconstructed for the last 8000 years….The rates of sea-level rise decreased sharply after the rapid early Holocene rise and stabilized at a rate of 4.5 mm/year between 8.0 and 6.9 ka. Southeast Vietnam beachrocks reveal that the mid-Holocene sea-level highstand slightly above + 1.4 m was reached between 6.7 and 5.0 ka, with a peak value close to + 1.5 m around 6.0 ka….

      Translation the sea level was up to 1.5 meters higher than today in a tectonically stable area 6,000 years ago

      Sea-level highstand recorded in Holocene shoreline deposits on Oahu, Hawaii

      Unconsolidated carbonate sands and cobbles on Kapapa Island, windward Oahu, are 1.4-2.8 (+ or – 0.25) m above present mean sea level (msl)…we interpret the deposit to be a fossil beach or shoreline representing a highstand of relative sea level during middle to late Holocene time. Calibrated radiocarbon dates of coral and mollusc samples, and a consideration of the effect of wave energy setup, indicate that paleo-msl was at least 1.6 (+ or – 0.45) m above present msl prior to 3889-3665 cal. yr B.P, possibly as early as 5532-5294 cal. yr B.P., and lasted until at least 2239-1940 cal. yr B.P

      This study shows a sea level highstand ~1.6 meter above the present level from ~5500 years ago to 2000 years ago on the other side of the world from Greece and England. It also shows a high stand similar to the techtomically stable Vietnam.

      If you want to get into the problem of rebound…
      A new Holocene relative sea level curve for the South Shetland Islands, Antarctica

      The curve shows a mid-Holocene RSL highstand on Fildes Peninsula at 15.5 m above mean sea level between 8000 and 7000 cal a BP. Subsequently RSL gradually fell as a consequence of isostatic uplift in response to regional deglaciation….

      15.5 meters = 50.8 feet now THAT is some kinda sea level fall! The mid-Holocene (~6000 BC ) was when the grasslands of Egypt started drying out to form the Sahara desert. As the climate gets colder it gets drier.

      By 5,000 years ago, African climates and vegetation in most areas were drier than in the early Holocene, but still generally moister than today’s.

      Arabian Peninsula. Becoming drier. Conditions were drier than at 8,000 years ago, but still moister than today. The occurrence of Neolithic sites within Arabia between 5,000 and 3,500 years ago indicates moister than present conditions (Petit-Maire et al. 1994; S. Stokes, pers. comm. Aug. 1994), and Lioubimtseva (1995) suggests that scrub would still have been widespread in the west Arabian mountains and steppe in northern Arabia. On the basis of various indicators, Whitney et al. (1983) suggested that in much of the Arabian Peninsula the annual rainfall was about 250-300 mm during the mid Holocene, in contrast to the present 50-100mm, and enough to give a semi-desert rather than the present desert vegetation.

      Saharan region. Drying under way. A switch towards drier climates apparently began around 6,100 14C years ago and intensified around 4,500 14C years ago. There is a fall in the level of many lakes at around 5,000 years ago (Lioubimtseva 1995) reaching a minimum sometime between 5,500 and 4,000 years ago (Damanti & Harrison 1995). A range of other indicators also suggest that by 5,000 years ago, a significant drying of the climate of the whole Saharan region had already occurred, relative to the situation at 8,000 years ago (Lioubimtseva 1995, Vernet 1995). However, the climate was still much moister than at present; there are many indications that rainfall was sufficient to allow a much more extensive vegetation cover than at present.

      Baumhauer (1995) suggests on faunal, pedological and lake-level evidence that at his central Saharan site, annual rainfall during the mid-Holocene (after about 6,500 14C years ago) was about 150-250 mm; enough to support semi-desert vegetation. In the present eastern Sahara hyperarid region at Oyo (19N, 16E), Ritchie (1994) suggests on the basis of pollen evidence a cover of steppe and semi-desert communities between 6,000 and 4,500 years ago. This stands in contrast with the present landscape which is almost totally devoid of vegetation….
      ….Hoezelmann et al. also suggest a very extensive area of wetlands south-east of Lake Mega-Chad, rivalling the lake itself in scale; they suggest that rainfall in the catchment area was around 300-350mm higher than today in order to sustain this high water level. Other extensive wetland areas are suggested for the eastern Arabian Peninsula….

      • Gail Combs says:

        I am mentioning the higher rainfall in the Arabian Peninsula and Saharan region 5000 years ago because the hand-wringing Alarmists never mention that higher temperatures,melting glaciers and higher sea levels also means a much greener earth with the tropical desert belt shrinking and the growing season in the north (Canada, Russia, China) expanding to higher latitudes. A net gain in food production areas. Even the minor cooling of the 1970s lead to decreased harvests, fear of mass starvation and a 1974 CIA report on climate.

        18,000 years ago, during the Wisconsin Ice Age much of Africa was desert.

        Africa 8,000 years ago during the Holocene Optimum the Desert belt had retreated to a much smaller area. (Remember other studies I posted yesterday said the Arctic was ice free in summer and 3C warmer)

        Even 5,000 years ago the Desert belt was still smaller than today.

        Today the Tr Des 7 (7. Tropical extreme desert (very sparse vegetation, or completely barren) has expanded to cover the entire northern part of Africa.

  13. Airsurfer1 says:

    Kurtz Lambeck and Masao Nakada (1990) research proves sea levels on the Australian coastline in the Late Holocene were up to 2 metres higher than present! Highstands and Pumice Deposits are physical proof along the North Queensland Coast.

  14. Gary H says:

    A quick look at the site on Google Earth was instructive. while the grounds at the castle are 25-28 feet above sea level, only 1100-1200 feet away, it’s 1 ft above sea level.

    • Gail Combs says:

      That does not necessaraliy mean anything. Geologists use notches and benches to determine paleo-sea levels.

      (Hearty and Neumann 2001)

      • I had the great pleasure to take a research submarine down the Great Wall off of Grand Cayman, to a depth of about 900 feet (not quite 300 meters). On the way, there was a quite obvious beach — from a past sea level — at around 320 feet (about 100 meters) down. It was quite striking, quite extensive, and demonstrative of the low ocean levels tens of thousands of years ago. Apparently it was stable enough for long enough to carve the quite distinctive beach.

        ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

        • cfgj says:

          Wow that is very cool, that must have been created during the last ice age (or the preceding ones).

  15. sfx2020 says:

    If only there was an accurate way to measure such things.

  16. Caleb says:

    I’m glad you are taking some time off, and think it is remarkable you keep this site operating even while taking time off. Of course it helps that you have attracted such an interesting bunch of commentators, some of whom really know their stuff.

    To get me away from “bad influences” I was sent, as a teenager, to a sort of “Outward Bound” type school way up in the northeast corner of Scotland. (We played rugby against Wick and Thurso, which are way up there.)

    The way the land was rebounding up there from the ice-age was obvious and impressive. The waves had gnawed away at the land, creating a flat area the surf once charged over, and then that flat area was lifted something like twenty feet above sea level. It extended for miles and miles along the coast, and, because flat areas are rare in the Highlands, it was used for gardens, pastures, and yes, rugby fields. I was glad the rocks were rounded by the action of long-ago waves into cobbles, when an entire scrum toppled on top of me and my face was being ground into the turf.

    What is interesting about Greenland is that the land doesn’t just rebound when the ice retreats, but also settles when ice returns. It is difficult to know where to look, for signs of the Greenland Viking’s docks. Should you look inland, because the land has rebounded? Or should you look off shore, because the land has settled?

    To make matters even more befuddling, land close to the sea can be rising even as up a valley an advancing glacier can cause land to settle.

    One of the most bizarre cases of less-weight-causing-land-to-rise doesn’t involve less ice, but glaciers grinding away the stone on the bottom of a valley. As the glacier grinds and grinds and grinds, the glacier itself may weigh the same, but so much rock is removed that the land rises. The glacier keeps grinding downwards, and the land keeps rising. Where the center of the glacier sits the rising land may get ground down, but to either side the land rises up and up and up until you wind up with the incredibly steep-walled and beautiful fjords of Norway.

    When you consider the majesty of a fjord, doesn’t it seem a bit silly that some fret about the sea rising a milometer?

  17. John Silver says:

    So why is it called Pevensey Bay when there is no bay?
    The correct name should be Pevensey Former Bay, so there.
    (stupid Brits)

  18. Padre says:

    Hey Gail, don’t forget the Greenland Ice Core studies. They also demonstrate that AGW is a crock full of it……

  19. Chris Barron says:

    Sea levels at Pevensey may be in decline….you need to look over a longer period than 2000 years to see it…..over the past 20k or so years the trend has been a rise. The MWP is just a tiny blip at the highest recorded level on the right of this graph.

    The area is known as ‘Pevensey levels’ because they are very flat and even a tiny change in sea level can dramatically change the surface area of land which is considered as wet, from that considered to be dry

    • Gail Combs says:

      Thanks that is a really nice way of showing sea level and as you say a very flat area is going to accentuate any changes.

      • Excellent picture indeed above, as is the graph of the Pevensey Levels effect. It would have been nice to slow it down for recent times.

        I’d guess that isostatic rebound has been going on the whole time in that area, since the loss of ice around 20,000 years ago, but the separate and quicker rise of sea level from that ice outpaced it. Now that the sea level rise has slowed down, isostatic uplift has finally got a chance to have its own effect seen. But because it is slow, it had been evident only as a slight modification to the separate rise of the oceans as the ice sheets drained away.

        We don’t have much ice left to melt; we’re pretty close to the maximum between glaciations. It seems likely to me that the small rises and falls of the last couple of thousand years are going to be the dominant (though modest) rule now.

        A return to the Holocene Climate Optimum is conceivable, though hardly in the manner and timespan the catastrophists want. It might cost a bit of shoreline, but the gain in productivity will be astounding, and badly needed. The alternative, giving way to the inevitable next round of glaciation, is an unhappy prospect.

        ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

        • AndyG55 says:

          “We don’t have much ice left to melt;”

          Actually, there was probably quite a lot less ice for most of the first 5000 years of the Holocene.

          Biosamples show that sea ice was “seasonal” at most during that time.

          We are actually only just a bit down from the anomalous extremes of the LIA.

  20. Billy Liar says:

    During the next glaciation there are going to be some great farming opportunities in the middle of the English Channel.

  21. basara549 says:

    For what it’s worth, some of the English & French sea level change is from the islands tilting from the continual crustal rebound of northern Europe. As Scandinavia, the Baltic/North Sea area (including the seafloor) and (to a lesser extent) Scotland rebound upward, the east coast of England and the other side of the channel are being tilted up, and the southwest coast and Wales are tilting down slightly.

    Yeah, it’s caused by global warming all right – the glaciers melting off in prehistory, that’s taking geological time scales to reset to its natural equilibrium.

    There’s also been debate over whether water accumulated around Doggerland from melt, before the sea level rose to meet it, and it breaking loose to scour the Channel deeper than it would have been from mere sea level rise.

  22. Tony says:

    More evidence here, of higher sea levels in more recent times:

  23. James M Davidson says:

    There is a mediaeval village, Culross, in Fife, Scotland.It used to be a fishing village, but now it is about a mile inland. This is not because the sea level has fallen, but because the land is still rebounding from the removal of the weight of ice with the ending of the last ice age, 10,000 years ago.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s