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The understanding of sea-level rise (SLR) processes has improved significantly over the past 15-20 years. Contributions from ice sheets and ocean dynamics are increasingly well-understood, and global budgets better constrained. In addition to physically-based models, semi-empirical methods, and more recently expert elicitations, are also available to describe potential SLR. In spite of these advances, there is still large uncertainty in the magnitude and timing of SLR over the next century and beyond. How much and how fast sea-level may rise can be a significant determinant of management actions in both natural and built environments. Assessing the potential vulnerability of the coastal zone to SLR requires integrating...
Assessing the potential vulnerability of the coastal zone to sea-level rise (SLR) requires integrating a variety of physical, biological, and social factors. These include landscape, habitat, and resource changes, as well as the ability of society and its institutions to adapt. The range of physical and biological responses associated with SLR is poorly understood at some of the critical time and space scales required for decision making. Limitations in the ability to quantitatively predict outcomes at local, regional, and national scales affect whether, when, and how some decisions will be made. The USGS and collaborators are developing scientific knowledge and tools to understand and anticipate the magnitude and...