Ocean Dynamics

, Volume 58, Issue 3–4, pp 227–236 | Cite as

Relationship between global mean sea-level and global mean temperature in a climate simulation of the past millennium

  • Hans von Storch
  • Eduardo ZoritaEmail author
  • Jesús F. González-Rouco
Open Access


The possibility of using global mean near-surface temperature, its rate of change or the global mean ocean heat-flux as predictors to statistically estimate the change of global mean sea-level is explored in the context of a long climate simulation of the past millennium with the climate model ECHO-G. Such relationships have recently been proposed to by-pass the difficulty of estimating future sea-level changes based on simulations with coarse-resolution climate models. It is found that, in this simulation, a simple linear relationship between mean temperature and the rate of change of sea level does not exist. A regression parameter linking both variables, and estimated in sliding 120-year windows, varies widely along the simulation and, in some periods, even attains negative values. The ocean heat-flux and the rate-of-change of mean temperature seem to better capture the rate-of-change of sea level due to thermal expansion.


Global sea-level Temperature Last millennium Climate simulation Climate change 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hans von Storch
    • 1
    • 2
  • Eduardo Zorita
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Jesús F. González-Rouco
    • 3
  1. 1.GKSS Research CentreGeesthachtGermany
  2. 2.KlimaKampusHamburgGermany
  3. 3.Depto. de Astrofśica y CC. Atmósfera, U. ComplutenseMadridSpain

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