This article discusses how sea level rise is underestimated in southern Louisiana, Tulane study finds.
The tools used to measure relative sea level rise in low-lying coastal areas, including coastal Louisiana, are only telling half of the story, according to a Tulane University study published in Ocean Science. Researchers say sea level rise estimates don’t account for the primary contributor to higher water levels: sinking marsh.
Relative sea level rise is the sum of rising seas and sinking land. It’s typically measured with tide gauges. In areas where there’s no bedrock, like Southern Louisiana, these gauges are fixed to stiff rods anchored nearly 60 feet below the surface. That’s problematic when it comes to measuring subsidence near the ground surface, said lead author Molly Keogh, a 5th-year PhD student at Tulane University.