CSIRO tracks decreasing wave height
Wave heights are set to decrease across 25 per cent of the world’s oceans, according to a new research published by the CSIRO.
A team of researchers have conducted some of the first climate simulations of modelled wave conditions, concluding that 7 per cent of the world’s oceans are also set to experience increased wave height, predominatly around the Southern Ocean.
The report’s lead author, CSIRO’s Dr Mark Hemer, said that 20 per cent of the world's coastlines are sandy beaches which are prone to natural or man-made changes. It is estimated that 10 per cent of these sandy coasts are becoming wider as they build seawards, 70 per cent are eroding and the remaining 20 per cent are stable. Around 50 per cent of Australia's coast is sand.
"Waves are dominant drivers of coastal change in these sandy environments, and variability and change in the characteristics of surface ocean waves (sea and swell) can far exceed the influences of sea-level rise in such environments.
"If we wish to understand how our coasts might respond to future changes in climate then we need to try and understand how waves might respond to the projected changes in global atmospheric circulation seen as shifts in storm frequency, storm intensity and storm tracks," Dr Hemer stated.