Australia\textquoterights unique influence on global sea level in 2010-2011

Author
Keywords
Abstract
In 2011, a significant drop in global sea level occurred that was unprecedented in the altimeter era and concurrent with an exceptionally strong La Ni\~na. This analysis examines multiple data sets in exploring the physical basis for the drop\textquoterights exceptional intensity and persistence. Australia\textquoterights hydrologic surface mass anomaly is shown to have been a dominant contributor to the 2011 global total, and associated precipitation anomalies were among the highest on record. The persistence of Australia\textquoterights mass anomaly is attributed to the continent\textquoterights unique surface hydrology, which includes expansive arheic and endorheic basins that impede runoff to ocean. Based on Australia\textquoterights key role, attribution of sea level variability is addressed. The modulating influences of the Indian Ocean Dipole and Southern Annular Mode on La Ni\~na teleconnections are found to be key drivers of anomalous precipitation in the continent\textquoterights interior and the associated surface mass and sea level responses.
Year of Publication
2013
Journal
Geophysical Research Letters
Volume
40
Number of Pages
4368-4373
Date Published
08/2013
DOI
10.1002/grl.50834