Inferring regional vertical crustal velocities from averaged relative sea level trends: A proof of concept

H. Bâki Iz 1 , C. K. Shum 2 , 3 , C. Zhang 1 ,  and C. Y. Kuo 4
  • 1 Division of Geodetic Science, School of Earth Sciences, The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, United States of America
  • 2 Division of Geodetic Science, School of Earth Sciences, The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, United States of America
  • 3 State Key Laboratory of Geodesy and Earth’s Dynamics, Institute of Geodesy & Geophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Wuhan, Hubei, China
  • 4 Department of Geomatics, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan


This study demonstrates that relative sea level trends calculated from long-term tide gauge records can be used to estimate relative vertical crustal velocities in a region with high accuracy. A comparison of the weighted averages of the relative sea level trends estimated at six tide gauge stations in two clusters along the Eastern coast of United States, in Florida and in Maryland, reveals a statistically significant regional vertical crustal motion of Maryland with respect to Florida with a subsidence rate of −1.15±0.15 mm/yr identified predominantly due to the ongoing glacial isostatic adjustment process. The estimate is a consilience value to validate vertical crustal velocities calculated from GPS time series as well as towards constraining predictive GIA models in these regions.

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