Glacial Isostasy: Regional—Not Global

DOI: 10.4236/ijg.2015.66045   PDF   HTML   XML   3,190 Downloads   3,955 Views   Citations


The load of the continental ice caps of the Ice Ages deformed the bedrock, and when the ice melted in postglacial time, land rose. This process is known as glacial isostasy. The deformations are compensated either regionally or globally. Fennoscandian data indicate a regional compensation. Global sea level data support a regional, not global, compensation. Subtracting GIA corrections from satellite altimetry records brings—for the first time—different sea level indications into harmony of a present mean global sea level rise of 0.0 to 1.0 mm/yr.

Share and Cite:

Mörner, N. (2015) Glacial Isostasy: Regional—Not Global. International Journal of Geosciences, 6, 577-592. doi: 10.4236/ijg.2015.66045.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


[1] Jamieson, T.F. (1865) On the History of the Last Geological Changes in Scotland. Journal of the Geological Society London, 21, 161-204.
[2] Jamieson, T.F. (1882) On the Cause of the Depression and Re-Elevation of the Land during the Glacial Period. Geological Magazine (Decade II), 9, 400-407.
[3] De Geer, G. (1888) Om Skandinaviens nivaforandringar under Quartorperioden. Geologiska Foreningens i Stockholm Forhandlingar, 10, 366-379 (1888) &12, 61-110 (1890).
[4] Morner, N.-A. (1979) The Fennoscandian Uplift and Late Cenozoic Geodynamics: Geological Evidence. GeoJournal, 3, 287-318.
[5] de Charpentier, J. (1835) Notice sur la cause probable du transport des blocs erratiques de la Suisse. Chez Carilian-Goeury, Paris. Annales des mines, 3me ser.
[6] Hitchcock, Ε. (1841) First Anniversary Address before the Association of American Geologists. American Journal of Science, 41, 232-275.
[7] Torell, O. (1872) Undersokningar Ofver istiden. I & II. ofversigt Kongliga Svenska Vetenskapsakademiens Forhandlingar, 10, 25-66.
[8] Maclaren, C. (1841) The Glacial Theory of Professor Agassiz of Neuchatel. The Scotsman Office, Edinburgh. (also: American Journal of Science, 42, 346-365, 1842).
[9] Daly, R.A. (1910) Pleistocene Glaciation and the coral Reef Problem. American Journal of Science, 30, 297-308.
[10] Morner, N.-A. (1995) Earth Rotation, Ocean Circulation and Paleoclimate. GeoJournal, 37, 419-430.
[11] Morner, N.-A. (1976) Eustasy and Geoid Changes. Journal of Geology, 84, 123-151.
[12] Imbrie, J. and Imbrie, K.P. (1986) Ice Ages. Solving the Mystery. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, 224 p.
[13] Morner, N.-A. (2003) Paleoseismicity of Sweden—A Novel Paradigm. Proceedings of the 16th International INQUA Congress, Reno, 23-30 July 2003, 1-320.
[14] Bloom, A.L. (1967) Pleistocene Shorelines: A New Test of Isostasy. Geological Society of America Bulletin, 78, 1477-1498.[1477:PSANTO]2.0.CO;2
[15] Walcott, R.I. (1972) Past Sea Levels, Eustasy and Deformation of the Earth. Quaternary Research, 2, 1-14.
[16] Morner, N.-A. (2005) Sea Level Changes and Crustal Movements with Special Reference to the East Mediterranean. Zeitschrift für Geomorphologie, 137, 91-102.
[17] O’Connell, R.J. (1971) Pleistocene Glaciation and the Viscosity of the Lower Mantle. Geophysical Journal International, 23, 299-327.
[18] Cathles, L.M. (1975) The Viscosity of the Earth’s Mantle. Princeton University Press, Princeton, 386 p.
[19] Peltier, W.R. (1976) Glacial-Isostatic Adjustment-I. The Forward Problem. Geophysical Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society, 46, 605-646.
[20] Clark, J.A. (1980) A Numerical Model of Worldwide Sea Level Changes on a Viscoelastic Earth. In: M?rner, N.-A., Ed., Earth Rheology, Isostasy and Eustasy, John Wiley & Sons, London, 525-534.
[21] Peltier, W.R. (1998) Postglacial Variations in the Level of the Sea: Implications for Climate Dynamics and Solid-Earth Geophysics. Reviews of Geophysics, 36, 603-689.
[22] Lambeck, C. (1998) On the Choice of Timescale in Glacial Rebound Modelling: Mantle Viscosity Estimates and the Radiocarbon Timescale. Geophysical Journal International, 134, 647-651.
[23] Peltier, W.R. (2004) Global Glacial Isostasy and the Surface of the Ice-Age Earth: The ICE-5G (VM2) Model and GRACE. Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences, 32, 111-149.
[24] Nansen, F. (1928) The Earth’s Crust, Its Surface Forms and Isostatic Adjustment. Norske Videnskabs-Akademi i Oslo, Matematikk og Naturvidenskap, 12, 1-122.
[25] van Bemmelen, R.W. and Berlage, H.P. (1935) Versuch einer mathematischen Behandlung geotektonischer Bewegungen unter besonderer Berücksichtigung der Undattionteorie. Gerlands Beitr?ge Geophysik, 43, 19-55.
[26] M?rner, N.-A. (1969) The Late Quaternary History of the Kattegatt Sea and the Swedish West Coast: Deglaciation, Shore-Level Displacement, Chronology, Isostasy and Eustasy. Sveriges Geologiska Unders?kning, C460, 1-487.
[27] Morner, N.-A. (1980) The Fennoscandian Uplift: Geological Data and Their Geodynamical Implication. In: M?rner, N.-A., Ed., Earth Rheology, Isostasy and Eustasy, John Wiley & Sons, London, 251-284.
[28] Morner, N.-A. (1991) Course and Origin of the Fennoscandian Uplift: The Case for Two Separate Mechanisms. Terra Nova, 3, 408-413.
[29] Fjeldskaar, W. and Cathles, L. (1991) The Present Rate of Uplift of Fennoscandia Implies a Low-Viscosity Asthenosphere, Terra Nova, 3, 393-400.
[30] Morner, N.-A. (2013) Sea Level Changes: Past Records and Future Expectations. Energy & Environment, 24, 509-536.
[31] Morner, N.-A. (1977) The Fennoscandian Uplift: Geological Data and Their Geodynamical Implications. Proceedings of the Symposium on Earth Rheology and Late Cenozoic Isostatic Movements, Stockholm, 31 July-8 August 1977, 79-92.
[32] Morner, N.-A. (2015) Chapter 7: The Bolling/Allerod—Younger Dryas Oscillations. In: Morner, N.-A., Ed., Planetary Influence on the Sun and the Earth and a Modern Book-Burning, Noca Science Publishers, Hauppauge, 79-89.
[33] Morner, N.-A. (1990) Glacial Isostasy and Long-Term Crustal Movements in Fennoscandia with Respect to Lithospheric and Asthenospheric Processes and Properties. Tectonophysics, 176, 13-24.
[34] Morner, N.-A. (1973) Eustatic Changes during the Last 300 Years. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 13, 1-14.
[35] Morner, N.-A. (1971) Eustatic Changes during the Last 20,000 Years and a Method of Separating the Isostatic and Eustatic Factors in an Uplifted Area. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 9, 153-181.
[36] Morner, N.-A. (2015) Deriving the Eustatic Sea Level Component in the Kattegatt Sea. Global Perspectives on Geography, 2, 16-21.
[37] Morner, N.-A. (1977) Past and Present Uplift in Sweden: Glacial Isostasy, Tectonism and Bedrock Influence. Geologiska Foereningan i Stockholm. Foerhandlingar, 99, 48-54.
[38] Morner, N.-A. (2007) Sea Level Changes and Tsunamis. Environmental Stress and Migration over the Seas. Internationales Asienforum, 38, 353-374.
[39] Pirazzoli, P.A., Montaggioni, L.F., Salvat, B. and Faure, G. (1988) Late Holocene Sea Level Indicators from Twelve Atolls in the Central and Eastern Tuamotus (Pacific Ocean). Coral Reefs, 7, 57-68.
[40] Nunn, P. (1995) Holocene Sea-Level Changes in the South and West Pacific. Journal of Coastal Research, SI17, 311-319.
[41] Grossman, E.E., Fletcher, C.H. and Richmond, B.M. (1998) The Holocene Sea-Level Highstand in the Equatorial Pacific: Analysis of the Insular Paleosea-Level Database. Coral Reefs, 17, 309-327.
[42] Morner, N.-A. (2014) Sea Level Changes in the 19-20th and 21st Centuries. Coordinates, X:10, 15-21
[43] Morner, N.-A. (2014) An Insult to Geology and Sea Level Research.
[44] UC, University of Colorado (2013) Sea Level Research Group of University of Colorado.
[45] IPCC (2007) Fourth Assessment Report. The Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change.
[46] IPCC (2013) Fifth Assessment Report. The Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change.
[47] NOAA (2014) Laboratory for Satellite Altimetry/Sea Level Rise.
[48] UC, University of Colorado (2015) Sea Level Research Group of University of Colorado.
[49] Morner, N.-A. (2010) There Is No Alarming Sea Level Rise. 21st Century Science & Technology, Winter 2010/2011, 12-22.
[50] Morner, N.-A. (2004) Estimating Future Sea Level Changes. Global and Planetary Change, 40, 49-54.
[51] Morner, N.-A. (2007) The Greatest Lie Ever Told. P&G-Print, Stockholm, 20 p. (2nd Edition 2009, 3rd Edition 2010)
[52] Morner, N.-A. (2008) Comments. Global and Planetary Change, 62, 219-220.
[53] Morner, N.-A. (2011) Chapter 6: Setting the Frames of Expected Future Sea Level Changes by Exploring Past Geological Sea Level Records. In: Easterbrook, D.J., Ed., Evidence-Based Climate Science, Elsevier, Amsterdam, 185-196.
[54] Morner, N.-A. (2011) Chapter 7: The Maldives as a Measure of Sea Level and Sea Level Ethics. In: Easterbrook, D.J., Ed., Evidence-Based Climate Science, Elsevier, Amsterdam, 197-209.
[55] Morner, N.-A. (2012) Sea Level Is Not Rising. SPPI Reprint Series, December 6, 2012, 7-25.
[56] Peltier, W.R. and Tushinghan, A.M. (1989) Global Sea Level Rise and the Greenhouse Effect: Might There Be a Connection? Science, 244, 806-810.
[57] Cazenave, A., Dominh, K., Guinehut, S., Berthier, E., Llovel, W., Rammien, G., Ablain, M. and Larnicol, G. (2009) Sea Level Budget over 2003-2008: A Reevaluationfrom GRACE Space Gravimetry, Satellite Altimetry and Argo. Global Planetary Change, 65, 83-88.
[58] MEDIAS (2000) Satellite-Based Altimetry Reveals Physical Ocean. Medias Newsletter, 12, 9-17.
[59] Morner, N.-A. (1991) Intense Earthquakes and Seismotectonics as a Function of Glacial Isostasy. Tectonophysics, 188, 407-410.
[60] M?rner, N.-A. (1986) The Concept of Eustasy: A Redefinition. Journal of Coastal Research, S1, 49-51.
[61] Morner, N.-A. (1980) The Northwest European “Sea-Level Laboratory” and Regional Holocene Eustasy. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 29, 181-300.
[62] Morner, N.-A. (1988) Terrestrial Variations within Given Energy, Mass and Momentum: Paleoclimate, Sea Level, Paleomagnetism, Differential Rotation and Geodynamics. In: Stephenson, F.R. and Wolfendale, A.W., Eds., Secular Solar and Geomagnetic Variations in the Last 10,000 Years, Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht, 455-478.
[63] Morner, N.-A. (2015) Multiple Planetary Influences on the Earth. In: M?rner, N.-A., Ed., Planetary Influence on the Sun and the Earth, and a Modern Book-Burning, Nova Science Publishers, Hauppauge, 39-49.
[64] Karato, S. (2012) On the Origin of the Asthenosphere. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 321-322, 95-103.
[65] Naif, S., Key, K., Constable, S. and Evans, R.L. (2013) Melt-Rich Channel Observed at the Lithosphere-Asthenosphere Boundary. Nature, 495, 356-359.
[66] Houston, J.R. and Dean, R.G. (2012) Comparisons at Tide-Gauge Locations of Glacial Isostatic Adjustment Predictions with Global Positioning System Measurements. Journal of Coastal Research, 28, 739-744.
[67] Morner, N.-A. (1996) Sea Level Variability. Zeitschrift für Geomorphologie, 102, 223-232.
[68] Morner, N.-A. (2013) Patterns in Seismology and Palaeoseismology, and Their Application in Long-Term Hazard Assessments—The Swedish Case in View of Nuclear Waste Management. Pattern Recognition in Physics, 1, 75-89.
[69] Morner, N.-A. (2010) Some Problems in the Reconstruction of Mean Sea Level and Its Changes with Time. Quaternary International, 221, 3-8.
[70] CU Sea Level Research Group.
[71] Broecker, W.S. (1962.) The Contribution of Pressure-Induced Phase Changes to Glacial Rebound. Journal of Geophysical Research, 67, 4837-4842.

comments powered by Disqus

Copyright © 2020 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.