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Science in China Series D: Earth Sciences

, Volume 43, Issue 4, pp 412–422 | Cite as

Prediction and prevention of the impacts of sea level rise on the Yangtze River Delta and its adjacent areas

  • Shi Yafeng
  • Zhu Jiwen
  • Xie Zhiren
  • Ji Zixiu
  • Jiang Zixun
  • Yang Guishan
Article

Abstract

The Yangtze River Delta region is characterized by high density of population and rapidly developing economy. There are low lying coastal plain and deltaic plain in this region. Thus, the study area could be highly vulnerable to accelerated sea level rise caused by global warming. This paper deals with the scenarios of the relative sea level rise in the early half period of the 21st century in the study area. The authors suggested that relative sea level would rise 25–50 cm by the year 2050 in the study area, of which the magnitude of relative sea level rise in the Yangtze River Delta would double the perspective worldwide average. The impacts of sea level rise include: (i) exacerbation of coastline recession in several sections and vertical erosion of tidal flat, and increase in length of eroding coastline; (ii) decrease in area of tidal flat and coastal wetland due to erosion and inundation; (iii) increase in frequency and intensity of storm surge, which would threaten the coastal protection works; (iv) reduction of drainage capacity due to backwater effect in the Lixiahe lowland and the eastern lowland of Taihu Lake region, and exacerbation of flood and waterlogging disasters; and (v) increase in salt water intrusion into the Yangtze Estuary. Comprehensive evaluation of sea level rise impacts shows that the Yangtze River Delta and eastern lowland of Taihu Lake region, especially Shanghai Municipality, belong in the district in the extreme risk category and the next is the northern bank of Hangzhou Bay, the third is the abandoned Yellow River delta, and the district at low risk includes the central part of north Jiangsu coastal plain and Lixiahe lowland.

Keywords

sea level rise impact prevention Yangtze River Delta 

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Copyright information

© Science in China Press 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shi Yafeng
    • 1
  • Zhu Jiwen
    • 1
  • Xie Zhiren
    • 2
  • Ji Zixiu
    • 1
  • Jiang Zixun
    • 1
  • Yang Guishan
    • 1
  1. 1.Nanjing Institute of Geography & LimnologyChinese Academy of SciencesNanjingChina
  2. 2.Nanjing Normal UniversityGeographical CollegeNanjingChina

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