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FALL 2003

EOS 295 S-01
Time: T/Th 2:15-3:30pm
Location: Room 201 Old Chem (simulcast to Marine Lab)

This course is being offered by the AY03/04 CGC Working Group on Coastal Processes.


Climate models predict at least a 50 cm sea level rise in the present century as a result of global warming (melting of ice caps and thermal expansion of the ocean). Most climate model projections do not consider the complicated geological interactions that are associated with sea level rise. In this reading/lecture course we will introduce material from both the climate and coastal science perspective in order to help bring the two fields closer together. The course will consist of some introductory lectures on global warming/sea level change, physical and biological setting of Carolina estuaries, policy considerations of Carolina coastal development, response of coastlines to rising sea levels and changes in wind directions, and a geological perspective of sea level change over the last few millennia. We will be paying particular attention to the Virginia/North Carolina area because there is a "natural" rate of sea level rise over the last few millennia in this area that is comparable to the global rise projected for the 21st century. We will try to draw inferences from this case study of past rapid sea level on a low-lying coast. Students will be involved in group reading assignments and presentations and at least one project that they will report on.

The course will be offered by:

•Dr. Thomas Crowley, climatologist, Nicholas School, Earth and Ocean Sciences

•Dr. Brad Murray, coastal geomorphologist, Nicholas School, Earth and Ocean Sciences

•Dr. Joseph Ramus, marine ecologist, Nicholas School, Coastal Systems Science and Policy

•Dr. Michael Orbach, marine environmental policy, Nicholas School, Coastal Systems Science and Policy.

Queries should be addressed to Tom Crowley at 681-8228 or

©2005 Center on Global Change
Box 90658, Duke University, Durham NC 27708-0658
A150 Levine Science Research Center (LSRC), Research Drive
Tel: 919-681-7180 Fax: 919-681-7176

Last updated November 29, 2005