Sea level drop refers to the phenomenon in which the shrinking weights of melting glaciers cause the surrounding land to rise and the relative sea level to fall.[1][2]


In Höfn, Iceland, the sea level is dropping relative to the land at a rate of about 1.7 cm (0.7 in) per year, and nearby it is dropping 3.8 cm (1.5 in) per year.[3] The effect in Iceland is mainly caused by the Vatnajökull glacier. If the land rises enough, the Hornafjörður fjord would become impassable from ships, which would significantly hurt the town.[4] Other countries experience this effect as well; in a portion of Alaska and Canada, the relative sea level is falling by up to 2.0 cm (0.8 in) a year. In Norway, Sweden and Finland, an effect called Fennoscandian land elevation causes the relative sea level to fall by up to 0.7 cm (0.3 in) a year.[5][6]

See also


  1. ^ Naranjo, Laura (2013-10-11). "When Oceans Drop | Earthdata".
  2. ^ ClimateWire, Stephanie Paige Ogburn. "A Scientist Explains the Mystery of Recent Sea-Level Drop". Scientific American. Retrieved 2023-06-03.
  3. ^ Kottasová, Ivana; Doran, Temujin. "A drop in the ocean". Retrieved 2023-06-03.
  4. ^ Ástvaldsson, Jóhann Páll (2019-08-21). "Land Rising Due to Melting Glaciers". Iceland Review. Retrieved 2023-06-03.
  5. ^ "Land uplift". National Land Survey of Finland. Retrieved 2023-06-03.
  6. ^ "Where the land rises faster than the sea". 2017-07-28. Retrieved 2023-06-03.