Scope & Project Framework
In scope IGCP 495 is strongly international and will involve a global community of scientists. This will enable us to explore the linkages between the land, the coast and the ocean in a variety of depositional settings, ranging from polar environments where links between sea-level change and ice sheet history are strong; through temperate latitude coasts where abundant salt-marsh and other sediment sequences provide excellent archives of high resolution sea-level change capable of correlation with a host of terrestrial and oceanic records of environmental change; to low latitude coasts which provide superb controls on Quaternary sea-level change and coastal evolution (using coral and mangrove based records, for example). The global coverage of sites will allow rigorous comparisons between regions affected by a wide variety of terrestrial (natural and anthropogenic) processes, as well as areas influenced by different types of tectonic activity. This will include determining the driving mechanisms behind coastal and sea-level change in uplifting and subsiding deltaic regions, complementing the work undertaken by other delta-focussed projects identified above.
Strong international support for this project is demonstrated by over 100 letters of support for the original project submission to UNESCO from over 30 countries, including a significant proportion of which are from the developing world.