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Protecting tidal wetlands

April 17, 2013 — According to a 2007 report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, global sea level is expected to increase one half meter or more over the next century. Along the Mid-Atlantic coast of the United States, relative sea-level rise is about two times higher than the global rise.

In Delaware, nearly 371,000 acres of contiguous tidal wetlands surround the Delaware Bay. Studies indicate that the proportion of wetlands that were degraded increased from 25 percent in 1984 to an alarming 54 percent in 1993.

Three University of Delaware scientists are studying tidal water flow and sediment movement in a Kent County salt marsh to better understand changes to the marsh ecosystem due to a rising sea level.