PSMSL data have many applications within

image of IPCC report

The most familiar application is global and regional sea level rise and variability. The PSMSL data set is the main source of information on long term changes in global sea level during the last two centuries. The data have been employed intensively in studies such as those of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

The latest IPCC report, published in 2021, finds that "Global mean sea level (GMSL) rose faster in the 20th century than in any prior century over the last three millennia (high confidence), with a 0.20 [0.15 to 0.25] m rise over the period 1901–2018 (high confidence). GMSL rise has accelerated since the late 1960s, with an average rate of 2.3 [1.6 to 3.1] mm yr–1 over the period 1971–2018 increasing to 3.7 [3.2 to 4.2] mm yr–1 over the period 2006–2018 (high confidence)"
(IPCC Sixth Assessment Report, Chapter 9).

This section provides only a brief overview of PSMSL data coverage and applications. For more detailed information, consult a textbook such as one of those listed in the Training and Information web page.