Turkish Journal of Earth Sciences




With the rising sea level becoming a more pressing issue to coastal areas, a comprehensive analysis has been conducted to assess the vulnerability of the Çukurova Delta under the projected inundation by the end of the century. The level of inundation was estimated from a multimission satellite altimetry sea level anomaly and significant wave height data between September 1992 and February 2012. Superposed to the clear annual oscillation with 6.2 cm amplitude peaking around the beginning of October, the mean sea level signal exhibits a positive trend of 3.4 ± 0.1 mm/year over the altimetric data period. The extreme wave height with a 100-year return period is estimated to be about 6.1 ± 0.03 m, based on extreme probability distribution of the significant wave height data. In addition, taking the effects of tidal and meteorological forcings on the sea level into account, the maximum level of flooding expected to occur by the year 2100 reaches up to 6.7 m. GIS-based inundation mapping on the high resolution elevation model indicates that 69% of the area would be at risk of flooding. Nearshore settlements, lagoons, and the agricultural lands are the most severely impacted areas due to the inundation. The results can contribute to enhancing wetland conservation and management in the Çukurova Delta.


Coastal vulnerability, inundation, satellite altimetry, GIS, Çukurova Delta, Turkey

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