Climate Change

Global vulnerability of groundwater resources to sea-level rise:

We are using numerical modeling tools to simulate changes in groundwater salinity and flow to the sea due to sea-level rise predicted to occur over the next century. Modeling shows that areas limited by topographic elevation are particularly vulnerable. We used GIS to classify world coastlines by type: those where the elevation of the water table is limited by topography or by recharge (Figure and analysis done by Chris Russoniello and Lindsay Byron):



Michael, HA, CJ Russoniello, and LA Byron (2013) Global assessment of vulnerability to sea-level rise in topography-limited and recharge-limited coastal groundwater systems, Water Resources Research, 49, doi: 10.1002/wrcr.20213.

World Bank, Implications of Climate Change on Fresh Groundwater Resources in Coastal Aquifers in Bangladesh, Eds: Yu, W, CI Voss, HA Michael, KM Ahmed, L Feinson, MMR Khan, and A Tuinhof,  Report of the World Bank, South Asia Region, 2010, 105p.



Michael, HA*, LA Byron, LS Feinson, CI Voss, CJ Russoniello, Vulnerability of topography-limited and recharge-limited groundwater systems to sea-level rise-induced salinization, American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, San Francisco, CA, December 7, 2012, invited.

Michael, HA*, LS Feinson, L Byron, and CI Voss, Climate and human impacts on the vulnerability of coastal groundwater resources to salinization by seawater, Sixth International Conference on Sustainable Water Environment, “Water Infrastructures in Time of Climate Change”, Newark, DE, July 29-31, 2010.

Michael, HA*, LS Feinson, and CI Voss, Mechanisms of seawater intrustion in Bangladesh and the potential impacts of sea-level rise on coastal groundwater resources, 21st Salt Water Intrusion Meeting, Azores, Portugal, June 21-26, 2010.

Featured Faculty

Holly Michael

Holly Michael picture

Unidel Fraser Russell Career Development Chair in Environment Associate Professor Geological Sciences


CEOE School & Departments

School of Marine Science & Policy

Advancing the understanding, stewardship, and conservation of estuarine, coastal, and ocean environments.

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Department of Geological Sciences

Discovering how geological processes have operated over various time scales to create and influence the planet’s surface environments.

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Department of Geography

Investigating the interactions between people and the environment and the processes that explain the location of human and natural phenomena.

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College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment • 111 Robinson Hall • Newark, DE 19716 • USA • Phone: 302-831-2841
Geography: 302-831-2294 • Geology: 302-831-2569 • Marine Science and Policy: 302-645-4212 • E-mail:

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