Understanding spatial and temporal changes of seasonal sea level cycles is important because of direct influence on coastal systems. The annual sea level cycle is substantially larger than semi-annual cycle in most parts of the ocean. Ensemble empirical mode decomposition (EEMD) method has been widely used to study tidal component, long-term sea level rise, and decadal sea level variation. In this work, EEMD is used to analyze the observed monthly sea level anomalies and detect annual cycle characteristics. Considering that the variations of the annual sea level variation in the Northeast Pacific Ocean are poorly studied, the trend and characteristics of annual sea level amplitudes and related mechanisms in the North Pacific Ocean are investigated using long-term tide gauge records covering 1950–2016. The average annual amplitude of coastal sea level exhibits interannual-to-decadal variability within the range of 14–220 mm. The largest value of ~174 mm is observed in the west coast of South China Sea. In the other coastal regions of North Pacific Ocean, the mean annual amplitude is relatively low between 77 and 124 mm for the western coast and 84 and 87 mm for the eastern coast. The estimated trend values for annual sea level amplitudes in the western coastal areas of South China Sea and Northeast Pacific Ocean have statistically decreased over 1952–2014 with a range of −0.77 mm·yr−1 to −0.11 mm·yr−1. Our results suggested that the decreasing annual amplitude in the west coast of South China Sea is in good agreement with the annual mean wind stress associated with the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO). This wind phenomenon also explains the temporal variations of annual sea level amplitude in Northeast Pacific Ocean, especially the high correlations since 1980 (R = 0.61−0.72).
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)