The BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Award in Climate Change goes, in this eleventh edition, to Anny Cazenave, John A. Church and Jonathan Gregory, for outstanding contributions to detecting, understanding and projecting the response of global and regional sea level to climate change.
Rising sea level imperils low-lying areas with manifold societal and ecological impacts. Because it is influenced by many factors, interpreting and projecting sea-level change is a tremendous scientific challenge.
Dr. Cazenave and Professors Church and Gregory pioneered the integration of satellite observations with in situ measurements and innovations in numerical modeling to develop an accurate and consistent depiction of sea-level change globally. Collectively, their research demonstrated the recent acceleration of regional and global sea-level change and quantified the relative contributions of the different causes of sea-level rise, most importantly ocean thermal expansion and the melting of ice sheets and glaciers driven by anthropogenic global warming. Their findings have been instrumental in testing our understanding of how the Earth system works.