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SCIENCE of
CLIMATE CHANGE

International Journal of Science and Philosophy

Nils-Axel Mörner in Memoriam

A collection of memorial articles by friends and colleagues

Nils-Axel Mörner (Niklas among friends) was born on March 17, 1938 in Stockholm, Sweden. He took his Ph.D. in 1969, becoming associate professor in Quaternary Geology at Stockholm University that year. He conducted his postdoctoral research in Canada and was then employed by the Swedish Research Council. 

He was awarded a personal associate professorship at the Institute for Palaeogeophysics & Geodynamics, which from 1991 became a special research institute at Stockholm University. As head of the unit, he addressed a variety of geological and geophysical problems. 

He organized two major international conferences: Earth Rheology, Isostasy and Eustasy in 1977, and Climatic Changes on a Yearly to Millennial Basis in 1983. 

Professor Mörner led several international field excursions throughout Sweden. Overseas, he was President of the INQUA Commission on Neotectonics (1981-1989) and President of the INQUA Commission on Sea Level Changes and Coastal Evolution (1999-2003). He also headed the INTAS Project on Geomagnetism and Climate from 1997-2003. 

In 2000, he launched an international research project on sea level in the Maldives, probably his most famous project, proving that there is no sea-level rise going on there.

After his ‘retirement’ in 2005, he continued working on several projects and producing books, booklets, reports and articles, many of which are told about on the succeeding pages. 

Among his more than seven hundred publications are studies on the following – 

–     the interaction between isostasy and eustasy; 

–     the oscillating regional eustatic curve of NW Europe; 

–     the changing concept of the geoid; 

–     the redefinition of the concept of eustasy; 

–     the dynamic-rotational redistribution of oceanic water masses; 

–     the interchange of angular momentum between the Earth’s hydrosphere and lithosphere; 

–     a new sea-level curve in the Maldives (showing no sea-level rise); 

–     a new sea-level study in the Sundarban delta of Bangladesh. 

In 2008, at an international meeting on sea level in Portugal, Professor Mörner was awarded the Golden Chondrite of Merit from the University of the Algarve “for his irreverence and his contribution to our understanding of sea-level change”.

He became a member of the Scientific Council of the Norwegian association Klimarealistene (the Climate Realists) in 2015, and was chosen as Chief Editor of our journal Science of Climate Change Sep. 26, 2020, a name he coined himself, but sadly died after a short illness on Oct. 16, less than a month later.

Niklas insisted that we should use the Northern Lights on the cover of the journal, as a symbol of the Scandinavian cooperation behind it.

Peace be with his memory.

The editor.

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