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Journal Articles Atmospheric Environment Year : 2012

Impact of biogenic emissions on air quality over Europe and North America


This study aims to compare the relative impact of biogenic emissions on ozone (O3) and particulate matter (PM) concentrations between North America (NA) and Europe. The simulations are conducted with the Polyphemus air quality modeling system over July and August 2006. Prior to the sensitivity study on the impact of biogenic emissions on air quality, the modeling results are compared to observational data, as well as to the concentrations obtained by other modeling teams of the Air Quality Model Evaluation International Initiative (AQMEII) study. Over Europe, three distinct emission inventories are used. Model performance is satisfactory for O3, PM10 and PM2.5 with all inventories with respect to the criteria described in the literature. Furthermore, the rmse and errors are lower than the average rmse and errors of the AQMEII simulations. Over North America, the model performance satisfies the criteria described in the literature for O3, PM10 and PM2.5. Polyphemus results are within the range of the AQMEII model results. Although the rmse and errors are higher than the average of the AQMEII simulations for O3, they are lower for PM10 and PM2.5. The impact of biogenic and anthropogenic emissions on O3 and PM concentrations is studied by removing alternatively biogenic and anthropogenic emissions in distinct simulations. Because biogenic species interact strongly with NOx, the impact of biogenic emissions on O3 concentrations varies with variations of the Volatile Organic Compound (VOC)/NOx ratio. This impact is larger over NA than Europe. O3 decreases by 10–11% on average over Europe and 20% over NA. Locally, the relative impact is also higher in NA (60% maximum) than in Europe (35% maximum). O3 decreases near large urban centers where biogenic emissions are large (e.g. Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston in NA, Milan in Europe). Most of secondary organic aerosols (SOA) formed at the continental scale over Europe and NA are biogenic aerosols. Eliminating biogenic emissions reduces SOA by 72–88% over Europe and by 90% over NA. However, biogenic SOA are not only impacted by biogenic but also by anthropogenic emissions: eliminating all anthropogenic emissions affects oxidant levels and the absorbing carbon mass, reducing the formation of SOA by 15–16% over Europe and by about 10% over NA; Furthermore, locally, the reduction may be as large as 50%, especially over large urban centers in Europe and NA.
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hal-01694102 , version 1 (08-02-2018)



Karine Sartelet, Florian Couvidat, Christian Seigneur, Yelva Roustan. Impact of biogenic emissions on air quality over Europe and North America. Atmospheric Environment, 2012, 53, pp.131 - 141. ⟨10.1016/j.atmosenv.2011.10.046⟩. ⟨hal-01694102⟩
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