Articles | Volume 12, issue 2
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 12, 961–987, 2012

Special issue: The Modular Earth Submodel System (MESSy) (ACP/GMD inter-journal...

Atmos. Chem. Phys., 12, 961–987, 2012

Research article 19 Jan 2012

Research article | 19 Jan 2012

Distributions and regional budgets of aerosols and their precursors simulated with the EMAC chemistry-climate model

A. Pozzer*,2,1, A. de Meij1, K. J. Pringle3, H. Tost4, U. M. Doering5, J. van Aardenne6,**, and J. Lelieveld7,2,1 A. Pozzer et al.
  • 1The Cyprus Institute, Energy, Environment and Water Research Center, P.O. Box 27456, 1645 Nicosia, Cyprus
  • 2Atmospheric Chemistry Department, Max-Planck Institute of Chemistry, P.O. Box 3060, 55020 Mainz, Germany
  • 3School of Earth and Environment, Univ. of Leeds, Woodhouse Lane, Leeds, LS2 9JT, UK
  • 4Institut für Physik der Atmosphere, Johannes-Gutenberg Universität Mainz, 55099, Mainz, Germany
  • 5Federal Environment Agency (UBA), Wörlitzer Platz 1, 06844, Dessau, Germany
  • 6European Commission Joint Research Centre, Institute for Environment and Sustainability, Ispra, Italy
  • 7King Saud University, Riyadh 11451, Saudi Arabia
  • *now at: The Abdus Salam International center for Theoretical Physics, Earth System Physics section, Strada Costiera 11, 34151 Trieste, Italy
  • **now at: Air and climate change-mitigation, European Environment Agency, Kongens Nytorv 6, 1050 Copenhagen K, Denmark

Abstract. The new global anthropogenic emission inventory (EDGAR-CIRCE) of gas and aerosol pollutants has been incorporated in the chemistry general circulation model EMAC (ECHAM5/MESSy Atmospheric Chemistry). A relatively high horizontal resolution simulation is performed for the years 2005–2008 to evaluate the capability of the model and the emissions to reproduce observed aerosol concentrations and aerosol optical depth (AOD) values. Model output is compared with observations from different measurement networks (CASTNET, EMEP and EANET) and AODs from remote sensing instruments (MODIS and MISR). A good spatial agreement of the distribution of sulfate and ammonium aerosol is found when compared to observations, while calculated nitrate aerosol concentrations show some discrepancies. The simulated temporal development of the inorganic aerosols is in line with measurements of sulfate and nitrate aerosol, while for ammonium aerosol some deviations from observations occur over the USA, due to the wrong temporal distribution of ammonia gas emissions. The calculated AODs agree well with the satellite observations in most regions, while negative biases are found for the equatorial area and in the dust outflow regions (i.e. Central Atlantic and Northern Indian Ocean), due to an underestimation of biomass burning and aeolian dust emissions, respectively. Aerosols and precursors budgets for five different regions (North America, Europe, East Asia, Central Africa and South America) are calculated. Over East-Asia most of the emitted aerosols (precursors) are also deposited within the region, while in North America and Europe transport plays a larger role. Further, it is shown that a simulation with monthly varying anthropogenic emissions typically improves the temporal correlation by 5–10% compared to one with constant annual emissions.

Final-revised paper