Articles | Volume 13, issue 10
Research article
23 May 2013
Research article |  | 23 May 2013

High-resolution mapping of combustion processes and implications for CO2 emissions

R. Wang, S. Tao, P. Ciais, H. Z. Shen, Y. Huang, H. Chen, G. F. Shen, B. Wang, W. Li, Y. Y. Zhang, Y. Lu, D. Zhu, Y. C. Chen, X. P. Liu, W. T. Wang, X. L. Wang, W. X. Liu, B. G. Li, and S. L. Piao

Abstract. High-resolution mapping of fuel combustion and CO2 emission provides valuable information for modeling pollutant transport, developing mitigation policy, and for inverse modeling of CO2 fluxes. Previous global emission maps included only few fuel types, and emissions were estimated on a grid by distributing national fuel data on an equal per capita basis, using population density maps. This process distorts the geographical distribution of emissions within countries. In this study, a sub-national disaggregation method (SDM) of fuel data is applied to establish a global 0.1° × 0.1° geo-referenced inventory of fuel combustion (PKU-FUEL) and corresponding CO2 emissions (PKU-CO2) based upon 64 fuel sub-types for the year 2007. Uncertainties of the emission maps are evaluated using a Monte Carlo method. It is estimated that CO2 emission from combustion sources including fossil fuel, biomass, and solid wastes in 2007 was 11.2 Pg C yr−1 (9.1 Pg C yr−1 and 13.3 Pg C yr−1 as 5th and 95th percentiles). Of this, emission from fossil fuel combustion is 7.83 Pg C yr−1, which is very close to the estimate of the International Energy Agency (7.87 Pg C yr−1). By replacing national data disaggregation with sub-national data in this study, the average 95th minus 5th percentile ranges of CO2 emission for all grid points can be reduced from 417 to 68.2 Mg km−2 yr−1. The spread is reduced because the uneven distribution of per capita fuel consumptions within countries is better taken into account by using sub-national fuel consumption data directly. Significant difference in per capita CO2 emissions between urban and rural areas was found in developing countries (2.08 vs. 0.598 Mg C/(cap. × yr)), but not in developed countries (3.55 vs. 3.41 Mg C/(cap. × yr)). This implies that rapid urbanization of developing countries is very likely to drive up their emissions in the future.

Final-revised paper