Articles | Volume 7, issue 10
14 May 2007
14 May 2007

Air quality in North America's most populous city – overview of the MCMA-2003 campaign

L. T. Molina, C. E. Kolb, B. de Foy, B. K. Lamb, W. H. Brune, J. L. Jimenez, R. Ramos-Villegas, J. Sarmiento, V. H. Paramo-Figueroa, B. Cardenas, V. Gutierrez-Avedoy, and M. J. Molina

Abstract. Exploratory field measurements in the Mexico City Metropolitan Area (MCMA) in February 2002 set the stage for a major air quality field measurement campaign in the spring of 2003 (MCMA-2003). Involving over 100 scientists from more than 30 institutions in Mexico, the United States and Europe, MCMA-2003 revealed important new insights into the meteorology, primary pollutant emissions, ambient secondary pollutant precursor concentrations, photochemical oxidant production and secondary aerosol particle formation in North America's most populated and polluted megacity. A description of meteorological and atmospheric chemistry and aerosol microphysics measurements performed during MCMA-2003 is presented. More than 40 published or submitted MCMA-2003 research papers are reviewed and key discoveries pertinent to understanding and improving air quality in Mexico City and similar megacities in the developing world are summarized.

Final-revised paper