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https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2020-385
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2020-385
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

  21 Jul 2020

21 Jul 2020

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A revised version of this preprint is currently under review for the journal ACP.

Rapid increase in summer surface ozone over the North China Plain during 2013–2019: a side effect of particulate matters reduction control?

Xiaodan Ma1, Jianping Huang2,6, Tianliang Zhao1, Cheng Liu3, Kaihui Zhao4, Jia Xing5, and Wei Xiao6 Xiaodan Ma et al.
  • 1Collaborative Innovation Center on Forecast and Evaluation of Meteorological Disasters, Key Laboratory for Aerosol-Cloud-Precipitation of China Meteorological Administration, Nanjing University of Information Science and Technology, Nanjing 210044, China
  • 2I. M. System Group, Environmental Modeling Center, NOAA National Centers for Environmental Prediction, College Park, MD, USA
  • 3Jiangxi Province Key Laboratory of the Causes and Control of Atmospheric Pollution/School of Water Resources and Environmental Engineering, East China University of Technology, Nanchang 330013, China
  • 4School of Environment and Energy, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510006, China
  • 5State Key Joint Laboratory of Environmental Simulation and Pollution Control, School of Environment, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China
  • 6Yale-NUIST Center on Atmospheric Environment, Nanjing University of Information Science and Technology, Nanjing, 210044, China

Abstract. While the elevated ambient levels of particulate matters with aerodynamic diameter of 2.5 micrometers or less (PM2.5) are alleviated largely with the implementation of effective emission control measures, an opposite trend with a rapid increase is seen in surface ozone (O3) in the North China Plain (NCP) region over the past several years. It is critical to determine the real culprit causing such a large increase in surface O3. In this study, seven-year surface observations and satellite retrieval data are analyzed to determine the long-term change in surface O3 as well as driving factors. Results indicate that anthropogenic emission control strategies and changes in aerosol concentrations as well as aerosol optical properties such as single-scattering albedo (SSA) are the most important factors driving such a large increase in surface O3. Numerical simulations with National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Master Mechanism (MM) model suggest that reduction of O3 precursor emissions and aerosol radiative effect accounted for 45 % and 23 % of the total change in surface O3 in summertime during 2013–2019, respectively. Planetary boundary layer (PBL) height with an increase of 0.21 km and surface air temperature with an increase of 2.1 °C contributed 18 % and 12 % to the total change in surface O3, respectively. The combined effect of these factor was responsible for the rest change. Decrease in SSA or strengthened absorption property of aerosols may offset the impact of AOD reduction on surface O3 substantially. While the MM model enables quantification of individual factor's percentage contributions, it requires further refinement with aerosol chemistry included in the future investigation. The study indicates an important role of aerosol radiative effect in development of more effective emission control strategies on reduction of ambient levels of O3 as well as alleviation of national air quality standard exceedance events.

Xiaodan Ma et al.

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Short summary
The present work aims at identifying and quantifying the relative contributions of the key factors in driving a rapid increase in summertime surface O3 over the North China Plain during 2013–2019. In addition to anthropogenic emissions reduction and meteorological variabilities, our study highlights the importance of inclusion of aerosol absorption/scattering property rather than aerosol abundance only in accurate assessment of aerosol radiative effect on surface O3 formation and change.
The present work aims at identifying and quantifying the relative contributions of the key...
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