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Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

  22 Jul 2020

22 Jul 2020

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

Significant wintertime PM2.5 mitigation in the Yangtze River Delta, China from 2016 to 2019: observational constraints on anthropogenic emission controls

Liqiang Wang1, Shaocai Yu1,2, Pengfei Li3,1, Xue Chen1, Zhen Li1, Yibo Zhang1, Mengying Li1, Khalid Mehmood1, Weiping Liu1, Tianfeng Chai4, Yannian Zhu5, Daniel Rosenfeld6, and John H. Seinfeld2 Liqiang Wang et al.
  • 1Research Center for Air Pollution and Health, Key Laboratory of Environmental Remediation and Ecological Health, Ministry of Education, College of Environment and Resource Sciences, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, Zhejiang 310058, P. R. China
  • 2Division of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA 91125, USA
  • 3College of Science and Technology, Hebei Agricultural University, Baoding, Hebei 071000, P. R. China
  • 4Air Resources Laboratory, NOAA, Cooperative Institute for Satellite Earth System Studies (CISESS), University of Maryland, College Park, USA
  • 5Meteorological Institute of Shananxi Province, 36 Beiguanzhengjie, Xi'an 710015, China
  • 6Institute of Earth Science, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem, Israel

Abstract. Ambient fine particulate matter (PM2.5) mitigation relies strongly on anthropogenic emission control measures, the actual effectiveness of which is challenging to pinpoint owing to the complex synergies between anthropogenic emissions and meteorology. Here, observational constraints on model simulations allow us to derive not only reliable PM2.5 evolution but also accurate meteorological fields. In this study, we isolate meteorological factors to achieve reliable estimates of surface PM2.5 responses to both long-term and emergency emission control measures from 2016 to 2019 over the Yangtze River Delta (YRD), China. The results show that long-term emission control strategies play a crucial role in curbing PM2.5 levels (> 14 μg/m3, 19 %), especially in the megacities and other areas with abundant anthropogenic emissions. The G20 summit hosted in Hangzhou in 2016 provides a unique and ideal opportunity involving the most stringent, even unsustainable, emergency emission control measures. For the winter time periods from 2016 to 2019, the most substantial declines in PM2.5 concentrations (~ 35 μg/m3, ~ 59 %) are thus achieved in Hangzhou and its surrounding areas. The following hotspots also emerge in megacities, especially in Shanghai (32 μg/m3, 51 %), Nanjing (27 μg/m3, 55 %), and Hefei (24 μg/m3, 44 %). Compared to the long-term policies from 2016 to 2019, the emergency emission control measures implemented during the G20 Summit achieve more significant decreases in PM2.5 concentrations (17 μg/m3 and 41 %) over most of the whole domain, especially in Hangzhou (24 μg/m3, 48 %) and Shanghai (21 μg/m3, 45 %). By extrapolation, we derive insight into the magnitude and spatial distributions of PM2.5 mitigation potentials across the YRD, revealing significantly additional rooms for curbing PM2.5 levels.

Liqiang Wang et al.

Liqiang Wang et al.


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Publications Copernicus
Short summary
The China government has made major strides in curbing anthropogenic emissions. In this study, we constrain a state-of-the-art CTM by a reliable data assimilation method with extensive chemical and meteorological observations. This comprehensive technical design provides a crucial advance in isolating the influences of emission changes and meteorological perturbations over the Yangtze River Delta (YRD) from 2016 to 2019, thus establishing the first map of the PM2.5 mitigation across the YRD.
The China government has made major strides in curbing anthropogenic emissions. In this study,...