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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.

  10 Aug 2020

10 Aug 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal ACP.

Improvement from the satellite-derived NOx emissions on air quality modeling and its effect on ozone and secondary inorganic aerosol formation in Yangtze River Delta, China

Yang Yang1, Yu Zhao1,2, Lei Zhang1, Jie Zhang3, Xin Huang4, Xuefen Zhao1, Yan Zhang1, Mengxiao Xi1, and Yi Lu1 Yang Yang et al.
  • 1State Key Laboratory of Pollution Control & Resource Reuse and School of the Environment, Nanjing University, 163 Xianlin Ave., Nanjing, Jiangsu 210023, China
  • 2Jiangsu Collaborative Innovation Center of Atmospheric Environment and Equipment Technology (CICAEET), Nanjing University of Information Science & Technology, Jiangsu 210044, China
  • 3Jiangsu Provincial Academy of Environmental Science, 176 North Jiangdong Rd., Nanjing, Jiangsu 210036, China
  • 4School of the Atmospheric Sciences, Nanjing University, 163 Xianlin Ave., Nanjing, Jiangsu 210023, China

Abstract. We developed a top-down methodology combining the inversed chemistry transport modeling and satellite-derived tropospheric vertical column of NO2, and estimated the NOx emissions of Yangtze River Delta (YRD) region at a horizontal resolution of 9 km for January, April, July and October 2016. The effect of the top-down emission estimation on air quality modeling, and the response of ambient ozone (O3) and secondary inorganic aerosols (SO42−, NO3, and NH4+, SNA) to the changed precursor emissions were evaluated with the Community Multi-scale Air Quality (CMAQ) system. The top-down estimates of NOx emissions were smaller than those in a national emission inventory, MEIC (i.e., the bottom-up estimates), for all the four months, and the monthly mean was calculated at 260.0 Gg/month, 24 % less than the bottom-up one. The NO2 concentrations simulated with the bottom-up estimate of NOx emissions were clearly higher than the ground observation, indicating the possible overestimation in current emission inventory attributed to its insufficient consideration of recent emission control in the region. The model performance based on top-down estimate was much better, and the biggest change was found for July with the normalized mean bias (NMB) and normalized mean error (NME) reduced from 111 % to −0.4 % and from 111 % to 33 %, respectively. The results demonstrate the improvement of NOx emission estimation with the nonlinear inversed modeling and satellite observation constraint. With the smaller NOx emissions in the top-down estimate than the bottom-up one, the elevated concentrations of ambient O3 were simulated for most YRD and they were closer to observation except for July, implying the VOC (volatile organic compound)-limit regime of O3 formation. With available ground observations of SNA in the YRD, moreover, better model performance of NO3 and NH4+ were achieved for most seasons, implying the effectiveness of precursor emission estimation on the simulation of secondary inorganic aerosols. Through the sensitivity analysis of O3 formation for April 2016, the decreased O3 concentrations were found for most YRD region when only VOCs emissions were reduced or the reduced rate of VOCs emissions was two times of that of NOx, implying the crucial role of VOCs control on O3 pollution abatement. The SNA level for January 2016 was simulated to decline 12 % when 30 % of NH3 emissions were reduced, while the change was much smaller with the same reduced rate for SO2 or NOx. The result suggests that reducing NH3 emissions was the most effective way to alleviate SNA pollution for YRD in winter.

Yang Yang et al.

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Yang Yang et al.


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Latest update: 21 Oct 2020
Publications Copernicus
Short summary
We made new NOx emission estimation based on the satellite-derived NO2 column constraint, and found the reduced emissions compared to previous estimate for a developed region in east China. The subsequent improvement on air quality modeling was demonstrated based on available ground observation. With multiple emission reduction cases for various pollutants, we explored the effective control approaches for ozone and inorganic aerosol pollution.
We made new NOx emission estimation based on the satellite-derived NO2 column constraint, and...