11 Feb 2022
11 Feb 2022
Status: a revised version of this preprint is currently under review for the journal ACP.

Quantifying hard coal mines CH4 emissions from TROPOMI and IASI observations using high-resolution CAMS forecast data and the wind-assigned anomaly method

Qiansi Tu1, Matthias Schneider1, Frank Hase1, Farahnaz Khosrawi1, Benjamin Ertl1,2, Jaroslaw Necki3, Darko Dubravica1, Christopher J. Diekmann1, Thomas Blumenstock1, and Dianjun Fang4 Qiansi Tu et al.
  • 1Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Institute of Meteorology and Climate Research (IMK-ASF), Karlsruhe, Germany
  • 2Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Steinbuch Centre for Computing (SCC), Karlsruhe, Germany
  • 3AGH – University of Science and Technology, Krakow, Poland
  • 4School of Mechanical Engineering, Tongji University, Shanghai, China

Abstract. Intensive coal mining activities are in the Upper Silesian Coal Basin (USCB) in southern Poland, resulting in large amounts of methane (CH4) emissions. Annual CH4 emission reached to 448 kt according to the European Pollutant Release and Transfer Register (E-PRTR, 2017). As a CH4 emission hot spot in Europe, it is of importance to investigate its emission sources and accurate emission estimates.

In this study, we use satellite-based column-averaged dry-air molar fraction observations of CH4 (XCH4) from the TROPOspheric Monitoring Instrument (TROPOMI) and tropospheric XCH4 (TXCH4) from the Infrared Atmospheric Sounding Interferometer (IASI), together with the high-resolution model forecast XCH4 and TXCH4 from the Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service (CAMS) to estimate the CH4 emission rate averaged over three years in the USCB region (49.3°–50.8° N and 18°–20° E). Using the CAMS inventory as the a priori knowledge of the sources, together with ERA5 wind at 330 m, the wind-assigned XCH4 anomalies for two opposite wind directions are calculated, which yields an estimated CH4 emission of 9.6E26 ± 1.4E25 molec./s for CAMS XCH4 and 9.1E26 ± 1.2E25 molec./s for CAMS TXCH4. These values are very close to the total emission of the CAMS inventory (9.7E26 molec./s). Very good agreements between CAMS and the wind-assigned model results (R2 = 0.89 for XCH4 and TXCH4) indicate that our wind-assigned method is quite robust. The similar estimates of XCH4 and TXCH4 also imply that for a strong source, the dynamically induced variations of the CH4 mixing ratio in the upper troposphere and lower stratosphere region is of secondary importance.

This wind-assigned method is further applied to the TROPOMI XCH4 and TROPOMI+IASI TXCH4 with using the Carbon dioxide and Methane (CoMet) inventory performed in 2018. The calculated averaged total CH4 emission over the USCB region is about 5.7E26 ± 4.9E24 molec./s for TROPOMI XCH4 and 5.2E26 ± 2.2E25 molec./s for TROPOMI+IASI TXCH4. These results are very close and thus in agreement to the emissions given in the E-PRTR inventory (5.33E26 molec./s) and the CoMet inventory (6.6E26 molec./s).

Since the wind speed is increasing with altitude, sensitivity tests show that higher CH4 emission strengths are yielded with increasing altitude and vice versa. About 23 % lower and 13 % higher estimates are obtained when using lower wind information at 10 m and higher wind information at 500 m instead of 330 m, respectively. When using different wind coverage and different wind segmentation, an uncertainty of 4.2 % and −2.1% is obtained, respectively. These results suggest that our wind-assigned method is quite robust and might also serve as a simple method to estimate CH4 or CO2 emissions for other regions.

Qiansi Tu et al.

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on acp-2022-41', Anonymous Referee #1, 23 Mar 2022
    • AC1: 'Reply on RC1', Qiansi Tu, 24 Apr 2022
  • RC2: 'Comment on acp-2022-41', Anonymous Referee #2, 31 Mar 2022
    • AC2: 'Reply on RC2', Qiansi Tu, 24 Apr 2022

Qiansi Tu et al.

Qiansi Tu et al.


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Short summary
Three-year satellite observations and high-resolution model forecast of XCH4 are used to derive CH4 emissions in the USCB region, Poland, a region of intensive coal mining activities. The wind-assigned anomalies for two opposite wind directions are calculate and the estimated emission rates are very close to the inventories and in reasonable agreement to the previous studies. Our method is quite robust and can be served as a simple method to estimate CH4 or CO2 emissions for other regions.