Ozone (O3) precursor emissions influence regional and global climate and air quality through changes in tropospheric O3 and oxidants, which also influence methane (CH4) and sulfate aerosols (SO4 (sup 2-)). We examine changes in the tropospheric composition of O3, CH4, SO4 (sup 2-) and global net radiative forcing (RF) for 20% reductions in global CH4 burden and in anthropogenic O3 precursor emissions (NOx, NMVOC, and CO) from four regions (East Asia, Europe and Northern Africa, North America, and South Asia) using the Task Force on Hemispheric Transport of Air Pollution Source-Receptor global chemical transport model (CTM) simulations, assessing uncertainty (mean plus or minus 1 standard deviation) across multiple CTMs. We evaluate steady state O3 responses, including long-term feedbacks via CH4. With a radiative transfer model that includes greenhouse gases and the aerosol direct effect, we find that regional NOx reductions produce global, annually averaged positive net RFs (0.2 plus or minus 0.6 to 1.7 2 mWm(sup -2)/Tg N yr(sup -1), with some variation among models. Negative net RFs result from reductions in global CH4 (-162.6 plus or minus 2 mWm(sup -2) for a change from 1760 to 1408 ppbv CH4) and regional NMVOC (-0.4 plus or minus 0.2 to 0.7 plus or minus 0.2 mWm(sup -2)/Tg C yr(sup -1) and CO emissions (-0.13 plus or minus 0.02 to -0.15 plus or minus 0.02 mWm(sup-2)/Tg CO yr(sup-1). Including the effect of O3 on CO2 uptake by vegetation likely makes these net RFs more negative by -1.9 to- 5.2 mWm(sup -2)/Tg N yr(sup -1), -0.2 to -0.7 mWm(sup -2)/Tg C yr(sup -1), and -0.02 to -0.05 mWm(sup -2)/ Tg CO yr(sup -1). Net RF impacts reflect the distribution of concentration changes, where RF is affected locally by changes in SO4 (sup -2), regionally to hemispherically by O3, and globally by CH4. Global annual average SO4 2 responses to oxidant changes range from 0.4 plus or minus 2.6 to -1.9 plus or minus 1.3 Gg for NOx reductions, 0.1 plus or minus 1.2 to -0.9 plus or minus 0.8 Gg for NMVOC reductions, and -0.09 plus or minus 0.5 to -0.9 plus or minus 0.8 Gg for CO reductions, suggesting additional research is needed. The 100-year global warming potentials (GWP(sub 100)) are calculated for the global CH4 reduction (20.9 plus or minus 3.7 without stratospheric O3 or water vapor, 24.2 plus or minus 4.2 including those components), and for the regional NOx, NMVOC, and CO reductions (18.7 plus or minus 25.9 to 1.9 plus or minus 8.7 for NOx, 4.8 plus or minus 1.7 to 8.3 plus or minus 1.9 for NMVOC, and 1.5 plus or minus 0.4 to 1.7 plus or minus 0.5 for CO). Variation in GWP(sub 100) for NOx, NMVOC, and CO suggests that regionally specific GWPs may be necessary and could support the inclusion of O3 precursors in future policies that address air quality and climate change simultaneously. Both global net RF and GWP100 are more sensitive to NOx and NMVOC reductions from South Asia than the other three regions.
Environment Pollution; Meteorology and Climatology
Journal of Geophysical Research; 117; D7; D07306