In Asian monsoon countries, such as China and India, human health and safety problems caused by air pollution are becoming increasingly serious, due to the increased loading of atmospheric pollutants from waste gas emissions and from rising energy demand associated with the rapid pace of industrialization and modernization. Meanwhile, uneven distribution of monsoon rain associated with flash floods or prolonged drought, has caused major loss of human life and damage to crops and.property with devastating societal impacts. Historically, air-pollution and monsoons research are treated as separate problems. However recent studies have suggested that the two problems may be intrinsically linked and need to be studied jointly. Fundamentally, aerosols can affect precipitation through radiative effects cif suspended particles in the atmosphere (direct effect) and/or by interfering and changing: the cloud and precipitation formation processes (indirect effect). Based on their optical properties, aerosols can be classified into two types.: those that absorb solar radiation, and those that do not. Both types of aerosols scatter sunlight and reduce the amount of solar radiation from reaching the Earth's surface, causing it to cool. The surface cooling increases atmospheric stability and reduces convection potential, Absorbing aerosols, however, in addition to cooling the surface, can heat the atmosphere. The heating of the atmosphere may reduce the amount of low clouds by increased evaporation in cloud drops. The heating, however, may induce rising motion, enhance low-level moisture, convergence and, hence, increases rainfall, The latent heating from enhanced rainfall may excite feedback processes in the large-scale circulation, further amplify.the initial response to aerosol heating and producing more rain. Additionally, aerosols can increase the concentration of cloud condensation nuclei (CCN), increase cloud amount and decrease coalescence and collision rates, leading to reduced precipitation. However, in the presence of increasing moist and warm air, the reduced coalescence/collision may lead to supercooled drops at higher altitudes where ice precipitation falls and melts. The latent heat release from freezing aloft and melting below implies greater upward heat transport in polluted clouds and invigorate deep convection. In this way, aerosols may lead to increased local convection. Hence, depending on the ambient large-scale conditions and dynamical feedback processes, aerosols' effect on precipitation can be positive, negative or mixed. In the Asian monsoon and adjacent regions, the aerosol forcing and responses of the water cycle are even more complex, Both direct and indirect effects may take place locally and simultaneously, interacting with each other. in addition to local effects, monsoon rainfall may be affected by aerosols transported from other regions and intensified through large-scale circulation and moisture feedback. Thus, dust transported by the large-scale circulation from the adjacent deserts to northern India may affect rainfall over the Bay of Bengal; sulphate and black carbon front industrial pollution in central, southern China and northern India may affect the rainfall regime over the Korean peninsula and Japan; organic and black carbon front biomass burning from Indo-China may modulate the pre-monsoon rainfall regime over southern China and coastal regions, contributing to variability in differential heating and cooling of the atmosphere and to the land-sea thermal contrast. During the pre-monsoon season and monsoon breaks, it has been suggested that radiative forcing by absorbing aerosols have nearly the same order of magnitude as the forcing due to latent heating from convection and surface fluxes. The magnitude of the total aerosol radiative cooling due to sulphates and soot is of the order of 20-40 W/m2 over the Asian monsoon land region in the pre-monsoon season, compared to about 1-2 W/m2 for global warng. However, the combined forcing at the surface and in the atmosphere, including all species. if aerosols, and details of aerosol mixing, and impacts on the energy and water cycles in the monsoon land regions, are not well known.
Meteorology and Climatology