On the sensitivity of radiative forcing from biomass burning aerosols and ozone to emission location

Vaishali Naik, Denise Leonore Mauzerall, Larry W. Horowitz, M. Daniel Schwarzkopf, Venkatachalam Ramaswamy, Michael Oppenheimer

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Abstract

Biomass burning is a major source of air pollutants, some which are also climate forcing agents. We investigate the sensitivity of direct radiative forcing due to tropospheric ozone and aerosols (carbonaceous and sulfate) to a marginal reduction in their (or their precursor) emissions from major biomass burning regions. We find that the largest negative global forcing is for 10% emission reductions in tropical regions, including Africa (-4.1 mVm-2 from gas and -4.1 mVm-2 from aerosols), and South America (-3.0 mVm-2 from gas and -2.8 mVm-2 from aerosols). We estimate that a unit reduction in the amount of biomass burned in India produces the largest negative ozone and aerosol forcing. Our analysis indicates that reducing biomass burning emissions causes negative global radiative forcing due to ozone and aerosols; however, regional differences need to be considered when evaluating controls on biomass burning to mitigate global climate change.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberL03818
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Volume34
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 16 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

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