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Climate model calculations of the impact of aerosols from road transport and shipping

Shine, K. P. ORCID:, Highwood, E. J., Radel, G., Stuber, N. and Balkanski, Y. (2012) Climate model calculations of the impact of aerosols from road transport and shipping. Atmospheric and Oceanic Optics, 25 (1). pp. 62-70. ISSN 2070-0393

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1134/S1024856012010125


Road transport and shipping are copious sources of aerosols, which exert a 9 significant radiative forcing, compared to, for example, the CO2 emitted by these sectors. An 10 advanced atmospheric general circulation model, coupled to a mixed-layer ocean, is used to 11 calculate the climate response to the direct radiative forcing from such aerosols. The cases 12 considered include imposed distributions of black carbon and sulphate aerosols from road 13 transport, and sulphate aerosols from shipping; these are compared to the climate response 14 due to CO2 increases. The difficulties in calculating the climate response due to small 15 forcings are discussed, as the actual forcings have to be scaled by large amounts to enable a 16 climate response to be easily detected. Despite the much greater geographical inhomogeneity 17 in the sulphate forcing, the patterns of zonal and annual-mean surface temperature response 18 (although opposite in sign) closely resembles that resulting from homogeneous changes in 19 CO2. The surface temperature response to black carbon aerosols from road transport is shown 20 to be notably non-linear in scaling applied, probably due to the semi-direct response of clouds 21 to these aerosols. For the aerosol forcings considered here, the most widespread method of 22 calculating radiative forcing significantly overestimates their effect, relative to CO2, 23 compared to surface temperature changes calculated using the climate model.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Science > School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences > Department of Meteorology
ID Code:20570

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