BIPHOREP research proposal

Economic and social impacts

Except for ozone, there is no other compound in the troposphere where the difference between actual atmospheric levels and toxic levels is so marginal. Increased levels of ozone are of major concern because of its adverse effects on human health, materials and ecosystems. There are also a number of investigations showing synergistic effects between ozone and acidifying compounds (Guderian and Tingey, 1989). Due to the complex chemistry of ozone and its multirelational connections with many other atmospheric trace gases, any attempt to define a cost-effective reduction policy addressing either long-term means or episodic peak values or both requires a wide amount of basic data (among other emission inventories of ozone precursors) and a deep understanding of ozone formation under various conditions. This proposal aims to address both issue: it will provide transparent and accurate BVOC emission inventories and assess ozone formation under high BVOC emission densities, episodic intrusion of NOx precursors and prolonged enlightment conditions in the boreal summer.

Ongoing European-wide negotiations for reducing ozone levels through VOC and NOx emission abatement intend to take into account the differential ozone formation potential of the various precursors as well as the potential impacts in relation to the varying sensitivity of receptors across Europe. The results of this project will be very important for such negotiations in providing a better understanding of these issues for an extended set of areas and conditions. Especially, our results will be available for the UNECE and the EMEP model group to run various relevant scenarios.

The establishment of an emission database per-se will also have important applications since emission inventories serve several purposes that will benefit from the findings of this project. Inventories help to:

Maximum benefit from this project will be achieved by close contact with the EMEP and the CORINAIR groups.

Our results will be also relevant for landuse planning, reforestation or afforestation planning (e.g., what is the best mix of trees for reducing BVOC emission under changing climatic conditions?).

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