Oceanic bromine emissions weighted by their ozone depletion potential

At present, anthropogenic halogens and oceanic emissions of Very Short-Lived Substances (VSLS) are responsible for stratospheric ozone destruction. Emissions of the, mostly long-lived, anthropogenic halogens have been reduced, and as a consequence, their atmospheric abundance has started to decline since the beginning of the 21st century. Emissions of VSLS are, on the other hand, expected to increase in the future. VSLS are known to have large natural sources; however increasing evidence arises that their oceanic production and emission is enhanced by anthropogenic activities. Here, we introduce a new approach of assessing the overall impact of all oceanic halogen emissions on stratospheric ozone by calculating Ozone Depletion Potential (ODP)-weighted emissions of VSLS. Seasonally and spatially dependent, global distributions are derived exemplary for CHBr3 for the period 1999–2006. At present, ODP-weighted emissions of CHBr3 amount up to 50% of ODP-weighted anthropogenic emissions of CFC-11 and to 9% of all long-lived ozone depleting substances. The ODP-weighted emissions are large where strong oceanic emissions coincide with high-reaching convective activity and show pronounced peaks at the equator and the coasts with largest contributions from the Maritime Continent and West Pacific. Variations of tropical convective activity lead to seasonal shifts in the spatial distribution of the ODP with the updraught mass flux explaining 71% of the variance of the ODP distribution. Future climate projections based on RCP8.5 scenario suggest a 31% increase of the ODP-weighted CHBr3 emissions until 2100 compared to present values. This increase is related to larger convective activity and increasing emissions in a future climate; however, is reduced at the same time by less effective bromine-related ozone depletion. The comparison of the ODP-weighted emissions of short and long-lived halocarbons provides a new concept for assessing the overall impact of oceanic bromine emissions on stratospheric ozone depletion for current conditions and future projections.


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Authors: Tegtmeier, S., Ziska, F., Pisso, I., Quack, B., Velders, G. J. M., Yang, X. ORCIDORCID record for X. Yang, Krüger, K.

On this site: Xin Yang
1 December, 2015
Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics / 15
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