Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Air Quality In West Going South

Date:
October 18, 2005
Source:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
Summary:
By mid-century, air quality throughout the Western United States will deteriorate, according to a new EPA-funded computer simulation by the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.

STAGNATION NATION: A new computer simulation shows changes in stagnation in days per season (a=summer, b=fall) and the same for still-air "unvented" hours per day (c=summer, d=fall) based on the difference between the mean future (2045-2055) and control (1995-2005) regional climate simulations.
Credit: Image courtesy of Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Related Articles


Themodel is among the first to project effects of future climate change onU.S. regional air quality, and they will be most dramatic in the West,this time of year. Come fall 2050, the model shows, a temperatureincrease of up to 4 degrees centigrade will contribute to a doubling ofstagnant, bad-air days—from one week to two—west of the Rockies to thecoastal mountains, said Ruby Leung, a fellow at the Department ofEnergy laboratory who led the study.

Bad air days are marked by"stagnation events," which occur when dry, windless air heats and fillswith dust, ozone and other [WG1] pollutants harmful to lungs and eyes.The model covers the period from 2045 to 2055, factoring inmeteorological elements relevant to air quality—temperature, solarradiation and cloud cover, and two that control the rate at whichpolluted air is diluted or flushed from a locale, ventilation andstagnation. A known period, 1995-2005, was used for comparison.

Thestagnation forecast in the West is limited to the fall, with noadditional drop in air quality forecast for the summer, a findingsimilar to most other regions of the country. Summer, however, is thepoor-air-quality season in Texas, and Texas will continue to warm by 2to 3 degrees centigrade and to stagnate, by nearly four additional daysat mid-century. Still, Leung reported, "it’s not a large changecompared to the average 15 days per season in the control simulation."

TheMidwest stands out in glaring contrast. The model predicts increasedcloud cover, which will in turn deflect the sun’s rays back towardspace, offsetting warming in the air near the surface for unchanged oreven cooler temperatures than today. There will be less stagnation, upto 8 fewer days a season, and more frequent rainfall, as many as sixextra days each season.

"Depending on the relative impacts ofthese parameters," Leung said, "ozone concentrations may remain similaror slightly decrease based on the simulated atmospheric changes alone."For more detailed projections of future air quality, Leung emphasizedthat "more studies need to be performed by including projections ofnatural and anthropogenic (human-produced) emissions and the complexchemical reactions that occur in the atmosphere."

PNNL staffscientist William Gustafson collaborated on the study, whose resultswere derived from the PNNL team’s regional climate model, driven byHarvard University global climate simulations using a NASA model.

PNNLis a DOE Office of Science laboratory that solves complex problems inenergy, national security, the environment and life sciences byadvancing the understanding of physics, chemistry, biology andcomputation. PNNL employs 4,000 staff, has a $700 million annualbudget, and has been managed by Ohio-based Battelle since the lab'sinception in 1965.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. "Air Quality In West Going South." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 18 October 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/10/051007083855.htm>.
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. (2005, October 18). Air Quality In West Going South. ScienceDaily. Retrieved January 27, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/10/051007083855.htm
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. "Air Quality In West Going South." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/10/051007083855.htm (accessed January 27, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Earth & Climate News

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Obama's Wildlife Plan Renews Alaska Drilling Debate

Obama's Wildlife Plan Renews Alaska Drilling Debate

Newsy (Jan. 26, 2015) President Obama&apos;s proposal aims to protect more land in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, but so far, all that&apos;s materialized is a war of words. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Florida Might Legalize Black Bear Hunting

Florida Might Legalize Black Bear Hunting

Newsy (Jan. 24, 2015) A string of black bear attacks has Florida officials considering lifting the ban on hunting the animals to control their population. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dramatic Footage Shows Coast Guard Rescue Off Scottish Coast

Dramatic Footage Shows Coast Guard Rescue Off Scottish Coast

Reuters - News Video Online (Jan. 23, 2015) Footage just released by the UK Coast Guard shows a dramatic helicopter rescue off the Scottish coast, where five men were plucked to safety after their fishing boat sank on Saturday. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Stunning Wingsuit Proximity Flying in Norway

Stunning Wingsuit Proximity Flying in Norway

Rumble (Jan. 23, 2015) A collection of amazing shots from flights made in the Aurland Valley in Norway. How incredible is that? Credit to &apos;BASEjumper&apos;. Video provided by Rumble
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins