Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., 12, 5771-5801, 2012
© Author(s) 2012. This work is distributed
under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
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This discussion paper has been under review for the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP). Please refer to the corresponding final paper in ACP.
Diurnal tracking of anthropogenic CO2 emissions in the Los Angeles basin megacity during spring, 2010
S. Newman1, S. Jeong2, M. L. Fischer2, X. Xu3, C. L. Haman4, B. Lefer4, S. Alvarez4, B. Rappenglueck4, E. A. Kort5, A. E. Andrews6, J. Peischl7, K. R. Gurney8, C. E. Miller9, and Y. L. Yung1
1Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA 91125, USA
2Atmospheric Science Department, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, MS 90K-125, 1 Cyclotron Rd., Berkeley, CA, 94720, USA
3Department of Earth System Science, University of California, Irvine, CA 92697, USA
4Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, The University of Houston, 4800 Calhoun Road, Houston, Texas 77004, USA
5Jet Propulsion Laboratory, 4800 Oak Grove Drive, Pasadena, CA 91109, USA
6NOAA~ESRL Global Monitoring Division, 325 Broadway, Boulder, CO 80305, USA
7CIRES, University of Colorado Boulder, Boulder, CO 80309, USA
8School of Life Sciences, Arizona State University, P.O. Box 874501, Tempe, AZ 85287, USA
9Earth Atmospheric Sciences, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, 4800 Oak Grove Dr., Pasadena, California 91109, USA

Abstract. Attributing observed CO2 variations to human or natural cause is critical to deducing and tracking emissions from observations. We have used in situ CO2, CO, and planetary boundary layer height (PBLH) measurements recorded during the CalNex-LA (CARB et al., 2008) ground campaign of 15 May–15 June 2010, in Pasadena, CA, to deduce the diurnally varying anthropogenic component of observed CO2 in the megacity of Los Angeles (LA). This affordable and simple technique, validated by carbon isotope observations, is shown to robustly attribute observed CO2 variation to anthropogenic or biogenic origin. During CalNex-LA, local fossil fuel combustion contributed up to ~50 % of the observed CO2 enhancement overnight, and ~100 % during midday. This suggests midday column observations over LA, such as those made by satellites relying on reflected sunlight, can be used to track anthropogenic emissions.

Citation: Newman, S., Jeong, S., Fischer, M. L., Xu, X., Haman, C. L., Lefer, B., Alvarez, S., Rappenglueck, B., Kort, E. A., Andrews, A. E., Peischl, J., Gurney, K. R., Miller, C. E., and Yung, Y. L.: Diurnal tracking of anthropogenic CO2 emissions in the Los Angeles basin megacity during spring, 2010, Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., 12, 5771-5801, doi:10.5194/acpd-12-5771-2012, 2012.
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