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Discussion papers | Copyright
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 11 Jan 2018

Research article | 11 Jan 2018

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This discussion paper is a preprint. A revision of this manuscript was accepted for the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP) and is expected to appear here in due course.

HTAP2 multi-model estimates of premature human mortality due to intercontinental transport of air pollution

Ciao-Kai Liang1, J. Jason West1, Raquel A. Silva2, Huisheng Bian3, Mian Chin4, Frank J. Dentener5, Yanko Davila6, Louisa Emmons7, Gerd Folberth8, Johannes Flemming9, Daven Henze6, Ulas Im10, Jan Eiof Jonson11, Tom Kucsera12, Terry J. Keating13, Marianne Tronstad Lund14, Allen Lenzen15, Meiyun Lin16, R. Bradley Pierce17, Rokjin J. Park18, Xiaohua Pan19, Takashi Sekiya20, Kengo Sudo20, and Toshihiko Takemura21 Ciao-Kai Liang et al.
  • 1Department of Environmental Sciences and Engineering, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA
  • 2Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education at US Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, NC, USA
  • 3Goddard Earth Sciences and Technology Center, University of Maryland, Baltimore, MD, USA
  • 4Earth Sciences Division, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD, USA
  • 5European Commission, Joint Research Center, Ispra, Italy
  • 6Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO, USA
  • 7Atmospheric Chemistry Observations and Modeling Laboratory, National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), Boulder, CO, USA
  • 8UK Met Office Hadley Centre, Exeter, UK
  • 9European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts, Reading, UK
  • 10Aarhus University, Department of Environmental Science, Frederiksborgvej, DK-24 4000, Roskilde, Denmark
  • 11Norwegian Meteorological Institute, Oslo, Norway
  • 12Universities Space Research Association, Greenbelt, MD, USA
  • 13US Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, NC, USA
  • 14CICERO Center for International Climate Research, Oslo, Norway
  • 15Space Science & Engineering Center, University of Wisconsin -Madison, WI, USA
  • 16Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ, USA
  • 17NOAA National Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Service, Madison, WI, USA
  • 18Seoul National University, Seoul, Korea
  • 19Earth System Science Interdisciplinary Center, University of Maryland, College Park, MD, USA
  • 20Nagoya University, Furocho, Chigusa-ku, Nagoya, Japan
  • 21Research Institute for Applied Mechanics, Kyushu University, Fukuoka, Japan

Abstract. Ambient air pollution from ozone and fine particulate matter is associated with premature mortality. As emissions from one continent influence air quality over others, changes in emissions can also influence human health on other continents. We estimate global air pollution-related premature mortality from exposure to PM2.5 and ozone, and the avoided deaths from 20% anthropogenic emission reductions from six source regions, North America (NAM), Europe (EUR), South Asia (SAS), East Asia (EAS), Russia/Belarus/Ukraine (RBU) and the Middle East (MDE), three emission sectors, Power and Industry (PIN), Ground Transportation (TRN) and Residential (RES) and one global domain (GLO), using an ensemble of global chemical transport model simulations coordinated by the second phase of the Task Force on Hemispheric Transport of Air Pollution (TF-HTAP2), and epidemiologically-derived concentration-response functions. We build on results from previous studies of the TF-HTAP by using improved atmospheric models driven by new estimates of 2010 emissions, with more source and receptor regions, new consideration of source sector impacts, and new epidemiological mortality functions. We estimate 290,000 (95% CI: 30,000, 600,000) premature O3-related deaths and 2.8 million (0.5 million, 4.6 million) PM2.5-related premature deaths globally for the baseline year 2010. While 20% emission reductions from one region generally lead to more avoided deaths within the source region than outside, reducing emissions from MDE and RBU can avoid more O3-related deaths outside of these regions than within, and reducing MDE emissions also avoids more PM2.5-related deaths outside of MDE than within. In addition, EUR, MDE and RBU have more avoided O3-related deaths from reducing foreign emissions than from domestic reductions. For six regional emission reductions, the total avoided extraregional mortality is estimated as 10,300 (6,700, 13,400) deaths/year and 42,000 (12,400, 60,100) deaths/year through changes in O3 and PM2.5, respectively. Interregional transport of air pollutants leads to more deaths through changes in PM2.5 than in O3, even though O3 is transported more on interregional scales, since PM2.5 has a stronger influence on mortality. In sectoral emission reductions, TRN emissions account for the greatest fraction (26–53% of global emission reduction) of O3-related premature deaths in most regions, except for EAS (58%) and RBU (38%) where PIN emissions dominate. In contrast, PIN emission reductions have the greatest fraction (38–78% of global emission reduction) of PM2.5-related deaths in most regions, except for SAS (45%) where RES emission dominates. The spread of air pollutant concentration changes across models contributes most to the overall uncertainty in estimated avoided deaths, highlighting the uncertainty in results based on a single model. Despite uncertainties, the health benefits of reduced intercontinental air pollution transport suggest that international cooperation may be desirable to mitigate pollution transported over long distances.

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Ciao-Kai Liang et al.
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Ciao-Kai Liang et al.
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Short summary
Emissions from one continent affects air quality and health elsewhere. Here we quantify the effects of intercontinental transport on human health using a new multi-model ensemble, evaluating the health effects of emissions from 6 world regions and 3 emission source sectors. Emissions from one world region has significant health impacts outside of that source region; similarly, foreign emissions contribute significantly to air pollution-related deaths in several world regions.
Emissions from one continent affects air quality and health elsewhere. Here we quantify the...