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Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2018-448
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
Research article
14 May 2018
Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP).
Black carbon (BC) in North Tibetan Mountain; Effect of Kuwait fires on glacier
Jiamao Zhou1,6, Xuexi Tie1,2, Baiqing Xu3, Shuyu Zhao1, Mo Wang3, Guohui Li1, Song Yang3, Luyu Chang4,5, and Junji Cao1 1KLACP, SKLLQG, Institute of Earth Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xi'an 710061, China
2Center for Excellence in Urban Atmospheric Environment, Institute of Urban Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xiamen 361021, China
3Key Laboratory of Tibetan Environment Changes and Land Surface Processes, Institute of Tibetan Plateau Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China
4Shanghai Meteorological Service, Shanghai, 200030, China
5Shanghai Key Laboratory of Meteorology and Health, Shanghai, 200030, China
6University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
Abstract. The BC deposition on the ice core at Muztagh Ata Mountain, Northern Tibetan Plateau was analyzed. Two sets of measurements were used in this study, which included the air samplings of BC particles during 2004–2006 and the ice core drillings of BC deposition during 1986–1994. Two numerical models were used to analyze the measured data. A global chemical transportation model (MOZART-4) was used to analyze the BC transport from the source regions, and a radiative transfer model (SNICAR) was used to study the effect of BC on snow albedo. The results show that during 1991–1992, there was a strong spike of the BC deposition at Muztagh Ata, suggesting that there was an unusual emission in the upward region during this period. This high peak of BC deposition was investigated by using the global chemical transportation model (MOZART-4). The analysis indicated that the emissions from large Kuwait fires at the end of the first Gulf War in 1991 caused this high peak of the BC concentrations and deposition (about 3–4 times higher than other years) at the Muztagh Ata Mountain, suggesting that the upward BC emissions had important impacts on this remote site located in Northern Tibetan Plateau. Thus, there is a need to quantitatively estimate the effect of surrounding emissions on the BC concentrations in the northern Tibetan Plateau. In this study, a sensitive study with 4 individual BC emission regions (Central Asia, Europe, Persian Gulf, and South Asia) was conducted by using the MOZART-4 model. The result suggests that during the "normal period" (non Kuwait Fires), the largest effect was due to the Central Asia source (44 %) during Indian monsoon period, while during non-monsoon period, the largest effect was due to the South Asia source (34 %). The increase of radiative forcing increase (RFI) due to the deposition of BC on snow was estimated by using the radiative transfer model (SNICAR). The results shows that under the fresh snow assumption, the estimated increase of RFI ranged from 0.2 W m-2 to 2.5 W m-2, while under the aged snow assumption, the estimated increase of RFI ranged from 0.9 W m-2 to 5.7 W m-2. During the Kuwait fires period, the RFI values increased about 2–5 times higher than the "normal period", suggesting a significant increase for the snow melting in Northern Tibetan Plateau due to this fire event. This result suggests that the variability of BC deposition at the Muztagh Ata Mountain provides useful information to study the effect of the upward BC emissions on environmental and climate issues in the Northern Tibetan Plateau. The radiative effect of BC deposition on the snow melting provides important information regarding the water resources in the region.
Citation: Zhou, J., Tie, X., Xu, B., Zhao, S., Wang, M., Li, G., Yang, S., Chang, L., and Cao, J.: Black carbon (BC) in North Tibetan Mountain; Effect of Kuwait fires on glacier, Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2018-448, in review, 2018.
Jiamao Zhou et al.
Jiamao Zhou et al.
Jiamao Zhou et al.

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Short summary
A global chemical transportation model (MOZART-4) was used to analyze the BC transport from the source regions and a radiative transfer model (SNICAR) was used to study the effect of BC on snow albedo in the Northern Tibetan Plateau.The result provides useful information to study the effect of the upward BC emissions on environmental and climate issue. The radiative effect of BC deposition on the snow melting provides important information regarding the water resources in the region.
A global chemical transportation model (MOZART-4) was used to analyze the BC transport from the...
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