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https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2020-293
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2020-293
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 24 Apr 2020

Submitted as: research article | 24 Apr 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal ACP.

Effects of global ship emissions on European air pollution levels

Jan Eiof Jonson1, Michael Gauss1, Michael Schulz1, Jukka-Pekka Jalkanen2, and Hilde Fagerli1 Jan Eiof Jonson et al.
  • 1Norwegian Meteorological Institute, Oslo, Norway
  • 2Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki, Finland

Abstract. Ship emissions constitute a large, and so far poorly regulated, source of air pollution. Emissions are mainly clustered along major ship routes, both in open seas and close to densely populated shorelines. Major air pollutants emitted include sulfur dioxide, NOx and particles. Sulfur dioxide and NOx are both major contributors to the formation of secondary fine particles (PM2.5) and to acidification and eutrophication. In addition, NOx is a major precursor for ground-level ozone.

This study is based on global and regional model calculations. The model runs are made with meteorology and emission data representative for year 2017, after the tightening of the SECA (Sulphur Emission Control Area) regulations in 2015, but before the global sulfur cap entering into force in 2020. We have also made model runs reducing sulfur emissions by 80 % corresponding to the 2020 requirements. This study is based on model sensitivity studies perturbing emissions from different sea areas: the Northern European SECA in the North Sea and the Baltic Sea, the Mediterranean Sea and the Black Sea, the Atlantic Ocean close to Europe, shipping in the rest of the world and finally all global ship emissions together. Sensitivity studies have also been made setting lower bounds on the effects of ship plumes on ozone formation.

The results from the global and regional calculations are similar. Both global and regional scale calculations show that for PM2.5 and depositions of oxidised nitrogen and sulfur, the effects of ship emissions are much larger when emissions occur close to the shore than at open seas. In many coastal countries calculations show that shipping is responsible for 10 % or more of the controllable PM2.5 concentrations and depositions of oxidised nitrogen and sulphur. For ozone the lifetime in the atmosphere is much longer than for PM2.5, and the potential for ozone formation is much larger in otherwise pristine environments. We find considerable contributions from open sea shipping. As a result the largest contributions to ozone in several regions and countries are from rest of the world shipping.

Jan Eiof Jonson et al.

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Jan Eiof Jonson et al.

Model code and software

EMEP model EMEP MSC-W https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.3355041

Jan Eiof Jonson et al.

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Short summary
We have calculated the effects of air pollution in Europe from shipping on levels of PM2.5 and ozone, and deposition of oxidised nitrogen and sulfur from individual sea areas and from all global shipping. Model results are shown for Europe as a whole but also focusing on selected, mainly coastal, countries. Calculations are made using 2017 emissions, supplemented by calculations reducing sulfur emissions from ships by about 80 % following the implementation of the 2020 global sulfur cap.
We have calculated the effects of air pollution in Europe from shipping on levels of PM2.5 and...
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