An Improved Representation of Fire Non-Methane Organic Gases (NMOGs) in Models: Emissions to Reactivity Journal Article uri icon



  • Abstract. Fires emit a substantial amount of non-methane organic gases (NMOGs); the atmospheric oxidation of which can contribute to ozone and secondary particulate matter formation. However, the abundance and reactivity of these fire NMOGs are uncertain and historically not well constrained. In this work, we expand the representation of fire NMOGs in a global chemical transport model, GEOS-Chem. We update emission factors to Andreae (2019) and the chemical mechanism to include recent aromatic and ethene/ethyne model improvements (Bates et al., 2021; Kwon et al., 2021). We expand the representation of NMOGs by adding lumped furans to the model (including their fire emission and oxidation chemistry) and by adding fire emissions of nine species already included in the model, prioritized for their reactivity using data from the FIREX laboratory studies. Based on quantified emissions factors, we estimate that our improved representation captures 72 % of emitted, identified NMOG carbon mass and 49 % of OH reactivity from savanna and temperate forest fires, a substantial increase from the standard model (49 % of mass, 28 % of OH reactivity). We evaluate fire NMOGs in our model with observations from the Amazon Tall Tower Observatory (ATTO), FIREX-AQ and DC3 in the US, and ARCTAS in boreal Canada. We show that NMOGs, including furan, are well simulated in the eastern US with some underestimates in the western US and that adding fire emissions improves our ability to simulate ethene in boreal Canada. We estimate that fires provide 15 % of annual mean simulated surface OH reactivity globally, and exceeding 75 % over fire source regions. Over continental regions about half of this simulated fire reactivity comes from NMOG species. We find that furans and ethene are important globally for reactivity, while phenol is more important at a local level in the boreal regions. This is the first global estimate of the impact of fire on atmospheric reactivity.;

publication date

  • July 7, 2022

has restriction

  • green

Date in CU Experts

  • July 19, 2022 1:06 AM

Full Author List

  • Carter TS; Heald CL; Kroll JH; Apel EC; Blake D; Coggon M; Edtbauer A; Gkatzelis G; Hornbrook RS; Peischl J

author count

  • 18

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