Role of low carbon scenarios on 2050 European air quality and radiative forcing ETC/ACM Technical Paper 2012/13

07 Jan 2013

Iulian Petchesi

To quantify changes in air pollution in Europe resulting from climate policies at the 2050 horizon, we designed a comprehensive modelling system capturing most important external factors for air quality and which relies on the latest set of air pollution and climate scenarios. Climate simulations rely on the recent RCP of IPCC; air quality modelling is based on the emissions produced by Global Energy Assessment. In both cases, we explored two scenarios that are consistent in the climate and air quality models in terms of policy measures: a reference in which climate policies are absent and a mitigation scenario which will limit global temperature rise to within 2 degrees Celsius by the end of this century. Results are presented in terms of indicators regarding the impact of air pollution on health and vegetation. Furthermore attention is given to the de-convolution of the respective contribution of changes in European emissions, hemispheric background concentrations and climate conditions. To minimize the complexity of the modelling chain, a synthetic indicator is designed to quantify the respective impact of each compartment. This new indicator allows isolating the net effect of climate change on air quality, as well as the contributions of anthropogenic emission changes and long range transport.

Prepared by: ETC/ACM Consortium partner member Augustin Colette, Bertrand Bessagnet, Laurence Rouïl (INERIS).

Published by: ETC/ACM, December 2012, 39 pp.