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Estimating stratospheric polar vortex strength using ambient ocean-generated infrasound and stochastics-based machine learning

Vorobeva, Ekaterina; Eggen, Mari Dahl; Midtfjord, Alise Danielle; Benth, Fred Espen; Hupe, Patrick; Brissaud, Quentin; Orsolini, Yvan Joseph Georges Emile G.; Näsholm, Sven Peter

There are sparse opportunities for direct measurement of upper stratospheric winds, yet improving their representation in subseasonal-to-seasonal prediction models can have significant benefits. There is solid evidence from previous research that global atmospheric infrasound waves are sensitive to stratospheric dynamics. However, there is a lack of results providing a direct mapping between infrasound recordings and polar-cap upper stratospheric winds. The global International Monitoring System (IMS), which monitors compliance with the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty, includes ground-based stations that can be used to characterize the infrasound soundscape continuously. In this study, multi-station IMS infrasound data were utilized along with a machine-learning supported stochastic model, Delay-SDE-net, to demonstrate how a near-real-time estimate of the polar-cap averaged zonal wind at 1-hPa pressure level can be found from infrasound data. The infrasound was filtered to a temporal low-frequency regime dominated by microbaroms, which are ambient-noise infrasonic waves continuously radiated into the atmosphere from nonlinear interaction between counter-propagating ocean surface waves. Delay-SDE-net was trained on 5 years (2014–2018) of infrasound data from three stations and the ERA5 reanalysis 1-hPa polar-cap averaged zonal wind. Using infrasound in 2019–2020 for validation, we demonstrate a prediction of the polar-cap averaged zonal wind, with an error standard deviation of around 12 m·s compared with ERA5. These findings highlight the potential of using infrasound data for near-real-time measurements of upper stratospheric dynamics. A long-term goal is to improve high-top atmospheric model accuracy, which can have significant implications for weather and climate prediction.

John Wiley & Sons

2024

Impact of Biomass Burning on Arctic Aerosol Composition

Gramlich, Yvette; Siegel, Karolina; Haslett, Sophie L.; Cremer, Roxana S.; Lunder, Chris Rene; Kommula, Snehitha M.; Buchholz, Angela; Yttri, Karl Espen; Chen, Gang; Krejci, Radovan; Zieger, Paul; Virtanen, Annele; Riipinen, Ilona; Mohr, Claudia

Emissions from biomass burning (BB) occurring at midlatitudes can reach the Arctic, where they influence the remote aerosol population. By using measurements of levoglucosan and black carbon, we identify seven BB events reaching Svalbard in 2020. We find that most of the BB events are significantly different to the rest of the year (nonevents) for most of the chemical and physical properties. Aerosol mass and number concentrations are enhanced by up to 1 order of magnitude during the BB events. During BB events, the submicrometer aerosol bulk composition changes from an organic- and sulfate-dominated regime to a clearly organic-dominated regime. This results in a significantly lower hygroscopicity parameter κ for BB aerosol (0.4 ± 0.2) compared to nonevents (0.5 ± 0.2), calculated from the nonrefractory aerosol composition. The organic fraction in the BB aerosol showed no significant difference for the O:C ratios (0.9 ± 0.3) compared to the year (0.9 ± 0.6). Accumulation mode particles were present during all BB events, while in the summer an additional Aitken mode was observed, indicating a mixture of the advected air mass with locally produced particles. BB tracers (vanillic, homovanillic, and hydroxybenzoic acid, nitrophenol, methylnitrophenol, and nitrocatechol) were significantly higher when air mass back trajectories passed over active fire regions in Eastern Europe, indicating agricultural and wildfires as sources. Our results suggest that the impact of BB on the Arctic aerosol depends on the season in which they occur, and agricultural and wildfires from Eastern Europe have the potential to disturb the background conditions the most.

American Chemical Society (ACS)

2024

Life starts with plastic: High occurrence of plastic pieces in fledglings of northern fulmars

Collard, France; Benjaminsen, Stine Charlotte; Herzke, Dorte; Husabø, Eirin; Sagerup, Kjetil; Tulatz, Felix; Gabrielsen, Geir W.

Plastic pollution threatens many organisms around the world. In particular, the northern fulmar, Fulmarus glacialis, is known to ingest high quantities of plastics. Since data are sparse in the Eurasian Arctic, we investigated plastic burdens in the stomachs of fulmar fledglings from Kongsfjorden, Svalbard. Fifteen birds were collected and only particles larger than 1 mm were extracted, characterised and analysed with Fourier Transform InfraRed spectroscopy. All birds ingested plastic. In total, 683 plastic particles were found, with an average of 46 ± 40 SD items per bird. The most common shape, colour and polymer were hard fragment, white, and polyethylene, respectively. Microplastics ( 5 mm). This study confirms high numbers of ingested plastics in fulmar fledglings from Svalbard and suggests that fulmar fledglings may be suitable for temporal monitoring of plastic pollution, avoiding potential biases caused by age composition or breeding state.

Elsevier

2024

Long-term meteorology-adjusted and unadjusted trends of PM2.5 using the AirGAM model over Delhi, 2007–2022

Chetna, NN; Dhaka, Surendra K.; Walker, Sam-Erik; Rawat, Vikas; Singh, Narendra

This study investigates the impact of meteorological variations on the long-term patterns of PM2.5 in Delhi from 2007 to 2022 using the AirGAM 2022r1 model. Generalized Additive Modeling was employed to analyze meteorology-adjusted (removing the influence of inter-annual variations in meteorology) and unadjusted trends (trends without considering meteorology) while addressing auto-correlation. PM2.5 levels showed a modest decline of 14 μg m−3 unadjusted and 18 μg m−3 meteorology-adjusted over the study period. Meteorological conditions and time factors significantly influenced trends. Temperature, wind speed, wind direction, humidity, boundary layer height, medium-height cloud cover, precipitation, and time variables including day-of-week, day-of-year, and overall time, were used as GAM model inputs. The model accounted for 55% of PM2.5 variability (adjusted R-squared = 0.55). Day-of-week and medium-height cloud cover were non-significant, while other covariates were significant (p

Elsevier

2024

Effect of Long-Range Transported Fire Aerosols on Cloud Condensation Nuclei Concentrations and Cloud Properties at High Latitudes

Kommula, Snehitha M.; Buchholz, Angela; Gramlich, Yvette; Mielonen, Tero; Hao, L.; Pullinen, Iida; Vettikkat, Lejish; Ylisirniö, A.; Joutsensaari, J.; Schobesberger, Siegfried; Tiitta, P; Leskinen, Ari; Heslin-Rees, Dominic; Haslett, S. L.; Siegel, Karolina; Lunder, Chris Rene; Zieger, Paul; Krejci, Radovan; Romakkaniemi, Sami; Mohr, C.; Virtanen, Annele

Active vegetation fires in south-eastern (SE) Europe resulted in a notable increase in the number concentration of aerosols and cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) particles at two high latitude locations—the SMEAR IV station in Kuopio, Finland, and the Zeppelin Observatory in Svalbard, high Arctic. During the fire episode aerosol hygroscopicity κ slightly increased at SMEAR IV and at the Zeppelin Observatory κ decreased. Despite increased κ in high CCN conditions at SMEAR IV, the aerosol activation diameter increased due to the decreased supersaturation with an increase in aerosol loading. In addition, at SMEAR IV during the fire episode, in situ measured cloud droplet number concentration (CDNC) increased by a factor of ∼7 as compared to non-fire periods which was in good agreement with the satellite observations (MODIS, Terra). Results from this study show the importance of SE European fires for cloud properties and radiative forcing in high latitudes.

American Geophysical Union (AGU)

2024

Recent advances and current challenges of new approach methodologies in developmental and adult neurotoxicity testing

Serafini, Melania Maria; Sepheri, Sara; Midali, Miriam; Stinckens, Marth; Biesiekierska, Marta; Wolniakowska, Anna; Gatzios, Alexandra; Rundén-Pran, Elise; Reszka, Edyta; Marinovich, Marina; Vanhaecke, Tamara; Roszak, Joanna; Viviani, Barbara; Tanima, SenGupta

Adult neurotoxicity (ANT) and developmental neurotoxicity (DNT) assessments aim to understand the adverse effects and underlying mechanisms of toxicants on the human nervous system. In recent years, there has been an increasing focus on the so-called new approach methodologies (NAMs). The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), together with European and American regulatory agencies, promote the use of validated alternative test systems, but to date, guidelines for regulatory DNT and ANT assessment rely primarily on classical animal testing. Alternative methods include both non-animal approaches and test systems on non-vertebrates (e.g., nematodes) or non-mammals (e.g., fish). Therefore, this review summarizes the recent advances of NAMs focusing on ANT and DNT and highlights the potential and current critical issues for the full implementation of these methods in the future. The status of the DNT in vitro battery (DNT IVB) is also reviewed as a first step of NAMs for the assessment of neurotoxicity in the regulatory context. Critical issues such as (i) the need for test batteries and method integration (from in silico and in vitro to in vivo alternatives, e.g., zebrafish, C. elegans) requiring interdisciplinarity to manage complexity, (ii) interlaboratory transferability, and (iii) the urgent need for method validation are discussed.

Springer

2024

The Greenhouse Gas Budget of Terrestrial Ecosystems in East Asia Since 2000

Wang, Xuhui; Gao, Yuanyi; Jeong, Sujong; Ito, Akihiko; Bastos, Ana; Poulter, Benjamin; Wang, Yilong; Ciais, Philippe; Tian, Hanqin; Yuan, Wenping; Chandra, Naveen; Chevallier, Frédéric; Fan, Lei; Hong, Songbai; Lauerwald, Ronny; Li, Wei; Lin, Zhengyang; Pan, Naiqing; Patra, Prabir K.; Peng, Shushi; Ran, Lishan; Sang, Yuxing; Sitch, Stephen; Takashi, Maki; Thompson, Rona Louise; Wang, Chenzhi; Wang, Kai; Wang, Tao; Xi, Yi; Xu, Liang; Yan, Yanzi; Yun, Jeongmin; Zhang, Yao; Zhang, Yuzhong; Zhang, Zhen; Zheng, Bo; Zhou, Feng; Tao, Shu; Canadell, Josep G.; Piao, Shilong

East Asia (China, Japan, Koreas, and Mongolia) has been the world's economic engine over at least the past two decades, exhibiting a rapid increase in fossil fuel emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs) and has expressed the recent ambition to achieve climate neutrality by mid-century. However, the GHG balance of its terrestrial ecosystems remains poorly constrained. Here, we present a synthesis of the three most important long-lived greenhouse gases (CO2, CH4, and N2O) budgets over East Asia during the decades of 2000s and 2010s, following a dual constraint approach. We estimate that terrestrial ecosystems in East Asia is close to neutrality of GHGs, with a magnitude of between −46.3 ± 505.9 Tg CO2eq yr−1 (the top-down approach) and −36.1 ± 207.1 Tg CO2eq yr−1 (the bottom-up approach) during 2000–2019. This net GHG sink includes a large land CO2 sink (−1229.3 ± 430.9 Tg CO2 yr−1 based on the top-down approach and −1353.8 ± 158.5 Tg CO2 yr−1 based on the bottom-up approach) being offset by biogenic CH4 and N2O emissions, predominantly coming from the agricultural sectors. Emerging data sources and modeling capacities have helped achieve agreement between the top-down and bottom-up approaches, but sizable uncertainties remain in several flux terms. For example, the reported CO2 flux from land use and land cover change varies from a net source of more than 300 Tg CO2 yr−1 to a net sink of ∼−700 Tg CO2 yr−1. Although terrestrial ecosystems over East Asia is close to GHG neutral currently, curbing agricultural GHG emissions and additional afforestation and forest managements have the potential to transform the terrestrial ecosystems into a net GHG sink, which would help in realizing East Asian countries' ambitions to achieve climate neutrality.

American Geophysical Union (AGU)

2024

Modelled sources of airborne microplastics collected at a remote Southern Hemisphere site

Aves, Alex; Ruffell, Helena; Evangeliou, Nikolaos; Gaw, Sally; Revell, Laura E.

Airborne microplastics have emerged in recent years as ubiquitous atmospheric pollutants. However, data from the Southern Hemisphere, and remote regions in particular, are sparse. Here, we report airborne microplastic deposition fluxes measured during a five-week sampling campaign at a remote site in the foothills of the Southern Alps of New Zealand. Samples were collected over 24-hour periods for the first week and for 7-day periods thereafter. On average, atmospheric microplastic (MP) deposition fluxes were six times larger during the 24-hour sampling periods (150 MP m−2 day−1) than during the 7-day sampling periods (26 MP m−2 day−1), highlighting the importance of sampling frequency and deposition collector design to limit particle resuspension. Previous studies, many of which used weekly sampling frequencies or longer, may have substantially underestimated atmospheric microplastic deposition fluxes, depending on the study design. To identify likely sources of deposited microplastics, we performed simulations with a global dispersion model coupled with an emissions inventory of airborne microplastics. Modelled deposition fluxes are in good agreement with observations, highlighting the potential for this method in tracing sources of deposited microplastics globally. Modelling indicates that sea-spray was the dominant source when microplastics underwent long-range atmospheric transport, with a small contribution from road dust.

Elsevier

2024

Can plastic related chemicals be indicators of plastic ingestion in an Arctic seabird?

Collard, France; Tulatz, Felix; Harju, Mikael; Herzke, Dorte; Bourgeon, Sophie; Gabrielsen, Geir Wing

For decades, the northern fulmar (Fulmarus glacialis) has been found to ingest and accumulate high loads of plastic due to its feeding ecology and digestive tract morphology. Plastic ingestion can lead to both physical and toxicological effects as ingested plastics can be a pathway for hazardous chemicals into seabirds' tissues. Many of these contaminants are ubiquitous in the environment and the contribution of plastic ingestion to the uptake of those contaminants in seabirds’ tissues is poorly known. In this study we aimed at quantifying several plastic-related chemicals (PRCs) -PBDE209, several dechloranes and several phthalate metabolites- and assessing their relationship with plastic burdens (both mass and number) to further investigate their potential use as proxies for plastic ingestion. Blood samples from fulmar fledglings and liver samples from both fledgling and non-fledgling fulmars were collected for PRC quantification. PBDE209 and dechloranes were quantified in 39 and 33 livers, respectively while phthalates were quantified in plasma. Plastic ingestion in these birds has been investigated previously and showed a higher prevalence in fledglings. PBDE209 was detected in 28.2 % of the liver samples. Dechlorane 602 was detected in all samples while Dechloranes 601 and 604 were not detected in any sample. Dechlorane 603 was detected in 11 individuals (33%). Phthalates were detected in one third of the analysed blood samples. Overall, no significant positive correlation was found between plastic burdens and PRC concentrations. However, a significant positive relationship between PBDE209 and plastic number was found in fledglings, although likely driven by one outlier. Our study shows the complexity of PRC exposure, the timeline of plastic ingestion and subsequent uptake of PRCs into the tissues in birds, the additional exposure of these chemicals via their prey, even in a species ingesting high loads of plastic.

Elsevier

2024

Air pollution emission inventory using national high-resolution spatial parameters for the Nordic countries and analysis of PM2.5 spatial distribution for road transport and machinery and off-road sectors

Paunu, Ville-Veikko; Karvosenoja, Niko; Segersson, David; Lopez-Aparicio, Susana; Nielsen, Ole-Kenneth; Plejdrup, Marlene S.; Thorsteinsson, Throstur; Vo, Dam Thanh; Kuenen, Jeroen; van der Gon, Hugo Denier; Jalkanen, Jukka-Pekka; Brandt, Jørgen; Geels, Camilla

Air pollution is an important cause of adverse health effects, even in the Nordic countries, which have relatively good air quality. Modelling-based air quality assessment of the health impacts relies on reliable model estimates of ambient air pollution concentrations, which furthermore rely on good-quality spatially resolved emission data. While quantitative emission estimates are the cornerstone of good emission data, description of the spatial distribution of the emissions is especially important for local air quality modelling at high resolution. In this paper we present a new air pollution emission inventory for the Nordic countries with high-resolution spatial allocation (1 km × 1 km) covering the years 1990, 1995, 2000, 2005, 2010, 2012, and 2014. The inventory is available at https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.10571094 (Paunu et al., 2023). To study the impact of applying national data and methods to the spatial distribution of the emissions, we compared road transport and machinery and off-road sectors to CAMS-REGv4.2, which used a consistent spatial distribution method throughout Europe for each sector. Road transport is a sector with well-established proxies for spatial distribution, while for the machinery and off-road sector, the choice of proxies is not as straightforward as it includes a variety of different type of vehicles and machines operating in various environments. We found that CAMS-REGv4.2 was able to produce similar spatial patterns to our Nordic inventory for the selected sectors. However, the resolution of our Nordic inventory allows for more detailed impact assessment than CAMS-REGv4.2, which had a resolution of 0.1° × 0.05° (longitude–latitude, roughly 5.5 km × 3.5–6.5 km in the Nordic countries). The EMEP/EEA Guidebook chapter on spatial mapping of emissions has recommendations for the sectoral proxies. Based on our analysis we argue that the guidebook should have separate recommendations for proxies for several sub-categories of the machinery and off-road sectors, instead of including them within broader sectors. We suggest that land use data are the best starting point for proxies for many of the subsectors, and they can be combined with other suitable data to enhance the spatial distribution. For road transport, measured traffic flow data should be utilized where possible, to support modelled data in the proxies.

2024

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