Impacts of climate change on surface ozone and intercontinental ozone pollution: A multi-model study

R. M. Doherty*, O. Wild, D. T. Shindell, G. Zeng, I. A. MacKenzie, W. J. Collins, A. M. Fiore, D. S. Stevenson, F. J. Dentener, M. G. Schultz, P. Hess, R. G. Derwent, T. J. Keating

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

The impact of climate change between 2000 and 2095 SRES A2 climates on surface ozone (O)3 and on O3 source-receptor (S-R) relationships is quantified using three coupled climate-chemistry models (CCMs). The CCMs exhibit considerable variability in the spatial extent and location of surface O3 increases that occur within parts of high NOx emission source regions (up to 6 ppbv in the annual average and up to 14 ppbv in the season of maximum O3). In these source regions, all three CCMs show a positive relationship between surface O3 change and temperature change. Sensitivity simulations show that a combination of three individual chemical processes-(i) enhanced PAN decomposition, (ii) higher water vapor concentrations, and (iii) enhanced isoprene emission-largely reproduces the global spatial pattern of annual-mean surface O3 response due to climate change (R2 = 0.52). Changes in climate are found to exert a stronger control on the annual-mean surface O3 response through changes in climate-sensitive O3 chemistry than through changes in transport as evaluated from idealized CO-like tracer concentrations. All three CCMs exhibit a similar spatial pattern of annual-mean surface O3 change to 20% regional O3 precursor emission reductions under future climate compared to the same emission reductions applied under present-day climate. The surface O3 response to emission reductions is larger over the source region and smaller downwind in the future than under present-day conditions. All three CCMs show areas within Europe where regional emission reductions larger than 20% are required to compensate climate change impacts on annual-mean surface O3.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3744–3763
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres
Issue number9
Early online date16 May 2013
Publication statusPublished - 16 May 2013

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • surface ozone
  • climate change
  • intercontinental transport
  • source-receptor relationships


Dive into the research topics of 'Impacts of climate change on surface ozone and intercontinental ozone pollution: A multi-model study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this