Linking air pollution with climate change

Climate change and long-range air pollution interact strongly in a number of ways. Policy choices in technology and fuels affect emissions of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide and methane, and air pollutants such as sulphur dioxide and nitrogen dioxide. These compounds have consequences of acidification and eutrophication for ecosystems, and chemical interactions produce further compounds such as ozone. Most research to date considers climate change and air pollution separately, even though they share common causes, interactions, and policies for reduction. For integrated assessments of climate change, it is necessary to consider the interactions between climate change and air pollution. Dr Rachel Warren, a computer scientist at Tyndall Centre HQ is leading a project that will link the next generation of climate change models with established programs for simulating regional air pollution. The ultimate aim is to identify cost-effective strategies that distribute efforts between compounds and countries, delivering target reductions for both greenhouse gases and air pollution. Dr Warren has recently prototyped a practical technique for linking different computer models of sociological, economic, and environmental data for integrated assessments of climate change. This project builds upon these innovative techniques, and will ultimately generate a new dynamic model that will further inform Dr Warren’s integrated assessment model. The first part of the research is deriving the scientific basis and structure for a new computer simulation of climate change and air pollution (called DETA: Dynamic model for Extension to Transboundary Air-pollution). A full-blown modelling effort will follow as the cornerstone of the Tyndall Centre’s ability to integrate climate change policies with emissions scenarios for air pollutants and greenhouse gases.
Tyndall Centre research is linking the next generation of climate change models with established programs for simulating regional air pollution. The aim is to identify cost-effective strategies that deliver target reductions for both greenhouse gases and air pollution.

More information
Contact the lead investigator of Project T3.14 (Linkages between regional air pollution and climate): Dr Rachel Warren Tyndall Centre HQ Zuckerman Institute for Connective Environmental Research University of East Anglia Norwich NR4 7TJ Tel: 01603 593912 r.warren@uea.ac.uk Other researchers involved in this project are: Professor Dennis Anderson, Dr Tim Foxon, Dr Matt Leach, Prof. Peter Pearson, Imperial College, University of London Dr Markus Amann, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, Austria

Useful Websites
Imperial College Centre for Energy Policy and Technology www.iccept.ic.ac.uk International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis www.iiasa.ac.at/~schoepp/doc/iiasa.htm The Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research www.tyndall.ac.uk Project duration June 2003 – September 2004

Round 3

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