Integrated Analysis of Land Use-Based Policies for Improving Air and Water Quality: A Focus on Agricultural Reactive Nitrogen and Wildland Fire Emissions as Climate, Land Use and Anthropogenic Emissions Change

EPA Grant Number: R835880
Title: Integrated Analysis of Land Use-Based Policies for Improving Air and Water Quality: A Focus on Agricultural Reactive Nitrogen and Wildland Fire Emissions as Climate, Land Use and Anthropogenic Emissions Change
Investigators: Russell, Armistead G. , Burtraw, Dallas , Driscoll, Charles T. , Odman, Mehmet Talat , Shih, Jhih-Shyang , Smith, Richard
Current Investigators: Russell, Armistead G. , Burtraw, Dallas , Driscoll, Charles T. , Odman, Mehmet Talat , Shih, Jhih-Shyang , Siikamäki, Juha , Smith, Richard
Institution: Georgia Institute of Technology , Resources for the Future , Syracuse University , United States Geological Survey [USGS]
EPA Project Officer: Chung, Serena
Project Period: January 1, 2016 through December 31, 2018
Project Amount: $789,820
RFA: Particulate Matter and Related Pollutants in a Changing World (2014) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Air Quality and Air Toxics , Air

Objective:

Agriculture-related reactive nitrogen and wildland fire emissions are playing an increasingly more prominent role in the formation of atmospheric particulate matter. Those sources can also impact water quality and ecosystem structure and function through the deposition of reactive nitrogen to sensitive environments. While nitrogen and sulfur oxides and organic emissions are being markedly curtailed by traditional control strategies, alternative approaches are needed to address reduced nitrogen and fire emissions. Land use-based policies can be an attractive approach to improve air quality with the co-benefit of decreasing reactive nitrogen deposition and improving water quality. An integrated modeling framework will be developed to investigate a range of land use based policies to mitigate particulate matter levels, atmospheric deposition and associated impacts on water quality and sensitive ecosystems. Land use policies will be assessed across multiple environmental endpoints of concern, with a focus on identifying cost effective strategies and those with benefits in one or more media.

Approach:

Outputs from the Community Multiscale Air Quality (CMAQ) model, with the bidirectional ammonia flux parameterization, will be integrated and used to drive inputs to SPARROW and PnET-BGC watershed biogeochemical models to quantify the impacts of land use-based policies on PM formation, water quality and deposition of reactive nitrogen and associated effects to sensitive ecosystems. The integrated atmospheric-land water system will be used to investigate how potential land use changes from 2010 to 2050 impact the targeted environmental endpoints, and how specific policies can affect change. We will address the understudied impacts of agricultural reactive nitrogen and wildland fire emissions on nitrogen sensitive ecosystems. While the scope of this study is large, we will leverage recent and ongoing work to accomplish the objectives. The proposed study is primarily aimed at integrating research to address key policy questions that involve multiple environmental endpoints.

Expected Results:

This study will provide important understanding on the expanding role of agricultural and wildland fire emissions on air and water quality and ecosystem function and how these effects can be mitigated by land use change and land management policies. Two graduate students will be involved and trained in this transdiciplinary project.

Supplemental Keywords:

Ammonia emissions, fire emissions, PM2.5, air quality, reactive nitrogen deposition, nitrogen saturation, water quality;

Progress and Final Reports:

2016 Progress Report