Ensemble Sensitivity Analysis on the Impact of Global Climate Change on Regional Air Quality

EPA Grant Number: U916236
Title: Ensemble Sensitivity Analysis on the Impact of Global Climate Change on Regional Air Quality
Investigators: Avise, Jeremy C.
Institution: Washington State University
EPA Project Officer: Lee, Sonja
Project Period: January 1, 2003 through January 1, 2006
Project Amount: $96,437
RFA: STAR Graduate Fellowships (2003) Recipients Lists
Research Category: Academic Fellowships , Air Quality and Air Toxics , Fellowship - Atmospheric Sciences


The objective of this research project is to develop an understanding of the sensitivity of regional air quality predictions to uncertainties in pollutant emissions, meteorological input, and chemical boundary conditions.


The sensitivity of model predictions to input parameters will be investigated through an ensemble strategy, where the ensemble members are developed through guided perturbations of model inputs. This research project is addressed within the framework of a collaborative effort to investigate the impact of global climate change on regional air quality. The groups involved in this effort include Washington State University, the University of Washington, the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), and the U.S. Forest Service. This work involves coupling the MM5/SMOKE/CMAQ modeling system with output from the NCAR/DOE Parallel Climate Model and the NCAR MOZART-2 global chemical transport model. We will investigate regional ozone and aerosol impact on air quality in the Pacific Northwest and northern Midwest regions through simulations 50 years in the future (2045-2055) in comparison to current simulations (1990-2000). Initial detailed sensitivity analyses will be conducted using ensemble simulations for a select period within the current simulations so that model sensitivity can be evaluated with respect to observed pollutant patterns. Ensemble members will be developed by varying meteorological inputs and from variations in land use, anthropogenic and biogenic emissions, and fire/burn inputs in the CMAQ regional air quality model. Additional sensitivity studies will be conducted for future simulations in a similar manner.

This research project will result in new insight into how regional air quality simulations are affected by uncertainties in meteorological, emissions, and boundary condition inputs for both current and future climate conditions.

Supplemental Keywords:

fellowship, global climate change, regional air quality, pollutant emissions, regional ozone, aerosol impact, air pollution, modeling., RFA, Scientific Discipline, Air, Environmental Chemistry, climate change, Air Pollution Effects, Ecological Risk Assessment, Urban and Regional Planning, Atmosphere, ecosystem models, environmental monitoring, infrastructure systems, human activities, motor vehicle emissions, Emissions Inventory Modeling System, ensemble sensitivity analysis, traffic patterns, green house gas concentrations, modeling, mobile source emissions, emissions impact, atmospheric pollutant loads, tropospheric ozone, regional emissions model, global warming, predicting ecological response, air quality, climate variability, community structure, Global Climate Change, ambient air pollution

Progress and Final Reports:

  • 2003
  • 2004
  • Final