IARPC Webinar Available - Black Carbon Webinar II

15 April 2014

IARPC Webinar Available - Black Carbon Webinar II
Current Science Questions and Activities Related to Arctic Black Carbon
Atmosphere Collaboration Team
Interagency Arctic Research Policy Committee

Webinar: Friday, 18 April 2014 from 3:00-4:30 p.m. EDT

For further information, please go to:

Or contact
Sara Bowden
Email: bowden@arcus.org

The Atmosphere Collaboration Team of the Interagency Arctic Research
Policy Committee (IARPC) is hosting the second of two webinars on black
carbon, which are open to the community. The second webinar, entitled
"Current Science Questions and Activities Related to Arctic Black
Carbon" will be held Friday, 18 April 2014 from 3:00-4:30 p.m. EDT.

The intent of the second webinar is to share information about current
science questions and activities related to Arctic black carbon. Experts
will be on hand to share information and answer questions in an effort
to inform the Atmosphere Collaboration Team of IARPC of possible future
interagency activities related to Arctic black carbon.

To join the webinar online and from mobile devices, please go to:

- Meeting Number: 741 225 454
- Meeting Password: carbon

- If requested, enter your name and email address and click "Join."
- If password is required, please enter the meeting password: carbon.

To join the teleconference only, please use:
- Dial in Number: 1-866-242-0349
- Passcode: 2728

Webinar topics and speakers:

- In-situ ground sensing: Patricia Quinn, NOAA;
- Satellite remote sensing: Ralph Kahn, NASA; and
- Transport modeling: Mark Jacobson, Stanford.

Webinar Synopsis:

Black carbon is "the second most important human emission in terms of
its climate-forcing in the present-day atmosphere; only carbon dioxide
is estimated to have a greater forcing." When BC is deposited on snow
and ice, it darkens an otherwise bright surface. The darker surface may
enhance the absorption of solar radiation resulting in an acceleration
of snow and ice melting. In addition, BC particles suspended in the
atmosphere absorb solar radiation and heat the surrounding air.
Atmospheric BC can also alter cloud properties leading to changes in
cloud amount and precipitation. Black carbon has multiple sources
including domestic combustion for heating and cooking, diesel combustion
related to transportation, fossil fuel and biofuel combustion for power
generation, agricultural burning, and wildfires. Identification of the
sources and types of black carbon (both the geographical region of the
source and the combustion process) is necessary for effectively
mitigating its climate impacts. In addition, measurements of black
carbon are required to verify whether implemented mitigation strategies
that target BC emissions from certain sources are actually leading to
reductions in BC concentrations in the Arctic atmosphere and surface. In
2013, NOAA's Arctic Report Card added a black carbon assessment to the
Atmosphere Section. The primary conclusions of the assessment are that
(1) the average equivalent black carbon concentrations in 2012 at
locations Alert, Nunavut, Canada; Barrow, Alaska, USA; and Ny-Alesund,
Svalbard, Norway; were similar to average EBC concentrations during the
last decade and (2) equivalent black carbon has declined by as much as
55% during the 23 year record at Alert and Barrow (Sharma et al. 2013).

Several issues are currently challenging the Arctic black carbon
research community:

- In-situ measurements are the most reliable measure of black carbon;
however, the most prevalent techniques which involve filter samplers
only make proxy black carbon measurements.
- Retrievals of aerosols optical depth (AOD) over snow and ice-covered
surfaces with passive remote sensing from vis-NIR imagers from space are
problematic. Some success over incomplete snow-covered surfaces has been
achieved, e.g., with MISR. TOMS, OMI, and probably now OMPS UV passive
imaging has some qualitative sensitivity (the Aerosol Index), though
with limited sensitivity to near-surface aerosol, and CALIPSO lidar is
by far the most sensitive, but with limited coverage.
- Standardized ground-based networks such as AeroNET, MPLNet, and BSRN
have sparse and sporadic Arctic coverage, and are uncoordinated with the
necessary black carbon-in-snow measurements, and some long-standing
surface stations have actually been decommissioned in the past few years.
- A promising approach to assessing high-latitude aerosol effects is to
constrain aerosol transport models with satellite observations taken at
lower latitudes, near the aerosol sources (mainly Boreal fires and
pollution sites) where and when the surface is not snow-covered.

For further information, please go to:

Or contact
Sara Bowden
Email: bowden@arcus.org

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