Large modeling uncertainty in projecting decadal surface ozone changes over city clusters of China

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Climate policies will affect future surface ozone pollution in China. Here, we simulate changes in summertime ozone across China by 2030 under four emission scenarios reflecting different levels of climate action. We also contrast results obtained with two different chemical mechanisms employed in the chemical transport model (WRF-Chem). With emission reductions in ozone precursors introduced by climate policies, both mechanisms show promising ozone mitigation for most parts of China. However, they disagree starkly in China's three main city clusters, where one mechanism projects worsening ozone pollution by 2030 despite the emission reductions. We analyze possible drivers of this important discrepancy, in particular the role of varying ozone chemical regimes affecting its sensitivity to emission changes. We recommend an intercomparison project to examine this critical modeling uncertainty among other models/mechanisms, which would be invaluable for informing local and regional emission control strategies that are based on single-model results.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere2023GL103241
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Issue number9
Early online date28 Apr 2023
Publication statusPublished - 16 May 2023


  • Ozone
  • chemical transport modeling
  • air pollution
  • China
  • Decadal projections
  • Climate policy
  • Emission controls
  • Urban pollution
  • Modeling uncertainty

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