Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-2024-1680
https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-2024-1680
19 Jun 2024
 | 19 Jun 2024
Status: this preprint is open for discussion and under review for Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP).

Role of chemical production and depositional losses on formaldehyde in the Community Regional Atmospheric Chemistry Multiphase Mechanism (CRACMM)

T. Nash Skipper, Emma L. D'Ambro, Forwood C. Wiser, V. Faye McNeill, Rebecca H. Schwantes, Barron H. Henderson, Ivan R. Piletic, Colleen B. Baublitz, Jesse O. Bash, Andrew R. Whitehill, Lukas C. Valin, Asher P. Mouat, Jennifer Kaiser, Glenn M. Wolfe, Jason M. St. Clair, Thomas F. Hanisco, Alan Fried, Bryan K. Place, and Havala O. T. Pye

Abstract. Formaldehyde (HCHO) is an important air pollutant due to its direct health effects as an air toxic that contributes to elevated cancer risk, its role in ozone formation, and its role as a product from oxidation of most gas phase reactive organic carbon. We make several updates affecting secondary production of HCHO in the Community Regional Atmospheric Chemistry Multiphase Mechanism (CRACMM) in the Community Multiscale Air Quality (CMAQ) model. Secondary HCHO from isoprene and monoterpenes is increased, correcting an underestimate in the current version. Simulated 2019 June–August surface HCHO during peak photochemical production (11 am–3 pm) increased by 0.6 ppb (32 %) over the southeastern US and by 0.2 ppb (13 %) over the entire contiguous US. The increased HCHO compares more favorably with satellite-based observations from TROPOMI and observations from an aircraft campaign. Evaluation against hourly surface observations indicates a missing nighttime sink for HCHO which can be ameliorated by adding bidirectional exchange of HCHO and a leaf wetness dependent deposition process which increases nighttime deposition, decreasing 2019 June–August nocturnal (8 pm–4 am) surface HCHO by 1.1 ppb (36 %) over the southeastern US and 0.5 ppb (29 %) over the entire contiguous US. The ability of CRACMM to capture peak levels of HCHO at midday is improved, particularly at sites in the northeastern US, while peak levels at southeastern US sites are improved though still lower than observed. Using established risk assessment methods, lifetime exposure of the contiguous U.S. population (~320 million) to ambient HCHO levels predicted here may result in 6200 lifetime cancer cases, 40 % of which are from controllable anthropogenic emissions of nitrogen oxides and reactive organic compounds. Chemistry updates will be available in CRACMM version 2 (CRACMM2) in CMAQv5.5.

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T. Nash Skipper, Emma L. D'Ambro, Forwood C. Wiser, V. Faye McNeill, Rebecca H. Schwantes, Barron H. Henderson, Ivan R. Piletic, Colleen B. Baublitz, Jesse O. Bash, Andrew R. Whitehill, Lukas C. Valin, Asher P. Mouat, Jennifer Kaiser, Glenn M. Wolfe, Jason M. St. Clair, Thomas F. Hanisco, Alan Fried, Bryan K. Place, and Havala O. T. Pye

Status: open (until 01 Aug 2024)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
T. Nash Skipper, Emma L. D'Ambro, Forwood C. Wiser, V. Faye McNeill, Rebecca H. Schwantes, Barron H. Henderson, Ivan R. Piletic, Colleen B. Baublitz, Jesse O. Bash, Andrew R. Whitehill, Lukas C. Valin, Asher P. Mouat, Jennifer Kaiser, Glenn M. Wolfe, Jason M. St. Clair, Thomas F. Hanisco, Alan Fried, Bryan K. Place, and Havala O. T. Pye

Data sets

NASA FIREX-AQ 2019 DC8 Aircraft Data FIREX-AQ Team https://www-air.larc.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/ArcView/firexaq

KaiserLab-GeorgiaTech/long-term-HCHO-monitoring_efforts_datasets Kaiser Lab Georgia Tech https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.10855090

NASA GROUND-GOETHALS-FIELD 2023 Data NASA https://www-air.larc.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/ArcView/listos.2023

UWFPS 2017 Ground Sites Data Download UWFPS Team https://csl.noaa.gov/groups/csl7/measurements/2017uwfps/Ground/DataDownload/

Model code and software

CMAQ Github Repository US Environmental Protection Agency https://github.com/USEPA/CMAQ

CMAQ Version 5.4 US EPA Office of Research and Development https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.7218076

CRACMM Github Repository US Environmental Protection Agency https://github.com/USEPA/CRACMM

Framework for 0-D Atmospheric Modeling (F0AM) Github Repository Glenn M. Wolfe https://github.com/AirChem/F0AM

T. Nash Skipper, Emma L. D'Ambro, Forwood C. Wiser, V. Faye McNeill, Rebecca H. Schwantes, Barron H. Henderson, Ivan R. Piletic, Colleen B. Baublitz, Jesse O. Bash, Andrew R. Whitehill, Lukas C. Valin, Asher P. Mouat, Jennifer Kaiser, Glenn M. Wolfe, Jason M. St. Clair, Thomas F. Hanisco, Alan Fried, Bryan K. Place, and Havala O. T. Pye

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Short summary
Here, we develop the Community Regional Atmospheric Chemistry Multiphase Mechanism (CRACMM) version 2 to improve predictions of formaldehyde in ambient air compared to satellite-, aircraft-, and ground-based observations. With the updated chemistry representation, we then estimate the cancer risk in the contiguous US from exposure to ambient formaldehyde and estimate 40 % of this risk is controllable through reductions in anthropogenic emissions of nitrogen oxides and reactive organic carbon.