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https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-2024-370
https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-2024-370
04 Mar 2024
 | 04 Mar 2024

Current potential of CH4 emission estimates using TROPOMI in the Middle East

Mengyao Liu, Ronald van der A, Michiel van Weele, Lotte Bryan, Henk Eskes, Pepijn Veefkind, Yongxue Liu, Xiaojuan Lin, Jos de Laat, and Jieying Ding

Abstract. An improved divergence method has been developed to estimate annual methane (CH4) emissions from TROPOspheric Monitoring Instrument (TROPOMI) observations. It has been applied to the period of 2018 to 2021 over the Middle East, where the orography is complicated, and the mean mixing ratio of methane (XCH4) might be affected by albedos or aerosols over some locations. To adapt to extreme changes of terrain over mountains or coasts, winds are used with their divergent part removed. A temporal filter is introduced to identify highly variable emissions and further exclude fake sources caused by retrieval artifacts. We compare our results to widely used bottom-up anthropogenic emission inventories: Emissions Database for Global Atmospheric Research (EDGAR), Community Emissions Data System (CEDS) and Global Fuel Exploitation Inventory (GFEI) over several regions representing various types of sources. The NOX emissions from EDGAR and Daily Emissions Constrained by Satellite Observations (DECSO), and the industrial heat sources identified by Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) are further used to better understand our resulting methane emissions. Our results indicate possibly large underestimations of methane emissions in metropolises like Tehran (up to 50 %) and Isfahan (up to 70 %) in Iran. The derived annual methane emissions from oil/gas production near the Caspian Sea in Turkmenistan are comparable to GEFI but more than two times higher than EDGAR and CEDS in 2019. Large discrepancies of distribution of methane sources in Riyadh and its surrounding areas are found between EDGAR, CEDS, GFEI and our emissions. The methane emission from oil/gas production in the east to Riyadh seems to be largely overestimated by EDGAR and CEDS, while our estimates, and also GFEI and DECSO NOX indicate much lower emissions from industry activities. On the other hand, regions like Iran, Iraq, and Oman are dominated by sources from oil and gas exploitation that probably includes more irregular releases of methane, with the result that our estimates, that include only invariable sources, are lower than the bottom-up emission inventories.

Publisher's note: Copernicus Publications remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims made in the text, published maps, institutional affiliations, or any other geographical representation in this preprint. The responsibility to include appropriate place names lies with the authors.
Mengyao Liu, Ronald van der A, Michiel van Weele, Lotte Bryan, Henk Eskes, Pepijn Veefkind, Yongxue Liu, Xiaojuan Lin, Jos de Laat, and Jieying Ding

Status: closed

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on egusphere-2024-370', Anonymous Referee #1, 07 May 2024
    • AC1: 'Reply on RC1', Mengyao Liu, 16 Jun 2024
  • RC2: 'Comment on egusphere-2024-370', Anonymous Referee #2, 08 May 2024
    • AC2: 'Reply on RC2', Mengyao Liu, 16 Jun 2024
    • AC3: 'Reply on RC2', Mengyao Liu, 16 Jun 2024

Status: closed

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on egusphere-2024-370', Anonymous Referee #1, 07 May 2024
    • AC1: 'Reply on RC1', Mengyao Liu, 16 Jun 2024
  • RC2: 'Comment on egusphere-2024-370', Anonymous Referee #2, 08 May 2024
    • AC2: 'Reply on RC2', Mengyao Liu, 16 Jun 2024
    • AC3: 'Reply on RC2', Mengyao Liu, 16 Jun 2024
Mengyao Liu, Ronald van der A, Michiel van Weele, Lotte Bryan, Henk Eskes, Pepijn Veefkind, Yongxue Liu, Xiaojuan Lin, Jos de Laat, and Jieying Ding
Mengyao Liu, Ronald van der A, Michiel van Weele, Lotte Bryan, Henk Eskes, Pepijn Veefkind, Yongxue Liu, Xiaojuan Lin, Jos de Laat, and Jieying Ding

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Short summary
A new divergence method was developed and applied to estimate methane emissions from TROPOMI observations over the Middle East, where is typically challenging for a satellite to measure methane due to its complicated orography and surface albedo. Our results show the potential of TROPOMI to quantify methane emissions from various sources rather than big emitters from space after objectively excluding the artifacts in the retrieval.