Release and dispersion of vegetation and peat fire emissions in the atmosphere over Indonesia 1997/1998 B. Langmann and A. Heil Max-Planck-Institut für Meteorologie, Hamburg, Germany
Abstract. Smoke-haze episodes caused by vegetation and peat fires affect parts of
Indonesia every year with significant impacts on human health and climate.
Particularly fires in degenerated peat areas release huge amounts of trace
gases, e.g. CO2, CO and CH4, and particles into the atmosphere, exceeding by far the emissions per
unit area from fires in surface vegetation. However, only limited
information is available about the current distribution of pristine and
degenerated peat areas in Indonesia, their depth, drainage condition and
modification by fire. Particularly during the strong El Niño event in 1997/1998
a huge uncertainty exists about the contribution of Indonesian peat fire emissions to
the measured increase of atmospheric CO2, as the published estimates of the peat
area burned differ considerably. In this paper we study the contribution of peat fire
emissions in Indonesia during the El Niño event 1997/1998. A
regional three-dimensional atmosphere-chemistry model is applied over
Indonesia using two emission estimates. These vegetation and peat fire emission
inventories for Indonesia are set up in 0.5° resolution in weekly intervals and differ only in the size of the
fire affected peat areas. We evaluate simulated rainfall and particle
concentrations by comparison with observations to draw conclusions on the
total carbon emissions released from the vegetation and peat fires in Indonesia in 1997/1998.
Citation: Langmann, B. and Heil, A.: Release and dispersion of vegetation and peat fire emissions in the atmosphere over Indonesia 1997/1998, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 4, 2145-2160, doi:10.5194/acp-4-2145-2004, 2004.