Severe ozone air pollution in the Persian Gulf region J. Lelieveld1,2, P. Hoor2, P. Jöckel2, A. Pozzer1, P. Hadjinicolaou1, J.-P. Cammas3, and S. Beirle2 1Energy, Environment and Water Research Centre, The Cyprus Institute, 20 Kavafi Street, 1645 Nicosia, Cyprus 2Max Planck Institute for Chemistry, Becherweg 27, 55128 Mainz, Germany 3Observatoire Midi-Pyrénées, CNRS – Laboratoire d'Aérologie, 14 Avenue E. Belin, 31400 Toulouse, France
Abstract. Recently it was discovered that over the Middle East
during summer ozone mixing ratios can reach a pronounced maximum in the
middle troposphere. Here we extend the analysis to the surface and show that
especially in the Persian Gulf region conditions are highly favorable for
ozone air pollution. We apply the EMAC atmospheric chemistry-climate model
to investigate long-distance transport and the regional formation of ozone.
Further, we make use of available in situ and satellite measurements and
compare these with model output. The results indicate that the region is a
hot spot of photochemical smog where European Union air quality standards
are violated throughout the year. Long-distance transports of air pollution
from Europe and the Middle East, natural emissions and stratospheric ozone
conspire to bring about relatively high background ozone mixing ratios. This
provides a hotbed to strong and growing indigenous air pollution in the dry
local climate, and these conditions are likely to get worse in the future.
Citation: Lelieveld, J., Hoor, P., Jöckel, P., Pozzer, A., Hadjinicolaou, P., Cammas, J.-P., and Beirle, S.: Severe ozone air pollution in the Persian Gulf region, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 9, 1393-1406, doi:10.5194/acp-9-1393-2009, 2009.