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Volume 16, issue 20
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 16, 13081–13104, 2016
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-16-13081-2016
© Author(s) 2016. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 16, 13081–13104, 2016
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-16-13081-2016
© Author(s) 2016. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Research article 26 Oct 2016

Research article | 26 Oct 2016

Impact of climate change on the production and transport of sea salt aerosol on European seas

Joana Soares1, Mikhail Sofiev1, Camilla Geels2, Jens H. Christensen2, Camilla Andersson3, Svetlana Tsyro4, and Joakim Langner3 Joana Soares et al.
  • 1Atmospheric Composition Research Unit, Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki, Finland
  • 2Department of Environmental Science, Aarhus University, Roskilde, Denmark
  • 3Air Quality Research Unit, Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute, Norrköping, Sweden
  • 4EMEP MSC-W, Norwegian Meteorological Institute, Oslo, Norway

Abstract. The impact of climate change on sea salt aerosol production, dispersion, and fate over Europe is studied using four offline regional chemistry transport models driven by the climate scenario SRES A1B over two periods: 1990–2009 and 2040–2059. This study is focused mainly on European seas: Baltic, Black, North, and Mediterranean. The differences and similarities between the individual models' predictions of the impact on sea salt emission, concentration, and deposition due to changes in wind gusts and seawater temperature are analysed. The results show that the major driver for the sea salt flux changes will be the seawater temperature, as wind speed is projected to stay nearly the same. There are, however, substantial differences between the model predictions and their sensitivity to changing seawater temperature, which demonstrates substantial lack of current understanding of the sea salt flux predictions. Although seawater salinity changes are not evaluated in this study, sensitivity of sea salt aerosol production to salinity is similarly analysed, showing once more the differences between the different models. An assessment of the impact of sea salt aerosol on the radiative balance is presented.

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Short summary
Multi-model comparison of four offline dispersion models driven by the global climate projection climate show that the major driver for the sea salt flux changes will be the seawater temperature, but there are substantial differences between the model predictions. The impact on regional radiative budget due to sea spray is considerable in the Mediterranean area, due to warmer temperatures and longer days during the winter.
Multi-model comparison of four offline dispersion models driven by the global climate projection...
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