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Stratospheric Ozone Response in Experiments G3 and G4 of the Geoengineering Model Intercomparison Project (GeoMIP)Geoengineering with stratospheric sulfate aerosols has been proposed as a means of temporarily cooling the planet, alleviating some of the side effects of anthropogenic CO2 emissions. However, one of the known side effects of stratospheric injections of sulfate aerosols is a decrease in stratospheric ozone. Here we show results from two general circulation models and two coupled chemistry climate models that have simulated stratospheric sulfate aerosol geoengineering as part of the Geoengineering Model Intercomparison Project (GeoMIP). Changes in photolysis rates and upwelling of ozone-poor air in the tropics reduce stratospheric ozone, suppression of the NOx cycle increases stratospheric ozone, and an increase in available surfaces for heterogeneous chemistry modulates reductions in ozone. On average, the models show a factor 20-40 increase of the sulfate aerosol surface area density (SAD) at 50 hPa in the tropics with respect to unperturbed background conditions and a factor 3-10 increase at mid-high latitudes. The net effect for a tropical injection rate of 5 Tg SO2 per year is a decrease in globally averaged ozone by 1.1-2.1 DU in the years 2040-2050 for three models which include heterogeneous chemistry on the sulfate aerosol surfaces. GISS-E2-R, a fully coupled general circulation model, performed simulations with no heterogeneous chemistry and a smaller aerosol size; it showed a decrease in ozone by 9.7 DU. After the year 2050, suppression of the NOx cycle becomes more important than destruction of ozone by ClOx, causing an increase in total stratospheric ozone. Contribution of ozone changes in this experiment to radiative forcing is 0.23 W m-2 in GISS-E2-R and less than 0.1 W m-2 in the other three models. Polar ozone depletion, due to enhanced formation of both sulfate aerosol SAD and polar stratospheric clouds, results in an average 5 percent increase in calculated surface UV-B.
Document ID
Document Type
Reprint (Version printed in journal)
Pitari, Giovanni (Aquila Univ. Italy)
Aquila, Valentina (Johns Hopkins Univ. Baltimore, MD, United States)
Kravitz, Ben (Pacific Northwest National Lab. Richland, WA, United States)
Watanabe, Shingo (Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology Kanagawa, Japan)
Tilmes, Simone (National Center for Atmospheric Research Boulder, CO, United States)
Mancini, Eva (Aquila Univ. Italy)
DeLuca, Natalia (Aquila Univ. Italy)
DiGenova, Glauco (Aquila Univ. Italy)
Date Acquired
September 3, 2014
Publication Date
August 10, 2013
Subject Category
Meteorology and Climatology
Report/Patent Number
Distribution Limits
Public Use Permitted.
stratospheric ozone

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