Direct radiative feedback due to biogenic secondary organic aerosol estimated from boreal forest site observations

Thursday, 17 December 2015: 08:00
3008 (Moscone West)
Heikki Lihavainen1, Eija Asmi1, Veijo Aaltonen1, Ulla Makkonen1 and Veli-Matti Kerminen2, (1)Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki, Finland, (2)University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland
Biogenic secondary organic aerosol (BSOA) originating from the emissions of volatile organic compounds from terrestrial vegetation constitutes an important part of the natural aerosol system. According to large-scale model simulations, the direct and indirect radiative effects of the BSOA are potentially large, yet poorly quantified. We used more than 5 years of continuous aerosol measurements to estimate the direct radiative feedback associated with the formation of biogenic secondary organic aerosol at a remote continental site at the edge of the boreal forest zone in Northern Finland. Our upper-limit estimate for this feedback during the summer period (ambient temperatures above 10 °C) was −97±66 mW m−2 K−1 (mean ± STD) when using measurements of the aerosol optical depth (fAOD) and −63±40 mW m−2 K−1 when using measurements of the “dry” aerosol scattering coefficient at the ground level (fσ). Here STD represents the variability in f caused by the observed variability in the quantities used to derive the value of f. Compared with our measurement site, the magnitude of this direct radiative feedback is expected to be larger in warmer continental regions with more abundant biogenic emissions, and even larger in regions where biogenic emissions are mixed with anthropogenic pollution.