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Atmospheric and Oceanic Optics

2017 year, number 6

Atmospheric black carbon in the northern Russia: sources, spatial and temporal variations

A.A. Vinogradova, A.V. Vasileva
A.M. Obukhov Institute of Atmospheric Physics Russian Academy of Sciences, Pyzhevsky per., 3, 119017, Moscow, Russia
Keywords: черный углерод, российские эмиссии черного углерода, спутниковая информация, данные российской статистики, дальний перенос в атмосфере, Арктика, black carbon, Russian BC emissions, satellite data, data of Russian statistics, long-range atmospheric transport, the Arctic


Model estimates of air black carbon (BC) concentrations at different sites of the Russian North were made for 2000-2013. Different physical sources of BC emissions (anthropogenic and from wildfires), their intensities (from different databases), and their contributions to BC air concentrations in the Arctic are discussed for winter and summer. We used GFED, MACCity, and other satellite data, as well as the ground-based data of Russian official statistics on pollution emissions to the atmosphere. Long-range atmospheric transport of BC was modeled by analysing back-trajectory statistics from ARL NOAA (HYSPLIT model). In total, anthropogenic BC inputs exceed wildfire ones in surface air BC concentrations even in summer when contributions from distant anthropogenic sources are minimal. Annual and interannual variations in BC air concentrations are sizable. Variations in air BC concentration along the Russian Arctic coast may be above two orders with maximal values near Nenetsky Nature Reserve (near the Pechora River delta). There are open flares of oil/gas mining companies with extreme BC emissions in close proximity to this site. So, the results measured at one point and/or during a season or even a year should not be the basis for long-term conclusions and forecasts in relation to the entire region.