Relationship between volatile organic compounds (VOC) and nitrogen oxides (NOx) emissions and the chemical production of tropospheric ozone is studied through mathematical simulation. The study is applied to the Aburrá Valley, in the Colombian Andes, which is a practically unknown area from the point of view of ozone formation. The model used for this application is the European modelling of atmospheric constituents (EUMAC) zooming model (EZM) which consists of a mesoscale prognostic model (MEMO, mesoscale meteorological model) and a chemical reaction model (MUSE, multiscale for the atmospheric dispersion of reactive species), coupled to the chemical mechanism EMEP (European monitoring and evaluation program). The analysis is performed for a real episode that was characterized by high ozone production and that happened during the 23rd and 24th December, 1999 in Medellín (Colombia). From this real scenario, a sensitivity analysis has been carried out in order to assess the influence of VOC and NOx amounts on ozone production and to extract some conclusions for future ozone abatement policies in Andean regions. As far as ozone air quality is concerned, it is shown that in order to keep current levels the emphasis must be put to avoid increasing NOx emissions, or alternatively, to augment VOC emissions in order to have a high VOC/NOx ratio.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The authors wish to thank the Instituto Colombiano para el Desarrollo de la Ciencia y la Tecnología “Francisco José de Caldas”, COLCIENCIAS, and the Area Metropolitana del Valle de Aburrá for their financial support.
- Colombian Andes
- Ozone abatement
- Photochemical model