Effects of Future Ship Emissions in the North Sea on Air Quality


By means of model simulations with the chemistry transport model CMAQ the influence of ship emissions in the North Sea on concentrations and depositions of sulfur and nitrogen oxides over Europe was investigated. Ship emissions for the North Sea of the base year 2008 were provided by the Dutch research institute MARIN. Based on this, emission scenarios were developed that comply to ECA regulations at different levels. Finally, the emissions were fed into the CMAQ model that simulates the fate of pollutants in the atmosphere in order to estimate concentrations and depositions of the pollutants of interest for each scenario. A comparison of the simulation results yielded a quantification of the changes of air pollution levels over the North Sea riparian states and, hence, provided information for estimating the benefit of installing ECAs in the North Sea. Concentration differences can reach up to 50 % close to shipping lines and still 25 % ashore. The ECA regulations to lower nitrogen and sulfur exhaust take effect at different time scales and are counteracted by the expected increase of fuel use due to increased ship traffic.
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