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[KNU-GEBCO (The KNU Global Environmental Biogeochemistry and Chemical Oceanography Group)]

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Research Overview

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Climate change and global environmental problems are driven by changes in atmospheric concentrations of the environmentally and radiatively important constituents - greenhouse gases (GHGs) and ozone-depleting substances (ODSs). The distribution of atmospheric concentrations represents a combination of the effect of sources, sinks, transformations, and atmospheric transport. However, precise measurements of trace amounts of ODSs and GHGs and understanding of spatially-varying sources and sinks, and the effect of transport that underlie the observations have been the major scientific challenges of our time.


The KNU-GEBCO research group performs real-time high-frequency measurements of a comprehensive suite of tracers (CFCs, HCFCs, HFCs, PFCs, SF6, NF3, COS, CO2, CH4, 13CO2:12CO2, 13CH4:12CH4 plus selected hydrocarbons) at a remote site (Gosan, Jeju Island, South Korea) in East Asia.




Our principal scientific questions are:

1. How are the temporal trends in Montreal Protocol and Kyoto Protocol/Paris Agreement gases and their replacements in East Asia? We will address this question by obtaining the full set of high-frequency, long-term observational data of atmospheric ODSs and GHGs.


2. What are the observation-derived, regional-scale emission estimates and how have they been changed with time and location? We will address this question by analyzing the atmospheric observations in conjunction with a Lagrangian particle dispersion atmospheric transport model and a Bayesian inverse modelling framework to estimate the spatially-resolved annual emissions and by developing new analytical tools to fully exploit the atmospheric observations for the assessment of uncertainties associated with regional emission estimates and for the improvement of emissions source apportionment.


3. Are the derived regional- and country-scale emissions comparable to the changes expected from international compliance with the Protocols, and are they consistent with variations estimated independently from industrial production and sales data available? We will address this question by performing top-down validation of reported bottom-up inventories compiled in East Asia to understand and investigate any differences.