Sources of Black Carbon Deposition to the Himalayan Glaciers in Current and Future Climates


Journal Article

©2018 The World Bank. ©2018. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved. The Weather Research and Forecasting model coupled with Chemistry and a modified version of the Evaluating the Climate and Air Quality Impacts of Short-Lived Pollutants (ECLIPSE) 5a emission inventory were used to investigate the sources impacting black carbon (BC) deposition to the Himalaya, Karakoram, and Hindu Kush (HKHK) region. This work extends previous studies by simulating deposition to the HKHK region not only under current conditions but also in the 2040–2050 period under two realistic emission scenarios and in three different phases of the El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO). Under current conditions, sources from outside our South Asian modeling domain have a similar impact on total BC deposition to the HKHK region (35–87%, varying with month) as South Asian anthropogenic sources (13–62%). Industry (primarily brick kilns) and residential solid fuel burning combined account for 45–66% of the in-domain anthropogenic BC deposition to the HKHK region. Under a no further control emission scenario for 2040–2050, the relative contributions to BC deposition in the HKHK region are more skewed toward in-domain anthropogenic sources (45–65%) relative to sources outside the domain (26–52%). The in-domain anthropogenic BC deposition has significant contributions from industry (32–42%), solid fuel burning (17–28%), and diesel fuel burning (17–27%). Under a scenario in which emissions in South Asia are mitigated, the relative contribution from South Asian anthropogenic sources is significantly reduced to 11–34%. The changes due to phase of ENSO do not seem to follow consistent patterns with ENSO. Future work will use the high-resolution deposition maps developed here to determine the impact of different sources of BC on glacier melt and water availability in the region.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Alvarado, MJ; Winijkul, E; Adams-Selin, R; Hunt, E; Brodowski, C; Lonsdale, CR; Shindell, DT; Faluvegi, G; Kleiman, G; Mosier, TM; Kumar, R

Published Date

  • July 27, 2018

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 123 / 14

Start / End Page

  • 7482 - 7505

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 2169-8996

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 2169-897X

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1029/2018JD029049

Citation Source

  • Scopus