Estimates of Annual and Regional Releases of CO2 and Other Trace Gases to the Atmosphere from Fires in the Tropics, Based on the FAO Statistics for the Period 1975–1980

  • Wei Min Hao
  • Mei-Huey Liu
  • P. J. Crutzen
Part of the Ecological Studies book series (ECOLSTUD, volume 84)

Abstract

Deforestation in the tropics plays an important role in determining the atmospheric CO2 content and therefore the earth’s climate (e.g., Myers 1980; Seiler and Crutzen 1980; Lanly 1982; Brown and Lugo 1982, 1984; Houghton et al. 1985; Melillo et al. 1985; Detwiler et al. 1985; Detwiler and Hall 1988). The burning of biomass is also a significant source of chemically reactive trace gases, such as NOx, N2O, CO, CH4, and other hydrocarbons (Crutzen et al. 1979; Logan 1983; Greenberg et al. 1984; Crutzen et al. 1985; Andreae et al. 1988). Among these, CO2, CH4, and N2O are also important “greenhouse” gases, which have an impact on the global climate (e.g., WMO 1985). The oxidation of CO, CH4, and other hydrocarbons in the presence of NOx leads to more ozone in the troposphere and thus influences its oxidation efficiency. In the stratosphere, increases in N2O lead to additional NOx, a loss of ozone above about 25 km and an increase below 25 km. Worldwide observations of CO2, CH4, and N2O have shown that the concentrations of these gases are currently increasing annually by about 0.4, 1, and 0.25% (WMO 1985).

Keywords

Biomass Burning Dioxide Ozone Hydrocarbon 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wei Min Hao
  • Mei-Huey Liu
  • P. J. Crutzen
    • 1
  1. 1.Atmospheric Chemistry DepartmentMax-Planck-Institute for ChemistryMainzGermany

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