Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2024-71
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2024-71
13 May 2024
 | 13 May 2024
Status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal AMT.

Eddy-covariance with slow-response greenhouse gas analyser on tall towers: bridging atmospheric and ecosystem greenhouse gases networks

Pedro Henrique Herig Coimbra, Benjamin Loubet, Olivier Laurent, Laura Bignotti, Mathis Lozano, and Michel Ramonet

Abstract. Greenhouse gases monitoring is important to ensure climate goals are being achieved. This study unveils the potential of using atmospheric tall towers in direct flux measurements, bridging the gap between atmospheric and ecosystem monitoring networks. The ICOS Cities (PAUL) project aims to monitor CO2 emissions in urban areas, where concentrated emissions make them key targets for climate change mitigation. This study explores synergy between ICOS atmospheric and ecosystem networks by utilizing slow-response analysers (~2 sec) on tall atmospheric towers for ecosystem studies using the Eddy Covariance method. A standard setup with an ultrasonic anemometer and an infrared (IR) fast-response CO2 analyser was installed and compared with measurements from an existing cavity ring down spectroscopy (CRDS) analyser measuring CO2, CO, and CH4. Deployed on the 100 m Saclay tower near Paris, covering a 43.9 km² 80 % footprint with heavy traffic roads, a nearby heating plant, and a forest, the setup addressed technical challenges and height-induced complexities. Corrections for flux attenuation by high frequency losses were limited to <20 % on average for all stabilities, around 11 % for unstable conditions. Wavelet-based eddy covariance allowed 18–34 % more data exploitation than standard EC enabling the analysis of non-stationary fluxes, particularly from a point source such was the case of a heating plant. The estimated storage term produced by atmospheric profiling measurements reported an expected increase at night, destocking during the first half of the day. Storage term represented at times more than half of the surface flux. Elevated mean fluxes for CO2 (10 μmolm−2s−1) and CH4 (200 nmolm−2s−1) were observed from the heating plant wind direction during December and January. Conversely, the forest direction exhibited the strongest sink among all wind directions, with −4 μmolm−2s−1 during July and August. These results demonstrate the feasibility and versatility of utilizing atmospheric towers for urban emission monitoring, offering valuable insights for emission monitoring strategies worldwide.

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Pedro Henrique Herig Coimbra, Benjamin Loubet, Olivier Laurent, Laura Bignotti, Mathis Lozano, and Michel Ramonet

Status: open (until 03 Jul 2024)

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Pedro Henrique Herig Coimbra, Benjamin Loubet, Olivier Laurent, Laura Bignotti, Mathis Lozano, and Michel Ramonet
Pedro Henrique Herig Coimbra, Benjamin Loubet, Olivier Laurent, Laura Bignotti, Mathis Lozano, and Michel Ramonet

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Short summary
This study explores using infrastructure built to assess atmospheric gas concentration with high precision to measure local emissions and sequestration. This only requires, relatively inexpensive, 3D wind measurements. The study uses the Saclay tower near Paris, in a mixed urban, forest and agricultural area. Results identified strong heating plant emissions and carbon uptake by the forest. Collaboration between scientific communities is further encouraged, so to better monitor greenhouse gases.