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Contribution of oil and natural gas production to renewed increase of atmospheric methane (2007-2014): top-down estimate from ethane and methane column observations

Hausmann, P.; Sussmann, R.; Smale, D.

Abstract:
Harmonized time series of column-averaged mole fractions of atmospheric methane and ethane over the period 1999–2014 are derived from solar Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) measurements at the Zugspitze summit (47°N, 11°E; 2964ma.s.l.) and at Lauder (45°S, 170°E; 370m a.s.l.). Long-term trend analysis reveals a consistent renewed methane increase since 2007 of 6.2 [5.6, 6.9] ppb yr$^{-1}$ (parts-per-billion per year) at the Zugspitze and 6.0 [5.3, 6.7] ppb yr$^{-1}$ at Lauder (95% confidence intervals). Several recent studies provide pieces of evidence that the renewed methane increase is most likely driven by two main factors: (i) increased methane emissions from tropical wetlands, followed by (ii) increased thermogenic methane emissions due to growing oil and natural gas production. Here, we quantify the magnitude of the second class of sources, using long-term measurements of atmospheric ethane as a tracer for thermogenic methane emissions. In 2007, after years of weak decline, the Zugspitze ethane time series shows the sudden onset of a significant positive trend (2.3 [1.8, 2.8] ×10$^{-2}$ ppb yr$^{-1}$ for 2007–2014), while a negative trend persists at Lauder after 2007 (-0.4 [-0.6, -0.1] ×10$^{-2}$ ppb yr$^{-1}$). ... mehr

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Volltext §
DOI: 10.5445/IR/1000052447
Originalveröffentlichung
DOI: 10.5194/acpd-15-35991-2015
Coverbild
Zugehörige Institution(en) am KIT Institut für Meteorologie und Klimaforschung - Atmosphärische Umweltforschung (IMK-IFU)
Publikationstyp Zeitschriftenaufsatz
Jahr 2015
Sprache Englisch
Identifikator ISSN: 1680-7367, 1680-7375
urn:nbn:de:swb:90-524472
KITopen-ID: 1000052447
HGF-Programm 12.03.01 (POF III, LK 01)
Erschienen in Atmospheric chemistry and physics / Discussions
Band 15
Seiten 35991-36028
Bemerkung zur Veröffentlichung Gefördert durch den KIT-Publikationsfonds
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