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Ammonia in a time of COVID-19. A submission of evidence to Defra/AQEG

Braban, C.F.; Tang, Y.S.; Dragosits, U.; Twigg, M.M.; Leeson, Sarah; Jones, Matthew; Simmons, Ivan; Harvey, Duncan; Sutton, M.A.; Nemitz, E.; Reis, S.. 2020 Ammonia in a time of COVID-19. A submission of evidence to Defra/AQEG. London, Defra, 8pp. (UKCEH Project no. C05967)

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Abstract/Summary

A submission to the Air Quality Expert Group (AQEG), an expert committee of the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) • Ammonia gas (NH3) is a priority pollutant both as a precursor to particulate matter and for ecosystem impacts. • Three scenarios for UK emission reductions during COVID-19 in emission sectors, where activity is likely reduced ,have been assessed. • Total UK emissions of NH3 are likely to have decreased slightly (~2%), which is within the uncertainty and meteorological variability of the UK atmosphere. • Urban background and urban on road and roadside emissions of NH3 are likely to have decreased, by as much as 30% and 90% respectively compared with usual emissions before COVID-19. • Unratified data from three of the five UK automatic NH3 analysers (Auchencorth Moss, Chilbolton Observatory, and Manchester OSCA Observatory) show typical springtime NH3 concentrations across the UK. • Data from the non-automatic National Ammonia Monitoring Network will enable analysis at UK level in the months ahead. This includes roadside data from London Cromwell Rd. • Evidence gaps & future approaches are outlined. Future analysis of the Defra UKEAP rural networks proposed. • The key measurement gap is urban roadside NH3 (and PM ammonium) as there is only one long-term site in the UK measuring roadside NH3 concentrations. It is suggested that a roadside network of samplers and/or analysers are urgently put in place (perhaps aligned with the UK Urban NO2 Network; UUNN) to monitor NH3 at roadsides during and post COVID-19 lock down where possible.

Item Type: Publication - Report
UKCEH and CEH Sections/Science Areas: Atmospheric Chemistry and Effects (Science Area 2017-)
Funders/Sponsors: UK Centre for Ecology & Hydrology, Natural Environment Research Council
Additional Information. Not used in RCUK Gateway to Research.: Published in 'Annex to the AQEG report - submissions cited in the published work: Estimation of changes in air pollution emissions, concentrations and exposure during the COVID-19 outbreak in the UK. Rapid evidence review – June 2020'.
NORA Subject Terms: Atmospheric Sciences
Date made live: 06 Jul 2020 14:42 +0 (UTC)
URI: https://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/528087

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