The global impact of ozone on agricultural crop yields under current and future air quality legislation

van Dingenen R, Dentener FJ, Raes F, Krol MC, Emberson L, & Cofala J (2009). The global impact of ozone on agricultural crop yields under current and future air quality legislation. Atmospheric Environment 43 (3): 604-618. DOI:10.1016/j.atmosenv.2008.10.033.

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In this paper we evaluate the global impact of surface ozone on four types of agricultural crop. The study is based on modelled global hourly ozone fields for the year 2000 and 2030, using the global 1 degree X 1 degree 2-way nested atmospheric chemical transport model (TM5). Projections for the year 2030 are based on the relatively optimistic "current legislation (CLE) scenario", i.e. assuming that currently approved air quality legislation will be fully implemented by the year 2030, without a further development of new abatement policies. For both runs, the relative yield loss due to ozone damage is evaluated based on two different indices (accumulated concentration above a 40 ppbV threshold and seasonal mean daytime ozone concentration respectively) on a global, regional and national scale. The cumulative metric appears to be far less robust than the seasonal mean, while the seasonal mean shows satisfactory agreement with measurements in Europe, the US, China and Southern India and South-East Asia.

Present day global relative yield losses are estimated to range between 7% and 12% for wheat, between 6% and 16% for soybean, between 3% and 4% for rice, and between 3% and 5% for maize (range resulting from different metrics used). Taking into account possible biases in our assessment, introduced through the global application of "western" crop exposure-response functions, and through model performance in reproducing ozone-exposure metrics, our estimates may be considered as being conservative.

Under the 2030 CLE scenario, the global situation is expected to deteriorate mainly for wheat (additional 2-6% loss globally) and rice (additional 1-2% loss globally). India, for which no mitigation measures have been assumed by 2030, accounts for 50% of these global increase in crop yield loss. On a regional-scale, significant reductions in crop losses by CLE-2030 are only predicted in Europe (soybean) and China (wheat).

Translating these assumed yield losses into total global economic damage for the four crops considered, using world market prices for the year 2000, we estimate an economic loss in the range $14-$26 billion. About 40% of this damage is occurring in China and India. Considering the recent upward trends in food prices, the ozone-induced damage to crops is expected to offset a significant portion of the GDP growth rate, especially in countries with an economy based on agricultural production.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Ozone; Crop damage; Global; Model; Impact assessment
Research Programs: Atmospheric Pollution (APD)
Bibliographic Reference: Atmospheric Environment; 43(3):604-618 (January 2009)
Depositing User: IIASA Import
Date Deposited: 15 Jan 2016 08:42
Last Modified: 19 Feb 2016 12:52

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