Relative importance of dynamical and chemical contributions to Arctic wintertime ozone

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Abstract

[1] We present the first complete budget of the interannual variability in Arctic springtime ozone taking into account anthropogenic chemical and natural dynamical processes. For the winters 1991/1992 to 2003/2004 the Arctic chemical ozone loss is available from observations. This work investigates the dynamical supply of ozone to the Arctic polar vortex due to mean transport processes for the same winters. The ozone supply is quantified in a vortex-averaged framework using estimates of diabatic descent over winter. We find that the interannual variability of both dynamical ozone supply and chemical ozone loss contribute, in equal shares, to the variability of the total ozone change. Moreover, together they explain nearly all of the interannual variability of Arctic springtime column ozone. Variability in planetary wave activity, characterized by the Eliassen-Palm flux at 100 hPa, contributes significantly to the variability of ozone supply, chemical ozone loss and total springtime ozone.

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