Data_Sheet_1_Deposition and Resuspension Mechanisms Into and From Tree Canopies: A Study Modeling Particle Removal of Conifers and Broadleaves in Diff.pdf (1.54 MB)

Data_Sheet_1_Deposition and Resuspension Mechanisms Into and From Tree Canopies: A Study Modeling Particle Removal of Conifers and Broadleaves in Different Cities.pdf

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posted on 12.03.2020 by Rocco Pace, Rüdiger Grote

With increasing realization that particles in the air are a major health risk in urban areas, strengthening particle deposition is discussed as a means to air-pollution mitigation. Particles are deposited physically on leaves and thus the process depends on leaf area and surface properties, which change throughout the year. Current state-of-the-art modeling accounts for these changes only by altering leaf longevity, which may be selected by vegetation type and geographic location. Particle removal also depends on weather conditions, which determine deposition and resuspension but generally do not consider properties that are specific to species or plant type. In this study, we modeled <2.5 μm-diameter particulate-matter (PM2.5) deposition, resuspension, and removal from urban trees along a latitudinal gradient (Berlin, Munich, Rome) while comparing coniferous with broadleaf (deciduous and evergreen) tree types. Accordingly, we re-implemented the removal functionality from the i-Tree Eco model, investigated the uncertainty connected with parameterizations, and evaluated the efficiency of pollution mitigation depending on city conditions. We found that distinguishing deposition velocities between conifers and broadleaves is important for model results, i.e., because the removal efficiency of conifers is larger. Because of the higher wind speed, modeled PM2.5 deposition from conifers is especially large in Berlin compared to Munich and Rome. Extended periods without significant precipitation decrease the amount of PM2.5 removal because particles that are not occasionally washed from the leaves or needles are increasingly resuspended into the air. The model predicted this effect particularly during the long summer periods in Rome with only very little precipitation and may be responsible for less-efficient net removal from urban trees under climate change. Our analysis shows that the range of uncertainty in particle removal is large and that parameters have to be adjusted at least for major tree types if not only the species level. Furthermore, evergreen trees (broadleaved as well as coniferous) are predicted to be more effective at particle removal in northern regions than in Mediterranean cities, which is unexpected given the higher number of evergreens in southern cities. We discuss to what degree the effect of current PM2.5 abundance can be mitigated by species selection and which model improvements are needed.

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