Effects of tropical deforestation on global and regional atmospheric chemistry
- Cite this article as:
- Keller, M., Jacob, D.J., Wofsy, S.C. et al. Climatic Change (1991) 19: 139. doi:10.1007/BF00142221
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A major portion of tropospheric photochemistry occurs in the tropics. Deforestation, colonization, and development of tropical rain forest areas could provoke significant changes in emissions of radiatively and photochemically active trace gases. A brief review of studies on trace-gas emissions in pristine and disturbed tropical habitats is followed by an effort to model regional tropospheric chemistry under undisturbed and polluted conditions. Model results suggest that changing emissions could stimulate photochemistry leading to enhanced ozone production and greater mineral acidity in rainfall in colonized agricultural regions. Model results agree with measurements made during the NASA ABLE missions. Under agricultural/pastoral development scenarios, tropical rain forest regions could export greater levels of N2O, CH4, CO, and photochemical precursors of NOy and O3 to the global atmosphere with implications for climatic warming.