Global Atmosphere Watch e-zine, February 2017
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In this issue

The Antarctic Ozone Hole
News from GESAMP
Recent Meetings
Upcoming Meetings
Recent Reports and Bulletins
New Projects
New GAW Reports

The 2016 Antarctic Ozone Hole

The Antarctic ozone hole is an annually recurring phenomenon. Its size and depth depends to a large extent on the meteorological conditions since the atmosphere still contains more than enough halogen reservoir gases to destroy all the ozone in a certain height range (typically 15-20 km altitude) if they are converted to active chlorine and bromine. The area of the 2016 ozone hole followed the long term (1979-2015) median closely until about mid October. After that, the area of the ozone hole shrunk rapidly and remained smaller than the long term median for the rest of the season.
The ozone hole area reached its maximum for 2016 on 28 September with 23.1 million km2, whereas it reached 28.2 million km2 on 2 October in 2015 according to an analysis from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.
An analysis carried out at the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute (KNMI) shows that the 2016 ozone hole area reached a maximum of 22.3 million km2 on 28 September, whereas the 2015 ozone hole area reached a maximum of 27.1 million km2 on 9 October (see figure below).
More details about ozone hole observations in Antarctica is found in the WMO Antarctic Ozone Bulletins (see lower down in this Newsletter). The profile shown here will appear in the next Bulletin, which is planned for mid October. 
Daily valus of the area where total ozone is less than 220 DU. One can see that this area followed the long term median until mid October and after that it was lower than this median.
News from GESAMP

Atmospheric Input of Chemicals to the Oceans 


WMO-GAW is a long-term partner of the Joint Group of Experts on the Scientific Aspects of Marine Environmental Protection (GESAMP) and a sponsor of Working Group 38 concerned with atmospheric input of chemicals to the oceans. In 2016, WG 38 published several new scientific papers on atmospheric nitrogen inputs to the ocean.  Among these are a paper on past, present and future atmospheric nitrogen deposition to the ocean (Kanakidou et al., Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences), a paper that re-evaluates the magnitude and impacts of anthropogenic atmospheric nitrogen inputs on the ocean (Jickells et al., Global Biogeochemical Cycles), and a paper under review that compares atmospheric measurements with model based estimates of atmospheric nitrogen aerosol dry deposition (Baker et al., Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics). In 2017, WG 38 is embarking on two new topics: 1) the impact of ocean acidification on fluxes of atmospheric non-CO2 climate-active species, and 2) the changing atmospheric nutrient oceanic solubility. This work will commence with two simultaneous workshops  on 27 Feb – 2 Mar, 2017, at the University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK (funded by WMO, IMO, SCOR, UEA, and the United States National Science Foundation).  WG 38 is also sponsoring a session on Air-sea exchanges: Impacts on Biogeochemistry and Climate at the 2017 European Geosciences Union General Assembly (23-28 April, Vienna, Austria).


Illustration of the complex interaction of biological, chemical and physical processes at the air-sea interface and of the chemical species on which WP1 places a special emphasis. Modified from figure provided at SOLAS homepage (

Recent Meetings

SDS-WAS SC meeting, Asian Dust and Aerosol workshop and SDS-WAS Asian Node meeting, S. Korea

The second meeting of the Steering Committee of SDS-WAS was held on 20 September in Jeju, Korea, hosted by the Korea Meteorological Administration. On the occasion of this event, an International Asian Dust and Aerosol Workshop and a meeting of the SDS-WAS Regional Steering Group for Asia were organized in the same venue. The Steering Committee emphasized the interdisciplinary nature of the dust problem, thus requiring close collaboration between WMO and other United Nations agencies. For this reason, WHO, UNEP and UNCCD representatives had been invited to the meeting. The Committee discussed extensively on the difficulty of finding suitable products for dust monitoring, data assimilation and forecast evaluation, and investigation of long-term trends. It was decided to create a task team with the mission to write a white paper describing the state-of-the-art, existing gaps and recommendations for future actions. It was reported on the creation in Barbados of an SDS-WAS Regional Centre for the Americas, hosted by the Caribbean Institute for Meteorology and Hydrology. Also, on the steps done for the designation of China Meteorological Administration to host a Center for operational sand and dust forecast in Asia.
Participants at the SDS WAS Steering Committee meeting.
Workshop on Sand and Dust Storms, Istanbul, Turkey
The International Workshop on Sand and Dust Storms was held in Istanbul, Turkey, on 4-7 October 2016. It was hosted by the Turkish Ministry of Forestry and Water Affairs, the General Directorate of Combating Desertification and Erosion and the Turkish Meteorological Service with technical support from WMO, UNEP and UNCCD. The event was attended by 89 participants from international organizations and 16 countries (Algeria, Chad, ShinaChina, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Italy, Kuwait, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Spain, Sudan, Turkey and Turkmenistan). The workshop appreciated the joint efforts of WMO, UNCCD and UNEP in their coordination of activities on sand and dust storm (SDS) issues, in particular in writing the Global Assessment of SDS and a further initiative for elaboration of a Technical Guide for SDS. However, better co-ordination and harmonization between UN bodies and national agencies was requested to address the implementation of a West Asia regional research plan and the establishment of regional SDS-WAS centre(s) in the region. The workshop recommendations are available here.
Participants at the Istanbul SDS Workshop.
UN HABITAT-III conference
The 3rd United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development (Habitat III) was arranged by UN-Habitat in Quito, Ecuador between 17 and 20 October 2016. More than 45 000 persons registered for HABITAT-III and about 30 000 participated in the conference.
For the conference itself, WMO organised or was involved as co-organisers of the eight different events and presented the WMO statement at the key Plenary meeting.
The main outcome of HABITAT-III is the adoption of the New UN Urban Agenda (NUA) for the next 20 years. WMO participated in preparing the New UN Urban Agenda by contributing to the Focus Area 5: Urban Ecology and Environment by writing two main papers #17: Cities and Climate Change and Disaster Risk Management, and #15: Urban Resilience. It was stated at the conference that 90% of disasters in urban areas are of a hydrometeorological nature and they have increased due to climate change and due to the increasing risk exposure of the growing urban population. Therefore, the WMO cross-cutting urban focus is very important for realisation of the NUA and our suggested novel approach of Integrated urban weather, water, environment and climate services for sustainable development and multi-hazard early-warning systems for cities would be a key contribution of WMO to the New UN Urban Agenda. Many critical aspects of NUA for urban resilience and sustainable developments, e.g. the migration issues, could also be considered in WMO relevant programmes and activities. More information about this conference and WMO's participation can be found here.
Asia-Pacific GAW Workshop on Greenhouse Gases
The 8th Asia-Pacific GAW Workshop on Greenhouse Gases and the 3rd GAW Asia-Pacific Training and Education Course (GAPTEC) were arranged back-to-back in Seoul and Anmyeondo GAW station in the Republic of Korea from 17 to 21 October 2016. The workshop announcement can be found here.
Participants at the 8th Asia-Pacific GAW Workshop on Greenhouse Gases.
GAWTEC 15 years
The 31st Training Course of the Global Atmosphere Watch Training & Education Centre (GAWTEC) took place from 30 October–12 November 2016. In 2016 GAWTEC turned 15 years old, and that was celebrated with a ceremony on November 3rd in the Environmental Research Station Schneefernerhaus. During these 15 years 30 courses have been held and 341 participants from 63 different countries have received training.
Oksana Tarasova, Chief of the Atmospheric Environment Research Division of WMO, cutting the 15th anniversary cake at the celebration in the Schneefernerhaus station.
On the photo you see (from left to right): Dr. Holzmann (Vice president; German Environment Agency), Dr. Ries (head of GAW Global Station Zugspitze, German Environment Agency), Mr. Neumann (director Environmental Research Station Schneefernerhaus), Dr. Kratzer (Chief climate protection, Environmental Science and Technology, recycling economy Department; Bavarian State Ministry of the Environment and Consumer Protection) and Dr. Tarasova Chief, Atmospheric Environment Research Division, Research Department.
40th anniversary of the Cape Grim Global GAW station
In conjunction with the 40th anniversary of the Cape Grim observatory (Tasmania), the GAW Scientific Advisory Group (SAG) for Reactive Gases held its annual meeting at the station from 10-12 November. A summary of the SAG meeting can be found here.
The Cape Grim Observatory has been in operation for 40 years and this was celebrated at the station on 15 November. An article on the celebration can be found here.
Oksana Tarasova, Chief of the Atmospheric Environment Research Division of WMO, is handing over a diploma to Dr. Sue Barrell, Permanent Representative of Australia with WMO and to Dr. Larry Marshall, Chief Executive of  CSIRO.
Upcoming meetings
The 10th Meeting of the Ozone Reseach Managers, 28-30 March
The 10th Meeting of the Ozone Research Managers of the Parties to the Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer will take place in WMO, Geneva from 28 to 30 March. More information can be found here.
Participants at the 9th ORM in May 2014.
GAW Symposium 10-13 April
GAW symposia are organized every four years in order to gather the GAW research and observational community and existing and potential partners to reassess the programme and discuss issues of importance for a successful future. This next symposium will take place in the context of the new GAW Implementation Plan for 2016-2023 (GAW IP). More information about the GAW Symposium is found here.
Discussion at the posters at the 2013 GAW Symposium
6thWMO-GAW Expert Workshop on Volatile Organic Compounds 24 - 26 May 2017,Boulder, USA
The 6thWMO-GAW Expert Workshop on Volatile Organic Compounds takes place from 24 - 26 May 2017 at INSTAAR, University of Colorado, Boulder, USA.

The aim of this workshop is to review the progress in global volatile organic compound (VOC) observations, to discuss new and emerging measurement techniques, and to assess progress in building up quality assurance and global data archiving programs. This workshop is organized by the Scientific Advisory Group of Reactive Gases (SAG) of the Global Atmosphere Watch (GAW) Programme, and hosted by the Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research (INSTAAR). It will take place in the Sustainability, Energy and Environment Complex (SEEC) on the East Campus of the University of Colorado, Boulder ( This meeting continues the series of expert meetings that are dedicated to promotion of VOC observations by the global community, its quality assurance, and data interpretations. Contributions from the GAW community, other research communities (including biogenic VOC and air quality) are welcome.

The VOC expert workshop will be held right after the 45th NOAA Global Monitoring Division (GMD) Annual Conference, May 23-24, giving participants the opportunity to attend both meetings. More information on the NOAA GMD conference is posted at

You are invited to submit an abstract for the VOC workshop to be presented orally (up to 15 min) or as a poster in the field of your expertise related to VOCs observations and analysis, laboratory studies, comparison campaigns, standard, and other VOC observation related issues. Contributions on VOC standard generation and quality control are particularly welcome. We also encourage contributions on biogenic VOC measurements (BVOC). Posters will be on display during the entire meetings. Please send your abstract to the WMO Secretarial ( with a copy to
The abstract submission deadline is 28 February 2017.

More information can be found on the GAW "Upcoming Meetings" web page.

Meeting List

A list of meetings taking place in 2017 can be found here
Recent Reports and Bulletins
The 2016 issue of the WMO Greenhouse Gas Bulletin
The 2016 edition of the WMO Greenhouse Gas Bulletin, with data until the end of 2015, was published on 24 October 2016. For the first time the annually averaged global mean CO2 mole fraction reached 400 ppm. The cover story of the Bulletin deals with the importance of El Niño as a regulator of the global mean temperature as well as the growth rate of the atmospheric CO2 abundance. Inside the Bulletin there is an article describing the Integrated Global Greenhouse Gas Information System (IG3IS). The Bulletin can be found here in all six UN languages.
The cover story of the 2016 issue of the Greenhouse Gas Bulletin is about the importance of the El Niño.
The Asia-Pacific GAW Greenhouse Gas Newsletter 2016
The Korean Meteorological Adminstration publishes every year a newsletter on greenhouse gas observations and other GAW activities. The 2016 issue can be found here.

2016 Activity Report from the Barcelona Dust Forecast Center
The Barcelona Dust Forecast Center is a WMO Regional Specialized Meteorological Center with activity specialisation on Atmospheric Sand and Dust Forecast. The 2016 Activity Report can be found here.

From the 5th training course on WMO SDS-WAS products.

The WMO Antarctic Ozone Bulletin no. 2 / 2016 has been published.

It can be found here.
New Projects
NextGEOSS is a project funded under the Horizon 2020 Programme of the European Commission. NextGEOSS project, a European contribution to GEOSS, proposes to develop the next generation centralised hub for Earth Observation data, where the users can connect to access data and deploy EO-based applications. WMO/GAW participates in the NextGEOSS project together with three institutions that host GAW Central Facilities: 1) MeteoSwiss who host GAWSIS, NILU who host the World Data Centre for Aerosols and the World Data Centre for Reactive Gases and 3) DLR who hosts the World Data Centre for Remote Sensing of the Atmosphere. The goal is to improve the interoperability of GAW data centres and data centres that host data for Contributing Networks. More information on this project can be found at the project web site.
New GAW Reports

Since the previous Newsletter, two GAW reports have been published:

GAW 231 - Fourth WMO Filter Radiometer Comparison (FRC-IV), Davos, Switzerland, 28 September - 16 October 2015, 65 pp. November 2016
GAW 230 - Airborne Dust: from R&D to Operational Forecast. 2013-2015 Activity Report of the SDS-WAS Regional Center for Northern Africa, Middle East and Europe.

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