Direct oceanic emissions unlikely to account for the missing source of atmospheric carbonyl sulfide

Sinikka T. Lennartz, Christa A. Marandino, Marc Von Hobe, Pau Cortes, Birgit Quack, Rafel Simo, Dennis Booge, Andrea Pozzer, Tobias Steinhoff, Damian L. Arevalo-Martinez, Corinna Kloss, Astrid Bracher, Elliot Atlas, Kirstin Krüger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

The climate active trace-gas carbonyl sulfide (OCS) is the most abundant sulfur gas in the atmosphere. A missing source in its atmospheric budget is currently suggested, resulting from an upward revision of the vegetation sink. Tropical oceanic emissions have been proposed to close the resulting gap in the atmospheric budget. We present a bottom-up approach including (i) new observations of OCS in surface waters of the tropical Atlantic, Pacific and Indian oceans and (ii) a further improved global box model to show that direct OCS emissions are unlikely to account for the missing source. The box model suggests an undersaturation of the surface water with respect to OCS integrated over the entire tropical ocean area and, further, global annual direct emissions of OCS well below that suggested by top-down estimates. In addition, we discuss the potential of indirect emission from CS2 and dimethylsulfide (DMS) to account for the gap in the atmospheric budget. This bottom-up estimate of oceanic emissions has implications for using OCS as a proxy for global terrestrial CO2 uptake, which is currently impeded by the inadequate quantification of atmospheric OCS sources and sinks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)385-402
Number of pages18
JournalAtmospheric Chemistry and Physics
Volume17
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 10 2017

    Fingerprint

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atmospheric Science

Cite this

Lennartz, S. T., Marandino, C. A., Von Hobe, M., Cortes, P., Quack, B., Simo, R., Booge, D., Pozzer, A., Steinhoff, T., Arevalo-Martinez, D. L., Kloss, C., Bracher, A., Atlas, E., & Krüger, K. (2017). Direct oceanic emissions unlikely to account for the missing source of atmospheric carbonyl sulfide. Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, 17(1), 385-402. https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-17-385-2017