Description: Methane is an important greenhouse gas which affects the atmosphere directly by the absorption and re-emission of infrared radiation as well as indirectly, through chemical interactions. Emissions of several important greenhouse gases (GHGS) including methane are increasing, mainly due to human activity. Higher concentrations of these gases in the atmosphere are projected to cause a decrease in the amount of infrared radiation escaping to space, and a subsequent warming of global climate. It is therefore vital to understand not only the causes of increased production of methane and other GHGS, but the effect of higher GHG concentrations on climate, and the possibilities for reductions of these emissions. In GRI-UIUC methane project, the role of methane in climate change and greenhouse gas abatement strategies is being studied using several distinct approaches. First, a detailed treatment of the mechanisms controlling each important methane source and sink, and hence the atmospheric concentration of methane, is being developed for use with the UIUC Integrated Science Assessment Model. The focus of this study is to resolve the factors which determine methane emissions and removal, including human population, land use, energy demand, global temperature, and regional concentrations of the hydroxyl radical, carbon monoxide, nitrous oxides, non-methane hydrocarbons, water vapor, tropospheric and stratospheric ozone.
Date: February 1, 1997
Creator: Dignon, J.; Grant, K.; Grossman, A.; Wuebles, D.; Brasseur, G.; Madronich, S. et al.
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