Neutralization of soil aerosol and its impact on the distribution of acid rain over east Asia: Observations and model results

Zifa Wang, Hajime Akimoto, Itsushi Uno

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84 Citations (Scopus)


A comprehensive Air Quality Prediction Modeling System is applied to simulate the pH values in precipitation and to investigate neutralization by soil aerosols and their influence on the distribution of acid rain over east Asia. A modified deflation module is designed to provide explicit information on the soil aerosol loading. Numerical simulation was performed for 1 year, from 15 December 1998 to 31 December 1999. Wet deposition monitoring data at 17 sites of the Acid Deposition Monitoring Network in east Asia in addition to State Environmental Protection Agency data were used to evaluate the model, and a reasonable agreement was obtained. Observed evidence clearly shows that in northern China acid deposition is heavily influenced and buffered by natural soil dust from desert and semiarid areas. The observed mean rainwater pH value in northern China is the highest, between 6.0 and 7.2, while in southern China, where many areas severely impacted by acid precipitation are located, the pH value is much lower, between 3.5 and 5. In Japan the mean pH value is 4.7, significantly higher than that in southern China, while in South Korea the pH value is intermediate between those in northern China and Japan. The model is capable of reproducing this geographical distribution of rainwater pH over east Asia. The simulation results for 1999 demonstrated strong neutralization of precipitation by soil aerosols over northeast Asia, and the distribution pattern of acid rain was also altered. The annual mean pH values in northern China and Korea show a remarkable increase of 0.8-2.5, while the increase in mean pH values over southern China and Japan are less than 0.1. The neutralization effects vary by season, with the greatest influence in spring, when pH values increased by 0.1-0.4 in Japan, 0.5-1.5 in Korea, and more man 2 m northern China.

Original languageEnglish
Article number4389
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research Atmospheres
Issue number19
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2002

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geophysics
  • Forestry
  • Oceanography
  • Aquatic Science
  • Ecology
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Soil Science
  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Earth-Surface Processes
  • Atmospheric Science
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Palaeontology


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