This workshop convenes many of the nation's experts on atmospheric measurements of biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOCs) to define the current state of the science in this area. The emphasis will be on the Southeastern U.S., which previous field studies and modeling suggest is a "hotspot" for BVOC emissions to the atmosphere. BVOCs are a globally significant emission to the atmosphere; they have a major impact on ozone production, with secondary effects on ecosystems and human health. New techniques and infrastructure will also be discussed. A major goal of the workshop is to bring together established senior researchers and early career scientists with new and different perspectives to provide opportunities for professional interactions in a focused and productive forum. The discussion outcomes will be reported in a peer-reviewed journal publication.

Project Report

. The Southern Oxidant and Aerosol Study (SOAS) workshop to discern the most urgent and critical science questions regarding biosphere-atmosphere interactions was held at Rutgers University, May 26-27, 2011 Annmarie G. Carlton, Dept. of Environmental Science, Rutgers University; The Southeast has not warmed like other regions of the U.S. in response to global climate change. The anomaly may be related to aerosols derived from biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOCs) and the related aerosol direct and indirect radiative effects. To understand the causal relationships resulting in this trend, a focused workshop with approximately 30 atmospheric scientists with experimental (field and laboratory) and modeling backgrounds met to discern the most critical open science questions regarding biosphere-atmosphere interactions. Junior scientists were purposely paired with senior investigators to discuss the most pressing issues in atmospheric chemistry with an emphasis on climate. An objective of the meeting was to formulate targeted science questions and broadly discuss the tools, approaches and measurements needed to answer them. We propose that as a community we focus our varied talents to answer the following critical open science questions. Regional and global models indicate the Southeastern US is a good "laboratory" in which to address them: 1. What are the magnitudes, variations, and controlling processes for biosphere?atmosphere fluxes of oxidants and reactive carbon and nitrogen across spatial scales relevant to air quality and climate? 2. What are the chemical and physical processes that control the oxidation of BVOC? How do anthropogenic emissions alter the distribution of the BVOC oxidation products, and what are the implications for the formation of ozone, reactive nitrogen, and aerosol precursors? 3. To what extent do anthropogenic influences impact biogenic SOA formation? 4. How does aqueous chemistry and cloud processing of BVOCs and related aerosols influence atmospheric SOA? 5. What are the climate?relevant properties of biogenic aerosol (VOC of biogenic origin)? A workshop summary was published in Eos, the newspaper of the American Geophysical Union and details are freely available on our website: Out of the workshop led to a grass roots, community effort to visit the Southeastern U.S. for a field study. A wiki was developed to facilitate wide involvement: The organizers gratefully acknowledge workshop support from the U.S. National Science Foundation (Award No.AGS-1135038).

National Science Foundation (NSF)
Division of Atmospheric and Geospace Sciences (AGS)
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Sylvia A. Edgerton
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Rutgers University
New Brunswick
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