The first objective is to investigate efficient reduction strategies by designing emission scenarios in accordance with the objectives of the Minamata Convention. For this, policy scenarios will be developed and translated into emission datasets (ESR15). Based on the model results, in collaboration with WP5, the impact and effectiveness of different policy scenarios will be determined. Based on a model inter-comparison study (MIT/Harvard) the uncertainty of the model results will be determined. Finally, the regional models (ESR12,13) will be used to investigate the impact on specific ecosystems in Europe. The second objective is to examine how these reduction strategies might impact ocean-atmosphere exchange processes based on the information/relationships found in the analysis of existing long-term atmospheric Hg time-series and field studies as well as past emission data (ESR14). Finally, the objective of WP6 is data management and dissemination of measurement and model results, in formats suitable for purpose, to policy makers and the public.

Description of Work

Task 6.1: ESR14 will investigate atmosphere-ocean Hg interactions (e.g., short- to long-term-scales effects, source vs. sink function of oceans, anthropogenic vs. natural vs. legacy re-emission ratios) at HZG by exploiting long-term atmospheric Hg datasets (Mace Head, Ireland (MHD, started 1995) and Cape Point, South Africa (CPT, started 1997), and Amsterdam Island (started in 2012)). In addition, past emission data sets will be evaluated with respect to self-consistency and consistency with the long-term observations, seconded by AMAP. JRC and MIT. ESR14 will intensively collaborate with ESR1, ESR13 and ESR 15. Modelling studies on a global scale will be performed (MSC-E and CNR-IIA) to characterise the sensitivity of model results to parametrisations of exchange processes in the global Hg cycle. This will allow estimates of the uncertainty in the source/sink relationships and natural/anthropogenic/legacy roles to made (MSC-E and CNR-IIA). This will support the emission scenario development with information on trends in natural Hg cycling and re-emissions.

Task 6.2: ESR 15 in collaboration with scientists from AMAP (who create the official global Hg emission inventories) will construct policy scenarios for Hg emission reductions in line with the Minamata Convention. The EDGAR emission inventory from the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre (JRC) in Ispra will be used as an independent dataset. Regional high-resolution emission scenarios for Europe will be developed using the SMOKE Europe emission model developed and maintained at HZG. In collaboration with the MIT and MSC-E, ESR15 will perform model inter-comparison runs to constrain the model’s uncertainty. One key aspect of WP6 is the dissemination of results to support the implementation process of the Minamata Convention. For this, the partners UNEP, AMAP, EEB and GEO, will be involved from the beginning of the project to implement a dissemination strategy. All data created during the project will be available via the GMOS cyber infrastructure (CNR IIA).

Expected Results


Improved understanding of (i) ocean-atmosphere exchange processes and their effects on short- to long-term-scales, (ii) the role of the oceans in the global Hg budget and their source- vs. sink-function, (iii) (re-)construction of past emission data sets (iv) the ratio of anthropogenic vs. natural emissions, (v) the role of oceanic legacy re-emissions on a long-term perspective, (vi) the relevance of oceanic vs. terrestrial causes, such as SST vs. biomass burning (vi) Seasonality in emission based on long term data and emission inventories (1 paper). Supporting the emission scenario development through the analysis of Hg long-term trends and the global model development through an improved ocean atmosphere exchange parameterization.


Global emission perturbation runs that consider future reductions in line with the recommendation of the Minamata Convention. Validate models through an intercomparison exercise. Identify the source receptor relationship of Hg long-range transport for Europe. Demonstrate the impact of emission reductions on atmospheric concentrations and deposition and Hg concentrations in fish (2 papers) (in collaboration with ESR12-13-14).


Del. Deliverable Title – Science deliverables WP Lead Type Diss. Due
D6.1 ESR14: 2 papers (i) paper on parametrization of ocean-atmosphere exchange processes, (ii) paper on historic trends in Hg concentrations and their relation to emission data, supporting emission scenarios development & long-term trends 6, 1,2, 3, 5 HZG R PU M45
D6.2 ESR15 2 papers: (i) global emission scenario development and impacts on global Hg concentrations and deposition; (ii) novel global model performance and simulations including model intercomparison (collaboration with ESR13) 6,1,3,5 CNRS R PU M46


No Title WP(s) Lead Benef. Due Date Means of Verification
9 DOM: desorption kinetics and refractory concentrations of Hg 3, 6 SU M30 Data verified and reported
15 Long-term databases compiled 5, 6 HZG M26 Data availability (US, CNR-IIA, UGA, HZG)
16 Emission perturbation scenarios 5, 6 CNR-IIA M30 CNR-IIA/HZG: Emission datasets for policy scenarios done
17 Finalization of global model runs 6 HZG M40 Boundary condition data set delivered to WP6
24 PhD thesis submitted 1-6 JSI M48 All beneficiaries: PhD thesis approved by (co)supervisors