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Atmosphere 2015, 6(5), 623-640; doi:10.3390/atmos6050623

Influence of Climate Change and Meteorological Factors on Houston’s Air Pollution: Ozone a Case Study

Institute for Climate and Atmospheric Science, Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, University of Houston, Houston, TX 77204, USA
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Kimitaka Kawamura
Received: 3 April 2015 / Revised: 1 May 2015 / Accepted: 7 May 2015 / Published: 12 May 2015
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Abstract

We examined the past 23 years of ground-level O3 data and selected meteorological parameters in Houston, Texas, which historically has been one of the most polluted cities in the United States. Both 1-h and 8-h O3 exceedances have been reduced significantly down to single digit yearly occurrences. We also found that the frequency of southerly flow has increased by a factor of ~2.5 over the period 1990–2013, likely suppressing O3 photochemistry and leading to a “cleaner” Houston environment. The sea breeze was enhanced greatly from 1990 to 2013 due to increasing land surface temperatures, increased pressure gradients, and slightly stronger on-shore winds. These patterns driven by climate change produce a strengthening of the sea breeze, which should be a general result at locations worldwide. View Full-Text
Keywords: O3 mixing ratio; meteorological factors; southerly flow O3 mixing ratio; meteorological factors; southerly flow
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Liu, L.; Talbot, R.; Lan, X. Influence of Climate Change and Meteorological Factors on Houston’s Air Pollution: Ozone a Case Study. Atmosphere 2015, 6, 623-640.

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