WP7: Integrated Tools and Implementation


Coordinated by R. Sokhi (UH-CAIR) and H. Schluenzen (UHam)



Summary of progress toward objectives

The main objectives of this WP are listed below:
O7.1 To synthesise information on emissions, meteorology, processes, air quality, climate and model developments from other WPs.
O7.2 To synthesise knowledge and stimulate scientific consensus on the required complexity of model systems for mitigation/policy needs.
O7.3 To develop a European framework for coupling urban-regional-global modelling tools to examine science and policy problems identified in WP8.
O7.4 To apply integrated tools to study the air quality and climate change interactions and impact for selected megacities on urban, regional to global scales.
O7.5 To make recommendations on the improved understanding of megacity impacts on regional and global air quality and climate.
The first 18 months has focussed on developing a work plan for the WP in particular providing a framework for producing the synthesis of knowledge. Each WP leader has been responsible for including and 'integrating' element into their work plans and will identify how their outcomes will help to answer the key science questions. Progress on producing a European framework for online and offline coupling models for air quality and climate studies is already underway and a report has been produced (D7.1). Progress has also been made to identify the cities to which the integrated tools will be applied. London has been used as a case study to develop a strategy of implementing meteorological, chemistry-transport and climate models for regional and global scales within a 'common' approach. This is being undertaken in close cooperation with WP4 and WP5. There will be a responsible partner for each Case Study City. In the case of Paris all partners will be involved. A Case Study plan is being developed for London and currently involves UH-CAIR, UK Met Office, KCL, Cambridge and CNRS.    


Summary details for each relevant WP deliverables, milestones, and tasks

Task 7.1: Synthesis of outcomes of WPs - in relation to scientific knowledge and adequacy of models for mitigation measures and policy needs (lead: UH-CAIR + UHam, DMI, MPIC, FORTH, CNRS, FMI)
The task spans most of the duration of the project and involves cooperation with other WPs. A key aim is to develop common framework for modeling tools which allow the linkages between air quality and climate change to investigated. The task considers issues related to emissions, air quality and climate aspects on regional to global scale. The framework (as developed in Task 7.2) will address multi-scales (urban to global), multi-pollutant (e.g. O3, PM, NO2) and air quality climate feedback processes (e.g. for aerosols). This task will provide the scientific basis for the integrated modeling framework. This Task will continually interact with other WPs to ensure that interfaces, modules and parameterisation schemes meet the requirements of Task 7.2. Consequently, all partners will be involved in this task with key contributions from UH-CAIR, UHam, DMI, MPIC, FORTH, CNRS and FMI. The outputs of WP2 will also be important for simpler modelling tools which will be examined and developed in WP4 but implemented for selected megacities in Task 7.4 of this WP.
In the first phase of the project the following key high level tasks have been considered: T1: Develop and evaluate integrated methodologies to improve emission data from megacities on regional through global scales; (Objective 1); T8: Develop improved integrated tools for prediction of air pollution in megacities; (Objective 3); and T9: Evaluate these integrated modelling tools and use them in case studies for selected megacities; (Objective 3).

These Tasks are essential to develop the integrated approaches needed to undertake the megacity case studies and will the following questions (for example) such as to be addressed:
How do megacities affect air quality on regional and global scales? What is the range of influence for major air pollutants (ozone, particulate matter, etc.)? (Objective 1)
What are the major physical and chemical transformations of air pollutants as they are moving away from megacities? What happens to the organic particulate matter, volatile organic compounds, etc? (Objective 1)
How large is the current impact of megacities on regional and global climate? (Objective 2)
What are key feedbacks between air quality, local climate and global climate change relevant to megacities? For example, how will climate change affect air quality in megacities? (Objective 2)
What type of modelling tools should be used for the simulation of multi-scale megacity air quality - climate interactions? (Objective 3)

Task 7.2: Formulation and development of an integration framework (lead: DMI + UH-CAIR, UHam, FMI, ARIANET, UKMO)
A framework for mode integration has been developed in collaboration with COST 728. The framework incorporates the following three levels of integration: Level 1 - One way, Level 2 - two way, Level 3 - fully coupled.
Processes involving nonlinear interactions and feedbacks between emissions, chemistry and meteorology require coherent and robust approaches using integrated/online methods. This is particularly important where multiple spatial and temporal scales are involved with a complex mixture of pollutants from large sources, as in the case of megacities. The impacts of megacities on the atmospheric environment are tied directly to anthropogenic activities as sources of air pollution.
These impacts act on urban, regional and global scales. Previously there were only limited attempts to integrate this wide range of scales for regional and global air quality and climate applications. Indeed, progress on scale and process interactions has been limited because of the tendency to focus mainly on issues arising at specific scales. However the inter-relating factors between megacities and their impacts on the environment rely on the whole range of scales and thus should be considered within an integrated framework bringing together the treatment of emissions, chemistry and meteorology in a consistent modelling approach. Numerical weather and air pollution prediction models are now able to approach urban-scale resolution, as detailed input data are becoming more often available. As a result the conventional concepts of down- (and up-) scaling for air pollution prediction need revision along the lines of integration of multi-scale meteorological and chemical transport models. MEGAPOLI aims at developing a comprehensive integrated modelling framework usable by the research community which will be tested and implemented for a range of megacities within Europe and across the world to increase our understanding of how large urban areas and other hotspots affect air quality and climate on multiple scales.
The integration strategy in MEGAPOLI is not focused on any particular meteorological and/or air pollution modelling system. The approach considers an open integrated framework with flexible architecture and with a possibility of incorporating different meteorological and chemical transport models. The following levels of integration and orders of complexity are considering:
  • Level 1 - One way (Global -> regional -> urban), Models: All
  • Level 2 - Two way (Global <-> regional <-> urban), Models: ECHAM5/MESSy, MATCH-MPIC, UM-WRF-CMAQ, SILAM, M-SYS, FARM .
  • Order A - off-line, meteorology / emissions -> chemistry, Models: All
  • Order B - partly online, meteorology -> chemistry & emissions, Models: UKCA, DMAT,  M-SYS, UM-WRF-Chem, SILAM
  • Order C - fully online, meteorology <-> chemistry & emissions, Models: UKCA, WRF-Chem, Enviro-HIRLAM, ECHAM5/MESSy.
Where required new or improved interfaces for coupling (direct links between emissions, chemistry and meteorology at every time step) are developing. Common formats for data exchange (such as GRIB, netCDF formats) is defined to ease the implementation and to help combine the different models via agreed data exchange protocols. The current, chemistry schemes (tropospheric, stratospheric and UTLS) are examined as to their suitability for simulating the impact of complex emissions from megacities. The coupled model systems will be applied to different European megacities during the development phases of the project. The framework will be used and demonstrated for selected models including UKCA (MetO), WRF-Chem (UH-CAIR), Enviro-HIRLAM (DMI), STEM/FARM (ARIANET), M-SYS (UHam) and ECHAM5/MESSy and UKCA on different scales.
This part of the work is linked to the requirements and use of simpler tools for assessing air quality impacts within megacities (OSCAR - UH-CAIR, AIRQUIS - NILU, URBIS - TNO).

Task 7.3: Evaluation of integrated methods and models for risk/impact quantification (lead: UHam)

Considerable progress on model evaluation has been made through the COST 728 Action. MEGAPOLI will extend this work and include evaluation of risk and impact based models. This work will form part of the next phase. An extensive review of model evaluation methodologies can be found in Schluenzen and Sokhi (2008).

Task 7.4: Implementation of integrated tools to megacities (lead: WMO with UH-CAIR)

An initial list of cities and responsible partners which will be involved in the implementation of the integrated models is provided below:
Paris (All partners)
London (UH-CAIR, UK Met Office, Cambridge, KCL and CNRS)
Shanghai (M-SYS, UHam)
Bangkok (WRF-Chem , UH-CAIR)
A London case study technical plan is being produced to investigate the impact of climate change on air quality of London and the surrounding region. It will serve as an example for the other case study cities. The main elements of the protocols include:
Contributing partners:
KCL - measurements (WP2),
Met Office - UKCA and Climate,
UH-CAIR - WRF-CMAQ, WRF-Chem applications,
UCam - Regional UKCA,
CNRS - Simulation with CHIMERE,
FMI - collaboration with UH-CAIR.
Involvement of stakeholders and data availability
   Local agencies: Greater London Authority (GLA)
   Transport for London (TfL)
   National government: DEFRA
Available measurements: London Air Quality Network (long term data) with some meteorological data (urban and airport)
Emissions - NAEI - 2006, 1 x 1 km incorporated into TNO/MEGAPOLI European emissions.
Science questions to be investigated and modelling tools:
-  What key meteorological processes are responsible for LRT resulting from and entering into London (including seasonal variations)? - 'megacity plume study'
Year 2005
- How do the global air pollution levels of aerosols and gaseous species affect London's air quality and hence population exposure?
Global model BC:  UM-UKCA (UCam), GEOS-Chem (UH-CAIR)
Regional model: WRF-CMAQ
Year 2005
- How will London's air quality be affected by anthropogenic emission changes for years 2020 and 2050?
HadGEM2 with UKCA chemistry (without climate change effects)
WRF-CMAQ, WRF-Chem (UH-CAIR), UM (40km) (UCam)
- How will London's air quality be affected by anthropogenic climate change for years 2020 and 2050?
HadGEM2 with UKCA chemistry
WRF-CMAQ, WRF-Chem (UH-CAIR), UM (40km) (UCam).

Task 7.5: Recommendations on the scientific analysis of megacity impacts on regional and global air quality and climate (lead: UH-CAIR + all)

As the outcomes from WPs are produced they will be linked to the key science questions. It is expected that there will also be direct links to WP8 on mitigation and policy.

Milestone M7.1 (Determination of characteristics of the initial integration framework and model evaluation; lead: MPIC and UHam) met on the schedule (month 12).

Deliverable D7.1: (Framework for integrating tools; lead by DMI) had been completed and is available
Baklanov A. (Ed.) (2010): Framework for integrating tools. Deliverable D7.1, MEGAPOLI Scientific Report 10-11, MEGAPOLI-14-REP-2010-03, 68p, http://megapoli.dmi.dk/publ/MEGAPOLI_sr10-11.pdf

Deliverable D7.2: (Evaluation of integrated tools; lead by UHam) had been completed and is available
Schlünzen K.H., M. Haller (Eds) (2011): Evaluation of Integrated Tools. Deliverable D7.2, MEGAPOLI Scientific Report 11-03, MEGAPOLI-29-REP-2011-03, 51p, http://megapoli.dmi.dk/publ/MEGAPOLI_sr11-03.pdf

Deliverable D7.3: (Implementation of Integrated Models for Megacities. lead by UH-CAIR) had been completed and is available
Francis X.V., Sokhi R.S. (Eds) (2011): Implementation of Integrated Models for Megacities. Deliverable D7.3, MEGAPOLI Scientific Report 11-21, MEGAPOLI-47-REP-2011-09, 74p, http://megapoli.dmi.dk/publ/MEGAPOLI_sr11-21.pdf

Significant results: Methodologies and scientific achievements related to WP including partners' contributions

The main result is that the framework for integrating models has been agreed in collaboration with COST 728. After further refinement a report has been produced by month 18 (D7.1). Contributions from each partner involved in the WP are summarised below:


A framework for integrated modelling of air quality and climate impacts of megacities has been developed. The framework builds upon the work of COST 728.
A few initiatives for integrated tools do exist in Europe, e.g. ENVIRO-HIRLAM (see for instance Chenevez et al. 2004; Baklanov et al., 2008; Korsholm, 2009), PRISM (Valcke et al. 2006), UKCA (in development, http://www.ukca.ac.uk), COSMOS (in development, http://cosmos.enes.org), M-SYS (Trukenmuller et al., 2004) and would eventually be considered in MEGAPOLI. Similar frameworks are being developed in the USA, such as ESMF (e.g. Dickenson et al. 2002). The WRF-Chem model (Grell et al. 2005), which has been developed within the WRF collaborative framework, will also be considered. This integrated model has been successfully applied to the Mexico City metropolitan area in order to study the origin and evolution of ozone for a pollution event in May 2003 (Tie et al. 2007). The strategy adopted in MEGAPOLI will benefit from the existing integrated frameworks and eventually would be embedded within a European modelling strategy. With the application to megacities in mind, the 'integration' needs to be fully achieved down to urban scales (e.g. Baklanov et al. 2002, 2008). MEGAPOLI is thus addressed the difficulties arising from the treatment of the multi-scale and multi-process nature of the integration procedure down to the city scale. Main advantages of on-line & off-line modelling approaches are the following (Baklanov et al., 2008):
On-line coupling
  • Only one grid; No interpolation in space;
  • No time interpolation;
  • Physical parameterizations are the same; No inconsistencies;
  • All 3D meteorological variables are available at the right time (each time step); No restriction in variability of meteorological fields;
  • Possibility to consider feedback mechanisms;
  • Does not need meteo- pre/post-processors resulting in the reduction of IO operations
Off-line coupling
  • Possibility of independent parameterizations;
  • Low computational cost (if meteorology data are already available and no need to run meteorological model);
  • More suitable for ensembles and operational activities;
  • Easier to use for the inverse modelling and adjoint problem;
  • Independence of atmospheric pollution model runs on meteorological model computations;
  • More flexible grid construction and generation for ACT models,
  • Suitable for emission scenarios analysis and air quality management.
A key issue related to integrated modelling is to decide on the methodologies for coupling the chemistry and transport modules of the models. A step towards standardisation of interfacing was successfully taken for GCM modelling by the European PRISM initiative and their OASIS coupler and similar recent developments. Whether these couplers will become general on the global scale and will be adapted to the regional and local scale for the general user also in AQ applications remains to be seen in the future. Other interface devices like urban interfaces/postprocessors to MetMs will address more specialized and smaller communities of users.
A general recommendation for all designers of interfaces and couplers may be to build interfaces with flexible, generalized input-output interfaces and as modular as possible also concerning their internal structure and contents. Comprehensive documentation as well as user guidelines and workshops will enhance the applicability of the interface. Provision as open-source software will also increase the acceptance and use of these interfaces.  


FORTH contribution involves mainly the quantitative assessment of the changes in pollutant concentrations for different emission control scenarios for the European target megacities, Mexico City and North-Eastern US. FORTH has investigated the contributions of different sources and source regions to the fine particulate matter concentrations to across the board reductions of the emissions of its major precursors for Mexico City. These insights can guide the development of emission control policies and the corresponding scenarios. FORTH plan during the 2nd year is to use the corresponding emission inventories for different policies/ scenarios and estimate their effects on the gas and particulate pollutant concentrations in our target megacities.


The ARIANET team has conducted long-term evaluations of air pollution in the Po Valley region. The chemistry schemes in the global models used at MPIC and MetO have been substantially improved and extended (e.g., Folberth et al., 2009ab) and, for instance, oxidation pathways have been studied (Butler, 2009). The effect of megacities on the chemistry of the global atmosphere has been determined (Butler and Lawrence, 2009).


Meteorological runs for Paris with the MEMO model have been performed by AUTH. Use of urban morphology data and a two-way coupling methodology with the microscale model (Tsegas et al, 2008; Tsegas et al, 2009) is being explored for a nested grid of 300 x 300 km2 and 50 x 50 km2 domains. An online version of MEMO/MARS is also being developed to understand aerosol effects.


A methodology based on CHIMERE modelling systems has been developed by CNRS-LISA to simulate meso-to-urban scale chemical pollution transport for the Paris area during the 2009 campaign period. CNRS will also contribute to the London case study and will provide comparative data along with other model simulations.


Natural emissions including fires have been calculated and employed in an offline SILAM model on European scales. A morphological database has also been developed for Paris providing finer resolved information for advanced models.  


Global climate model HadGEM2 is being employed to model the impact of megacities on global scales. The model outputs will be used to provide boundary conditions for regional models. In particular a combination of global and regional models will be used for the London case study. 


A key aspect of MEGAPLI is to develop a strategy to evaluate the performance of complex models and to quantify the main uncertainties. UHam is coordinating this activity based on the framework developed in COST 728.


Protocols for a London case study have been developed. Model preparation have been started and emissions have been prepared for 2005 and for July 2009 (for Paris). Through collaboration with global climate modellers (UCam and MetO), an integrated framework will be demonstrated to quantify the impact of climate change on London's air quality. Such a methodology will also allow the influence of global boundary conditions on regional scale air quality to be quantified. In order to investigate the effect of climate change on air quality simulations will be performed with HadGEM2 and WRF/CMAQ for 2005 (base year), 2020 and 2050.


Specific applications are being tailored for selected case studies including non-European megacities. USTUTT is actively developing policy related scenarios as well as mitigation options for use for case studies


A direct link between WP7 and WP8 is provided by WMO. Outcomes of WP7 will feed into Task 8.3 which deals with a methodology for impact assessment.

Socio-economic relevance and policy implications

Implications of implementing integrated models to address air quality and climate change issues is highly relevant for policy makers and hence to society in general. These implications will be explored further through dialogue and cooperation with other projects and organisations.


Discussion and conclusion
WP7 relies on timely outcomes from the other WPs. Each WP leader is responsible to identify specific deliverables that will facilitate the synergy of knowledge and development of integrated modelling methodologies that bring together air quality and climate, multiple scales and multiple pollutants.
Key developments include:
  • Requirements for an integrated modelling framework has been developed with collaboration with COST 728.
  • An initial selection of megacities and responsible partners has been made. The availability of emission and measured data is being explored and a common evaluation framework is being developed (in collaboration with COST 728).
  • Harmonised approaches: where possible common and harmonised approaches are being implemented. They will include aspects of model evaluation including the use of the ENSEMBLE System  (in collaboration with COST 728 and JRC).
  • London case study has been defined to investigate the impact of climate change on air quality within the city and in the surrounding regions.


List of WP7 reports, publications, presentations

Korsholm U.S., A. Baklanov, A. Gross, J.H.Sorensen, "In the importance of the meteorological coupling interval in dispersion modeling during ETEX-1". Atmos. Environ., 2009, doi: 10.1016/j.atmosenv.2008.11.017.

Baklanov A., "Integrated Meteorology and Atmospheric Chemical Transport Modelling Perspectives on Strategy for Hirlam/Harmonie". HIRLAM Newsletter, vol. no. 53, pp. 56-68, (2008).

Baklanov A., U. S. Korsholm, A. Mahura, C. Petersen, A. Gross, "Enviro-HIRLAM: on-line coupled modelling of urban meteorology and air pollution, Advances in Science and Research, Vol. 2, pp. 41-46, (2008).

Baklanov, A., 2009: Chemical weather forecasting: a new concept and methodology of two-way integrated meso-scale modelling. In: Mesometeorology and Air pollution. COST728 Special Issue of Ukr. Hydrometeor. Journal, Vol. 4, pp. 109-120.

R. San Jose, A. Baklanov, R.S. Sokhi, K. Karatzas, J.L. Perez. Air Quality Modeling. Encyclopaedia of Ecology, 2008, pp. 111-123

R.-M. Hu, R.S. Sokhi, B.E.A. Fisher. New algorithms and their application for satellite remote sensing of surface PM2.5 and aerosol absorption. Journal of Aerosol Science 40 (2009) 394-402

R S Sokhi (ed) Atmospheric Environment Urban Air Quality - Selected Papers from the 6th International Conference on Urban Air Quality. Volume 43, Issue 31,  pp. 4669-4854 (October 2009)

Monks, P.S., C. Granier, S. Fuzzi, A. Stohl, M. Williams, H. Akimoto, M. Amman, A. Baklanov, U. Baltensperger, I. Bey, N. Blakem, R.S. Blake, K. Carslaw, O.R. Cooper, F. Dentener, D. Fowler, E. Fragkou, G. Frost, S. Generoso, P. Ginoux, V. Grewet, A. Guenther, H.C. Hansson, S. Hennew, J. Hjorth, A. Hofzumahaus, H. Huntrieser, I.S.A. Isaksen, M.E. Jenkin, J. Kaiser, M. Kanakidou, Z. Klimont, M. Kulmala, P. Laj, M.G. Lawrence, J.D. Lee, C. Liousse, M. Maione, G. McFiggans, A. Metzger, A. Mieville, N. Moussiopoulos, J.J. Orlando, C. O?Dowd, P.I. Palmer, D.D. Parrish, A. Petzold, U. Platt, U. Poeschl, A.S.H. Prevot, C.E. Reeves, S. Reimann, Y. Rudich, K. Sellegri, R. Steinbrecher, D. Simpson, H. ten Brink, J. Theloke, G.R. van der Werf, R. Vautard, V. Vestreng, Ch. Vlachokostas, R. vonGlasow (2009): Atmospheric composition change: global and regional  air quality. Atmospheric Environment, 43: 5268-5350. doi:10.1016/j.atmosenv.2009.08.021

Baklanov, A., A. Mahura, R. Sokhi (eds.) 2010: Integrated systems of meso-meteorological and chemical transport models, 183 p., Book to be published by Springer (in press). Available from: http://www.cost728.org.
Schluenzen K.H., Grawe D., Bohnenstengel S.I., Schlueter I., Koppmann R. (2011): Joint modelling of obstacle induced and mesoscale changes - current limits and challenges. J. Wind Eng. Ind. Aerodyn. 99, 217-225;doi: 10.1016/j.jweia.2011.01.009.

FP7 EC MEGAPOLI, 2008-2011