EOL Seminar: The SCOAPE (Satellite Coastal and Oceanic Atmospheric Pollution Experiment) Cruise, May 2019: Gulf of Mexico air quality near oil and natural gas operations

Tuesday, November 17, 2020 - 15:30 to 16:30
Virtual (Webcast link provided below)
Contact Name: 
Melissa Ward
Contact Email: 
Contact Phone: 

SPEAKER: Dr. Anne M. Thompson - Earth Sciences Division, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland 20771

DATE: November 17, 2020

Time: 3:30 - 4:30 pm MST

WEBCAST: https://operations.ucar.edu/live-eol

QUESTIONS: Email questions during the talk to Jacquie Witte: jwitte@ucar.edu



NASA/Goddard has an Interagency Agreement with the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM, Dept. of Interior) to assess the feasibility of using satellite data to measure Air Quality (AQ) over the US continental shelf and adjacent coast. In May 2019 we conducted an oceanographic cruise on the Research Vessel Point Sur to collect trace gas measurements (O3, NO2, CH4, CO2, VOC, CO) and to validate satellite column NO2 over the Gulf of Mexico (GOM). I present an overview of SCOAPE, including evaluations of TROPOMI NO2 data with ground- and ship-based Pandora spectrometers. Preliminary findings are: (1) general AQ over the area of deepwater operations, which were influenced by tropical air masses early in the cruise (10-14 May 2019), was better than near shore which was influenced by flow from urban areas (15-17 May). (2) Regions of smaller and typically older operations displayed high CH4 and hydrocarbon readings, presumably from leakage; (3) Satellite NO2 data with ground- and ship-based Pandora columns are in good agreement with one another. There has been an absence of regular AQ measurements over the GOM, so SCOAPE data constitute a baseline against which future observations can be compared. Continuous monitoring of NO2 and O3 from space and with coastal instruments and in the GOM will benefit BOEM’s ongoing mission.