First inter-institutional working table in Barcelona

The APICE partners in Barcelona, CSIC-IDAEA and EUCC Mediterranean Centre, convened a work meeting with the Port of Barcelona and Generalitat de Catalunya in order to present, fine-tune and validate preliminary results, as well as to agree on upcoming activities. The meeting was hosted by Port of Barcelona and it took place the 20th of April 2012. The agenda can be downloaded here.

APICE project to abate air emissions from maritime transport sector is progressing smoothly. The long air monitoring campaign has finished and preliminary results were discussed with both stakeholders. It seems that air pollution levels are slightly higher than in surrounding urban area, which suggests that measures are necessary in order to comply with legal thresholds.

As seen below, PM10 levels in the metropolitan area of Barcelona are relatively homogeneous independently of the type of monitoring station. However, they are slightly higher in the harbor area, probably because the influence of mineral dust particles derived from the harbor enlargement works.

As regards for NO2, the levels measured in the harbor area reflect perfectly the traffic emissions. Thus, they are much higher in the vicinity of heavy traffic lines, and much reduced close to the sea shore. In most of the cases they are above the annual threshold established for this pollutant (40 µg/m3).

These measurements are also very useful for fine-tuning the chemical transport model being implemented within APICE. The run for the year 2011 shows that it works well when compared with measurement data, which will allow the project team to forecast air pollution behaviour according to different development scenarios.

For this, the port movements forecast presented by Strategy Department of the Port of Barcelona, as well as other variables, are being used to build up two scenarios on the horizon 2015 and their related emissions. One of them will consider the current trend without any additional action to mitigate air emissions, which shows increased emissions compared to 2009. A second scenario will take into account APICE’s measures proposal, which are being discussed within the project team. The scenarios will also consider other emissions sectors thanks to the collaboration with Generalitat de Catalunya, who presented those forecasts.

Meeting participants agreed on the way to proceed and keep on collaborating, mainly on finding best strategy and actions to diminish air pollutants.