A rapidly emerging challenge for society is to tackle air pollution and climate change in a common policy framework. Many substances present in our atmosphere due to human activities play a dual role as climate change agents and as air pollutants. However, highly non-linear interactions of anthropogenic emissions with chemical reaction pathways, biosphere-atmosphere exchanges, climate, and pollutant transport make predictions of how this complex system will respond to changes in anthropogenic sources very difficult. A change of a single component can lead to significant and non-linear changes in others and the resulting feedbacks are critical to the behavior of the system as a whole.
PEGASOS will provide:
- Better estimates of air pollution in Europe and its impact on climate.
- Support to the EC/Thematic Strategy on Air Pollution and Air Quality regulation.
- Better quantification of regional and global links between air pollution and climate change to underpin mitigation options and other policy initiatives.
The philosophy of PEGASOS is to enhance our understanding of the interactions of climate and atmospheric chemistry in the past, present and future. This will allow us to assess the effectiveness of policies in-place and to better design future policy options. Policy making will be influenced by the PEGASOS outcomes; directly by public outreach, and providing relevant results to policy makers, and indirectly by delivering relevant scientific studies to international assessments and organisations that in turn are important in international and European policy making.
Through the long-standing involvement of most of its Partners in the IPCC process and other international assessments, PEGASOS ensures that results will have impact beyond Europe, which is important in the climate policy arena.