SOEE3431 Atmospheric Pollution: Causes, Impact and Regulation

Reading List
  • Taught: Semester 2 View timetable
  • Credits: 10
  • Class Size: 50
  • Module Manager: Dr Stephen Arnold
  • Email: s.arnold@leeds.ac.uk
  • This module replaces SOEE3430 Air Quality: Science and Policy
  • This module has the following Pre-requisites:
    • SOEE2481 Atmospheric Pollution from Local to Global Scales

Discovery module overview

Module Summary

Module Summary

By the end of this module students will have an understanding of the sources and processing of air pollution in the troposphere and stratosphere, its impacts on human health and ecosystems, and its interactions with the climate system. This will include a knowledge of the sources and sinks of air pollutants on a range of scales (such as UK national air quality strategy pollutants, greenhouse gases, ozone-depleting gases, transboundary pollutants, hazardous air pollutants); impact upon human and environmental health; measurement and monitoring; improvement technologies, emissions control strategies and the economic implications of these. A guest lecturer from Leeds City Council will also provide a local perspective on policy, monitoring and control strategies. On completion of the module students should be able to understand and use a simple computer box model to predict response of air pollution to different emission changes and climatic changes, perform analysis of computer model output and present scientific results suitable for use by politicians or consultants.

Objectives

This module is designed to extend the understanding students have gained at Level 1 and 2 in atmospheric chemistry and air pollution to research-level, state-of-the-art understanding of the interactions between air pollution and climate change, impacts on human health & ecosystems, and strategies for air pollution control. The module is designed around research-led lecture material and hands-on computer modelling classes. The module builds on topics studies at Level 2 in SOEE2481. The module is intended to prepare students for careers in air quality consultancy, pollution legislation or further research in atmospheric chemistry and climate related topics, as well as other general environmental careers.

Syllabus

- Air pollution legislation, international protocols.
- Global scale air pollution and stratospheric ozone depletion
- Secondary PM formation
- Regional scale photochemical ozone pollution.
- Particulate matter, PM10 and PM2.5.
- Health effects, ecosystem effects of air pollution and reduction in visibility
- Toxic air pollutants – mercury and POPs.
- Climate-air quality feedbacks
- Monitoring networks, Historic trends

Learning Outcomes

Students will gain an understanding of:

  • - sources and processing of air pollution in the troposphere and stratosphere.
  • - air pollution impacts on human health and ecosystems, and its interactions with the climate system.
  • - the sources and sinks of air pollutants on a range of scales (such as UK national air quality strategy pollutants, greenhouse gases, ozone-depleting gases, transboundary pollutants, hazardous air pollutants)
  • - methods and strategies for monitoring air pollution, improvement technologies, emissions control strategies and the economic implications of these.
  • - the use a simple computer box model to predict response of air pollution to different emission changes and climatic changes

Skills Outcomes

  • - computer modelling skills
  • - numerical interpretation and presentation of air pollution data
  • - computer model experimental design

Assessment and teaching

Assessment and teaching

Coursework

Assesment type Notes % of formal assesment
Computer Exercise 1 computer modelling exercise with written up answers/ graphs 35
Total percentages (Assessment Coursework) 35

Exams

Exam type Exam duration % of formal assessment
Standard exam (closed essays, MCQs etc) 1 hr 30 mins 65
Total Percentage (Assesment Exams) 65

Private Study

82 hours to include:3 hours reading per lecture, 4 hours preparation/analysis per computer workshop (including writing worksheet answers for assessment) 18 hours exam preparation.

Progress Monitoring

Students have the opportunity to gain verbal feedback on their ideas, experiment design and results during the computer classes with staff and demonstrators before submission of their worksheets.

Teaching methods

Delivery type Number Length hours Student hours
Lecture 14 1 14
Practical 4 1 4
Private Study Hours 82
Total Contact Hours 18
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits) 100

Reading List

Reading List
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