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A large terrestrial source of methyl iodide


We have identified terrestrial sources of methyl iodide (CH3I) and assessed their importance in its atmospheric budget using a synthesis of field observations. Measurements include those from NASA DC-8 research flights over the United States and the North Atlantic, the AIRMAP long-term ground-observing network in New England, and a field campaign at Duke Forest, North Carolina. We found an average CH3I flux of ∼2,700 ng m-2 d-1 to the atmosphere from midlatitude vegetation and soils, a value similar in magnitude to previous estimates of the oceanic source strength. The large-scale aircraft measurements of vertical profiles over the continental U.S. showed CH3I-mixing ratios comparable to and greater than those observed over the North Atlantic. Overall, midlatitude terrestrial biomes appear to contribute 33 Gg yr-1 to the CH3I global budget. Copyright 2007 by the American Geophysical Union.

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