GGMT-2011

The 16th WMO/IAEA Meeting on Carbon Dioxide, Other Greenhouse Gases, and Related Measurement Techniques (GGMT)

Summary

The 16th WMO/IAEA Meeting on Carbon Dioxide, Other Greenhouse Gases, and Related Measurement Techniques (GGMT-2011) took place in Wellington, New Zealand from 25-28 October, 2011, with a goals of:

  • advancing the accurate observation of long-lived greenhouse and related gases in the atmosphere
  • improving measurements of their isotopic composition*
  • improving calibration procedures and quality control.

The initial meeting in this biennial series was organized by Dave Keeling in La Jolla, California in 1975, and was attended by a small group of CO2 experts. Since that time, the focus of the meeting has expanded to include a host of greenhouse gases and related atmospheric species including:

  • CH4 (methane)
  • N2O (nitrous oxide)
  • SF6 (sulfur hexafluoride)
  • O2 (oxygen)
  • CO(carbon monoxide)
  • H2 (hydrogen)
  • isotopes of CO2 (carbon dioxide) and CH4.

In addition and as demonstrated by the 93 attendees in Wellington, the target audience has broadened to include those new to the field who stand to benefit from exposure to established techniques/practitioners and can contribute new ideas to the discussions on methods and observational strategies.

As in previous meetings, presentation and discussion topics included laboratory and field techniques for measurement, calibration, and quality control. The meeting participants reported on comparison efforts, national and regional observing networks, strategies for optimizing and expanding the observing networks, the management, distribution and archiving of data, and new instrument capabilities and assessments. The meeting saw a continued emphasis on the design of observation networks to validate and integrate with growing satellite and other remote sensing capabilities and to address greenhouse gas emissions verification, in addition to the more traditional scientific goals.

The attendees discussed revisions and additions to the World Meteorological Organization, Global Atmosphere Watch recommendations on "Carbon Dioxide, Other Greenhouse gases and Related Tracers Measurement Techniques" (WMO/GAW Report No 194). The WMO will publish an edited version of the new recommendations, along with the conference proceedings as part of the GAW Report series, while peer-reviewed papers will be published in a special issue of Atmospheric Measurement Techniques, in 2012. 

More information on the conference particulars can be found in the pages below (also shown in the left hand menu). The conference presentations and posters are available in Important Documents.  Details of the agenda, and the abstracts of the presentations/posters, can be found in Sessions, programmes and abstracts.

* An isotope is a slightly heavier or lighter variant of a particular element, and many environmental processes are associated with a unique isotopic signature. This isotopic signature acts like a finger print, that can allow researchers to see what processes are responsible for changes in atmospheric species.