Articles | Volume 2, issue 1
07 Apr 2008
 | 07 Apr 2008

Analysis of a low ozone episode over Extremadura (Spain) in January 2006 and its influence on UV radiation

M. Antón, M. L. Cancillo, A. Serrano, J. A. García, and F. J. Acero

Abstract. The main objectives of this work are to analyze, firstly, the detail of the causes of a low ozone event which occurred in January 2006 and, secondly, the related effects of this anomalous episode on ultraviolet (UV) radiation measured at three locations in Extremadura (South-Western Spain). On 19 January 2006, the OMI total ozone column (TOC) was 16–20% below the January mean value of TOMS/NASA TOC (period 1996–2005). The back trajectories analysis with the HYSplit model indicates that the notable decrease of TOC could be attributed to a fast rise of the isentropic trajectories height. Concomitantly, UV erythemal radiation greatly increases (between 23% and 37%) on 19 January 2006 respect to UV erythemal radiation measured on 19 January 2005. This notable increase in winter UV solar radiation may involve harmful effects for organisms adapted to receive less radiation during that season (e.g. early developmental stages of terrestrial plants and phytoplankton).