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Updated Emission Factors from Diffuse Combustion Sources in Sub-Saharan Africa and Their Effect on Regional Emission Estimates

Pfotenhauer, David J., Coffey, Evan R., Piedrahita, Ricardo, Agao, Desmond, Alirigia, Rex, Muvandimwe, Didier, Lacey, Forrest, Wiedinmyer, Christine, Dickinson, Katherine L., Dalaba, Maxwell, Kanyomse, Ernest, Oduro, Abraham, Hannigan, Michael P.
Environmental science & technology 2019 v.53 no.11 pp. 6392-6401
burning, carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, combustion, cooking, emissions, emissions factor, generators (equipment), inventories, kerosene, organic carbon, particulates, rural areas, wood, Ghana
Diffuse emission sources outside of kitchen areas are poorly understood, and measurements of their emission factors (EFs) are sparse for regions of sub-Saharan Africa. Thirty-one in-field emission measurements were taken in northern Ghana from combustion sources common to rural regions worldwide. Sources sampled included commercial cooking, trash burning, kerosene lanterns, and diesel generators. EFs were calculated for carbon monoxide (CO), carbon dioxide (CO₂), as well as carbonaceous particulate matter, specifically elemental carbon (EC) and organic carbon (OC). EC and OC emissions were measured from kerosene lighting events (EFEC = 25.1 g/kg-fuel SD = 25.7, EFOC = 9.5 g/kg-fuel SD = 10.0). OC emissions from trash burning events were large and highly variable (EFOC = 38.9 g/kg-fuel SD = 30.5). Combining our results with other recent in-field emission factors for rural Ghana, we explored updated emission estimates for Ghana using a region specific emissions inventory. Large differences are calculated for all updated source emissions, showing a 96% increase in OC and 78% decrease in EC compared to prior estimates for Ghana’s emissions. Differences for carbon monoxide were small when averaged across all updated source types (−1%), though the household wood use and trash burning categories individually show large differences.