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Environmental Science & Technology Letters ; 9(1):3-9, 2022.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-1655414


In situ measurements have suggested vehicle emissions may dominate agricultural sources of NH3 in many cities, which is alarming given the potential for urban NH3 to significantly increase human exposure to ambient particulate matter. However, confirmation of the prevalence of vehicle NH3 throughout a city has been challenging because of mixing with agricultural sources, and the latter are thus routinely assumed to dominate. Here we report vehicle NH3 emissions based on TROPOMI NO2 and CrIS NH3 (0.152 kg s(-1)) that are consistent with a model-based estimate (0.178 kg s(-1)) and show that COVID-19 lockdowns provide a unique opportunity for making the first satellite-based constraints on vehicle NH3 emissions for an entire urban region (western Los Angeles), which we find make up 60-95% of total NH3 emissions, substantially higher than the values of 13-22% in state and national inventories. This provides a new means of constraining a component of transportation emissions whose impacts may rival those of NOx yet which has been largely under-recognized and uncontrolled.