Publication Abstracts

Osipov et al. 2021

Osipov, S., G. Stenchikov, K. Tsigaridis, A.N. LeGrande, S.E. Bauer, M. Fnais, and J. Lelieveld, 2021: The Toba supervolcano eruption caused severe tropical stratospheric ozone depletion. Commun. Earth Environ., 2, no. 1, 71, doi:10.1038/s43247-021-00141-7.

Supervolcano eruptions have occurred throughout Earth's history and have major environmental impacts. These impacts are mostly associated with the attenuation of visible sunlight by stratospheric sulfate aerosols, which causes cooling and deceleration of the water cycle. Supereruptions have been assumed to cause so-called volcanic winters that act as primary evolutionary factors through ecosystem disruption and famine, however, winter conditions alone may not be sufficient to cause such disruption. Here we use Earth system model simulations to show that stratospheric sulfur emissions from the Toba supereruption 74,000 years ago caused severe stratospheric ozone loss through a radiation attenuation mechanism that only moderately depends on the emission magnitude. The Toba plume strongly inhibited oxygen photolysis, suppressing ozone formation in the tropics, where exceptionally depleted ozone conditions persisted for over a year. This effect, when combined with volcanic winter in the extra-tropics, can account for the impacts of supereruptions on ecosystems and humanity.

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BibTeX Citation

  author={Osipov, S. and Stenchikov, G. and Tsigaridis, K. and LeGrande, A. N. and Bauer, S. E. and Fnais, M. and Lelieveld, J.},
  title={The Toba supervolcano eruption caused severe tropical stratospheric ozone depletion},
  journal={Commun. Earth Environ.},

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RIS Citation

ID  - os04000e
AU  - Osipov, S.
AU  - Stenchikov, G.
AU  - Tsigaridis, K.
AU  - LeGrande, A. N.
AU  - Bauer, S. E.
AU  - Fnais, M.
AU  - Lelieveld, J.
PY  - 2021
TI  - The Toba supervolcano eruption caused severe tropical stratospheric ozone depletion
JA  - Commun. Earth Environ.
VL  - 2
IS  - 1
SP  - 71
DO  - 10.1038/s43247-021-00141-7
ER  -

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