Research press release


Nature Climate Change

Negative health and climate impacts of shipping trade in East Asia


東アジアは世界の海上貿易の約40%とつながっているため、この地域で生産された数多くの製品が船舶で全世界に輸送されている。今回、Huan Liu、Drew Shindell、Kebin Heの研究グループは、この貿易ネットワークに由来する温室効果ガス排出とその他の大気汚染物質が各地域の気候と人々の健康に与える影響を評価した。この研究グループは、約19,000隻の船舶に関する人工衛星データと地上観測を用いて、東アジア内とその周辺海域での船舶の動きを追跡調査した。


同時掲載されるJames CorbettのNews & Views記事では、「この論文の著者の最先端の方法と船舶活動に関する質の高い人工衛星観測と地上観測の統合は、近年の地球規模の取り組みに対する重要な貢献となり、ヨーロッパでの地域研究と同様に海運の健康リスクに関する過去の評価を改善するものである」と述べられている。

Increased air pollution from shipping emissions in East Asia have contributed to tens of thousands of premature deaths each year in the region, and could have significant local and global climatic impacts, shows a new study published online this week in Nature Climate Change. Given that many vessels are registered outside of the region, the authors call for joint global efforts in order to reduce the impacts of emissions from sea-borne trade.

Many goods are made in East Asia, and are transported around the world by sea as the region is connected to nearly 40% of world sea-borne trade. Huan Liu, Drew Shindell, Kebin He and colleagues assess the climate and health impacts of greenhouse gas emissions and other air pollutants on local health and climate from this trade network. They use satellite data and observations of almost 19,000 vessels to track shipping movements in and around the region.

The authors find that ship traffic in East Asia has more than doubled since 2005, and accounted for 16% of global shipping emissions of CO2 in 2013. The increased air pollution from this shipping activity accounts for approximately 14,500-37,500 premature deaths per year, and leads to short- and long-term changes in the climate system. The results show that controlling shipping emissions is important in order to both combat climate change, and to reduce the impacts of trade on local health.

In an accompanying News & Views, James Corbett notes: “The authors’ state-of-the-art methods and high-quality integration of satellite and terrestrial observations of ship activity represent an important contribution to recent global approaches, improving previous shipping health risk assessments in similar ways to European regional studies.”

doi: 10.1038/nclimate3083


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