Agricultural and prescribed burning activities emit large amounts of trace gases and aerosols on regional to global scales. We present a compilation of emission factors (EFs) and emission ratios from the eastern portion of the Fire Influence on Regional to Global Environments and Air Quality (FIREX-AQ) campaign in 2019 in the United States, which sampled burning of crop residues and other prescribed fire fuels. FIREX-AQ provided comprehensive chemical characterization of 53 crop residue and 22 prescribed fires. Crop residues burned at different modified combustion efficiencies (MCE), with corn residue burning at higher MCE than other fuel types. Prescribed fires burned at lower MCE (<0.90) which is typical, while grasslands burned at lower MCE (0.90) than normally observed due to moist, green, growing season fuels. Most non-methane volatile organic compounds (NMVOCs) were significantly anticorrelated with MCE except for ethanol and NMVOCs that were measured with less certainty. We identified 23 species where crop residue fires differed by more than 50% from prescribed fires at the same MCE. Crop residue EFs were greater for species related to agricultural chemical use and fuel composition as well as oxygenated NMVOCs possibly due to the presence of metals such as potassium. Prescribed EFs were greater for monoterpenes (5×). FIREX-AQ crop residue average EFs generally agreed with the previous agricultural fire study in the US but had large disagreements with global compilations. FIREX-AQ observations show the importance of regionally-specific and fuel-specific EFs as first steps to reduce uncertainty in modeling the air quality impacts of fire emissions.
- air quality
- emission factors