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Special Feature: Reactive Gases in the Global Atmosphere

Insights from contributions to the World Meteorological Organization Global Atmosphere Watch program.

Reactive trace gases in the Earth's atmosphere can have adverse effects on human health, environment and materials, they influence regional climate and are involved in many biogeochemical cycles. Atmospheric chemical reactions also play an important role in cleansing the atmosphere from anthropogenic and natural emissions. Assessing the importance and impacts of reactive gases in the atmosphere requires knowledge of the global distribution and long-term changes in their concentrations. Reactive gases are one of six focal areas in the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Global Atmosphere Watch (GAW) Program. It aims at establishing a global network of high-quality observations from ground-based, airborne and other platforms that can be used to deliver products and services relevant to scientists, policy makers, and general users in relation to environmental problems listed above.

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