This special issue of the Journal of Applied Meteorology contains peer-reviewed papers associated with the Fifth International Conference on Atmospheric Science and Air Quality (ASAAQ), which was held in Seattle, Washington, during 18–20 June 1996. This conference focused broadly on issues of air quality and atmospheric sciences, with a particular emphasis on the Pacific Rim region and Asia. This was the first ASAAQ meeting held outside of Asia; previous ASAAQ meetings were held in Seoul, Korea (two times); Tokyo, Japan; and Shanghai, China.
The fifth ASAAQ meeting brought over 200 scientists, engineers, and students from 25 countries together to discuss issues related to the atmospheric environment. There were approximately 250 oral and poster papers presented on a variety of topics including emissions and integrated assessment, acid deposition, ozone analysis and modeling, urban air quality, aerosol processes and characterization, meteorological modeling and emergency response, measurements and monitoring, and removal processes. The papers in this special issue are drawn from these topics.
The first set of papers deals mainly with the meteorological aspects of atmospheric sciences and air quality. These include a lidar study of the aerosol distribution in a sea-breeze front, dispersion in complex terrain and roadway tunnel portals, numerical studies of the effect of urbanization on dispersion (Kitada et al.) and stratified flow around a three-dimensional obstacle, modeling of surface fluxes, and real-time modeling of power plant plumes (Sauto et al.). A series of papers address various aspects of air-quality modeling in Asia, including dry deposition (Xu and Carmichael) and acid deposition modeling (Phadnis et al.). Six papers present new observational data on atmospheric chemistry and air quality in Asia. These include ozone observations in Hong Kong (Chan et al., Wang et al.); air pollutants at Cheju Island, South Korea (Kim et al.); air pollution in the Osaka, Japan, urban environment (Wakamatsu et al.); precipitation chemistry in China (Zhang and Qin); and 15 years of air-pollution monitoring in the former Soviet Union (Paramonov). There are also papers dealing with mesoscale air-quality modeling in Osaka (Wakamatsu et al.) and in the Fraser Valley in British Columbia (Hedley et al.).
As with all conferences, there are many who worked hard to make it a success. These include the sponsoring organizations: the American Meteorological Society, the Air and Waste Management Association, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the National Air and Space Agency, the World Meteorological Organization, the U.S. National Weather Service, the UNESCO-Committee on Science and Technology in Developing Countries, the ASIA–OCEANIA Network of Biological Sciences, the University of Iowa Center for Global and Regional Environmental Research, and the University of Washington. Special thanks also go to Mike Ruby, Envirometrics, Inc., who served as cochair of the conference and chair of the local organizing committee; to Jane Frank and Jennifer Wambolt, who helped with all aspects of the conference organization; to the members of the International Program and the ASAAQ Steering Committees; and to the Journal of Applied Meteorology’s former chief editor, Steve Hanna, and editorial assistant, Linda Hanna, for making this special issue possible.