Technical Comments

Comment on "Large Volcanic Aerosol Load in the Stratosphere Linked to Asian Monsoon Transport"

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Science  08 Feb 2013:
Vol. 339, Issue 6120, pp. 647
DOI: 10.1126/science.1228605


Bourassa et al. (Reports, 6 July 2012, p. 78) report on the 13 June 2011 eruption of the Nabro volcano and satellite observations of stratospheric aerosol that they attribute to troposphere to stratosphere ascent via the Asian monsoon. They claim (citing another source) that the 13 June top injection height was well below the tropopause. We will show that the 13 June Nabro eruption plume was clearly stratospheric and contained both volcanic gases and aerosols. Moreover, we will show height-resolved stratospheric sulfur dioxide and volcanic aerosol enhancements 1 to 3 days old, unaffected by the Asian monsoon, precisely connected to the volcano. The observed stratospheric aerosols and gases are fully explained by the 13 June eruption and do not require a monsoon vehicle.

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