the process of oxidizing living material. This process produces atmospheric particulates as well as the production of greenhouse and reactive tropospheric gases. These gases include CO2, CO, NOx, CH4, CH3Cl along with the addition of black carbon. All of these chemical species can be lofted relatively high in the atmosphere due to the convective heating of a fire. [Graedel, T.D. and Paul Crutzen. Atmospheric Change: an Earth system perspective; 1993; Freeman Press.
The burning of vegetation over large tracts of land, usually in tropical countries. This biomass burning restores nutrients to the soil, but also causes plumes of smoke containing partially burnt gases, secondary pollutants such as ozone, and particles that can extend downwind for hundreds of kilometers. Crutzen, P. J., and M. O. Andreae, 1990: Biomass burning in the tropics: Impact on atmospheric chemistry and biogeochemical cycles. Science, 250, 1669â€“1678. Crutzen, P. J., L. E. Heidt, J. P. Krasnec, W. H. Pollock, and W. Seiler, 1979: Biomass burning as a source of atmospheric gases CO, H2, N2O, CH3Cl, and COS. Nature, 282, 253â€“256.