Advances in Meteorology

Advances in Meteorology / 2020 / Article

Research Article | Open Access

Volume 2020 |Article ID 8839455 |

Cheru Atsmegiorgis Kitabo, "Bayesian Spatial and Trend Analysis on Ozone Extreme Data in South Korea: 1991–2015", Advances in Meteorology, vol. 2020, Article ID 8839455, 11 pages, 2020.

Bayesian Spatial and Trend Analysis on Ozone Extreme Data in South Korea: 1991–2015

Academic Editor: Herminia García Mozo
Received11 Apr 2020
Accepted12 Nov 2020
Published27 Nov 2020


Background. Extreme events like flooding, extreme temperature, and ozone depletion are happening in every corner of the world. Thus, the need to model such rare events having enormous damage has been getting priorities in most countries of the world. Methods. The dataset contains the ozone data from 29 representative air monitoring sites in South Korea collected from 1991 to 2015. Spatial generalized extreme value (GEV) using maximum likelihood estimation (MLE) and two max-stable and Bayesian kriging models are the statistical models used for analysis. Moreover, predictive performances of these statistical models are compared using measures like root-mean-squared error (RMSE), mean absolute error (MAE), relative bias (rBIAS), and relative mean separation (rMSEP) have been utilized. Results. From the time plot of ozone data, extreme ozone concentration is increasing linearly within the specified period. The return level of ozone concentration after 10, 25, 50, and 100 years have been forecasted and showed that there was an increasing trend in ozone extremes. High spatial variability of ozone extreme was observed, and those areas around the territories were having extreme ozone concentration than the centers. Moreover, Bayesian Kriging brought about relatively the minimum RMSE compared to the other models. Conclusion. The extreme ozone concentration has clearly showed a positive trend and spatial variation. Moreover, among the models considered in the paper, the Bayesian Kriging has been chosen as the better model.

1. Background

Extreme events like flooding, extreme temperature, and ozone depletion are happening in every corner of the world. Thus, the need to model such rare events is being getting prioritized in most countries of the world. These days, depletion of the stratospheric ozone layer by halogenated chemicals is a global problem. Since the issue was primarily a matter of scientific curiosity during the 1970s and early 1980s, recently, it became an urgent policy question for governments in both developed and developing countries.

There are various effects of ozone starting from human health to increasing the chance of existence of natural catastrophe. Some of them are the effects on human and animal health, terrestrial plants, aquatic ecosystems, bio-geochemical cycles, air quality, materials, climate change, and ultraviolet radiation. According to Stedman et al., the effect on human health like eye diseases, skin cancer, and infectious diseases is due to increased penetration of solar UV-B radiation [1]. The changes in plant form and secondary metabolism due to UV-B could have an important implication for plant competitive balance, plant pathogens, and biogeochemical cycles.

The climate and environmental applications used multivariate extreme distributions in order to take into account the extremal dependence [25]. For the study of extremes in a spatial context, max-stable processes are a relevant framework for modeling and inference. Different parametric models have been later proposed by various authors [68]. The extremal t process is a model of that family that extends the Schlather model [9, 10]. It has a supplementary parameter that lets the extremal coefficient function vary in a wider range. Max-stable processes have been used in applications for modeling air pollution using ozone data, rainfall, temperature, snowfall, and snow depth [1114].

Designing the methodology that brings accurate risk measures of these extreme events needed to minimize the casualties on human being and reduce the damage on infrastructure is indispensable. Thus, the importance of modeling such events and getting ready to take precaution measures will have great importance.

The main goal of this paper is to model and compare the predictive performance of the extreme values like spatial GEV with MLE estimation, two max-stable spatial models, and the other recent model Bayesian kriging. In most papers, Bayesian kriging has not been considered for comparison. The comparative criterion considered for comparing the predictive performance of Schlather’s, extremal t, and Bayesian kriging is the 5-fold cross validation. The paper considers 29 air monitoring sites found South Korea, and the daily ozone data have been collected from the year 1991 to 2015. 8 hours’ maximum ozone concentration has been selected from the daily maximum ozone concentration. Then, using this daily maximum ozone, the monthly maximum has been selected. From the monthly maximum, annual maximum have been selected. Actually, only ozone season months from May to September have been utilized for extracting data for the model fitting process.

2. Methodology

2.1. Basics of Extreme Value Theory (EVT)

These days, the statistical modeling of univariate extremes has been well assessed. However, these tools to model spatial extreme data have been active research areas of the time.

2.1.1. Univariate Extreme Value Models

For each station in this study, the univariate extreme value model has been fitted using generalized extreme value (GEV) distribution using Bayesian perspective. The GEV defined ason and with parameters satisfying , , and .

The maximum value of ozone per site and the parameters of the model are location (), scale (), and shape () for each 29 air monitoring sites. Block maxima first approved in work by Fisher and Tippett approach has been utilized [15]. Time series plot of the ozone concentration versus time has been plotted. Trend has been observed. Thus, the location parameter has been expressed as a linear function of time:

As the data contain ozone concentration in different sites, spatial dependence is inevitable.

2.1.2. Generalized Extreme Value Distribution

The generalized extreme value (GEV) distribution has a location parameter and a scale parameter and combines the three types of extreme value distributions by use of a shape parameter . It is usually represented by . The distribution function is as follows: the case corresponds to the Weibull family; for the case , the limit of the GEV as is used, which leads to the Gumbel family:

Therefore, we now have a single formulation for modeling block maxima data which overcomes the issue of distribution choice from the three types by allowing the data to choose the appropriate tail behavior for the model. The uncertainty for this choice is now incorporated into the model within the uncertainty for the parameter estimate of :defined on and with parameters satisfying , and . The case corresponds to the Fréchet family.

The yearly maximum values of the ozone concentration per geographic zone , follows generalized extreme value (GEV) distribution of the following form:with the location parameter,where is the intercept and is the trend in t.

2.2. Return Level Estimation for Block Maxima Approach

Finding the probability of occurrence for large events is the major motivation for modeling extreme data. This demands us to be able to predict the level of the process that we expect to exceed only once in the time period required, which is known as a return level.

For yearly maximum data, the value of the return level can be estimated from the GEV distribution function directly. If we let be the year return level of the process, thenwhere this expression comes from requiring the exceedance rate of to average once every years and considering a constant rate of exceedance. Accordingly, the approximate value of the year return level for the GEV distribution is given as

2.3. Bayesian Kriging Model Fitting for Annual Maximum Ozone

A spatial model with a simpler version that is considered in this paper utilizes a model with only one latent spatial process and no measurement errors:

The likelihood function is given by

2.3.1. Posterior for the Mean Parameter

The conjugate prior for the mean parameter has been considered. Assuming a normal conjugate prior for the mean parameter , which means

The posterior distribution is given by

Thus, normal distribution is a conjugate prior.

2.3.2. Posterior for the Model Parameter for

The posterior distribution for is obtained bywhere the prior distribution is the first term and the second is the likelihood. The posterior distribution for all the three prior distributions is a scaled-inverse- of the form and is given by

The choice of prior distribution determines the parameters . In a particular case of the inverse-gamma distribution, the scaled-inverse is the conjugate prior for . This conjugate distribution is specified by two hyperparameters:which corresponds to

The posterior distribution iswhere is the maximum likelihood estimator for

2.3.3. Posterior for the Model Parameters

The posterior distribution is obtained by

The posterior distribution is a normal-scaled-inverse-, i.e., the product of normal and scaled-inverse- densities for both priors considered. It is given as follows:

The prior choice determines the parameters .

2.4. Max-Stable Models

A general representation of max-stable processes can be described by two components, a stochastic process and a Poisson process with the intensity on (0, ). Let {} with and let be points of the Poisson process. Then, the spectral representation of Schlater’s model is given by

This is called Schlater’s spectral representation. A more flexible class of max-stable processes by taking to be any stationary Gaussian random field with finite expectation was suggested by Schlather [7]. A stationary max-stable process with unit Fréchet margins can be obtained bywhere and denote the points of a Poisson process on (0, ) with intensity measure .

The correlation and is used if the random process is specified for a stationary isotropic Gaussian random field with unit variance. This process Z(s) is called an extremal Gaussian process, and the bivariate marginal distributions are given bywhere h is the Euclidean distance between station and . For this paper, the power exponential correlation function has been utilized. Extremal dependence was discussed by various scholars in different disciplines [24, 16]. Various parametric models have been suggested by different experts [68, 17]. The extremal t process is a model of that family that extends the Schlather model [9, 10].

2.4.1. Specification of Parameters of Schlater’s Model

The covariate specification for the location and scale parameters for fitting Schlater’s model is

2.5. Model Choice Criteria Using 5-Fold Cross Validation

To compare the precisions of predictions and forecasts obtained from the fitted models, we used some validation criteria [7, 1820]. We used the root-mean-squared error (RMSE), mean absolute error (MAE), relative BIAS (rBIAS), and relative mean separation (rMSEP). These validation criteria are defined aswhere is the total number of observations that we need to validate, is the data indexed by , is the prediction value, and and are the arithmetic mean of the observations and predictions, respectively.

3. Results and Discussion

3.1. Results
3.1.1. Air Monitoring Sites Selected for the Study

Twenty-five years’ (from 1991 to 2015) extreme ozone data have been collected from the 29 sites. The reason for considering 1991 as the start of data collection was the existence of large number of missing data in almost all 29 sites prior to 1991. The distribution of air monitoring sites in South Korea is displayed in Figure 1.

3.1.2. Descriptive Outputs of Maximum Ozone Concentration

The minimum, first quartile, median, third quartile, and maximum are the descriptive measures used to portray the characteristics of extreme ozone concentrations in each 29 sites, and they are depicted in Figure 2.

Relative to the standard ozone concentration in South Korea which is 0.06 ppm, the distribution of maximum ozone concentration in all air monitoring sites was above the standards.

Time series plot of the maximum ozone concentration of all stations is displayed in Figure 3. As seen in Figure 3, we can clearly observe a positive trend in the ozone concentration with respect to time. This indicates that the location parameter of the generalized extreme value (GEV) distribution can be expressed as a linear combination of time.

3.1.3. Station by Station Analysis by GEV

We assumed that the maximum values of O3 per monitoring station, , are independent and follow a GEV distribution of the following form:where is an intercept parameter while represents a trend in t for the location parameter and t denotes the order in which the measurements were obtained. Moreover, and are constants in time and denote the scale and shape parameters of the GEV distribution. The time series plot of all sites in Figure 3 can be taken as a justification to use a linear trend for the location parameter of generalized extreme value distribution of maximum ozone concentration.

3.1.4. Prior Distribution of Parameter of GEV

The prior is defined by the marginal distributions , , and and the initial value for the prior of trend parameter is set to be 0.728. With the above prior specification, a Markov chain with target distribution can be generated. Then, chains of length 10,000 have been generated using the initial values and the proposal standard deviation . Convergence of the posteriors of all parameters has been checked using trace plots and Geweke test.

As it is depicted in Table 1, all the values of for all the stations in the country are positive indicating that there is a positive trend in the maximum ozone concentration with time.

Stations (SD)

Seoul0.014 (0.719)
Busan0.011 (0.312)
Daegu0.058 (0.787)
Incheon0.047 (0.740)
Anyang0.017 (0.356)
Songnam0.078 (0.810)
Uijeongbu0.062 (0.570)
Kuangmyeon0.029 (0.450)
Ansan0.018 (0.630)
Gimcheon0.069 (0.490)
Bucheon0.009 (0.060)
Chuncehon0.059 (0.740)
Kang-neung0.018 (0.390)
Wonju0.017 (0.027)
Changwon0.038 (0.640)
Gwangju0.027 (0.623)
Daejon0.083 (0.590)
Ulsan0.012 (0.777)
Suwon0.010 (0.705)
Cheongju0.005 (0.479)
Chinju0.027 (0.014)
Suncheon0.057 (0.710)
Jeonju0.077 (0.640)
Kungsan0.007 (0.030)
Iksan0.097 (0.840)
Yeosu0.128 (0.940)
Gwangyang0.076 (0.690)
Pohang0.004 (0.150)
Gumi0.061 (0.736)

3.1.5. Spatial Generalized Extreme Value Analysis Assuming No Spatial Dependence

In this perspective, the spatial extreme value analysis does not assume spatial dependence among stations in the study areas. Using this specification, the following likelihood is used for this analysis:

3.1.6. Exploratory Plot of Location Parameter versus Geographic Coordinates

We used the exploratory plot in Figure 4 to show the relation between the dependent variable ozone extreme value with two covariates latitude and longitude. The plot shows approximately linear relation.

As seen in the above plot, there seems to be a linear trend between the covariates latitude and longitude and the ozone concentration.

3.1.7. Exploratory Plot of Scale Parameter versus Geographic Coordinates

Similarly, the relationship between the scale parameter of the spatial GEV model and the geographic covariates latitude and longitude has been displayed in Figure 5.

3.1.8. Model Selection Criterion Using Takeuche Information Criteria

Based on the linear trend relation between the ozone concentration with that of latitude and longitude, the spatial generalized extreme value analysis has been fitted. Therefore, a various combinations of covariates have been used to model a spatial GEV model. Using this specification, 9 models have been fitted. Takeuche information criteria (TIC) were used for selection. Based on this criterion, the model having small TIC would be preferable. TIC of the combinations of covariates is displayed in Table 2.

CombinationsCovariate combinationsTIC values










lon = longitude, lat = latitude, loc = location, μ = location, s = scale, ξ = considered constant.

The second combination has been selected as good model for both the location and scale parameters with the consideration of the type of relationships displayed in Figures 4 and 5 and actually the smaller TIC value as well. TIC has been used as model selection criteria since Takeuchi [21] proposed Takeuchi information criterion (TIC) as a robust AIC in the spatial GEV model.

3.1.9. Specification of Location and Scale Parameter

The response surface with the covariates latitude and longitude has been fitted as follows:

Referring the results in Table 3, the model coefficient for latitude covariate is negative indicating that there is an inverse relation between ozone concentration and latitude. The negative relation between ozone concentration dispersion and latitude covariate has been observed.

Location parameter
Constant (SD)Latitude (SD)Longitude (SD)
−0.051 (0.001)−0.001 (0.00628)0.0013 (0.00185)

Scale parameter
Constant (SD)Latitude (SD)Shape (SD)
0.063 (0.00363)−0.003 (0.00175)−0.4898 (15.6)

SD = standard deviation of the parameter.
3.1.10. Interpolation of Return Level for Spatial GEV (No Spatial Dependence)

(1) Interpolation of 5-Year Return Level. For annual maxima data, the value of the return level can be estimated from the GEV distribution function directly.

As depicted in Figure 6, different colors show the intensity of the extreme ozone concentrations in various air monitoring sites of South Korea. The air monitoring sites found in territories having higher longitude have higher 5-year return level compared to other areas. The 5-year return level is the ozone concentration that is expected to be exceeded once in 5 years.

(2) Interpolation of 10 Years’ Return Level. The 10 years’ return levels (Figure 7) have been interpolated for the study areas using the spatial generalized extreme value analysis. A similar pattern has been observed as the 5 years’ return level. Those areas having smaller longitude have a lower return level.

The higher return periods have higher return levels. To confirm this relation between return periods and return level, we interpolated the 25, 50, and 100 years’ return levels. These return levels are the magnitude of the extreme ozone concentrations that are expected to be exceeded once in 25, 50, and 100 years, respectively.

(3) Interpolation of 25 Years’ Return Level. The areas in the upper left and lower right corner of the 25 years return level plot have higher interpolated return level relative to the other level. Similarly, the areas at the center of the study area South Korea depicted smaller 25 years’ return level. Moreover, areas having longitude between 127.7 and 128.4, irrespective of the latitude, have smaller 25 years’ return level compared to other areas as depicted in Figure 8.

(4) Interpolation of 50 Years’ Return Level. Similarly, the interpolations of higher return periods like 50 years and 100 years have been analyzed, and accordingly, the results are displayed in Figures 9 and 10, respectively. As seen in the 5, 10, and 25 years’ return levels, the same pattern of interpolated return levels for ozone concentration has been observed for both 50 and 100 years’ return periods.

(5) Interpolation of 100 Years’ Return Level

3.1.11. Model Parameter Estimation of Schlater’s Model

The estimated parameter values based on Schlater’s model is displayed in Table 4. These values of model parameters are used for interpolation of return levels of extreme ozone in the specified period of time. Moreover, the standard error of each parameter of Schlater’s model depicts the level of dispersion of the possible model parameters in sampling distributions.

Nugget (SD)Range (SD)Smooth (SD) (SD) (SD)

0.003 (0.0012)0.015 (0.0035)61.825 (29.3)−0.049 (0.00053)−0.001 (0.00083)
(SD) (SD) (SD) (SD)
0.001 (0.0071)−0.064 (0.0061)−0.001 (0.0036)0.001 (0.00083)−0.270 (0.034)

Lon = longitude, Lat = latitude, Cons = constant, SD = standard deviation, μ = mean, σ = population standard deviation.
3.1.12. Model Parameter Estimation of Extremal t Model

The estimated model parameter and the corresponding standard error for each parameters value based on the extremal t model specifications have been displayed in Table 5.

Nugget (SD)Range (SD)Smooth (SD) (SD) (SD)

0.197 (0.00053)0.546 (0.0018)92.897 (18.9)−0.045 (0.00016)−0.001 (0.00073)
(SD) (SD) (SD) (SD)
0.002 (0.0038)−0.044 (0.013)−0.001 (0.091)0.005 (0.000045)−0.222 (0.026)

Lon = longitude, Lat = latitude, Cons = constant, SD = standard deviation, μ = Mean, σ = population standard deviation.
3.1.13. Model Comparison Using 5-Fold Cross Validation

Random classification of these 29 stations in to 5 folds has been done. Four of the folds have 6 air monitoring sites and the last fold has 5 sites. Using 5 years’ return levels as actual ozone concentration and the interpolated ozone concentration as predicted values, the 7 performance measures have been computed for each fold, and we took the average of it (Table 6).

Performance measuresSchlather’s modelSpatial GEV (MLE)Bayesian krigingExtremal-t model


We used the root-mean-squared error (RMSE) as a measure of predictive performance. In Table 6, using the 5 years’ return level, the RMSE for the Bayesian kriging model brought the minimum RMSE. This indicates that it has good prediction performance relative to the other models. Similar results have been found for the 10, 25, 50, and 100 years’ return levels.

3.2. Discussion

Quentin conducted a study with the title “Comparison of spatial extreme value models application to precipitation data” [22]. This paper compares six models from max-stable process and other hierarchical models using the return level. But, the uniqueness of paper mainly lies on the consideration of other means of model comparison called k-fold cross validation in addition to return level measure.

When using the 5 years’ return level as an observed value, the RMSE for the Bayesian kriging models brought about the RMSE of 0.063, and it is relatively the minimum compared to 0.077 for Schlater’s model, 0.118 for the spatial GEV with MLE, and 0.083 for the extremal t model. Similarly, using the 25 years’ return level as observed value, the RMSE for Schlater’s, spatial GEV (MLE), Bayesian kriging, and extremal t are 0.083, 0.130, 0.071, and 0.089, respectively. The last return level considered as an observed value was the 50 years’ return level. Using this value, it has brought about an RMSE of 0.089, 0.137, 0.077, and 0.091 for Schlater’s, spatial GEV (MLE), Bayesian kriging, and extremal t models, respectively.

Zahidetal conducted a study on spatial prediction and concluded that Bayesian universal kriging fits better than universal kriging [23]. Based on the result from the study by Cui, Bayesian kriging was more precise as compared to those obtained with ordinary kriging [24]. A simulation study highlighted that the methodology of conditional simulations for the extremal t process was effective for a large range of values which characterizes the spatial asymptotic dependence [25].

The finding from the analysis indicated that the Bayesian kriging model brought about the minimum predictive performance measure compared to other extreme value models considered in this research. For researchers interested to extend this research, I would suggest to consider the criterion of amount of time consumed for estimating model parameters and the CPU used for model comparison.

4. Conclusion

In this paper, spatial GEV using MLE estimation, two models from max-stable process, Schlather’s and extremal t, and the Bayesian kriging have been put in comparison with respect to the predictive performance measures.

The station by station analysis using the Bayesian approach depicted that all the 29 stations considered in this paper brought about a positive trend in the annual extreme ozone concentration. This would indicate that that the ozone concentration of all these air monitoring sites has an increasing trend with time. From the interpolation of the 5, 10, 25, 50, and 100 years’ return level, most stations found in the territories will have a higher ozone concentration.


EVT:Extreme value theory
GEV:Generalized extreme value
MAE:Mean absolute error
MLE:Maximum likelihood estimation
rBIAS:Relative bias
rMSEP:Relative mean separation
RMSE:Root-mean-squared error
SD:Standard deviation
TIC:Takeuche information criteria
UV-B:Ultraviolet B.

Data Availability

All the data used in this study are available from the corresponding author upon request.

Additional Points

The use of national data that can represent South Korea and the utilization of the long period (25 years) extreme ozone concentration data are among the strengths of this study. The use of national data can help us to make inference to the national level. Although the data source where I extracted the data is a reliable source, the use of secondary data by itself has some limitation.

Conflicts of Interest

The author declares no conflicts of interest.


The author is grateful to Prof. Jong Tae Kim for locating the source of the data for ozone extreme observations in all air monitoring sites selected for this research from online source.


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Copyright © 2020 Cheru Atsmegiorgis Kitabo. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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