Earth’s Ozone Layer Is Healing

The ozone layer is healing from damage caused by aerosol sprays and coolants, according to a new UN report.

The upper ozone layer above the Northern Hemisphere should be completely repaired in the 2030s and the gaping Antarctic ozone hole should disappear in the 2060s. The Southern Hemisphere lags a bit and its ozone layer should be healed by mid-century.

The ozone layer had been thinning since the 70s. Scientist raised the alarm and ozone-depleting aerosols and coolants were phased out globally.

In the late 90s, 10 percent of the upper ozone layer was depleted. Since the turn of the century, the ozone layer has increased 1 to 3 percent per decade, the report said. If nothing had been done to stop the thinning, the world would have destroyed two-thirds of its ozone layer by 2065.

The ozone hole over the South Pole peaked this year 16 percent smaller than the biggest hole recorded in 2006. The hole reaches its peak in September and October and disappears by late December until the next Southern Hemisphere spring. The ozone layer starts about 6 miles above Earth and stretches for nearly 25 miles.

But it’s not a complete success yet, We are only at a point where recovery may have started. And the coolant replacements now being used to cool cars and refrigerators need to be replaced because the new chemicals worsen global warming.



Photo: “2009 Antarctic Ozone Hole” by NASA Goddard Space Flight Center is licensed under CC BY 2.0