We have only heard about climatic disasters and tragedies in various regions of the world during the past few months/years. There is finally some good news for the environment: as ozone-depleting agents are phased out, the ozone layer will fully regenerate within decades!
According to a recent United Nations report, the ozone layer is back on track to fully recover by 2066.
Every country in the world pledged more than 35 years ago to halt using pollutants that were harming the ozone. And as the ozone steadily but definitely starts to return, the improvement is evident.
The majority of the world’s ozone layer is anticipated to return to pre-1980s levels by 2040. Over the Arctic, the layer will have stabilized by 2045. By 2066, it will take a another 21 years for the layer above Antarctica to recover. The Ozone layer is weakest in this area.
“We see things improving in the upper stratosphere & in the ozone hole,” said Paul Newman, co-chair of the scientific assessment.
The UN-created accord from the 1980s is solely responsible for the ozone layer’s current resurgence. The Montreal Protocol was put in place in September 1987. A global accord known as the Montreal Protocol identifies over 100 chemical chemicals that need to be monitored because they include ozone-depleting substances (ODS). The ozone layer suffers severe harm when these compounds are discharged into the atmosphere. It is impossible to overestimate the favorable effects the Montreal Protocol has had on the atmosphere of Earth.
It is impossible to overstate the importance of the Montreal Protocol for mitigating climate change. According to Meg Seki, the Executive Secretary of the UN Environment Programme’s Ozone Secretariat, over the past 35 years, the Protocol has established itself as a genuine advocate for the environment.
Reducing global temperature
The benefits of fewer chemicals being released into the air are not limited to the ozone. The Montreal Protocol was amended to phase out harmful compounds known as HFCs, which will result in a reduction in global warming (hydrofluorocarbons). On the current track, extra warming of 0.3–0.5°C (0.5–0.9°F) might be prevented by 2100. That’s really neat!
So, what precisely is ozone?
The Earth’s sunscreen is the ozone layer.
It is impossible to exaggerate the value of the ozone layer. The ozone layer, a protective layer in Earth’s atmosphere, shields the planet from hazardous radiation, especially ultraviolet (UV) light, by absorbing virtually all of it.
Because it can block 98% of UV rays, the ozone has been called “Earth’s sunscreen.” UV radiation can have a severe impact on one’s health. UV exposure accounts for 95% of skin cancer cases. According to estimates, the Montreal Protocol will prevent skin cancer in almost two million individuals annually by the year 2030.
If present policies are followed, it is anticipated that the ozone layer will return to 1980 levels (before the ozone hole appeared) by 2066 over the Antarctic, 2045 over the Arctic, and 2040 for the rest of the planet. Particularly between 2019 and 2021, changes in the Antarctic ozone hole’s extent were mostly caused by weather. But since 2000, the size and depth of the Antarctic ozone hole have been gradually increasing.
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