Ozone is a molecule made up of three oxygen atoms that naturally occur in small amounts.
In the stratosphere, about seven to forty miles above the Earth’s surface, the ozone layer acts as a sunscreen, protecting the planet from potentially harmful ultraviolet rays that can cause skin cancer and cataracts, suppress the immune system and also damage plants.
It is produced in tropical latitudes and distributed all over the world.
Closer to the ground, ozone can also form from photochemical reactions between the sun and pollution from vehicle emissions and other sources, creating harmful smog.
Although warmer than average stratospheric weather conditions the past two years have reduced ozone depletion, the current ozongatgebied is still large compared to the eighties, when the ozone depletion over Antarctica was first discovered.
In the stratosphere, about seven to 25 miles above the Earth’s surface, the ozone layer acts as a sunscreen and protects the planet from potentially harmful ultraviolet rays
This is because the content of ozone-depleting substances such as chlorine and bromine remains high enough to cause significant ozone loss.
In the 1970s, it was recognized that chemicals called CFCs, used for example in refrigeration and aerosols, destroy ozone in the stratosphere.
In 1987 the Montreal Protocol was agreed, which led to the phasing out of CFCs and, recently, the first signs of recovery of the Antarctic ozone layer.
The upper stratosphere at lower latitudes also shows clear signs of recovery, proving that the Montreal Protocol is working well.
But the new study, published in Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, found that it is unlikely to recover at latitudes between 60 ° N and 60 ° S (London is 51 ° N).
The cause is not certain, but the researchers believe it is possible for climate change to change the pattern of atmospheric circulation, causing more ozone to drain from the tropics.
Alternatively, according to them that is very short-lived substances (chlorine and bromine) ozone in the lower stratosphere could destroy.
VSLSs include chemicals used as solvents, paint strippers, and as degreasers.
One of them is even used in the production of an ozone-friendly replacement for CFCs.