For nearly half a century, NASA has engaged in research and observation of the ozone layer of Earth’s stratosphere. Typical findings have merely shown that the layer can repair itself after repeated exposure to harmful chemical components.
The Reduction of the Ozone Hole Over Antarctica
As recently as September 2017, however, notable positive changes in an ozone hole hovering over Antarctica reveal an important catalyst in the layer’s reparation: warmth. After reaching its maximum size in 2008, that of 10.5 square miles, NASA started regularly confirming that Antarctica’s ozone hole is getting smaller.
Now, its latest measurement, taken in September 2017, shows that the hole is the smallest NASA has seen it since 1988. This is now 7.6 square miles. NASA published a report on November 02, 2017 which offers a potential explication for the phenomenon. This comes with the claim that warm temperatures in Antarctica created an effect that aids in the shrinking process.
Dr. Paul Newman, a decorated Atmospheric Scientist with NASA, has explained that ozone absorbs much of the harmful UV-b and UV-c radiations produced and released by the Sun.
When holes appear in the ozone layer, high UV radiation can damage anything from landscapes to the DNA. The Montréal Protocol of 1987 looked to implement measures that would help reduce the amount of chemical components harmful to the ozone layer. However, Dr. Newman confirmed this year that warmth makes its share of positive contributions.
The latest NASA report, therefore, gives rise to certain questions to which the scientific community will probably be subjected next. As it has been confirmed, the recent warm temperatures in Antarctica have aided in making the ozone hole smaller. So, is the Earth capable of righting itself in the face of catastrophic imbalances? Others might be wondering whether the efforts of the Montréal Protocol of 1987 are still effective. Some might even raise the question if Earth will ever see a reversal of the effects of climate change.
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