Oh No Ozone

This week I read some interesting news about the ozone hole above the Antarctic: it’s the smallest it’s been in 20 years.

But don’t let the headline fool you. The size of the ozone hole fluctuates according to the temperature and because this year was unseasonably warm, the hole was smaller. So, larger ozone holes are associated with very cold winters and vise versa.

I find this fascinating that the miserably hot summer and drought all of us endured actually had a beneficial effect on the ozone. The way it works is the CFCs (chlorofluorocarbons) that destroy the ozone layer have a harder time breaking down ozone particles when it’s hot.

Scientists say, however, the size varies a lot year to year and unfortunately, they don’t expect it to get back to its original state until 2060.

Knowing more about this ozone hole fluctuation isn’t just interesting, but I think it’s important for anyone who has a passion about the environment to understand. After-all, the ozone hole was one of the first real signs that humans were causing climate change.