Tejinder Kaur, Academic Content Creator at Edumarz
The Ozone layer is the protective region present in the lower portion of the earth’s atmosphere i.e. stratosphere and has a high concentration of ozone present in it. Ozone is harmful at the ground level but as we go up in the atmosphere it plays a very vital role. The sun propagates ultraviolet radiations and this layer has the tendency to absorb the radiations and prevent them from entering the earth’s surface. It has the potential to absorb around 97-99% of the harmful ultraviolet radiation from the sun.
Depletion Of Ozone Layer
The thinning of the ozone layer present in the upper atmosphere is known as Ozone layer depletion. The reason for this is the Ozone depleting Substances which on coming in contact with ozone, destroy the ozone molecules.
Some well-known ozone-depleting substances include chlorofluorocarbon, carbon tetrachloride, hydrochlorofluorocarbons, methyl chloroform, halons, methyl bromide, and hydro bromofluorocarbons.
Chlorofluorocarbons are the most abundant ozone-depleting substance. The first Ozone hole has been reported above the Antarctica.
Montreal Protocol was proposed in 1987 to stop the usage and production of ozone-depleting substances hence minimizing their concentration in the atmosphere to protect the ozone layer.
Effects of Ozone layer Depletion
The humans will be directly exposed to the harmful UV rays of the sun. This might result in health issues such as skin diseases, cancer, sunburns, cataract, and a weak immune system.
Direct exposure to UV rays leads to development of cancer in animals.
UV rays lead to reduced growth, flowering, and photosynthesis in plants.
Solutions to Ozone layer Depletion
Avoid the usage of Ozone depleting substances such as CFCs in refrigerators and air conditioners and replace the halon based fire extinguishers.
The vehicles release a lot of greenhouse gases that lead to global warming as well as ozone depletion. Therefore, the use of vehicles should be minimized as much as possible.
The government should take action and prohibit the use of harmful nitrous oxide that is adversely affecting the ozone layer.
Awareness about the Usage of Ozone depleting substances should be created.