The shift from Daylight Saving Time to Central Standard Time this weekend means the sun, which sets tonight at 5:44pm CDT will set, after we turn our clocks back an hour before heading to bed Saturday night, will set at 4:40pm Sunday evening.
NOAA and NASA researchers report the ozone hole over Antarctica is the 12th largest hole of any single day since 1979—but the overall downward trend in ozone-destroying chemicals continues in the wake of 1987’s International Montreal Protocol which banned a series of ozone-destroying chemicals
An international ban on chemicals emitted and known to destroy UV blocking ozone in the stratosphere has led to a decline in those chemicals which continues, modified some years by natural events such as especially mammoth volcanic eruptions. NASA and NOAA scientists note that overall, there continue to be “signs of stratospheric ozone recovery.”
Of this year’s Antarctic ozone hole, Paul Newman, leader of NASA’s ozone research team and chief scientist for Earth sciences at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland concludes, “It’s a very modest ozone hole”—adding, “Declining levels of human-produced chlorine compounds, along with help from active Antarctic stratospheric weather slightly improved ozone levels this year.” Absent a mammoth volcanic eruption in the western Pacific in January 2022, this year’s hole would have been smaller.
Volcanoes can blast ozone destroying chemicals high into the atmosphere–and they can linger several years. The latest NOAA/NASA report on the Antarctic ozone hole notes: “The Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha’apai volcano — which violently erupted in January 2022 (in the western Pacific) and blasted an enormous plume of water vapor into the stratosphere — likely contributed to this year’s substantial ozone depletion. That water vapor likely enhanced ozone-depletion reactions over the Antarctic early in the season. If Hunga Tonga hadn’t gone off, the ozone hole would likely be smaller this year,” Newman said. “We know the eruption got into the Antarctic stratosphere, but we cannot yet quantify its full impact to the ozone hole.”
Newman adds, “If Hunga Tonga hadn’t gone off, the ozone hole would likely be smaller this year. We know the eruption got into the Antarctic stratosphere, but we cannot yet quantify its full impact to the ozone hole.”.
The latest release from NOAA & NASA notes: “The ozone layer acts like Earth’s natural sunscreen, as this portion of the stratosphere shields our planet from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet (UV) radiation. A thinning ozone layer means less protection from UV rays, which can cause sunburns, cataracts and skin cancer in humans.
Every September, the ozone layer thins to form an “ozone hole” above the Antarctic continent. Scientists use the term “ozone hole” as a metaphor for the area in which ozone concentrations above Antarctica drop well below the historical threshold of 220 Dobson Units. Scientists first reported evidence of ozone depletion in 1985 and have tracked Antarctic ozone levels every year since 1979.”
READ MORE HERE: https://www.noaa.gov/…/2023-ozone-hole-ranks-12th…
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