• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Holes in the Ozone Layer.

Extracts from this document...


Holes in the Ozone Layer Ozone, 03 is a highly important component of the earth's atmosphere. Close to the ground ozone, is produced by the action of light on exhaust fumes and so concentrates in areas of heavy traffic. In this was it can be a pollutant, it corrodes metal, can inhibit plant growth and cause irritation to the lungs and throat. Up in the stratosphere though, about 15-50km above the earth surface, ozone is beneficial as it intercepts much of the suns UV (ultraviolet) radiation that would otherwise reach the earth. Over exposure to UV causes damage to DNA in cells and increases chances of mutations. It can reduce the metabolism of plants and algae as well as increasing chances of skin cancers and cataracts in animals and humans. ...read more.


This depletion of ozone eventually became a large hole by the early 1990's, and this same series of events has recently been observed to be occurring over the arctic. In fact ozone depletion has even occurred at lower latitudes and exposure to sunlight is not recommended in the UK without UV protecting sun cream. The depletion of ozone comes from chemical emissions, which then react in the stratosphere breaking down ozone. The worst of these chemicals are called halocarbons and include CFC's (chlorofluorocarbons) but nitrous oxide and methane also deplete ozone. In winter the problem is worst as CFC's build up in clouds at very low temperatures. When the polar area is again hit by sunlight, the sunlight triggers a photochemical reaction. ...read more.


Since 1987 and its introduction modifications have been made and reductions in CFC's have been significant. Although this is good there are problems. CFC's have a large lifespan and can stay in the stratosphere for about 70 years; so even after a total end to CFC use for 70 years damage would still continue. The protocol was mostly accepted by MEDC's and lots of LEDC's are still using large amounts of CFC's. Pesticide use was not restricted till 2002 and bromine used in the pesticides is 40 to 100 times more efficient at destroying ozone than chlorine. Unless some more action is taken the problem will just become worse and countries like Australia near the Antarctic will be more and more at risk. already the depletion of ozone is thought to have caused over an extra quarter of a million cases of skin cancer a year. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Environmental Management section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Environmental Management essays

  1. TOPIC: OZONE - DEVIL IN DISGUISE?1.0 INTRODUCTION Ozone (O3) is an allotropic ...

    3.0 LOW LEVEL OZONE 3.1 Background Ozone is also present in the troposphere. Even though ozone is essentially toxic, it is relatively harmless in quantities less than 30 parts per billion. However, human activities have increased the amount of ozone dramatically, resulting in damage to living organisms.


    CFCs were developed in the early 1930s and are used in a variety of industrial, commercial, and household applications.

  1. The Ozone a Hole in the TheoryThe protective ozone layer around our world undergoes ...

    Other scientists say how a super nova 340,000 years ago disrupted ten to twenty percent of the ozone layer(Limbaugh-178). A SUPER NOVA only disrupted twenty percent! How can humans compare with such an awesome and great a force? The human rac!

  2. Ozone (O3) is an allotropic form of oxygen with three atoms in each molecule. ...

    to nitric acid (HNO3) and also helps in converting sulfite ions HSO3- (from SO2) to sulfate ions (HSO4-). These products are the main components that lower the pH of rainwater, causing damage to trees, aquatic organisms and buildings (Stattersfield n.d.).

  1. Russia's dilemma - Is Russia going to sign the Kyoto treaty?

    in Paris.6 After the collapse of communism and USSR in 1990, Russia lost almost half of its large and small scale industries which are the biggest sources of greenhouse gas emissions.

  2. Waste, the Landfill Tax and the Inert Problem

    5.0 WHAT IS WASTE? Our perception of waste is a simple one, waste is something that we do not want, we put it in a dustbin and some one comes and takes it away. How ever from a legal perspective waste is a complex issue, there are many contrasting definitions and meanings of waste spread over the different tiers of our legal system.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work