Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Great News! Scientists Say the 'Ozone Layer' Is Recovering!

Published on Sep 10, 2014
From 2000 to 2013, ozone levels went up 4 percent in the key mid-northern latitudes at about 30 miles high, said NASA scientist Paul A. Newman. He co-chaired the every-four-years ozone assessment by 300 scientists, released at the United Nations.

"It's a victory for diplomacy and for science and for the fact that we were able to work together," said chemist Mario Molina. In 1974, Molina and F. Sherwood Rowland wrote a scientific study forecasting the ozone depletion problem. They won the 1995 Nobel Prize in chemistry for their work.

The ozone layer had been thinning since the late 1970s. Man-made chlorofluorocarbons, called CFCs, released chlorine and bromine, which destroyed ozone molecules high in the air. After scientists raised the alarm, countries around the world agreed to a treaty in 1987 that phased out CFCs. Levels of those chemicals between 30 and 50 miles up are decreasing.

The United Nations calculated in an earlier report that without the pact, by 2030 there would have been an extra 2 million skin cancer cases a year around the world.

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