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What´s The Ozone Layer?

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The ozone layer is a deep layer in the Earth’s stratosphere that has an altitude of about 6.2 miles and contains a high concentration of ozone molecules. The ozone layer shields the entire Earth from some of the harmful ultraviolet rays that come from the sun. The Earth’s atmosphere is composed of several layers, but the layer that we live in - the “troposphere” – is where most weather occurs. Above the troposphere is the stratosphere which is where most of the effects caused by ozone holes and global warming originate. The ozone layer absorbs 97% to about 99% of the Sun’s medium-frequency ultraviolet light which could otherwise potentially harm and damage exposed life forms on the surface of the Earth. There are three main types of ultraviolet light which are produced from the Sun: UV-A radiation, UV-B radiation and UV-C radiation. UV-A has a long wavelength of about 315 to 400 nanometers from the sun and is considered a “black light” which is not strongly absorbed by the Earth’s ozone. UV-B has a medium wave length of about 315 to 280 nanometers which is mostly absorbed by the ozone layer. Human exposure to UV-B rays increases the risk of skin cancer, a weakened immune system, and cataracts. Additionally, UV-B exposure can also damage single cell organisms, terrestrial plant life, and aquatic ecosystems. UV-C has a short wave length of 280 to 100 nanometers and is completely absorbed by the ozone layer and the atmosphere. UV-C has a variety of positive uses, but the most unique is that it contributes to food, air, and water purification.
For the billion years that the Earth has been here, ozone molecules in the atmosphere have protected life on Earth from the effects of ultraviolet rays that the Sun produces. In the...

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...times as much in the southern hemisphere. The ODS (ozone depleting substances) phase out is still providing significant climate protection benefits. Greenhouse gases, CO2 emissions, climate change, and methane emissions all contribute to the depletion of the ozone layer. By phasing out CFCs, HCFCs and all other ozone depleting substances under the Montreal Protocol, more than 5 giga tons equivalent of CO2 have already been eliminated thus helping to protect our beloved ozone layer (www.grdida.no).
Since the Montreal Protocol’s inception, significant progress has been made to protect and repair the ozone layer. However, throughout the world, people, plants, and animals are still being exposed to harmful UV rays on a daily basis. We must continue to find ways to ensure that every effort is made to work toward a global solution to the depletion of the ozone layer.
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