October 20, 2006 3:35 PM PDT

Ozone hole over South Pole growing

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Ozone hole living longer than expected

December 6, 2005
They said it would get worse before it gets better, and it has.

According to scientists from both NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the ozone hole over Antarctica is getting wider and deeper.

The Ozone Monitoring Instrument on NASA's Aura satellite determined that the hole over the South Pole was 10.6 million square miles between September 21 and 30 of this year, according to a joint announcement from the two groups.

That is the largest average ever observed, according Paul Newman, a scientist with NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. (The largest single day occurrence was 11.4 million square miles on Sept. 9, 2000.)

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The ozone layer over Antarctica, according to the statement, was aggravated by high levels of chlorine chemicals about 12.4 miles from the Earth's surface. The data was based on observations made by the Aura in September, as well as natural weather fluctuations in the Antarctic stratosphere.

The ozone layer is also getting significantly thinner and patchy, according to NOAA scientists.

Dobson Units (DU), the measurement of ozone thickness, plunged from an average of 300 DU over the South Pole in mid-July to 93 DU on Oct. 9, according to measurements taken from NOAA's Earth System Research Laboratory. Some areas that were at 125 DU in July and August, measured a record low of 1.2 DU.

"These numbers mean the ozone is virtually gone in this layer of the atmosphere," said David Hofmann, director of the Global Monitoring Division at the NOAA Earth System Research Laboratory, in the statement.

The joint report noted that the ozone situation is not a complete surprise.

The 2006 World Meteorological Organization/United Nations Environment Programme Scientific Assessment of Ozone Depletion concluded that despite efforts made as part of the Montreal Protocol, an international agreement to reduce the world's ozone-depleting gases, the ozone layer will not completely recover from past pollution until 2065.

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8 comments

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It's cyclical.
No worries.
Posted by gernblan (71 comments )
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no cycle
There is no cycle. We started using substances like freon that are hydro halides and it started destroying the ozone, which we need. So we started ploicies to stop using the harmfull chemicals.
I read that the increase was smaller than in the past. That means it's getting bigger but there is an improvment. It's like your going 60 mi/hr but you want to go in revese first you have to slow down to 0 mi/hr.
Posted by stevenmcs (47 comments )
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So much for it getting smaller
I did a report on this about a year back for one of my classes. I believe I touched basis on the massive hole residing over Antartica and if I'm not mistaken, I believe I found information by NASA stating that the hole in the Ozone was growing smaller, however, according to the sattelite footage I was watching from NASA, it seems that it just moved away to other areas and then right back to the South Pole where it grew larger.

The fact of the matter is this: No ozone, no protection. No protection, we're screwed. If the earth heats up, so do the oceans. There does happen to be nice pockets of frozen Hydrogen (atomic symbol: H) sitting right at the bottom of the Ocean. Frankly, I would prefer it to stay there.
Posted by mgss0lidsnak3 (18 comments )
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The increase was smaller
I don't know if you read the same thing I did but it said that the increase was smaller than in the past. That means it's getting bigger but there is an improvment. It's like your going 60 mi/hr but you want to go in revese first you have to slow down to 0 mi/hr.
Posted by stevenmcs (47 comments )
Link Flag
What lol
I have to say i hope your a school kid because this is the most retarded thing i have ever heard, solid hydrogen at bottom of ocean? you mean the same hydrogen with a melting point of -259.14°C just over 14 K.
Posted by R K K9684 (13 comments )
Link Flag
So what? It's a meaningless concern over nothing
Ozone is O3 oxygen instead of O2. It's created by sunlight. I'm sure there's been an ozone hole over Antartica every antarctic winter for a billion years. It's really not a problem. It's not news. It's just another example of radical environmental hysteria.
Posted by lingsun (482 comments )
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It gets more interesting . . .
Correct is is created by sunlight, and with the temperature of the
stratosphere the half life of ozone is about 4 days! With so little
light at the south pole much of the year it is amazing there ever
was a lasting ozone layer there. After 30 days of simple decay of
this unstable molecule you are left with less than 1% of it's original
concentration.
Posted by Mr. Dogers2U (65 comments )
Link Flag
The Ozone Hole
Since the whole was spotted, scientists have been keeping an eye on it. You would think that once we spotted the thing that we would add 2 and 2 together and exclaim, "Oh F**K, We did that?!" but we didn't. We played the blame game and pointed the finger at everything but ourselves. We made that whole collectively and only together can we get rid of it.
Posted by thedreaming (573 comments )
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