Smaller Hole In The Ozone Layer | October 28, 2013 Issue - Vol. 91 Issue 43 | Chemical & Engineering News
Volume 91 Issue 43 | p. 9 | News of The Week
Issue Date: October 28, 2013 | Web Date: October 25, 2013

Smaller Hole In The Ozone Layer

Environment: Depletion in 2013 peaks at lower levels than recent years
Department: Government & Policy | Collection: Climate Change
News Channels: Environmental SCENE
Keywords: stratospheric ozone, ozone depletion, Antarctica
Credit: NOAA
This is an image showing the ozone hole over Antarctica on September 26, 2013.
Credit: NOAA

The hole that forms each year in stratospheric ozone above Antarctica was smaller in 2013 than it has been in recent years, the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration says. In this illustration, created with NOAA satellite data, red designates an area of stratospheric ozone concentration of less than 220 Dobson units—the ozone hole. The data, which NOAA dubs preliminary, show this year’s single-day maximum extent of ozone depletion to be some 7.3 million sq miles on Sept. 26. That’s significantly smaller than the single-day maximum record ozone hole of 11.4 million sq miles set in 2006. Scientists can’t say whether this year’s results show the ozone layer is recovering from the deleterious effects of synthetic chemicals such as chlorofluorocarbons in the atmosphere, says Bryan Johnson of NOAA’s Earth System Research Laboratory. “But” he says, “it is certainly good news.”

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