Stubborn Antarctic Ozone Hole refuses to change

Maybe it is because the major catalyst isn’t CFC’s after all? See this story:

Galactic Cosmic Rays May Be Responsible For The Antarctic Ozone Hole

In the conclusions of the paper here (PDF) there is this:

Thus, the above facts (1)–(5) force one to conclude that the CR[Cosmic Ray]-driven electron-induced reaction is the dominant mechanism for causing the polar O3 hole.

2002 ozone hole

From NOAA’s Earth Systems Research Laboratory:

Antarctic Ozone Hole Persists, At Least for Awhile

Major success in reducing ozone-depleting substances may not pay off in the Antarctic for several more years


August in Antarctica means the Sun starts rising over the horizon again, following four months of darkness. For NOAA Corps officer Nick Morgan (GMD), stationed at the South Pole, the month also marks the moment when he begins measuring ozone in earnest.

For most of the year, Morgan and his colleagues launch giant plastic balloons into the air about weekly. Tethered to the balloons are instruments that take ozone readings up to about 18 miles high.

Then, in the Antarctic spring (August through October), sunlight-sparked chemical reactions begin eating away at ozone. Scientists start making measurements more often, and by October, Morgan or his colleagues are outside in minus 80°F temperatures about every other day. Morgan and other scientists around the world are watching those data carefully, looking for evidence that the Antarctic ozone hole is beginning to heal after decades of hurt.

There’s scant evidence yet, from the balloon-borne instrumnets or others on the ground and on satellites: At the end of September, total ozone was at its annual low of 122 Dobson units. Typical fall, winter, and summertime levels are 250-300 Dobson units. The worst-of-the-year ozone levels have averaged 108 during the last 24 years.

It will be difficult to establish a clear-cut recovery trend in Antarctic ozone levels because seasonal cycles and other variable natural factors—from the temperature of the atmosphere to the stability of atmospheric layers—can make ozone levels dip and soar from one day to another, says NOAA ESRL scientist Bryan Johnson. But the time is coming, probably within a few decades, when ozone depletion will no longer be observed each spring, Johnson said.

“And within the next decade or so,” Johnson says, “observations are anticipated to begin showing reduced severity of the ozone hole.”

As soon as the Sun crosses the horizon again during the Antarctic spring, sunlight-triggered chemical reactions involving air pollutants begin destroying ozone in a region of the atmosphere called the stratosphere. The stratospheric ozone layer protects Earth from some damaging ultraviolet radiation, so an ozone hole means more of that radiation can hit the surface and trigger elevated rates of skin cancer and crop damage.

In the Antarctic, the ingredients for ozone depletion line up perfectly around September: Sunlight, low temperatures in the stratosphere, polar stratospheric clouds that help catalyze the destructive chemistry, and the continued presence of ozone-depleting chemicals, many of them released decades ago. Most years, those conditions ease by early December, and the hole closes.

“The ozone hole has taken somewhat of a back seat in the public eye,” Morgan wrote in a recent blog post from the South Pole.  “And maybe that is a sign of success.”

Levels of most ozone-depleting substances in the atmosphere have declined significantly since the 1987 Montreal Protocol was signed, he noted.

That international treaty initiated the phasing out of chemicals called chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), then used widely in refrigeration, as solvents, and in aerosol spray cans. The chemicals were breaking down in the stratosphere, and reactive parts—chlorine and bromine atoms—triggered ozone destruction, when conditions are ripe (sunlight, polar stratospheric clouds, cold temperatures).

International scientists contributing to the quadrennial 2010 Ozone Assessment— including many NOAA scientists—have calculated that although global stratospheric ozone may recover by midcentury, the ozone hole in the Antarctic will likely persist longer.

More: http://esrl.noaa.gov/gmd/dv/spo_oz/ and http://icestories.exploratorium.edu/dispatches/south-pole-ozonesonde-lau… (video).

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114 Responses to Stubborn Antarctic Ozone Hole refuses to change

  1. tallbloke says:

    What is the relative magnitude of the natural processes and the effect of man made cfc’s at their peak output?

  2. Patrick Davis says:

    Well, back in the ’80’s the hole over the Antarctic was attributed to CFC’s released in the NH. I don’t see how CFC’s are, somehow, magigically attracted to Antarctic pole.

  3. Juraj V. says:

    So if those “destructive ozone-depleting substances in the atmosphere have declined significantly”, how come the ozone hole has reached its maximum in 2006 and _maybe_ we will see its recovery next decade? It somehow does not add up.

  4. UK John says:

    I am worried about this because we were told that the Montreal Protocol had to be signed in 1989 to stop “The end of the World” according to the scientists and all the Environmental Campaigners.

    Well the ozone depletion and the ozone hole is just as big as ever, but as yet I see no evidence of “The end of the World”.

  5. Can I have my old fridge back please?

  6. TheOldBear says:

    Was there ever a baseline measurement that showed that there was a state without the ‘hole’?

  7. PB-in-AL says:

    My question about the ozone hole has always been, “how do we know that it wasn’t always there?” It seemed that as soon as the technology was there to measure it that they found the “hole”. Then all the hand-wringing ensued culminating in the Montreal Protocol.

    It’s the same issue as all the AGW business, why is what we “think” the environment/climate should be more correct that what it is? Especially when one considers that both of these systems are W – I – D – E – L – Y variable.

  8. tarpon says:

    The sun creates ozone, the sun destroys ozone. It just depends on how it feels on any given day.

  9. Steve Keohane says:

    Excepting the high from late 2008-2010 CRs are as high now as they ever were in the past 45 years.

    http://cosmicrays.oulu.fi/webform/query.cgi?startdate=1964/10/12&starttime=00:00&enddate=2010/11/12&endtime=19:48&resolution=1440&picture=on

    If CRs are indeed a catalyst, as from the first link above, the hole won’t be healing anytime soon.

  10. Djozar says:

    Where’s the proof that this hole hasn’t always existed (at least in the last millenium)?

  11. Severian says:

    I want my cheap Freon back!

  12. Jacob Coburn says:

    Another great post. I feel though that qualifying Q – B Lu’s work as proof that CFCs had little to do witht he ozone hole is a tad misleading because the paper itself says that cosmic rays influence the halogenated molecules and aid in the large losses of ozone in the polar regions, mostly the Antarctic, and that this means the road to recovery will not be monotonic as the ozone modellers thought. However, I would definitely agree that the issue was much more complex than many environmentalists led us to believe and that it offers little in the way of sound ideas regarding how to deal with any anthropogenic global warming we may have been/are experiencing.

  13. John Kehr says:

    This is the perfect example of assuming the cause is one thing based on 10 years of observations. Then when it doesn’t change later, it is shown the stated cause was wrong. Bromine, much like CO2, has a natural source in the oceans.

    Once again the stated impact of mankind is vastly overblown.

  14. CodeTech says:

    Pffft – everyone knows that the ACTUAL cause of the “ozone hole” is people constantly launching balloons into the polar skies!

    By the way, the clear fraudulence of the “ozone hole” scare was my personal awakening to how “scientists” lie, how “greens” twist what scientists see into lies, and how many people are easily fooled by bogus “science”.

    The fact is, when the instruments to visualize the ozone layer were first deployed they found a hole, and the ONLY mechanism for this hole was assumed to be human industry.

    On the one hand, this was a runup to the sheer gall of the “AGW” hoax. On the other, those who saw through the Ozone hoax are more likely to see through the “AGW” hoax.

  15. Larry says:

    “so an ozone hole means more of that radiation can hit the surface and trigger elevated rates of skin cancer and crop damage”

    I don’t think there are a lot of people or crops in the antarctic, so how do they demonstrate that the hole in the ozone layer over the antarctic reduces the amount of ozone over people and crops?

  16. tallbloke says:

    Severian says:
    November 12, 2010 at 8:26 am (Edit)

    I want my cheap Freon back!

    And my highly effective life saving halon fire extinguishers!

  17. Bob Shapiro says:

    Am I missing something? The post says that the O3 depleting reaction requires sunlight, stratospheric clouds (moisture), and cold temperatures.

    Does the sun shine only at the poles?
    Are there stratospheric clouds only near the poles?
    Isn’t the temperature 18 miles up by the equator around -50 degrees?

    So why is there an ozone hole only at the pole? Aren’t the necessary conditions for ozone depletion also present in the temperate & tropical zones?

  18. AndiC says:

    Larry says:
    November 12, 2010 at 8:59 am
    ……..I don’t think there are a lot of people or crops in the antarctic, so how do they demonstrate that the hole in the ozone layer over the antarctic reduces the amount of ozone over people and crops?

    Regret the edges of the “hole” are not well defined, and in New Zealand (and probably South Australia and southern South America) the effects are very real

    The sun here gets very fierce, and big campaigns by Government and NGO’s to “slip, slop, slap” abound

    Compared to the Northern Hemisphere we do have a hugely increased exposure to UV – I have a “sensitive skin” – trust me I know what both feel like

    Andy

  19. Jim Cripwell says:

    I read somewhere that the ozone hole was a natural occurrence. Roughly, ozone is only created in the tropics, and migrates to the poles, In winter, the weather pattern (southern polar vortex?) is such, that the ozone cannot migrate to the south pole, though it can to the north pole. So in winter we have an ozone over the south pole as a result of Mother Nature. This then disappears in the spring when the vortex disappears.

  20. Juraj V. says:

    Re Larry
    Not speaking that the hole is formed predominantly in the southern winter time, when the Antarctic is pitch black all day. Isn’t it strange, Watson?

  21. James Sexton says:

    Ahh, a trip down bogus science memory lane. It is worthwhile and interesting to reflect upon the climate alarms of the past. In each and every alarm, the underlying cause was man’s industrialization and economic activity. Every one!

  22. tonyb says:

    Djozar says: November 12, 2010 at 8:25 am

    “Where’s the proof that this hole hasn’t always existed (at least in the last millenium)?”

    This was the exact question I asked the two leading world authorities two years ago. My question was directed to the Max Planck institute and Cambridge University.

    Instruments were developed to ‘see’ the hole in the 1950’s. Both institutions admit that it is quite possible the hole already existed but it couldn’t be measured. Just like Satellite readings therefore the ‘official’ view is that this problem has only ocurred in the last 40 years and it must be due to man.

    Personally I think that like many natural events its cyclical.

    Tonyb

  23. bubbagyro says:

    As a chemist, I never for one minute believed that CFCs were in any way related to, much less causative, of the ozone hole. Nor that DDT and the effective chlorinated pesticides were toxic. I did and do know, however, that the malathion and permethrin classes of pesticides in current use were sensitizers and nerve gases, and that environmentalist policies have cost millions of lives over the years..

    Poorly educated pseudo-scientists in Greenpeace, Sierra Club, WWF, etc. etc., have been in control of environmentalism for a long, long while. How do we defeat them and run them out of town?

    I guess, “keep doin’ what you’re doin’, Anthony!”

  24. tonyb says:

    Further to my post at 9.32

    I think this is a more up to date study than the one being referenced in this thread.

    Around a year ago I posted a new study by Qing Bin Lui on the possible reasons as to why the ozone hole hadn’t reduced substantially in line with modelled predictions.

    Qing Bin Lui believed there was a relationship to cosmic rays (and man made Cfc’s).

    http://journalofcosmology.com/QingBinLu.pdf

    I’m not sure I saw his recent study from June 2010 linked above given much publicity but it provides a very plausible explanation as to how CFC’s-rather than Co2-was the cause of warming from 1950 to 2000.

    Personally I remain doubtful that we fully know the cause as I mentioned above in 9.32 as when asking the Max Planck institute and Cambridge University whether the ozone hole could always have existed and just couldn’t be measured before the 1950′s I was told this was ‘possible.’

    Our knowledge of the atmosphere, sun and climate in general is at a far lower level than we believe.

    Does anyone have any comments on the finger being pointed at cfc’s instead of Co2? Could someone provide an update of the state of the ozone ‘hole’ and comment as to whether it might have always been there?

    tonyb

  25. Gene Zeien says:

    Ozone is diamagnetic http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diamagnetism
    The Earth’s magnetic field pushes ozone toward magnetic North. If the field reverses, the ozone hole will be over the Arctic. There will always be a “hole”, somewhere, unless the magnetic field goes to zero.

  26. Sam Hall says:

    Don’t have a source for this but I heard the the patent on the old Freon was running out. Be interesting if somebody with the right skills could find out for sure.

  27. coaldust says:

    Chlorofluorocarbons : heavier than air
    Ozone layer: above the tropopause

    Any questions?

  28. Sean says:

    Ozone depletion is an interesting kinetics and catalysis problem. (I had a chemical kinetics class in grad school taught by F. Sherwood Rowland and Mario Molina, who a few years later won the Nobel prize chemistry.) They had starting studying CFC’s to see how they might affect the local air polution in So. California but when they examined the spectroscopy of the molecules in ordinary daylight, they found that the CFC’s would not break apart and contribute to that problem. They then looked further into the UV and found that they could only be broken down by the short wavelengths at the top of the atmosphere, releasing chlorine radicals. These radicals then participated in the catalyzed decomposition of the O3 in the stratosphere. (By the way, keep in mind that O3 is also a result of a photochemical reaction where O2 is broken down by sunlight into atomic oxygen radicals that combine with two other O2 molecules to make the O3. O3 is relatively stable compare to the oxygen radicals. Also be advised that certain NOx compounds also play a role.) So when it comes down to it, the CFC’s are mearly a means to take chlorine to the upper atmosphere that otherwise could not make it there because they would have been washed out by weather and water at lower altitudes.

    But the south pole is unique and quite different than the north pole in that a vortex easily forms that keeps the air in that region from circulating with the rest of the atmosphere in the southern hemisphere. So you get ice particles that can easily trap other chemicals and hold them until the antarctic spring when the sun shines on them again. This releases the chemicals that have built up on the surface of the ice particles that can catalyze the destruction of O3. It seems to have been presumed that the CFC’s derived chlorine is the culprit in breaking down the O3 resulting in the antarctic ozone hole but the ice crystals, cold temperatures and vortex at the pole provides an alternate path to bring chlorine and other compounds to the stratoshpere that can catalyze the decomposition of the O3. My question is has anyone looked carefully at the natural processes to bring catalytic components to the stratosphere that are unique in the antarctic and how big would the ozone hole be if there were no CFC’s involved?

  29. I have never been completely comfortable with this whole Ozone hole thing. Just like AGW and CO2 it is more modeling and ideas, than empirical measurements and an accounting of all related factors. It has always seemed more a manufactured problem then a real one. Last time I looked not many people lived in the Antarctic and those that do are well protected from all atmospheric phenomena.

  30. Al Cooper says:

    …and Ozone (O3) is highly reactive and will break down into Oxygen (O2).

    This is a good thing, otherwise all the Oxygen would have been changed to Ozone by
    the sun eons ago.

    When it is winter in the Antarctic the sun does not create Ozone (because the South Pole
    is in the shade) and the Ozone that is there continues to break down resulting in less Ozone
    and this is called a “hole”. When the sun again shines on the South Pole it makes more
    Ozone and the “hole” goes away.

    This should have been learned in high school chemistry.

    High school chemistry (remember the Periodic table?) shows that Freon weights 4-8
    times more than air. This means that you can pour Freon out on the ground and it will
    stay there. It cannot reach the Ozone layer.

    This in turn means that DuPont made a lot of money because of a Freon Scare Fraud.

  31. wsbriggs says:

    Being a non-atmospheric scientist I have always wondered if vulcanism in the SH was possibly a primary driver of the O3 hole. My curiosity was truly piqued when Pinatubo blew and we suddenly had a NH O3 hole.

  32. John T says:

    “Severian says:
    November 12, 2010 at 8:26 am
    I want my cheap Freon back!”

    I want my son’s cheap albuterol inhaler back.

  33. sagi says:

    One of the biggest environmental marketing con jobs ever was defining a ‘hole’ in the ozone layer as anything less than 220 Dobson units.

    That level is reached most every Antarctic winter, and the ‘hole’ disappears once ultraviolet light again starts remaking ozone as the Sun comes back over the horizon. The ozone layer then returns to its usual summer values in the 300-400 unit Dobson unit range.

    Dangers to Antarcticans because of increased solar ultraviolet light exposures due to lower ozone levels during Antarctic winter have never been a real issue … it is night, remember?

    That simple scare word ‘hole’, a brilliant ploy by the Greens suggesting a fearsome absence of any ozone at all, has cost the world untold billions of dollars for no purpose whatsoever.

  34. Jim Turner says:

    Re:
    “Bob Shapiro says:
    November 12, 2010 at 9:09 am

    So why is there an ozone hole only at the pole? Aren’t the necessary conditions for ozone depletion also present in the temperate & tropical zones?”

    My understanding is that ozone is generated by solar uv, and so much more is generated in the tropics than the poles (more sunlight) hence the ozone layer is naturally always thinner at the poles. Ozone (O3) is unstable and recombines spontaneously to make molecular oxygen (O2), so ‘ozone depletion’ is a natural process; ozone only exists in the ozone layer because it is continually replenished – I think the half-life of ozone in the stratosphere is about 1 day. The protracted darkness of the polar winters naturally see a seasonal thinning of the ozone layer. The explanation that I have seen for the southern ‘hole’ being larger is due to the solar wind, this is deflected to the poles by the earth’s magnetic field and also partitioned: the negative electrons being deflected north and the positive protons south, the latter react with ozone and accelerate the depletion rate at the south pole relative to the north.
    Contrary to the simplistic message of environmentalists that the southern ozone ‘hole’ is ’caused’ by CFCs, it actually appears to be quite natural that there is an ozone minimum at the southern pole. In answer to Bob’s question, as far as I have read, there is no reason why CFCs would act preferentially at the south pole, it is just that any effect would be more obvious there. The question I think is not why do CFCs cause an antarctic ozone hole, but to what extent, if at all, do they contribute to it.

  35. Alberta Slim says:

    “Tethered to the balloons are instruments that take ozone readings up to about 18 miles high.”

    Is it possible that the Ozone layer rises above 18 miles and it is still there?

  36. Enneagram says:

    We have posted the following text several times, here in WUWT:
    What if the water cycle is not closed but opened?. During summer time above the pole and due to increased radiation, atmosphere´s oxygen is turned into Ozone (O3), which during winter time and specially when there are proton flares from the sun or increased cosmic rays, as during solar minimums (mainly composed of protons-90%-, which, btw, we must remember are Hydrogen Nucleii), then these react with ozone to produce water 2H+…O3=H2O+O2 and increase the “Ozone Hole” once again , then snow fall increases ice. So we have an ice cube making machine over there.
    Why do so many people make distinctions between states of matter, as they were totally different?….they LIKE THE SPIN, they change from one to the other and from the onther to the one…as they change of energy level (please check it while boiling water for your coffee):

    http://www.scribd.com/doc/42018959/Unified-Field-Explained-9

    We are currently deceived by Names and Tags. Time to change buddies…the 20th century is over!!!!

  37. Enneagram says:

    In any case…I am old too, and very…but to be old doesn’t mean to be fossilized, so I am younger than my grand kids. So, forget thinking the same way, or….a german MD will visit you soon. :-) and you’ll forget it!!!

  38. Fred Harwood says:

    Perhaps I’m just old, but I remember that Dobson, the father of the unit of ozone measurement, first measured very low units in Antarctica long ago. A few years later, several countries confirmed low levels, during some International Science jaunt. If so, the southern ozone hole is not new, and perhaps not significantly affected by CFCs.
    Does anyone have a reference at hand to that early international ozone measurement?

  39. gman says:

    Ozone is created by corona discharge or lightning or UV,it breaks O2 to reform into O3.WE are now in a very low O2 content atmosphere.It would seem that more CO2 would allow plants to create more O2 in turn allowing natural production of O3.

  40. kramer says:

    I think it’s possible that the earth’s magnetic poles are the mechanism that channels these charged particles towards the poles and this results in them accumulating at these regions where they destroy ozone. Just my 2 cents…

    I also find this sentence interesting:
    It was thus suggested that no further studies of the CR-driven mechanism for O3 deple- tion should be motivated.
    My translation of it is, they don’t want scientists wasting time looking for natural ozone hole causes because they might just find one and this would then make them look bad.

  41. cal says:

    AndiC says:
    November 12, 2010 at 9:14 am
    Larry says:
    November 12, 2010 at 8:59 am
    ……..I don’t think there are a lot of people or crops in the antarctic, so how do they demonstrate that the hole in the ozone layer over the antarctic reduces the amount of ozone over people and crops?

    Regret the edges of the “hole” are not well defined, and in New Zealand (and probably South Australia and southern South America) the effects are very real

    The sun here gets very fierce, and big campaigns by Government and NGO’s to “slip, slop, slap” abound

    Compared to the Northern Hemisphere we do have a hugely increased exposure to UV – I have a “sensitive skin” – trust me I know what both feel like

    Andy

    I am afraid this wrong and exposes a widespread misunderstanding about what causes cancer and sunburn.

    The Ozone levels over Australia and New Zealand are extremely high. About the highest anywhere in the world.

    These two countries also have very high usage of sunscreen.

    Clearly the sun is also very fierce in these countries but no fiercer than in many southern european countries with lower ozone levels and less sunscreen use.

    So how does one explain this paradox?

    The science is not yet conclusive but the logic goes something like this.

    The only real protection against skin cancer is a brown skin. For example skin cancer is almost unkown outside of the fair skinned races and amongst these races it is least common amongst trades with the greatest exposure to the sun, such as farmers and roofers.

    The only way one can get a brown skin is by exposure to UVB (the medium wavelength version).

    Ozone and sunscreens prevent the UVB reaching the skin and so prevent the build up of this protective layer. Neither of these prevent UVA reaching the skin. As far as we know UVA is just as capable of producing skin cancers as UVB but does not tan the skin although it will oxidise the melanin to change the appearance of the tan. So high ozone levels and high use of sunscreens would reduce melanin production and therefore increase the incidence of cancer.

    If this latest research is confirmed it would suggest that one should not avoid the sun completely. The skin’s ability to produce melanin saturates after 30 minutes. So it would be wise to sunbathe before noon (when the ratio of UVB to UVA is highest) but
    for thirty minutes only. Then cover up!

    This is not the standared view of many doctors who assume that since UVB is more energetic than UVA it must be more harmful. However there appears to be little or no justification for this view. Since sunscreens cannot currently remove UVA without removing all the UVB the pharmaceutical companies would clearly like to keep everyone in the dark about this, so to speak!

    However there are some new cremes currently being tested that can remove UVA and leave the UVB. My guess is that if these trial successfully there will suddenly be a huge number of “surprising” research results confirming that UVB is good for you after all.

    That’s what science is these days – just part of the marketing department.

  42. cal says:

    Sorry I left a line out of the above stating that Australia and New Zealand have the highest levels of skin cancer in the world despite high ozone levels and high sunscreen use. This is the paradox

  43. Enneagram says:

    Fred Harwood says:
    November 12, 2010 at 11:09 am
    The International Geophysical Year was in 1957.
    BTW We have forgot ELECTRICITY: (Forget the “Flintstones’ Universe” !!!)
    SinceEarth is electrically charged
    , it maintains an electric field at its surface of between 50 and 200 volts per meter. In other words, for every meter of altitude the voltage increases by that measure.

    Electromagnetic fields beneath thunderstorms increase to 10,000 volts per meter because the storms and the Earth act like the plates of a capacitor, storing electrical energy from the surrounding environment. A “wind” of charged particles blows toward the developing storm, which could be construed as an electric current flowing into the base of the clouds. The surrounding air is pulled along with the current flow, creating powerful updrafts that can occasionally rise into the stratosphere. Once the storm reaches a critical threshold, the stored energy is released as a lightning bolt.

    http://www.thunderbolts.info/tpod/2010/arch10/101111capacitors.htm

  44. Mike of FTG says:

    Juraj V. says:
    November 12, 2010 at 7:42 am
    So if those “destructive ozone-depleting substances in the atmosphere have declined significantly”, how come the ozone hole has reached its maximum in 2006 and _maybe_ we will see its recovery next decade? It somehow does not add up.

    Of course it adds up, all environmental warnings are on a timeframe long enough to gouge a good living from the public purse without being held accountable. Hence, by 2025 or in coming decades or by the end of the century.

  45. Eric Dailey says:

    When Dupont was about to loose patent rights to Freon due to expiration they invented a replacement product R-3. They influenced science and legislation to get law to require their new product. All the infrastructure was changed so they could maintain exclusive royalties. We are all suckers.

    Follow the money.

  46. Pat Frank says:

    Gene, diamagnetic means ozone doesn’t have any net internal magnetic field. That means an external magnetic field won’t impart any net momentum to ozone molecules.

    Oxygen is paramagnetic, however. But Earth’s magnetic field is only 0.5 Gauss, which is nowhere near strong enough to overcome the thermal kinetic energy of oxygen gas molecules.

  47. greg2213 says:

    How much chlorine/freon/etc has actually been measured at various altitudes and locations, as opposed to just theorized?

  48. Paul Deacon, Christchurch, New Zealand says:

    Regarding sunburn in Australia/New Zealand, I thought the cause was simply high sunshine hours combined with a significantly clearer atmosphere than the northern hemisphere (hence higher UV light levels). The clarity of the atmosphere (relative to Europe) is obvious to the naked eye, on a clear winter’s day in the mountains you can see up to 100 miles; once on a flight I took from Christchurch to Queenstown, the visibility was described by the pilot as “virtually unlimited” – I remember watching the wave formations in the Tasman Sea from the other side of the Southern Alps. Sorry, no references for all this.

    There is a small flower growing export industry in Southland (southernmost province of the South Island, NZ) based I believe on the higher UV light levels there, which are good for helping bright flower colours form (anecdote from a flower farmer I met).

    All the best.

  49. JKrob says:

    I believe another issue about why the ‘hole’ is more pronouncd over the Antarctic than the Arctic is because it is colder at altitude over the Antarctic than the Arctic during the local winter & that extra level of coldness allows the “…polar stratospheric clouds that help catalyze the destructive chemistry” to form & the O3 is reduced untill the temperatures climb with the Anarctic spring, the Polar Vortex collapses & the ‘hole’ is filled. In the Arctic, the temperatures don’t fall that low & the polar stratospheric clouds are not as wide-spread so there is less additional O3 loss.

    I would think if the temperatures were less & the polar stratospheric clouds did not form as widespread, the Antarctic Ozone hole would behave as the Arctic hole does…much smaller & less pronounced.

    Just my thoughts,
    Jeff

  50. Enneagram says:

    Pat Frank says:
    November 12, 2010 at 12:04 pm
    The EU guys say that the great majority of scientists should revisit Electricity. Amen.

  51. tarpon says:

    I remember reading a paper a few years ago, written by the very same scientists who said the ozone hole was created by excess CFC’s in the atmosphere created by evil man. In their paper they state their whole theory was wrong, that real world experiments had proved it in error.

    When asked the magic question, so why didn’t you know this before, didn’t you run the experiments? They said no they had not, because they didn’t think they had to, it was so obvious. And it turned out to not be so obvious, but the need the hide the truth did.

    And if you ask, why DDT is banned when that allows millions to be killed by malaria each year, well we thought …. The whole DDT thing was a lie.

    Did you ever stop and think, why lights have to be off at the beach house to prevent the turtles from being attracted to the lights, and then you ask yourself what do the turtles do on the West Coast of Florida where the moon comes up over the land … Huh. Yep, turtles go to the sound of the sea, not the moonlight. Why would turtles be that stupid. Turtles know the moon goes round the earth.

    So many lies, so little time.

  52. Enneagram says:

    Mike of FTG says:
    November 12, 2010 at 11:52 am
    You will have to read all WUWT posts on the subject of Cosmic Rays and the like.
    But Cosmic Rays are not PHANTOM RAYS or DEATH RAYS, 90% of them are HYDROGEN (A METAL BTW) nucleii. Don’t forget that energy turns into “touchable mass” and vice-versa.
    What began as a pure and pristine wave can hit you head and break it :-)
    Nature it is not divided in separate compartments OUR STUBBORN HEADS ARE!, because of a delusional “education”.

    http://www.scribd.com/doc/42018959/Unified-Field-Explained-9

  53. sagi says:

    Aussies and New Zelanders are largely descended from British/Scotch/Irish stock with more red hair, freckles, and the kind of pale skin that burns and does not tan.

    That lack of melanin lets Brits and other Northern Europeans still get enough Vitamin D from the low annual sun exposure in their native environment.

    Transport them to a more subtropical location with fewer clouds and lots of sun exposure and there will be a high indicence of actinic keratosis and squamous cell carcinoma. Atmospheric ozone is not that relevant to these genetic risks.

  54. Pat Frank says:
    November 12, 2010 at 12:04 pm
    “”Gene, diamagnetic means ozone doesn’t have any net internal magnetic field. That means an external magnetic field won’t impart any net momentum to ozone molecules.

    Oxygen is paramagnetic, however. But Earth’s magnetic field is only 0.5 Gauss, which is nowhere near strong enough to overcome the thermal kinetic energy of oxygen gas molecules.””

    As a result the magnetic reluctance of Ozone is three orders of magnitude lower than O2, when exposed to UV radiation or magnetic fields O2 converts to O3 to conserve energy of motion, the conversion is continual as is the break down to the base O2 state.

    It is the total combined effects of the residual magnetic field flux, and the level of UV light intensity’s annual variation that creates and regulates the size, position, and duration of the hole, that forms in the absence of bright UV sunlight.

    As the solar magnetic fields and the Earth’s magnetic fields decrease together the size and duration of the hole increases. I would bet that the hole is there any time the magnetic fields and UV levels are this low in the whole past history / future of the earth.

  55. hell_is_like_newark says:

    Meanwhile R-22 now costs a fortune as it is being phased out. If I need to service any of the central A/C systems, I will have to upgrade to R-410a. That means ripping out the existing condenser unit and replacing all the thermal expansion valves. Major $$$ and hassle.

    It appears it will all be for nothing….

  56. 1DandyTroll says:

    Of course I’m just a weird a** little troll, albeit very dandy indeed . . .

    Isn’t it just a little odd that them ozone holes (and do not try and say ozone hole to an over sexual male teenager unless your stomach can stomach the laughter) just happen to be located over the two areas on earth of absolutely no vegetation, i.e. oxygen producing, growth what so ever? Maybe it’s magnetics or because the places are “so far removed from the Sol our sun”, but still, it’s kind of fits in with the correlation that you need oxygen producing vegetation beneath an ozone layer.

  57. MostlyHarmless says:

    How do all the heavier-than air ozone-depleting chemicals actually get up that high?

  58. Ian W says:

    The law of unintended consequences applies.

    I think that the ozone hole was probably always there. But humans in the last decades have become far too hygiene conscious. The use of showers has increased in Australia, and the antipodes (as in Europe) over those decades. But using soap and detergents actually washes away UV protection that the skin naturally secretes and the vitamin D that is also secreted that increases the body’s defenses against UV damage.

    See the following disconnected references:

    Sebum comes from the sebaceous glands in the skin.. which increase in number and output in response to UV exposure..

    http://www.jdsjournal.com/article/S0923-1811(03)00003-3/abstract

    Abstract
    Background: Although an understanding of the photobiology of the skin has been extensively advanced recently, the effect of ultraviolet (UV) radiation on sebaceous glands is not well known. Objective: In this study, we examined the direct effect of UV radiation on cultured sebocytes from hamsters in vitro experimental system. Moreover, we examined whether UV-induced peroxidation of skin surface lipids may affect barrier function of horney layer. Methods: We irradiated cultured sebocytes from hamsters, which have similar biological characteristics to the human sebocytes, with UV radiation. Moreover, transepidermal water loss (TEWL) was examined after topical application of cholesterol or triglyceride (TG) and UV exposures on the back of hamsters. Results: The number of sebocytes were increased significantly (120–140%) after 4 days as compared with the non-irradiated controls. Lipid production in sebocytes was also increased on day 7 in an irradiation-dependent manner up to 4.1 times of the pre-irradiated level. When UVB was irradiated to TG- or cholesterol-applied skin at the minimum ear-swelling dose, TEWL increased twice or more as compared with UVB irradiation to unapplied sites. When in vitro-irradiated TG, in vitro-irradiated cholesterol, TG-peroxide (TG-OOH), and cholesterol-peroxide (CHO-OOH) were applied to the skin, TEWL increased significantly. Conclusion: These results suggest that UVB may directly activate the functions of the sebaceous gland in vivo to produce increased amounts of sebum, which may undergo peroxidation by UV light and damage the barrier functions of the skin.

    http://www.springerlink.com/content/k543140295250111/

    Abstract
    Dolichol, the polyisoprenoid lipid found in all eukaryotic cells and suggested to represent a biomarker of aging, is inserted into cell membranes, also in tissues exposed to light such as the skin. A general question about its physiological role is whether dolichol may play the role of a natural barrier for the noxious components of solar radiation. In order to clarify this point, we established that dolichol is a component of human sebum and we performed an “in vitro” study of the effects of UV radiation on the spectral properties of dolichol in isopropanol.
    Our data clearly show that, following UV irradiation, the optical absorption spectrum of dolichol undergoes remarkable modifications below 400nm: a significant, strongly dose-dependent, increase of the optical density around 320 nm and a minor, very slightly dose-dependent, raise of the absorbance at 250 nm. On the contrary, UV irradiation causes only minor changes in HPLC profiles and the formation of photooxidative products can be considered negligible in our experimental conditions. These results suggest that dolichol can be considered an innate, unusually efficient and promising UV screen for skin protection.

    and finally a little video

    http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/05/12/shocking-update-sunshine-can-actually-decrease-your-vitamin-d-levels.aspx

    Saying just that – do NOT shower and wash with soap for 48 hours after sun exposure.

    The reason that you have to ‘slap slop slip’ in Australia is that you have been using soap to wash off the natural protection and vitamins that the skin has secreted.

    This could explain why ‘in the old days’ deck hands and sheep shearers did not get many skin cancers whereas todays well washed workers do.

  59. Mooloo says:

    “The only real protection against skin cancer is a brown skin. For example skin cancer is almost unkown outside of the fair skinned races and amongst these races it is least common amongst trades with the greatest exposure to the sun, such as farmers and roofers.

    The only way one can get a brown skin is by exposure to UVB (the medium wavelength version).”

    I can assure you, this is rot. Skin cancer is not “unknown” in dark skinned races. The NZ Maori and Pacific Islanders get it, though obviously at a lower rate thanks to their genetic advantage.

    I have lived in New Zealand, New Caledonia and France for extended periods. The difference the sun makes in NZ is extraordinary. Just walking out of the airport ones notices how much sharper the light is.

    I cannot spend an hour outside working with my shirt off here. I would be fried to the point of being sick. Yet in beautifully clear New Caledonia it was not a major issue. In Europe I wouldn’t even have given it a thought.

    My parents had a black African visit once. They warned him to cover up in the sun, but he scoffed, thinking his skin made him immune. A sunburnt black man is quite a sight.

    The anomaly of NZ and Australia having high skin cancer and yet high protective regimes is no anomaly. The sun burns so fast that people get burnt even taking care (I have been). Not everyone, especially young people, take anywhere enough care. Many people live outdoor lifestyles of a sort very rarely seen in Europe or North America and have very high exposures.

    On the face of it the obvious reason for the high skin cancer in NZ is the high danger from UV from the sun, not some ass-backwards explanation that says we get high skin cancer because we take extra care. That NZ has higher rates than Australia follows the pattern, since the UV rate here is much higher.

  60. Mooloo says:

    This could explain why ‘in the old days’ deck hands and sheep shearers did not get many skin cancers whereas todays well washed workers do.

    Do you actually believe this nonsense?

    The reason people get more skin cancers is that we live longer, we diagnose them better, and we do stupid things like sunbathe. In the past workers consistently wore brimmed hats and long sleeved shirts – their skin just didn’t see the sun.

    We get more of every sort of cancer BTW, for much the same reasons.

    Regardless, the sun in NZ has got worse in living memory. It just has. People down here, even sceptics, get no traction on this issue because they make themselves look flat-earther even trying. Only people not living here dispute it.

  61. jimmi says:

    I wish people would read the original scientific papers. This is the second time that the cosmic rays and ozone layer paper has been mentioned here. The first was in March 2009 and Mr Watts had to put a caveat in the discussion – it is at the top of the link that is provided this time. Please read it. Please read the original paper.

    Ozone depletion chemistry requires several factors involving climate conditions, sunlight, ice particles in the stratosphere, CFC’s and molecules derived from CFC’s. It requires a mechanism for breaking up chlorine containing molecules to produce chlorine radicals. The usual mechanism proposed for this last step involves UV light and the main ozone depletion occurs at the end on the polar winter when UV returns and the reactions start. Lu’s paper was suggesting that cosmic rays could take the place of UV in the breakup step. He was NOT suggesting that cosmic rays replace CFC’s in the process. He has also since 2009 been shown to be wrong – see this http://prl.aps.org/abstract/PRL/v103/i22/e228501

    Here’s an old web page from 1998 explaining the basics http://www.atm.ch.cam.ac.uk/tour/part3.html
    They had it right then – the fundamentals have not changed. The chemistry is all observed and measured in the stratosphere.

  62. Richard Thompson says:

    It is courious that DuPont Freon patent expired at the same time concern over the hole escalated.

  63. Paul Deacon, Christchurch, New Zealand says:

    I have lived in both Singapore and Brunei. In Brunei I get sunburnt easily, in Singapore I don’t. The difference: similar latitude and climate, but Singapore’s atmosphere is hazy, Brunei’s is not. Nothing to do with ozone or UV light in themselves.

  64. paulsnz says:

    Fact, the effect of O3 “hole” is at the Poles
    Fact, the earths magnetic poles are concentrated at the Poles
    Fact, the earth spins on this axis about the poles
    Fact, O3 is a polarized molecule and is highly reactive.

    Conclusion the LACK of OR Concentration of O3 COULD be directly related to the Ionic atmosphere effects of the Solar wind in periods of Solar activity ie Sunspots …. and the interaction with the earths magnetic field.

  65. AndrewSanDiego says:

    And I want new Halon fire extinguishers back!

    “John T says:
    November 12, 2010 at 10:12 am
    ‘Severian says:
    November 12, 2010 at 8:26 am
    I want my cheap Freon back!’

    I want my son’s cheap albuterol inhaler back.”

  66. Henry chance says:

    The amount of ozone and nitrogen oxides that lightning creates is greater than those created by human activities in that level of the atmosphere, the study shows.

    Zhang’s research is published in the current Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and the study was supported by NASA and the Texas Air Research Center.

    Each year, about 77 million lightning bolts strike the United States, and worldwide lightning flashes occur about 60 times per second.

    This generates the ozone.

  67. Dr Chaos says:

    So, if AGW, Peak Oil, and now CFC-related ozone depletion have all been thoroughly debunked…what am I going to lie awake at night worrying about??
    I know – I will worry about politicians who still believe in AGW, PO and CFCs :)
    And windfarms.

  68. System says:

    Why is there a small hole over the north pole? Most of the world’s CFCs are produced in the northern hemisphere?

    Ozone needs solar UV radiation to be produced. The closer to the poles, the smaller the angle of incidence and the less ozone is produced (also less danger to humans because the UV has to go through more atmosphere). This is evidenced by changes in the size of the holes with the seasons, where the angle of incidence changes.

    I understand that the earth is slightly pear shaped, because of the weight of the antarctic continent on the mantle. This affects the angle of incidence of the UV rays differently between the north and south poles. Means a larger hole over the antarctic.

    What have I missed in the logic here?

  69. Mike Borgelt says:

    tarpon says:
    November 12, 2010 at 12:44 pm

    IIRC one of the intermediate reactions runs about an order of magnitude slower than the model assumptions which means in my book, back to square one. They’ve got nothing.

    Wonderful how many things we can find caused by people, when we start looking, even if we never looked before people started doing those things which allegedly damage the environment.

  70. Is there anyone out there that can prove ozone levels at the South pole would recover with the transition to ozone friendly CFCs?

    According to Nature article doi:10.1038/news050228-12, up to 60% of the ozone was destroyed in 2004 from solar wind storms which created ozone killing nitrogen oxides.

    It is worse than we thought, but it is totally natural.

  71. peter_dtm says:

    I remember when the O3 hole first arose – I was in Africa – on the High Veldt at the time.

    It was suggested (though I have never seen the proof) that UV strength is HIGHER up on the high veldt (1600M plus) than on the S American beaches directly under the ‘hole’.

    I wonder what the skin cancer rates are on the High Veldt compared to ANZ ? And what the comparative incidence of UVa & UVb really is.

    I want our HALON fire suppressant equipment back; I want our highly effective NON-DAMAGING; safe to use on all fire types HALON fire extinguishers back – you may remember the little green extinguishers that replaced large red/black/blue/stone/cream ones that you had to be trained to know which one to use ? (Mind you; they were also a damned good laxative !) .

    I also asked the same question then – HOW DO WE KNOW THE OZONE LAYER WASN’T LIKE THAT BEFORE ?

    Politics of shame; mass murder and suppression of the 3rd world:
    DDT
    CFC
    AGW

  72. cal says:

    Mooloo

    Your views are based on anecdote mine are based on a lecture by a professor doing research at Caltech. This does not guarantee that it is correct but I consider it is worth consideration. I will try and find a reference for you but at the moment I cannot find it. Incidentally I found it while googling when I was in NZ. I am well aware of how strong the sun is there. However it is not as strong as say Phoenix arizona.

    I tried to distinguish between the professor’ theories that are yet unproven and the facts that I quoted which I are based on the charts in the lecture which were referenced.

    I did not say that dark skinned people cannot get sun burned. I said they rarely get skin cancer. I might add that when they do the incidence is in random places on the body e.g. in the armpit and is unlikely to have a UV cause.

    The researchers show a clear correlation between the increased use of sunscreen and the incidence of melanomas although they take pains to make clear that correlation does not prove causality. However this fact and the correlation between melanomas and regions with HIGH ozone levels provoked the research which is still going on.

    This was the reason for my piece since it had been stated that NZ was on the edge of the ozone hole. This is just not true. It is in a band of high ozone concentration which runs through that latitude.

    You may find it hard to see how it works but I like to keep and open mind.

  73. Dr T G Watkins says:

    Maybe I can comment on Cal 11.37
    I am a retired anaesthesiologist who practiced in Australia for 13 years, 4 years in Townsville, North Queensland, at the time the largest tropical ‘white’ population in the world.
    There are 3 types of skin cancer, basal cell carcinoma (locally invasive but usually ‘curable’), squamous cell carcinoma ( nasty if not caught early) and malignant melanoma (the really nasty one).
    We saw a large number of BCCs (particularly in Irish descendants) which no-one would dispute is sun induced, an average number of SCCs which also occur in areas of skin that never see the sun, and, relative to the UK, a huge number of malignant melanomas. But the MMs seemed to have a much better prognosis than those in the UK and this was put down to higher awareness of skin problems and earlier diagnosis and surgery.
    An anecdote. My brother in law, a G.P. in the UK (family doctor) was diagnosed with M.M. ( local excision of a ‘black mole’ looked at by our local teaching hospital ‘skin specialist’ histopathologist) , and subsequent wide ‘local excision’ of lower medial leg.
    Two months later, a medical friend suggested a second opinion on the ‘path’ given by a ‘world expert’ in (I hate to say) London. Non- malignant!
    Brother in law going strong 18 years later.
    No law suite – we don’t do that to each other in the UK.
    Lesson – M.M. is difficult to diagnose even by average experts and I suspect the better prognosis in Aus may be associated with misdiagnosis. I hasten to add I have the greatest respect for Aus medicine which overall is the best in the world.
    A prof. from Newcastle, UK, has suggested that M.M. is unrelated to UV exposure. A number occur on the soles of feet and it is certainly not unknown in those with high melanin pigmentation.
    Probably ‘crap’ but Q.I.

  74. Geoff Sharp says:

    Ozone is destroyed and created by solar EUV, the EUV levels are not far off solar minimum levels and are refusing to rise above their low plateau which is also seen in the closely related F10.7 flux emissions. I keep track of the EUV levels HERE.

  75. Stephen Wilde says:

    I think the cause of the ozone holes is varying quantities of charged solar protons coming in at the poles on the solar wind and destroying ozone at the higher levels.

    The holes would grow when the sun is active and slowly recover when the sun is less active.

    After several decades of active sun it will take a while.

  76. Richard Sharpe says:

    hell_is_like_newark says on November 12, 2010 at 1:42 pm

    Meanwhile R-22 now costs a fortune as it is being phased out. If I need to service any of the central A/C systems, I will have to upgrade to R-410a. That means ripping out the existing condenser unit and replacing all the thermal expansion valves. Major $$$ and hassle.

    It appears it will all be for nothing….

    Cui bono? Follow the money.

  77. Ric Werme says:

    Al Cooper says:
    November 12, 2010 at 10:10 am

    High school chemistry (remember the Periodic table?) shows that Freon weights 4-8
    times more than air. This means that you can pour Freon out on the ground and it will
    stay there. It cannot reach the Ozone layer.

    By that logic, all the CO2 and O3 is at sea level and the N2 is at the top.

  78. Sean asked: “My question is has anyone looked carefully at the natural processes to bring catalytic components to the stratosphere that are unique in the antarctic and how big would the ozone hole be if there were no CFC’s involved?”

    Answer: Absolutely the SAME SIZE. The ozone molecule is the most unstable molecule known and as soon one O3 molecule touches another, the reaction results in 3 oxygen (O2) molecules. The famous Dimer Theory by Mario Molina is totally flawed: it states that for chlorine and other gases react with O3 it needs a hard surface (ice crystals of Stratospheric Polar Clouds = SPCs) AND the Sun’s light. Trouble is that ozone levels start to go down in Antarctica stratosphere about ONE MONTH BEFORE the first UV rays reach the Polar stratosphere.

    The formation of the “hole” is caused by the onset of the Polar Vortex and its hurricane winds that stir O3 molecules and the constant colliding of O3 with O3 produce oxygen. As there is no sunlight to produce O3, their levels plummet rapidly in the darkness. A totally dynamic process, completely unrelated to chlorine, fluorine, bromine, etc chemistry.

    *************
    greg2213 said: “How much chlorine/freon/etc has actually been measured at various altitudes and locations, as opposed to just theorized?”

    Fabian, Borders & Penkett (1989) measured CFCs reaching up to 29-30 km altitude in concentrations of 0.1 ppTRILLION. The fact that falsifies the “ozone catastrophic theory” is that UVC radiation is the only one that has energy enough to dissociate the CFC molecule –and UVC is completely absorbed above 35 km altitude.

    A Bonus: ozone absorbs very little energy from incoming photons. The real UV shields we have are Nitrogen and Oxygen = 99% of the atmosphere. Ozone makes only 0.000003% of the atmosphere.

  79. Braddles says:

    Readers should be warned that there is great deal of (un)scientific nonsense among the comments in this thread. A lot of commenters who have no expertise seem to think it is ok to theorise about this subject anyway, or draw false comparisons and analogies.

    There are some very sensible comments too but difficult to weed out the rubbish.

    This blog really needs a function where specific comments can be replied to. Not endless multiple layers of replies, just one layer will do (e.g., see Andrew Bolt’s blog).

  80. 899 says:

    In the off-hand case that nobody asked the most obvious question: What’s with the so-called ‘ozone hole’ over the Antarctic, when no such event happens over the Arctic?

    Polar is polar, is it not? Why would such an event happen over ONLY one of the poles?

    And then there’s that bit about Mt. Eurebus being an active volcano, spewing lots of chlorine into the air, an element which is supposed to be implicated in the destruction of ozone.

    WHY NO MENTION OF THAT?

  81. Ian W says:

    Mooloo says:
    November 12, 2010 at 2:09 pm
    This could explain why ‘in the old days’ deck hands and sheep shearers did not get many skin cancers whereas todays well washed workers do.

    Do you actually believe this nonsense?

    The reason people get more skin cancers is that we live longer, we diagnose them better, and we do stupid things like sunbathe. In the past workers consistently wore brimmed hats and long sleeved shirts – their skin just didn’t see the sun.

    We get more of every sort of cancer BTW, for much the same reasons.

    Regardless, the sun in NZ has got worse in living memory. It just has. People down here, even sceptics, get no traction on this issue because they make themselves look flat-earther even trying. Only people not living here dispute it.

    Well the research that was quoted one was looking at the effect of UV on secretion of sebum and found that it increased it but was concerned that the secretion would oxidize and damage the skin. The other was looking for a suitable compound for a high strength sunscreen and found that human skin secreted one and that it did not oxidized but was almost 100% effective. The final video was the result of medical research into vitamin D3 secretions (an associated secretion from the sebaceous glands) and found that it took 48 hours for it to be absorbed back into the skin – so washing would remove it and the other protective secretions.

    Sorry that the research does not match with the apocryphal and anecdotal evidence on skin cancers, but that is often what happens when subjects are really researched.

  82. PhilinCalifornia says:

    Sam Hall says:
    November 12, 2010 at 9:53 am
    Don’t have a source for this but I heard the the patent on the old Freon was running out. Be interesting if somebody with the right skills could find out for sure.
    ———————
    The old freon/CFC patents must have expired years ago. In fact the patents on the successors to the CFCs for respiratory drug inhalation, the hydrofluoroalkanes (HFAs) are expiring right about now. My, off the top of the head understanding, is that some asthma inhalers (rescue medication/albuterol) with CFCs had to be continued way past the Montreal protocol (up to now even) because manufacturers hadn’t got the alternatives ready. Asthmatic kids dying through a lack of rescue medication would not have been good. Of course, the use of CFCs in inhalers was dwarfed by their other uses.

    All just a complete pile of crap, but it led to the development of patentable dry powder inhalers (no propellant) that are now doing over $10 Billion a year for the pharmaceutical companies (Advair, Spiriva Symbicort), maybe over $12 Billion. God bless those greenies.

  83. A lot of the questions and misconceptions in the comments here can be clarified by the ozone information at http://www.appinsys.com/GlobalWarming/Ozone.htm

    Ozone is depleted in reaction with nitrogen oxides (NOx) in the atmosphere (which is produced as a result of solar events – see documentation towards the end of the above reference).

    The Arctic ozone column in March is correlated with ENSO (see documentation about half way through above reference).

  84. jimmi says:

    There are indeed a lot of misconceptions in this thread, but I am afraid that the website linked by Alan Cheetham above will not remove them. Come on, a site that does not even mention CFC’s – how plausible is that going to be?

    The statement

    “Maybe it is because the major catalyst isn’t CFC’s after all? See this story:
    Galactic Cosmic Rays May Be Responsible For The Antarctic Ozone Hole”

    at the top of this thread is misleading, because that is not what the referenced paper actually says (and also because paper is incorrect anyway)

  85. Jeff Alberts says:

    As far as we know, the hole has been there since the continents have been in this configuration. There has been no significant change (apart from seasonal changes) since it was first measured in the 1950s.

  86. Myrrh says:

    Ozone is good for us, heavier than air it’s the fresh smell of being at the seaside and with it comes the health benefits of extra oxygen, places like the Dead Sea have a thick layer of ozone and so popular destination for those with lung problems.

    There are some pages around describing the benefits, if you can get past the agendas, such as

    http://www.understandingozone.com/article_notsmog.asp

    http://www.edskilling.com/yh.html

    Used in water treatment plants and in getting rid of bacteria/mould in buildings too.

  87. Colin says:

    Quickly clear up a couple misconceptions…

    Why does the ozone hole occur over the SH and not the NH?

    In a frictionless, zonally-heated world, atmospheric flow wants to move parallel to latitude bands. During the winter time, vortices tend to set up near the polar regions because of strong thermal gradients (little-no incoming solar radiation at the pole, significant amount in the tropics). In the Southern Hemisphere, there is little land mass to disrupt this flow, therefore, the vortex that sets up is circular and strong, doing an efficient job of not mixing anything north/south into or out of the column. Land masses in the Northern Hemisphere cause the polar vortex in the Arctic to take on a more “wavelike” shape, which results in a weaker vortex which has enhanced meridional transport relative to its SH cousin.

    Why are CFCs implicated in SH ozone loss when they are emitted in the NH?

    Ozone occurs in the stratosphere– for a pollutant like CFCs to interact with it, it is necessary that it be transported above the tropopause. To do this, pollutants typically need to be mixed into equatorial regions where convective towers can penetrate the tropopause. This means the CFCs that play a role in O3 depletion typically ascend near the equator and become well-mixed in both stratospheric hemispheres, even if it is only emitted in the NH.

    Ozone is attracted to poles because it’s a polar molecule and the magnetic fields “pull” it.

    This is obviously not true, otherwise we would see molecules such as water vapor collecting at the poles (and aligning along magnetic field lines) along with non-polar molecules ending up near the equator (to maintain hydrostatic balance).

  88. Myrrh says:

    Re asthma – I found this posted by someone with this problem:

    “In 1904 Danish physiologist Christian Bohr described what is now known as the Bohr effect. Simply put, CO2 causes the release of the oxygen from the hemoglobin to tissue in the body. If there is not enough CO2 in the blood the oxygen is not released and the celss experience oxygen starvation. In order to have enough CO2 in the blood there must be sufficient amount in the lungs. If there is a shortage of CO2 in the lungs, the bronchioles become inflamed (i.e., swollen and narrowed – as in asthma) to reduce CO2 loss during exhalation. A concentration of up to 6.5% CO2 in the lungs is healthy; less than 4% is life threatening. Please not that these percentages are significantly higher than the amount of CO2 in our atmosphere.”

    From – http://www.iceagenow.com/CO2_essential_to_the_health_and_well_being_of_our_bodies.htm

    Not having asthma it’s not something I can test for myself so couldn’t personally recommend trying, but it’s a remedy for hyperventilation to breathe into a paper bag to up the level of CO2. Check with physician.

  89. maksimovich says:

    jimmi says:
    November 12, 2010 at 8:51 pm

    There are indeed a lot of misconceptions in this thread, but I am afraid that the website linked by Alan Cheetham above will not remove them. Come on, a site that does not even mention CFC’s – how plausible is that going to be?

    Baumgaertner et al. 2010 in its introduction states

    The Earth’s middle and upper atmosphere are strongly influenced by solar variability.
    Changes in the solar spectral irradiance as well as in the solar wind can lead to
    significant perturbations. Solar wind disturbances have been shown to lead to geomagnetic activity variations, which can result in magnetospheric loss of electrons. These electrons precipitate into the atmosphere at high geomagnetic latitudes where they lead to the production of NOx, termed EEP NOx, through dissociation and ionisation processes. Downward transport in the dark polar winter can lead to significant enhancements of NOx in the stratosphere. Because NOx can catalytically destroy ozone, such NOx enhancements lead to ozone depletion in the upper stratosphere as has been shown e.g. by Callis et al. (1998); Brasseur and Solomon (2005); Jackman et al. (2008); Baumgaertner et al. (2009).

    Paul Crutzen is a co author.

  90. aurbo says:

    A few comments re some of the questions above.

    A few years ago, knowing how disproportionately heavier CFCs are to other atmospheric gases, I asked the same question as to how the CFCs make it to the top of the atmosphere to Sherry Rowland. His one word answer was; “Diffusion”.

    The difference in the development and magnitude of the “ozone hole” between the North and South Poles is largely a meteorological one. The presence of a large and elevated landmass at the South Pole versus the ocean areas at the North pole, lead to significant hemispheric differences in climate. The Antarctic is a lot colder in both summer and winter than the Arctic. The SH circumpolar jetstream is significantly stronger than its NH counterpart. This results in a larger, colder and more persistent wintertime polar vortex over the SH. One of the consequences of this is that surface and atmospheric temperatures over the South Pole in winter can drop to levels where some liquid or gaseous atmospheric compounds can condense or freeze. CO2 freezes at -78.5°C (194.7K). Temps in the Antarctic stratosphere can dip below 200K in a strong winter circumpolar vortex. The formation of liquid or crystalline clouds provide abundant condensation nuclei for chemical reactions to occur, especially just prior to and around the time of Antarctic sunrise.

    The problem with the whole CFC/Ozone depletion theory is that the reactions described by Rowland and Molina, et al, may indeed be occurring as hypothesized, perhaps at different relative magnitudes, but they are only one of many other atmospheric, solar and cosmic interactions that may be occurring and about which we are still unable to determine their relative importance vis-a-vis ozone depletion.

    It is fine to investigate and formulate hypotheses based on the examination of a few of the many components involved in the real world atmospheric chemistry. But, with so little understanding of the degree of influence that CFCs may or may not have on polar ozone levels, it was and is wrong to deprive the public their use of such demonstrably safe and effective compounds.

    If there is one characteristic of science in the late 20th and current 21st Century, it is the unholy alliance of science and politics that has fostered the abuse of unproven theories to achieve self-serving ends. We still haven’t fully acknowledged the tragic mismanagement of DDT, the phony scare of Alar, the still contentious AGW constructs including causation and implication. The role of CFCs belong on that list.

  91. Roger Carr says:

    John T says: (November 12, 2010 at 10:12 am) I want my son’s cheap albuterol inhaler back.

    Worth posting over and over any time the opportunity arises, John. The harm done by (do)good people in ignorant innocence is sometimes, I feel, even greater than the harm caused by people of actual evil will.

  92. jimmi says:

    Maksimovich,

    I was not objecting to that website on the grounds that it mentioned the NOx cycle – I know about that – I was objecting on the grounds that it ONLY mentioned NOx, with no reference at all to any other mechanisms. It also does not seem to know when Spring in Antarctica is.

  93. Geoff Alder says:

    If we experience a magnetic reversal sometime soon, will the ozone hole migrate to the North Pole and leave us southern hemispherers in peace?

    Geoff Alder

  94. thingadonta says:

    Can we tax galactic cosmic rays?

  95. WetMan says:

    I agree with the comment of Braddles that there is a lot of nonsence sprouted in this thread. Even people claiming to be chemists seem to have missed a few vital classes in college… For instance: claiming that chorinated pesticides are non-toxic. (A pesticide is non-toxic…) For a toxicologist such as myself this is frankly a mind-boggling comment. And I would love to see a youtube video of the proponent of this comment stir is theaspoon of the stuff in his yoghurt. Hope he likes acne and is not too fond of his liver.

  96. Edouard says:

    @Colin

    The theory about CFC’s and the ozone hole might be true. But there are 2 problems:

    1) The ozone hole started about 1985 and is about the same size today. When did CFC’s get into the atmosphere? We were told that they needed 50 years to get there. When CFC’s were at their peak in 1985, why didn’t the hole expand. Normally there should at least be some kind of correlation between CFC’s and the Ozone layer.

    2) We were told that there exist no natural ozone destroyers that reach the ozone layer. Today we know that there exist many of them, naturally occuring bromine and chlorine molecules.

    Now, I ask you, with all the chlorine molecules humanity produces, and the ones that occur naturally, how can we know that its the CFCs and nothing else?

    Chlorine has always been an enemy for green activists (Seveso, dioxine) etc …

    “God created 91 chemical elements, man more than a thousand and the devil created one: chlorine.
    Greenpeace magazine (Belgium), August 1992.”

    What a surprise that it will destroy all life on earth … ;-) The great chief Greenpeace has spoken. No reason to become skeptic???

  97. aurbo says:

    As for the quote in Edouard (11/13 6:52am) from Greenpeace:

    “God created 91 chemical elements, man more than a thousand and the devil created one: chlorine.
    Greenpeace magazine (Belgium), August 1992.”

    I’d take that with a grain of salt.

  98. Ian H says:

    As has been pointed out the cited article DOES NOT suggest that CFCs don’t cause the ozone hole. CFCs when exposed to radiation under the right conditions produce halide radicals in the upper atmosphere, and it is these that cause the destruction by catalysing the conversion of ozone into oxygen.

    The radiation which does this job of releasing radicals from CFCs is for the most part sublight, which is why the reaction happens mostly in the spring when sunlight first reappears in the antarctic. The CFCs themselves cause no damage in the absence of radiation to split off halide radicals.

    The paper suggests that ionising radiation (i.e. cosmic rays) might be implicated in this part of the process. If this is correct (which I doubt – call me a skeptic) then it simply adjusts our understanding of one minor aspect of the process by which CFCs destroy ozone in the upper atmosphere. The implication would be that the rate of the reaction would then be influenced by solar weather (sunspot activity etc).

    The article does NOT suggests that the ozone hole is a natural phenomenon. It does NOT say that CFCs are not to blame.

    Anthony – I have seen some odd recent activity in this article. A preamble appeared briefly acknowledging that this old article was misleading and stating that it was being reopened for comments. Then the preamble disappeared and all the old comments now appear to be new comments … ? Could you please check that the article appears now as you want it to be. I now see what looks like a direct copy of the original, which I don’t think you really want as the article isn’t your best work. I can’t imagine you would want to emphasize it in this way.

    Could we please have a few more articles on the ozone hole in future. I think people here could stand to be a lot better informed as to the distinction between the ozone hole issue and the global warming issue. Something like 90% of the population (spurious made up percentage warning) thinks these two things are related. In fact they are completely separate problems.

    From my point of view the actions taken to eliminate CFCs are an environmental success story.

  99. Erl Happ says:

    Good science must explain what we observe.

    Maximovich is on the money when he says:
    Downward transport in the dark polar winter can lead to significant enhancements of NOx in the stratosphere. Because NOx can catalytically destroy ozone, such NOx enhancements lead to ozone depletion in the upper stratosphere as has been shown e.g. by Callis et al. (1998); Brasseur and Solomon (2005); Jackman et al. (2008); Baumgaertner et al. (2009).

    Look for yourself to see where the ozone is currently located here: http://www.cpc.noaa.gov/products/stratosphere/strat_a_f/

    Go to the lowest table.

    The flux in ozone levels as the vortex waxes and wanes with day by day change in surface atmospheric pressure can be inferred here: http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/precip/CWlink/daily_ao_index/hgt.aao.shtml

    You will notice that when the AAO rises (indicating a fall in sea level pressure and a collapse in downward transport of NOx from the mesosphere) the atmospheric column is cold. But as soon as the AAO begins to fall (pressure begins to increase and the vertical transport begins anew, geopotential heights increase indicating a warming atmosphere as the ozone that has built up in the upper stratosphere/ margins of the mesosphere during the weak phase is conveyed to the altitudes that we monitor where it absorbs long wave radiation from the Earth and warms the local atmosphere. The location of areas of enhanced ozone is in the mixing zone, outside the margins of the zone of most active downward transport (where there is a complete absence of ozone and it is very cold) and can be seen in the act of descent at 10hPa here: http://www.cpc.noaa.gov/products/intraseasonal/temp10anim.shtml
    and at 30hPa here:http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/intraseasonal/temp30anim.shtml
    and at 200hpa (troposphere) here: http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/intraseasonal/z200anim.shtml
    Where it seems to persist outside the margins of the semi permanent high pressure cells of descending air that form over the oceans. So, the troposphere at this level is almost a mirror image of what is in the stratosphere. It could be that upper atmosphere water vapour in the overturning atmosphere represented by these high pressure cells simply absorbs ozone (that is highly soluble in water).

    Warming and cooling in the upper troposphere affects ice cloud density which determines the flux of solar radiation to the surface. So, we should take a strong interest in the flux in polar atmospheric pressure.

    But, the most interesting thing that can be observed is that when the AAO rises (polar atmospheric pressure falls) the south east trade winds accelerate and the tropical ocean cools via enhanced evaporation.

    And that is the source of the current La Nina, and all the other La Nina’s that have ever occurred in the past.

    When the atmosphere is drawn away from the pole it goes to lower latitudes where it increases the pressure differential driving the trades.

    But the trades are not the only winds affected. The westerlies and the polar easterlies also change in strength and region of influence as the balance in atmospheric pressure is altered. The strengthening of atmospheric pressure over the Arctic since 1997 (falling Arctic Oscillation Index) is driving down winter temperatures over land in the northern hemisphere as the cold polar easterlies invade territory that has been the province of the warm moist westerlies for the last thirty years.

    Change in the AAO and the AO is most vigorous in winter when surface atmospheric pressure at high latitudes is highest. More atmosphere can be pulled away when there is more atmosphere to be pulled away.

    It can be observed that the AO and the AAO indexes fall (rising pressure at the poles) when the Dst (disturbed time index that measure the strength of the ring current in the ionosphere, and is a measure of geomagnetic activity due to the solar wind) relaxes (becomes less negative).

    That the atmosphere behaves in this way suggests that its capacity to change under the influence of electromagnetic forces has been generally underrated.

    Where is Leif Svalgaard when you need him? It isn’t TSI that drives surface temperature but the solar wind. Who would have thunk it?

  100. Edouard says:

    The natural “ozone killers” can be found here:

    http://www.uni-heidelberg.de/presse/ruca/ruca2_2002/keppler.html

    Also available in english without pictures: http://www.uni-heidelberg.de/press/news/press206_e.html

    “Much less widely known is the fact that nature also produces substances that do precisely the same thing. Scientists have already identified over 3,500 natural ozone killers produced by bacteria, algae, fungi, lichens and insects. Together they are to blame for about 30% of the depletion of the ozone layer. The odd thing is that the sources detected so far are insufficient to explain the concentrations of natural ozone-hostile substances actually measured in the atmosphere.”

  101. Ian H says:

    As has been pointed out the cited article DOES NOT suggest that CFCs don’t cause the ozone hole.

    Also the above article does not suggest that CFCs did and do not cause at least in part the ozone hole over the entire air column over the Antarctic Continent. As a layperson, I thought it is a good idea for other laypeople to read the basics about ozone depletion(just like myself). One significant conclusion there at Wiki is:

    Consequences of ozone layer depletion

    Since the ozone layer absorbs UVB ultraviolet light from the Sun, ozone layer depletion is expected to increase surface UVB levels, which could lead to damage, including increases in skin cancer. This was the reason for the Montreal Protocol. Although decreases in stratospheric ozone are well-tied to CFCs and there are good theoretical reasons to believe that decreases in ozone will lead to increases in surface UVB, there is no direct observational evidence linking ozone depletion to higher incidence of skin cancer in human beings. This is partly because UVA, which has also been implicated in some forms of skin cancer, is not absorbed by ozone, and it is nearly impossible to control statistics for lifestyle changes in the populace.

    …which is well in line with the link about ozone depletion basics another commenter suggested: http://www.appinsys.com/GlobalWarming/Ozone.htm

    Outside polar regions, ozone depletion has been relatively small, hence, in many places, increases in UV due to this depletion are difficult to separate from the increases caused by other factors, such as changes in cloud and aerosol.

    Btw, as I understand it, when talking about ozone depletion outside polar regions, we understand the protective stratospheric ozone layer, never mind higher tropospheric ozone concentrations over some continents and islands (Australia? New Zealand?).

  102. Ian H says:

    Something like 90% of the population (spurious made up percentage warning) thinks these two things are related. In fact they are completely separate problems.

    I completely disagree for at least three (3) reasons:

    (1)”More recently, policy experts have advocated for efforts to link ozone protection efforts to climate protection efforts.[44] [45]Many ODS are also greenhouse gasses, some significantly more powerful agents of radiative forcing than carbon dioxide over the short and medium term. Policy decisions in one arena affect the costs and effectiveness of environmental improvements in the other.” (Wikipedia)

    (2) journalofcosmology.com/QingBinLu
    The above paper claims to give answers to three puzzling questions:
    First, how could CO2 and other non-CFC greenhouse gases play a negligible role in the 1950-2000 global warming in spite of their extremely high concentrations? Second, is there other evidence from satellite or ground measurements for the almost zero warming effect of increasing CO2?
    Third, can the greenhouse effect of CFCs be large enough to account for the rise of 0.5~0.6 K in global temperature since 1950? This paper will address all the three questions.

    (3)

    The following figure compares Arctic ozone in February 1984 and 1997 earthobservatory.nasa.gov./… “long waves move up from the lower atmosphere (troposphere) into the stratosphere, where they dissipate. When these waves break up in the upper atmosphere they produce a warming of the polar region. So, when more waves are present to break apart, the stratosphere becomes warmer. When fewer waves rise up and dissipate, the stratosphere cools, and more ozone loss occurs.” http://www.appinsys.com/GlobalWarming/Ozone_files/image010

    And what is supposed to be one of the “proofs” that climate models get it right? Stratospheric cooling! Yes, but to what extent by ozone depletion and to what extent by greenhouse gases? The question remains up until now.

    Completely seperate problems? I guess you have discovered by now that this is nonsense. Bottom line: This is a very informative article and comments threat. Although it takes a long time to separate the wheat from the chaff. The positive effect of the Montreal Protocol may very well be overstated and the cost too high. And yes, AGW proponents nowadays may well wish that these were two completely separate problems…

  103. LazyTeenager says:

    Patrick Davis says:
    November 12, 2010 at 7:42 am
    Well, back in the ’80′s the hole over the Antarctic was attributed to CFC’s released in the NH. I don’t see how CFC’s are, somehow, magigically attracted to Antarctic pole.
    —————
    You don’t see CFC’s magically attracted to the south pole; because they are not magically or otherwise attracted to the south pole. CFC’s are distributed uniformly around the globe. The conditions at the south pole are different than else where.

  104. LazyTeenager says:

    Anthony says
    ————–
    Maybe it is because the major catalyst isn’t CFC’s after all?
    ————–
    Er no! Thus comes from skimming the paper and not reading it properly.

    I to skimmed it but got a better sense of what it was about.

    CFC’s are still the culprit in this paper. This paper is speculating about an alternative way of breaking CFC’s down to make chlorine atoms. The chlorine atoms destroy ozone.

    So sorry; this paper is not discrediting the Montreal protocol, and it’s not discrediting the scientists who discovered the ozone hole.

  105. SunburnedInNZ says:

    While I’m not going to go into the CFC debate, if you want some anecdotal evidence on sun from someone living in NZ, I can give it to you. When I was a kid in the 70s the highest SPF sold was 15 and that was considered a total block. It wasn’t a big deal if you forgot to put it on and it wasn’t waterproof so it washed off at the beach anyway. Result – a few mild sunburns but nothing needing medication, just a bit of discomfort in a hot shower. From the 80s onwards it got quickly and steadily worse. The SPF’s shot up to 50, and we started getting told to put on a shirt, sunscreen, hat and sunglasses (slip, slop, slap & wrap is the slogan). Today it’s quite easy to get bad sunburn in winter, and during summer you can get a bad sunburn with under 10 mins exposure unprotected. Bad being “Holy crap, I need painkillers”. An hour can send you to hospital. Having travelled around the world, there is a very noticable difference in the way the sun feels on your skin. In NZ it can be a very mild day but if you step from the shade into the sun it feels like the temp went up several degrees. There is a noticable burning sensation on a hot summers day. Travel to the northern hemisphere and you get a far gentler heat sensation when you’re in full sunlight. 2 years ago I sat on a beach in Thailand under an umbrella with sunscreen all day and did not get sunburned. I have done the same thing in NZ for 2 hours and got sunburned from indirect sunlight. Just my 2c.

  106. Robinson says:

    Yes, I too remember the hysteria, which in many ways foreshadowed today’s Climate Hysteria. We had programmes on the BBC called “The O-Zone” (a witty pun that kids would appreciate, concerned with environmental issues). I think there was even a porno movie called The O-Zone, but I’m guessing the O in that didn’t stand for oxygen.

  107. federico says:

    The paper does not question Freons and CFCs as (co-)responsible elements in the stratospheric Ozone decomposition. The paper challenges the currently general “photochemical” theory of Freon and CFC breakdown (generating Bromine and Chlorine radicals respectively, the actual chemical species that catalyze O3 decomposition), claiming that the main activating energy is electrons from Cosmic Rays (CRs) instead of UV radiation. According to the study, the correlation of Antarctic O3 loss with the CR intensity became manifest only from 1992 up to now because the total amount of CFCs stayed nearly constant since the early 90s. Polar Stratospheric Cloud (PSC) ice particles seem to be important elements in this theory.

  108. George E. Smith says:

    I think there is evidence (proxy) that there has always been ozone holes. It has to be proxy since there weren’t any “ozone holes until somebody named them.

    But it has been known for eons that sunlight as the one of the msot prominent natural light sources; has alway had a varying color temperature; it varies seasonally every year, and it also varies eratically from time to time.

    The change in apparent color temperature has been ascribed to variations in the UV and blue end of the solar spectrum due to changes in Ozone.

    The one day; somebody said I think I’ll go and look for an ozone hole; and voilla! there it was. And the reaon it is where it is, is because during the Antarctic winter midnight; there is a well known shortage of solar irradiation of Antarctica. thisw is believed toi be due to the definition of night time as being an absence of sunlight.

    And no sunlight; no XUV to break up O2 to form atomic Oxygen; which then (promptly) forms O3. Since Ozone is somewhat unstable anyway; if you have a decay of ozone, and a simultaneous lack of ozone formation; you get a hole. The principle applies to a lot of other things which disappear creating a shortage if they aren’t replaced.

  109. jimmi says:

    George,

    There is a problem with your analysis – while it is true that there is a diminishing of ozone above Antarctica during winter, there is a much greater loss during spring, peaking in the period from mid September to mid October. This loss is measured quantitatively and is accompanied by the appearance of the molecule ClO (Chlorine oxide). What is your theory to explain this?

  110. George E. Smith says:

    “”””” jimmi says:
    November 16, 2010 at 2:37 pm
    George,

    There is a problem with your analysis – while it is true that there is a diminishing of ozone above Antarctica during winter, there is a much greater loss during spring, peaking in the period from mid September to mid October. This loss is measured quantitatively and is accompanied by the appearance of the molecule ClO (Chlorine oxide). What is your theory to explain this? “””””

    Well I didn’t say it was a complete closed theory of Ozone holes; just that it’s a fact. It is also a fact that if you look at the air mass zero, and air mass one solar spectrums, you will see that Ozone also absorbs solar energy in the range of 0.5 to 0.7 microns; green to deep red regions. It is known that ground level ozone is destroyed by sunlight.

    So sunlight both creates ozone at very high altitudes where the XUV can penetrate; but also destroys it at lower altitudes; which maybe why ozone only persists to any extent in a very limited range in the atmosphere.

    So what is your theory for the seasonal appearance of the ClO molecule. I’m under the impression that Chlorine destroys ozone in a catalytic process that releases the Chlorine to kill again. So then what is the function of ClO in the chemistry. I believe somebody who worked out a chemistry of chlorine destruction of ozone; got a Nobel Prize in chemistry for it; but If my memory serves; there was no observational evidence that such chemical reactions were actually taking place in the stratosphere.

    The dissociation of O2 which is necessary to form ozone, I believe is a function of both XUV and also solar charged particle collisions in the upper atmosphere. The solar charged particles are influenced by the earth magnetic field; which also weakly affects the much higher energy Cosmic rays. The soalr particles typically get trapped by the earth magnetic field and spirtal around the field lines to reach the earth surface (if they can) in the regions around the magnetic poles. This process tends to reduce the density of solar charged particles above the polar regions; think of an iron dust map of a bar magnet field; there are quite low fields directly off the ends of the magnet compared to those between the poles.

    But in any case; I believe there are peer reviewed papers that refute the Chlorine destruction of Ozone model; but I’m not up on the latest positions in that area; I have heard that it is a discredited model.

    In any case; I’m not that worried about ozone depletion; some well credentialled people have suggested that ozone is simply the evidence that O2 is doing its job in absorbing solar UV. Well that is likely true of the XUV which doesn’t make it to the ground; but maybe UVA&B are another matter.

    In any case; life on earth began in an atmosphere largely devoid of oxygen; so there must have been plenty of UVA&B, yet life flourished.

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