Good news: no ‘ozone hole’ in the Arctic

From the Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Plugging an ozone hole

MIT researchers find that the extremes in Antarctic ozone holes have not been matched in the Arctic

AGU_ozone_hole1

The Antarctic “Ozone Hole” has no similarly sized Arctic counterpart

CAMBRIDGE, Mass– Since the discovery of the Antarctic ozone hole, scientists, policymakers, and the public have wondered whether we might someday see a similarly extreme depletion of ozone over the Arctic.

But a new MIT study finds some cause for optimism: Ozone levels in the Arctic haven’t yet sunk to the extreme lows seen in Antarctica, in part because international efforts to limit ozone-depleting chemicals have been successful.

 

“While there is certainly some depletion of Arctic ozone, the extremes of Antarctica so far are very different from what we find in the Arctic, even in the coldest years,” says Susan Solomon, the Ellen Swallow Richards Professor of Atmospheric Chemistry and Climate Science at MIT, and lead author of a paper published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Frigid temperatures can spur ozone loss because they create prime conditions for the formation of polar stratospheric clouds. When sunlight hits these clouds, it sparks a reaction between chlorine from chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), human-made chemicals once used for refrigerants, foam blowing, and other applications — ultimately destroying ozone.

“A success story of science and policy”

After the ozone-attacking properties of CFCs were discovered in the 1980s, countries across the world agreed to phase out their use as part of the 1987 Montreal Protocol treaty. While CFCs are no longer in use, those emitted years ago remain in the atmosphere. As a result, atmospheric concentrations have peaked and are now slowly declining, but it will be several decades before CFCs are totally eliminated from the environment — meaning there is still some risk of ozone depletion caused by CFCs.

“It’s really a success story of science and policy, where the right things were done just in time to avoid broader environmental damage,” says Solomon, who made some of the first measurements in Antarctica that pointed toward CFCs as the primary cause of the ozone hole.

To obtain their findings, the researchers used balloon and satellite data from the heart of the ozone layer over both polar regions. They found that Arctic ozone levels did drop significantly during an extended period of unusual cold in the spring of 2011. While this dip did depress ozone levels, the decrease was nowhere near as drastic as the nearly complete loss of ozone in the heart of the layer seen in many years in Antarctica.

The MIT team’s work also helps to show chemical reasons for the differences, demonstrating that ozone loss in Antarctica is closely associated with reduced levels of nitric acid in air that is colder than that in the Arctic.

“We’ll continue to have cold years with extreme Antarctic ozone holes for a long time to come,” Solomon says. “We can’t be sure that there will never be extreme Arctic ozone losses in an unusually cold future year, but so far, so good — and that’s good news.”

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133 thoughts on “Good news: no ‘ozone hole’ in the Arctic

  1. “Ozone levels in the Arctic haven’t yet sunk to the extreme lows seen in Antarctica, in part because international efforts to limit ozone-depleting chemicals have been successful.”

    So why haven’t efforts to limit ozone-depleting chemicals in the southern hemisphere been as successful?

  2. Louis says:
    April 15, 2014 at 3:09 pm
    ““Ozone levels in the Arctic haven’t yet sunk to the extreme lows seen in Antarctica, in part because international efforts to limit ozone-depleting chemicals have been successful.”

    So why haven’t efforts to limit ozone-depleting chemicals in the southern hemisphere been as successful?”

    For the same reason that Global Warming makes sea ice around Antarctica grow, not shrink.

  3. Note: “They found that Arctic ozone levels did drop significantly during an extended period of unusual cold in the spring of 2011.”

    If it is warm, it is the “new normal”. If it is cold, it is “unusual”.

    Self-reinforcing thinking.

  4. Please remind me, what was the problem with reduced ozone in the atmosphere? If it was only a theoretical/modeled hazard, today I would be strongly against believing a word these guys were saying. Show me the data.

  5. For all we know, the ozone hole over Antarctica has been there for decades, centuries, millenia, or longer. When we first went looking for it, it was there. I have seen nothing that conclusively shows that it was caused by CFC’s. There is also evidence that CFC’s don’t destroy ozone anywhere near as much as was feared (the temperature regime is wrong for the reaction).

  6. Can someone please explain how we know that the ozone hole came from “depletion” and if we could visualize the ozone hole in the past in the same way that we can today? I understand that CFC’s and other chlorines react and degrade ozone, but what is the confidence level that the ozone was a continuous layer before we could visualize it?

  7. CFC’s way to heavy to get above troposphere, Ozone probably blasted during all those above ground nuke tests for 30 odd yrs. The international ban on above ground nuke testing more likely a healing factor …. nice when things work.

  8. The reason isn’t due to man’s banning of a few chemicals. It is due to the Sun’s reduced activity.

  9. When there’s sunlight, ultra-violet rays create Ozone. Ozone is unstable, and quickly breaks down. Those long Arctic and Antarctic winters give the Ozone plenty of time to break down naturally, without being replenished by more sunlight created Ozone.

    I suppose REAL global warming, with temperatures as high in the Arctic as in the lower latitudes, there would NEVER be an Ozone hole, because circulating air from lower latitudes would completely replace the Ozone that broke down in the Arctic.

  10. Can anyone tell me what the ozone levels were in the Antarctic in 1950? 1900? 1800? 1700? If no,t how can we tell if the ozone hole has changed or been affected by man or is it a natural phenomenon? Could it be that there are natural reasons that the ozone hole is behaving differently in the Arctic as compared to the Antarctic?

  11. This seems a fairly straghtforward system, so it’s surprising that there would be any surprises
    possible. But it seems as though the lack of both before and after mesurements of ozone layers
    limits what can be said as to the effectiveness of the CFC ban, since other factors can and do affect the ozone holes.

  12. george e. conant says:
    April 15, 2014 at 3:22 pm
    CFC’s way to heavy to get above troposphere

    Buoyancy does not apply to gases or liquids dissolved in gases. If it did, you would never see clouds above the ground since liquid water is much denser than air.

  13. Point of the Entire Above Article:

    One line: “‘A success story of science and policy.’”

    It’s all about CONTROL (partly per se and MOSTLY for Enviroprofiteering).

    They are SOOOO desperate it’s really sad.

    A SUCCESS STORY! — SO LISTEN TO US!!!

    Pathetic.

    ********************************
    “… because international efforts to limit ozone-depleting chemicals have been successful.”

    Unfounded, baseless, speculation, iow,

    JUNK science.

  14. First, a question. When did they obtain their data? This is significant because extreme cold conditions like we experienced this winter (Jan-Mar) can increase the depletion of ozone – that is why the Antarctic ‘hole’ has always been larger than the Arctic ‘hole’, because it experiences considerably more extreme cold temperatures than the Arctic experiences during their corresponding winters.

    Second: Ozone has a very short lifetime (about 48 hours max) and is created in the ‘ozone layer’ by the photochemical reaction of UV radiation on Oxygen (O2). During a polar winter there is very little UV radiation so no ozone is being created to replace that which is naturally breaking down – thus, depletion of ozone in polar regions occurs naturally during a polar winter.

    Third: The ‘hole’ in the ‘ozone layer’ is a naturally occurring phenomenon at both poles and it will never completely disappear. All the banning of man-made ODS (Ozone Depleting Substances) can hope to accomplish is to slow down the rate of ozone depletion which, in turn, would decrease the maximum extent of the ‘hole’.

  15. “””””…..george e. conant says:

    April 15, 2014 at 3:22 pm

    CFC’s way to heavy to get above troposphere, Ozone probably blasted during all those above ground nuke tests for 30 odd yrs. The international ban on above ground nuke testing more likely a healing factor …. nice when things work……”””””

    Just when did the Kiwis and Aussies do all those nuke tests own south that blasted the Antarctic ozone.

    Antarctic ozone hole due to no sunlight during Antarctic winter midnight so no EUV to break down O2 into O which then makes O3.

    Ozone is the result of OXYGEN absorbing dangerous UV radiation , and protecting life on earth from it.

    Life on earth evolved in an oxygen free atmosphere so there was tons of UV on earth when life evolved.

    When the oxygen disappear, then we will have a UV problem to worry about; dang; we won’t be here to worry about UV, sans oxygen in the atmosphere.

    Ozone is overblown , holes or no. It is the evidence that oxygen is protecting us from solar UV.

  16. If the vast majority of the chemicals that are supposedly destroying ozone are found in the northern hemisphere- which makes sense, because I do believe that is where most of them are used- HOW do they get down to the Antarctic?

  17. Mr Smith Says:Just when did the Kiwis and Aussies do all those nuke tests own south that blasted the Antarctic ozone.

    ——
    Perhaps it was the extensive French above ground nuke testing in French Polynesia that did it, It is well documented that Cesium and Strontium nucleides were distributed world wide regardles.

  18. I am suspicious of this entire Ozone controversy.

    First it seems to occur at the Antarctic pole, the most separated and isolated region from where the Halogens originated and were used, in the Northern Hemisphere. Why??

    Secondly, after the Ozone hole was found in the mid 70s-early 80s and the Montreal Protocol was initiated to cure it. Some researchers went back and looked at data from the 1957 International Geophysical Year studies of Antarctica. The data shows an Ozone hole present back then, before much HVAC had spread worldwide.

    Thirdly, an Antarctic volcano was spewing great quantities of Ozone destroying compounds into the Antarctic atmosphere. But the Montreal Protocol had been adopted, and these research results were ignored,amidst the backslapping and bon homie. .

    Fourthly, the makers of flouro-halogens were anxious to agree to the Montreal Protocol, since the banning and replacements would replace ex-patent, commodity prices, with new and much higher prices for proprietary replacements. It would also require lots of new HVAC equipment too, as the new halogens were not at efficient as the older original ones. So a welcome profit opportunity beckoned for the refrigerant makers and the refrigerator makers, and their service companies. In short, the entire industry seemed to profit, so opposition was nullified.

  19. From the London Times yesterday (Tuesday)

    “Ozone hole means Britons face a burning problem

    The spring sunshine is surprisingly strong, and has been made more so by a recent ozone hole over Britain, allowing high levels of ultraviolet rays to penetrate the atmosphere and burning unprotected fair skin.”

    Behind paywall http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/weather/article4063546.ece

    Now you know where the ozone hole has gone.

  20. Considering that there is a thousand fold increase in UV between the poles and the equator I’ve never seen what all the fuss was about. A thousand fold increase means that if you move 100 mile south you DOUBLE your UV exposure (on average). The worst that I recall the threat of ozone depletion at the poles was a 10% increase in local UV levels – the same as moving ten miles south…Now this is just from memory, I looked into this over a decade ago and this is what I recall from my research. Could be totally wrong of course!

  21. I know that almost everyone here has been exposed to my magnetic susceptibility explanation of the ozone holes: O2 quite magnetic (strongly paramagnetic) – more so when very cold; all other atmospheric gases diamagnetic i.e. pushed away by a magnet. I won’t go into it all again in detail, but expect there to be a CO2 hole, N2 hole, noble gases hole and methane hole coincident with the ozone hole. Expect an elevated concentration in the temperate and equatorial regions (latter probably disrupted and mixed with weather). If these differential concentrations of the other gases is correct, then the case for solely a chemical reaction reason for the ozone hole is very tenuous. Since no one is taking me up on the invitation to examine this, I’m planning to collaborate with a physicist specializing in magnetics on a paper of this subject.

  22. Oh and look at the NASA image in the article of the “roll-necked” sweater band of concentrated ozone away from the hole.

  23. “If the vast majority of the chemicals that are supposedly destroying ozone are found in the northern hemisphere- which makes sense, because I do believe that is where most of them are used- HOW do they get down to the Antarctic?”

    Must be because they’re so heavy they sink. ;)

  24. Good news: no ‘ozone hole’ in the Arctic
    ————
    Not good news for the catastrophe mongers; they need stuff like that to get the proles into an uproar. And the greens need such a casus belli to feed their self-righteousness.

    They must be so disappointed.

  25. That UK Times statement about “burning unprotected fair skin” is the latest crazy thing. Since when has unprotected fair skin not burned? Have these folks only gone out at night for the last 17,000 years? They must be hard up if they no longer have hats and clothing!
    The problem is worse in the spring because the skin has not had time to acclimatise.
    Cover up, Brits.

  26. Has the ozone hole always been there? They did say

    Since the discovery of the Antarctic ozone hole, scientists, policymakers, and the public have wondered whether we might someday see a similarly extreme depletion of ozone over the Arctic.

    If it has always been there then why are we trying to get rid of it?

    NASA – 11 December, 2013
    NASA Reveals New Results From Inside the Ozone Hole
    …..More than 20 years after the Montreal Protocol agreement limited human emissions of ozone-depleting substances, satellites have monitored the area of the annual ozone hole and watched it essentially stabilize, ceasing to grow substantially larger. However, two new studies show that signs of recovery are not yet present, and that temperature and winds are still driving any annual changes in ozone hole size……
    http://www.nasa.gov/content/goddard/new-results-from-inside-the-ozone-hole/

    Mmmmmmm! I suspect man’s cfc’s have a role to play but is it possible that a substantial hole in the ozone layer has always been there?

  27. I am not sure what I believe about CFCs. I guess I’m a skeptic, but a couple of statement they make raise my eyebrows.

    The first statement is a confirmation statement about a well ran effort to make a compound out as a bad compound. I don’t know it could be true. Here is the first statement. {But a new MIT study finds some cause for optimism: Ozone levels in the Arctic haven’t yet sunk to the extreme lows seen in Antarctica, in part because international efforts to limit ozone-depleting chemicals have been successful.}

    Now here is the second statement about the actual science and their determination of what is causing the Antarctic hole. {The MIT team’s work also helps to show chemical reasons for the differences, demonstrating that ozone loss in Antarctica is closely associated with reduced levels of nitric acid in air that is colder than that in the Arctic.}

    The research is showing colder air decreases the amount of nitric acid and the lesser amount of nitric acid decreases the amount of ozone. It appears on the surface that those two statements are about two different things.

    It would be very funny if a couple of decades colder weather disproving AGW worries would also cause ozone holes to grow and cause some good scientific debate over whether CFCs really have a great effect on ozone holes or not.

  28. Further to my last comment it would be so funny if we failed to stabilize our co2 levels and cooling became more pronounced for 20 years. That seems to be what is happening with the hole in the ozone layer. Just a thought and a sneaking suspicion that we are waisting our valuable time……. again.

    Next up………………Acid oceans? Deformed canaries? Postal polar bears? Slithering kangaroos? Survivalist lemmings? Just what do these loons have up their sleeves?

  29. Is baseline Arctic ozone ‘hole’ data available to compare the recent findings to?
    Can anybody provide a link to data for Arctic ozone depletion from prior years/decades?

  30. “We’ll continue to have cold years with extreme Antarctic ozone holes for a long time to come,” Solomon says.

    Right there is the ticket. Maybe they suspect it’s always had an ozone hole.

  31. What area has the highest Ozone levels during the September low-point of Ozone (the hole) in the Antarctica?

    60S. Yup, highest on the planet.

    The Ozone just gets pushed out of the polar vortex during the peak of the Antarctic cold.

    What area has the highest Ozone levels during the February low period for the Arctic (when some holes have been measured)?

    60N.

    Pattern much?

  32. Considering the vast majority of industrial activity and use of CFCs is in the northern hemisphere why is there an “CFC induced” hole only in the southern hemisphere?

  33. There are no “holes” in the Ozone Layer for the simple reason that, in the real world, there is no such thing as an “Ozone Layer”.

    The so-called “Ozone Layer” is an imaginary mathematical construct, created by Professor Gordon Dobson, used to convert an atmospheric reading from a Dobson Spectrophotometer, into a unit of measurement of atmospheric ozone concentration (a Dobson Unit).

    “Scientists” who write papers on non-existent “holes” in imaginary “layers” in the air, need to be accommodated in small, padded rooms for their own safety, and kept away from sharp objects and school students, in the best interests of society in general.

  34. They found that Arctic ozone levels did drop significantly during an extended period of unusual cold in the spring of 2011.

    Ah. So its the cold what done it. We can fix that ;-)

  35. I guess the antarctic ozone hole did not exist before the “experts ” could model it.
    Maybe when the cold of the next 30 or so years kicks in, these same people will “discover” an arctic hole.
    Probably congruent with an arctic high holding steady over the polar region.
    Trust government funding to make science a swear word.

  36. Good News: no ‘ozone hole’ in the Arctic

    – – – – – – – – –

    Good. One less thing for me to worry about here at Latitude: 37-20’22” N &
    Longitude: 121-53’42” W

    John

  37. Louis says: April 15, 2014 at 3:09 pm
    “So why haven’t efforts to limit ozone-depleting chemicals in the southern hemisphere been as successful?”

    There’s no big difference in CFC concentrations. Conditions for ozone catalytic depletion depend on temperature, requiring cold and sunlight. Antarctica is colder.

    Here is a map of the size of SH ozone holes since good measurements began in 1980.

  38. I have references in Optics and infra-red handbooks to our sun as a natural light source. As such, it has an apparent “color Temperature” that is in the 6,000 kelvin range for zenith sun in a clear sky; imagine that.

    Well early investigations (1940s-50s) by the US Air Force, (imagine that ) noted that the apparent color Temperature of the sun varies, and it has both seasonal variations, and erratic longer term variations.

    Researchers at the time suggested that the source of the variations in solar apparent color Temperature, was an anomalous solar spectrum in the UV and near short wave regions (blue-green) Anomalous in the black body sense.

    Nobody at the time suggested any cause for these variations in the sun spectrum near, and shorter than the peak wavelength.

    Plots of solar spectra, routinely show deviation from black body shape near the UV and blue green peak of the solar spectrum. I presume that by now, solar physicists like Leif for example are pretty familiar with current theories of how the sun does that. (I am not )

    So what the hey does old sol know about earth’s seasons, so why would he fluctuate seasonally ??

    Well I don’t think so, but a seasonal variation in the earth ozone “layer” would certainly explain a seasonal change in apparent color Temperature due to variations in atmospheric transmitted solar UV and blue green; even if such variations are absent at the sun end.

    It is my conjecture, that these early Air Force studies, were evidence of natural ozone holes, long before, somebody said; “today I feel like looking for an ozone hole.”

    So howcome the Air Force looked at this stuff. Well they already had B29s and B36s and B47s and such, flying at ever higher altitudes, and they were concerned about radiation hazards to air crews.

    So ozone holes are old hat, and have always been coming and going.

  39. Chris,

    Nice link to David’s work at knowledgedrift. Pretty graphics too.
    Pity it’s incorrect.
    Just one of many variants on a theme created by NASA and others in the early 90’s to try and smudge over the fact that they had been caught out lying their pants off about “ozone holes”.

    I repeat: There IS NO OZONE LAYER.

    It is a mathematical construct created by taking a reading of total atmospheric ozone (from sea level to TOA), with a Dobson Spectrophotometer, ASSUMING all the measured ozone is compressed into a “layer” (the magical, mystical “ozone layer”) at sea level at STP, and expressing the calculated thickness of that “layer” in Dobson Units (based on the number of ozone molecules).

    This entirely calculated value can then be used to compare total atmospheric ozone concentration in different geographical locations.

  40. Mark and two Cats says:
    April 15, 2014 at 4:15 pm

    Good news: no ‘ozone hole’ in the Arctic
    ————
    Not good news for the catastrophe mongers; they need stuff like that to get the proles into an uproar. And the greens need such a casus belli to feed their self-righteousness.

    They must be so disappointed.

    *

    My thoughts exactly. But they win either way. Had they found a hole, they’d be screaming about it. As they haven’t, it’s “A success story of science and policy”, thus claiming their policies work!

    Is this nonsense EVER going to end?

  41. Nick Stokes says: April 15, 2014 at 5:53 pm

    Here is a map of the size of SH ozone holes since good measurements began in 1980.

    NASA GSFC, USA; image prepared by CSIRO Atmospheric Research – Click the pic to view

    The trend towards larger Ozone “Holes” in October;

    NASA GSFC, USA; image prepared by CSIRO Atmospheric Research – Click the pic to view at source

    is explained by “several studies (including Waugh and Randel 1999; Waugh et al. 1999; Karpetchko et al. 2005; Black and McDaniel 2007)” that “have indicated a trend over the 1980s and 1990s toward a later vortex breakdown”:

    http://www.columbia.edu/~lmp/paps/waugh+polvani-PlumbFestVolume-2010.pdf

  42. memoryvault1 says:
    April 15, 2014 at 6:05 pm
    Chris,
    Nice link to David’s work at knowledgedrift. Pretty graphics too.
    Pity it’s incorrect.
    Just one of many variants on a theme created by NASA and others in the early 90′s to try and smudge over the fact that they had been caught out lying their pants off about “ozone holes”.
    I repeat: There IS NO OZONE LAYER.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>

    I spend so little time on my own blog I completely forgot I wrote that, thanks Chris.

    As for it being incorrect, the article is clear that it is meant to be illustrative, and ACTUALLY SAYS that there really isn’t a hole, just a depression in concentration.

  43. The ozone “hole” appears and disappears every year, completely based on the earth’s axial tilt and orbit. Some fluctuation in size on an annual basis should be just as much expected as fluctuations in sea ice. We don’t have enough years of data to determine a trend for either.

  44. Bill Illis says: April 15, 2014 at 5:16 pm

    The Ozone just gets pushed out of the polar vortex during the peak of the Antarctic cold.

    Yes, that’s the simplest explanation, i.e. the dynamical forces of the Polar Vortex displace the ozone, resulting in an Ozone “Surplus” around the Polar Vortex and associated Ozone “Hole”:

    NOAA – National Weather Service – Climate Prediction Center

    It is primarily centrifugal force, i.e. “The walls of the polar vortex act as the boundaries for the extraordinary changes in chemical concentrations. Now the polar vortex can be considered a sealed chemical reactor bowl, containing a water vapor hole, a nitrogen oxide hole and an ozone hole, all occurring simultaneously (Labitzke and Kunze 2005)”

    http://books.google.com/books?id=B93SSQrcAh4C&lpg=PA283&ots=d0-uBRjmyI&dq=%22water%20vapor%20hole%22%20polar%20vortex&pg=PA283#v=onepage&q=%22water%20vapor%20hole%22%20polar%20vortex&f=false

    “The transport circulation is modified to simulate the vortex by preventing the exchange of air across the vortex boundary. The 03 distributions calculated using standard gasphase chemistry with and without this modification are shown in Figures 2a and 2b, respectively. Comparison of Figures 2a and 2b shows that modification of the circulation to eliminate transport of 03 into the vortex has the effect of increasing 03 (up to 10%) immediately outside the vortex wall and decreasing 03 (up to 20%) inside the vortex. In the following discussion the change in 03 due to the imposed 03 hole will be calculated relative to the 03 amount given in Figure 2b.”

    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1029/JD094iD09p11521/abstract

    By way of example:

    “Structure of a Hurricane
    In center: centrifugal force is very strong
    ƒ Divergence and sinking air
    ƒ Mostly clear skies in the eye of the hurricane”

    http://www.indiana.edu/~geog109/topics/13_severe/13-Hurricanes_nf.pdf

    “The hurricane’s center is a relatively calm, generally clear area of sinking air and light winds that usually do not exceed 15 mph (24 km/h) and is typically 20-40 miles (32-64 km) across. An eye will usually develop when the maximum sustained wind speeds go above 74 mph (119 km/h) and is the calmest part of the storm.

    But why does an eye form? The cause of eye formation is still not fully understood. It probably has to do with the combination of “the conservation of angular momentum” and centrifugal force. The conservation of angular momentum means is objects will spin faster as they move toward the center of circulation. So air increases it speed as it heads toward the center of the tropical cyclone. One way of looking at this is watching figure skaters spin. The closer they hold their hands to the body, the faster they spin. Conversely, the farther the hands are from the body the slower they spin. In tropical cyclone, as the air moves toward the center, the speed must increase.

    However, as the speed increases, an outward-directed force, called the centrifugal force, occurs because the wind’s momentum wants to carry the wind in a straight line. Since the wind is turning about the center of the tropical cyclone, there is a pull outward. The sharper the curvature, and/or the faster the rotation, the stronger is the centrifugal force.

    Around 74 mph (119 km/h) the strong rotation of air around the cyclone balances inflow to the center, causing air to ascend about 10-20 miles (16-32 km) from the center forming the eyewall. This strong rotation also creates a vacuum of air at the center, causing some of the air flowing out the top of the eyewall to turn inward and sink to replace the loss of air mass near the center.

    Radar image of hurricane Andrew showing eye, eyewall, and spiral bands. This sinking air suppresses cloud formation, creating a pocket of generally clear air in the center. ”

    http://www.srh.noaa.gov/jetstream/tropics/tc_structure.htm

    This explains why the Ozone “Hole” has it’s lowest concentrations at its center:

    NOAA – National Weather Service – Climate Prediction Center

  45. The MIT team’s work also helps to show chemical reasons for the differences, demonstrating that ozone loss in Antarctica is closely associated with reduced levels of nitric acid in air that is colder than that in the Arctic.

    In other words, they haven’t ruled out the possibility Antarctica has always had an ozone “hole” during winter due to the extreme cold. The fear-mongering troughers.

  46. And there are other dynamical influences that needs to be taken into account, i.e. “in the center of the Antarctic vortex. Air from very high altitudes descends vertically through the center of the vortex, moving air to lower altitudes over several months.”

    http://www.nasa.gov/centers/langley/news/factsheets/HALOE-Ozone.html

    “In the NH vortex, air parcels which were initialized at 18 km on November 1, descended about 6 km by March 21, while air initially at 25 km descended 9 km in the same time period. This represents an average descent rate in the lower stratosphere of 1.3 to 2 km per month. Air initialized at 50 km descended 27 km between November 1 and March 21.

    In the SH vortex, parcels initialized at 18 km on March 1, descended 3 km, while air at 25 km descended 5–7 km by the end of October. This is equivalent to an average descent in the lower stratosphere of 0.4 to 0.9 km per month during this 8-month period. Air initialized at 52 km descended 26–29 km between March 1 and October 31. In both the NH and the SH, computed descent rates increased markedly with height. The descent for the NH winter of 1992–1993 and the SH winter of 1992 computed with a three-dimensional trajectory model using the same radiation code was within 1 to 2 km of that calculated by the one-dimensional model, thus validating the vortex averaging procedure. The computed descent rates generally agree well with observations of long-lived tracers, thus validating the radiative transfer model.”

    https://earthref.org/ERR/59278/

    Air towards the top of the stratosphere and bottom of the mesosphere has lower concentrations of ozone;

    NOAA – National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) – Click the pic to view at source

    As such, when this “air from very high altitudes descends vertically through the center of the vortex” it displaces the air below it, decreasing the concentration of ozone within the Polar Vortex.

    Additionally, “Throughout the winter, air from the upper stratosphere moves poleward and descends into the middle stratosphere. In the SH lower to middle stratosphere, strongest descent occurs near the edge of the polar vortex. The NH shows a similar pattern in late winter, but in early winter strongest descent is near the center of the vortex. Strong barriers to latitudinal mixing exist above =420 K throughout the winter. Below this, the polar night jet is weak in early winter, so air that descends below that level mixes between polar and middle latitudes. In late winter, parcels descend less, and the polar night jet moves downward, so there is less latitudinal mixing. The degree of mixing in the lower stratosphere thus depends strongly on the position and evolution of the polar night jet.”

    “Diagnostics of mixing show a strong barrier to mixing at the edge of the polar vortex in the lower stratosphere, even into December in the SH, In the middle stratosphere, stratospheric warmings cause mixing to increase, and the vortex edge, as identified by a minimum in mixing, to move to higher PV values. This is consistent with previous studies showing the shrinking of the vortex and weakening of PV gradients during stratospheric warmings. As expected, considerably more mixing is seen in the NH than in the SH, In the lower stratosphere, in early winter the ,po]ar night jet usually does not extend significantly below =400 K, and parcels that descend below this level experience little barrier to mixing into mid-latitudes. As the winter progresses, the polar night jet moves downwards, and the parcels descend more slowly. Consistent with this, our simulations show considerably less mixing of polar air into mid-latitudes in late winter than in early winter in both hemispheres. In the presence of this polar night jet structure in the lower stratosphere and the sub-tropical jet in the upper troposphere, the degree of mixing of between polar and mid-latitude air in the lower stratosphere is strongly dependent on the amount of descent.”

    http://trs-new.jpl.nasa.gov/dspace/bitstream/2014/33809/1/94-0540.pdf

    Here is a simple view of the Ozone Layer;

    Figure 2.14: Ozone Concentration vs. Height (Ajavon, et al., 2007)- Click the pic to view at source

    here is what happens to Column Ozone when the Polar Vortex descends into and through the Ozone Layer:

    Figure 2.14: Ozone Concentration vs. Height (Ajavon, et al., 2007)- Click the pic to view at source

    and here is an animation of it occurring in 2013:

    http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/gmd/dv/spo_oz/movies/index.html

    Simple dynamical effects appear to explain the existence of Ozone “Holes”.

  47. Since a reduction in ozone in the polar night at the poles (north or south) could cause an increase in UV and burn fair skin I will certainly limit my sun bathing in these regions in their respective winters.

    Think about it for a moment. You would get more sunburn if only the sun were to shine there. Is someone’s head where the sun doesn’t shine?

  48. Gary Pearse says: April 15, 2014 at 4:12 pm

    I won’t go into it all again in detail, but expect there to be a CO2 hole, N2 hole, noble gases hole and methane hole coincident with the ozone hole.

    Yes, “the polar vortex can be considered a sealed chemical reactor bowl, containing a water vapor hole, a nitrogen oxide hole and an ozone hole, all occurring simultaneously (Labitzke and Kunze 2005)”

    http://books.google.com/books?id=B93SSQrcAh4C&lpg=PA283&ots=d0-uBRjmyI&dq=%22water%20vapor%20hole%22%20polar%20vortex&pg=PA283#v=onepage&q=%22water%20vapor%20hole%22%20polar%20vortex&f=false

    “measurements of low methane concentrations in the vortex made by the HALOE instrument on board the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite.” Rapid descent of mesospheric air into the stratospheric polar vortex, AGU 1993

    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1029/93GL01104/abstract

    “The ozone hole is in the center of a spiraling mass of air over the Antarctic that is called the polar vortex. The vortex is not stationary and sometimes moves as far north as the southern half of South America, taking the ozone hole with it.”

    http://www.nasa.gov/centers/langley/news/factsheets/HALOE-Ozone.html

    “Simultaneous global measurements of nitric acid (HNO3), water (H2O), chlorine monoxide (CIO), and ozone (O3) in the stratosphere have been obtained over complete annual cycles in both hemispheres by the Microwave Limb Sounder on the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite. A sizeable decrease in gas-phase HNO3 was evident in the lower stratospheric vortex over Antarctica by early June 1992, followed by a significant reduction in gas-phase H2O after mid-July. By mid-August, near the time of peak CIO, abundances of gas-phase HNO3 and H2O were extremely low. The concentrations of HNO3 and H2O over Antarctica remained depressed into November, well after temperatures in the lower stratosphere had risen above the evaporation threshold for polar stratospheric clouds, implying that denitrification and dehydration had occurred.”

    “There are no MLS measurements over Antarctica from mid-September through the end of October (20). By the time southviewing resumes on 1 November, chlorine over Antarctica has been largely deactivated. However, the 03 deficit that developed in September (4, 11, 12) persists. The deficits in gas-phase HNO3 and H20 also persist, with mixing ratio values less than 6 ppbv and less than 3 ppmv, respectively, throughout most of the vortex. Similar H20 values were measured by the UARS Halogen Occultation Experiment (HALOE) in mid-October 1992 (29). The strong PV gradient indicates that the vortex is still intact, inhibiting mixing between polar and midlatitude air. Lower stratospheric temperatures rose above the NAT PSC formation threshold the last week in September (30). The fact that gas-phase HNO3 and H20 values remain depressed long after the last PSCs would have been expected to evaporate strongly implies that irreversible removal (denitrification and dehydration) occurred at this level.”

    http://www.sciencemag.org/content/267/5199/849.short

    Here are the associated images of the Ozone, Nitric Acid and Water Vapor Holes:

    Interhemispheric Differences in Polar Stratospheric HNO3, H20, C10, and 03 – Santee, et al.

    If these differential concentrations of the other gases is correct, then the case for solely a chemical reaction reason for the ozone hole is very tenuous.

    Yes, and the chemical explanation doesn’t explain the Ozone “Holes” that exist higher in the atmosphere, i.e. “Antarctic ozone depletion occurs primarily between the altitudes of 12 and 20 kilometers, a region where polar stratospheric clouds, necessary for the chlorine-catalyzed chemical ozone destruction process, readily form.”

    http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/gmd/dv/spo_oz/1220plot.html

    However, on October 15, 2013, in the Southern Hemisphere, the Ozone “Hole” started at .5 hPa/mb – ~55 km;

    NOAA – National Weather Service – Climate Prediction Center

    grows at 1 hPa/mb – ~50 km;

    NOAA – National Weather Service – Climate Prediction Center

    is quite pronounced at 2 hPa/mb – ~42 km;

    NOAA – National Weather Service – Climate Prediction Center

    weakened at 5 hPa/mb ~ 35 km;

    NOAA – National Weather Service – Climate Prediction Center

    split into two lobes at 10 hPa/mb ~ 31 km;

    NOAA – National Weather Service – Climate Prediction Center

    and reinvigorated, with a large Ozone “Surplus” at 30 hPa/mb ~ 23 km;:

    NOAA – National Weather Service – Climate Prediction Center

    Since no one is taking me up on the invitation to examine this, I’m planning to collaborate with a physicist specializing in magnetics on a paper of this subject.

    Why do we need magnetism if simply observable dynamical effects can explain the existence of Ozone “Holes”? Not to say that magnetic and chemical are not necessarily factors, but what portion of the Ozone “Hole” can’t be explained by dynamical effects within polar vortices?

  49. Atmospheric ozone is almost completely the result of incoming solar radiation reacting with O2 oxygen, and creating the higher-energy O3 oxygen allotrope. As such, no O2 = no ozone, and no sunlight = no ozone.

    Since there is little or no sunlight at the poles for some months of the year, it was postulated that there would be a corresponding lack (or “depletion”) of ozone. This was the accepted wisdom in the late ’30’s, the ’40’s and the early ’50’s.

    Professor Gordon Dobson (and others) believed there were high-speed, high-level air currents called “jet streams”, which had a major effect on weather and climate. However, demonstrating their existence had proved problematic. It is difficult to “tag” a parcel of air and track its movement in the upper atmosphere.

    Professor Dobson postulated that, if these currents existed, then at certain times of the year they would move ozone-rich air from the lower latitudes, into the ozone depleted areas at the poles, where accepted wisdom said there should be little if any. By mapping the pattern of encroachment of ozone-laden air into the ozone-deficient polar region, Professor Dobson hoped to demonstrate the existence of the jet streams, as well as lay the foundations for mapping their paths and calculating their intensity.

    To this end Dobson invented the Dobson Spectrophotometer, and the Dobson Unit, He then spent some years traveling the world, measuring ozone concentrations. In 1957 (The International Geophysical Year), he spent the spring at Antarctica, measuring the pathways of incoming air-streams, by measuring variations in ozone.

    In this way Dobson proved the existence of the jet streams, and did much of the foundation work in plotting their pathways. In recognition of this ground-breaking work, Dobson was named “International Geophysical man of the Year”. He co-wrote a book about it in 1962 (revised edition 1964), “Exploring the Atmosphere”, which was one of my science textbooks in high school.

    In the 1980’s, when NASA decided to jump on the “holes in the ozone layer” band-wagon, Dobson and his work proved something of a stumbling block. So, like Tesla and others, he, and his work, were quietly “disappeared” out of the history and science books.

  50. It always struck me as an amazingly fortuitous coincidence that the Ozone Hole was discovered just as Dupont’s patent on freon was expiring, and the only answer was to ban freon and substitute a whole batch of new refrigerants with new, exclusive long term patents attached to them.

    yep, an amazingly fortuitous and…. highly profitable…. coincidence.

  51. Ok, perhaps someone upstream has mentioned this—sorry, gotta rant or I’d be patient and read to find out—but as many have pointed out today, and every time this subject arises, the “Ozone hole” in the Southern Hemisphere has been there since we first looked with Satellites at the South Pole. We don’t know what caused it, and I’m not sure if it’s hubris, idiocy, or both to assume it’s man-made or even man influenced. There have been studies which have shown how very difficult it is to get gasses to diffuse from the Northern Hemisphere to the Southern Hemisphere in any quantity, and nearly all the industrial activity is in the North. The US is frequently criticized by the do-gooders who want to redistribute the wealth of the West to themselves, that less than a quarter of the world’s population uses more than three quarters of it’s fuel, etc. Oh, and created most of those nasty CFCs, because the evil rich people there used so many CFCs for their air conditioning, which is evil (until every despot of every banana republic has it and people of North America do not anymore).

    But, ok, so if there’s no Ozone hole in the north, just who, exactly, is the bad-guy responsible for the one in the South? Kiwis? Aussies? Pacific Islanders? Wait! Easter Islanders! Yeah! That’s the ticket!

    The entire argument is foolish. No one has yet proven a thing regarding the hole in the South: what caused it, was man responsible at all, etc., and it is equally foolish to claim credit that there isn’t one in the North because of any policies.

    There isn’t a shred of evidence to support either hypothesis.

  52. p@ Dolan

    It is both arrogant and pointless to ask people to explain something to you, when it has already been explained in the comments, and you complete your request by stating that you are too lazy to read the comments.

    Might I suggest you instal some text-to speech software, then you can have the comments read to you while you lie down and veg out.

  53. ” in part because international efforts to limit ozone-depleting chemicals have been successful.”

    Or maybe because CFCs had nothing to do with it in the first place?

  54. The fear-mongering troughers.” (Katherine at 7:10pm)

    You GO, girl! #(:))
    ***************************************

    @ A. D. Everard — How is the writing going? Hang in there. Sometimes, things just take much longer than we expected. Hold onto hope with both hands!!

  55. Robert Parson’s old Ozone FAQ should be required reading before anyone comments here, however, it must be said that the press release was misleading. Justthe has explained a great deal of what happens, but the principle difference between the Arctic and Antarctic wrt ozone depletion is that the south is a lot colder.

    To form an ozone hole in the spring (note the ozone concentrations are roughly constant over the dark winter, because, while ozone does not form in the dark, neither is it destroyed by absorption of UV light) requires a temperature in the mid-lower stratosphere of about 195 K, at which NAT or nitric acid trihydrate freezes forming the polar stratospheric clouds (PSCs) (water vapor freezes maybe 20 K lower under stratospheric conditions and does not play the leading role)

    The PSCs sweep up NO2 converting it to nitric acid and depleting NO2ClO, which is a large reservoir for Cl atoms in the stratosphere. At first light the ClO is released and starts a rapid surge of ozone destruction. It is this that forms the ozone hole in the Spring.

    Details can be found all over the net and in the literature but the fact is that no one has ever expected a serious ozone hole in the Arctic, if for no other reason than the Arctic is warming at a very fast rate, and never was nearly as cold as the Antarctic, so PSCs there are much much rarer.

  56. Clearly, the CFC’s are migrating creatures, and have a preference for terra firma in Antarctica over mere ice at the Arctic. This prompts them to make their annual journey from the northern hemisphere where they are born two thirds of the way around the planet to their roost in Antarctica, where they gorge themselves on ozone before they die.

    A poignant miracle of nature.

  57. On the other hand, the 11-year modulation of GCR fluxes is strongest at the heights 20-25 km [Bazilevskaya et al., 2008] where the vortex is most pronounced. Hence, the vortex location seems to be favorable for the mechanisms of solar activity influence on the atmosphere
    circulation involving GCR variations. It is also favorable for the mechanisms involving solar UV variations, as at these heights (15-25 km) in the polar stratosphere the maximum ozone content is observed.
    However, Earth’s poles are where the radiation problem can be most severe. Our planet’s magnetic field funnels cosmic rays and solar energetic particles over the very same latitudes where airlines want to fly. On a typical day when the sun is quiet, dose rates for international flights over the poles are 3 to 5 times higher than domestic flights closer to the equator.

    http://geo.phys.spbu.ru/materials_of_a_conference_2012/STP2012/Veretenenko_%20et_all_Geocosmos2012proceedings.pdf

    http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2013/25oct_aviationswx/

    Please see the changes in ozone in the southern polar vortex.

  58. “(note the ozone concentrations are roughly constant over the dark winter, because, while ozone does not form in the dark, neither is it destroyed by absorption of UV light)”

    ‘Fess up, Eli, this is straight out of the Wizard of Oz Thunder and Lightning Machine Operations Manual, right?

    Ditto for Ren’s remarks about the polar vortex effect on ozone depletion.

  59. “My remarks are based on the latest research and scientific observations.”

    Then I suggest you give young Ilya a call and gently explain to him that the allotrope of oxygen known as ozone (O3), is in a higher energy state than its plebeian cousin O2, and quickly loses that energy and returns to its original form, ALL BY ITSELF.

    It doesn’t need UV light – or anything else – to “destroy” it.
    It’s a high-energy molecule, godammit, not a dragon.

  60. Cosmic rays do not get far into the atmosphere before they collide with nitrogen or oxygen molecules in the air. The collision destroys the cosmic ray particle and the air molecule, and then several new particles emerge. Cosmic rays from space are termed “primary,” and any particles created in the atmosphere from collisions are termed “secondary.” A bit of energy is transferred to each new secondary particle. Secondary cosmic rays spread out and continue to hit other particles and air molecules, creating a cascade of particles showering towards the ground. Figure 2 shows how the particles shower to the ground. The number of secondary cosmic rays in the atmosphere increases to a maximum, and then diminishes as the energy fades closer to the ground. Because of atmospheric absorption, low energy particles are plentiful and high energy particles are rare. Scientists studying the neutron monitor data are more interested in the energy of primary cosmic rays, before they are affected by the atmosphere. A typical energy level for a galactic cosmic ray detected by the neutron monitor is 17 billion electron volts. Solar cosmic rays are more concentrated towards lower energies. The ones reaching ground level started out with an average energy of about 3 billion electron volts before meeting the atmosphere.

    http://neutronm.bartol.udel.edu/listen/main.html#lives

  61. Cosmic rays influence both the reduction of ozone (in summer) and its increase (in winter). The more that in front of us low solar cycles.

  62. I remember well when the BBC announced, all those years ago, that “scientists had discovered” the ozone hole. The newsreader went on, in true, smooth BBC style, to tell us (remember, this was the first time they’d mentioned it at all) that it had been attributed to mankind’s evil CFCs. This resulted in an immediate shout of laughter from my then partner, and the comment, “It didn’t take them long to work that out, did it?” My, how we laughed!

    My partner was not a climate scientist, but I guess you’d worked that out from her obvious good sense.

  63. Boondoogle stated above;

    ‘Can anyone tell me what the ozone levels were in the Antarctic in 1950? 1900? 1800? 1700? If no,t how can we tell if the ozone hole has changed or been affected by man or is it a natural phenomenon? Could it be that there are natural reasons that the ozone hole is behaving differently in the Arctic as compared to the Antarctic?’

    I asked the world experts at the Max Plank institute and Cambridge University a similar question some 4 or 5 years ago. In essence, as we did not have instruments capable of recording the ozone hole prior to the 1950’s how do we know whether or not the hole hasn’t always been there?

    They said they didn’t know and at that time there was no means to hindcast the likely hole size in earlier centuries.

    So the appearance of the hole in modern times due to man is complete speculation based on physics theory

    tonyb

  64. archonix says: Everyone seems to forget that the southern ozone hole was completely unexpected when it was found.

    Very good point. There is no data to say that this hole has not always existed.

    This is a classic case, like the gulf stream slow down. They start measuring something that’s never been measured before, and five years later find it has changed. They them stupidly assume that must always be constant (since they never measured it before, it must be constant , right?) , do a linear regression , project 100 years outside the period of the data and say “OMG, if this “new” change continues it will be catastrophic , we must act NOW”.

    Ten years, later they find it’s changes back again and it’s just another natural variation in climate.

    Soloman’s paper is just an attempt to suggest that “we save the world last time, you’d better listen to us now”.

  65. The balance of ozone creation / destruction appears linked to variations in solar activity and in particular changes in the mix of wavelengths received from the sun.

    The observed ozone reduction occurred when the sun was active and now with a less active sun there are signs of recovery.

    I am still waiting for new data as regards ozone amounts above 45km since 2007. For the period 2004 to 2007 ozone appears to have increased above that level at a time of quiet sun which was contrary to expectations.

  66. “how do we know whether or not the hole hasn’t always been there?”

    Try reading this aloud several times over, until it sinks in:
    Sunlight (UV radiation) + Oxygen (O2) = Ozone (O3)
    —————————————————————————
    Okay, when you think you’ve got it, try the corollary:
    NO sunlight (UV radiation) + Oxygen (O2) = NO Ozone (O3)
    —————————————————————————-
    Alright, from around July 21 until September 21, there is little or no sunlight at the South Pole, due to the tilt in the earth’s axis. Hence there is little or no formation of Ozone O3. The only ozone in the region is that carried in by the jet stream air currents, as previously described.

    Ozone depletion, erroneously referred to as the “ozone hole”, starts in July, and reaches its maximum at the end of the third week in September, which is when all the scary stories about “holes in the ozone layer” appear in the MSM. After that, increasing sunlight replenishes ozone concentrations and after about six wees things are back to normal.

    So, for how long has there been an “ozone hole”?
    For as long as the earth has been tilted on its axis, the atmosphere has contained oxygen, and the sun has produced UV radiation.

    For how long will there be an “ozone hole”?
    For as long as the earth remains tilted on its axis, the atmosphere continues to contain oxygen, and the sun produces UV radiation.

    • @ memoryvault1 commented on Good news: no ‘ozone hole’ in the Arctic.

      in response to Anthony Watts:

      From the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Plugging an ozone hole MIT researchers find that the extremes in Antarctic ozone holes have not been matched in the Arctic CAMBRIDGE, Mass– Since the discovery of the Antarctic ozone hole, scientists, policymakers, and the public have wondered whether we might someday see a similarly extreme depletion of ozone […]

      “how do we know whether or not the hole hasn’t always been there?”

      Try reading this aloud several times over, until it sinks in:
      Sunlight (UV radiation) + Oxygen (O2) = Ozone (O3)
      —————————————————————————
      Okay, when you think you’ve got it, try the corollary:
      NO sunlight (UV radiation) + Oxygen (O2) = NO Ozone (O3)
      —————————————————————————-
      Alright, from around July 21 until September 21, there is little or no sunlight at the South Pole, due to the tilt in the earth’s axis. Hence there is little or no formation of Ozone O3. The only ozone in the region is that carried in by the jet stream air currents, as previously described.
      _____________________________________________________________________
      Hey, Mr Pot, from the Kettle:
      I hear you talkin’, but you haven’t proven anything. I admit it’s plausible—and I wanted to thank you for the history lesson; I didn’t know that about the early Jet Stream theories and proof. Always good to learn something new—but you haven’t proven it. Plausible ain’t proof.

  67. “Everyone seems to forget that the southern ozone hole was completely unexpected when it was found.”

    Yeah, right. That’s why Professor Gordon Dobson spent years designing and refining the Dobson Spectrophotometer, and the Dobson Unit, to measure atmospheric ozone concentrations. Then, in 1957 – the International Geophysical Year, the British decided to form the British Antarctic Research Team and send it to Antarctica to study atmospheric conditions.

    Because Professor Dobson had invented this cool piece of scientifical gear that didn’t serve any known useful purpose at the time, and because he happened to be sitting around twiddling his thumbs doing nothing much at the time, the British Research Team decided to include him in the team, and make his measurements of Antarctic ozone levels the central theme of their work.

    And Lo! in a burst of Fortean logic, the “completely unexpected” southern ozone hole was “found”.

  68. The ozone hole occurs naturally when the temperature of the ozone in the zone falls to a sufficiently low level.

  69. climatereason says: April 16, 2014 at 12:48 am
    “So the appearance of the hole in modern times due to man is complete speculation based on physics theory.”

    So is the safety of the design of any modern bridge.

  70. “Nick Stokes says:

    April 16, 2014 at 2:43 am

    climatereason says: April 16, 2014 at 12:48 am
    “So the appearance of the hole in modern times due to man is complete speculation based on physics theory.”
    So is the safety of the design of any modern bridge.”

    We’ve been building bridges a lot longer than we “noticed a hole” over a magnetic pole of a very short lived, volatile, gas. But good one matey, made me chuckle!

  71. The games been up for the ozone scam since at least last year…

    Weather ‘behind ozone hole changes’
    “Satellite images show that fluctuating air temperatures and winds change the amount of ozone gas that sits above Antarctica.

    And scientists believe this is dictating the apparent size of the ozone hole changes year on year.”

    Article available here…

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-25344563

  72. Some aspects of the climate debate I have looked into
    or feel more confident about discussing them. I have not
    looked into the various claims discussed here so I simply make the following
    observation: I see many claims that some effect on the climate
    or atmospheric levels of aerosols or ozone, etc. are all due to
    passing federal legislation. This always amuses me because I
    had previously seen other explanations by different “warmists”.
    In some people’s view, if you pass a law, it automatically works
    and any later problems could never have anything to do with
    previous laws. Apparently it is an almost never-ending succession
    of wise decisions by intelligent legislators responding only to true
    science and the sage advice of good citizens. This applies to any
    law, not just those affecting the environment.

    I have seen people claim (in quality journals) that the 1973 pollution
    laws (in the US) had effects on world climate and now that the Montreal
    protocol had all these wonderful effects. As always, I am skeptical.
    Interesting that the 1973 laws in the US (only 4% of land mass remember)
    had an effect on world climate. As a chemist I understand the reactions
    that break down ozone although I have not looked at them in awhile. But
    I also remember later articles in Science or Nature that explained new
    effects not covered by the Montreal protocol and more importantly, I
    remember articles discussing the fact that the ozone holes have
    probably always been there to some extent. Which complicates the
    simple narrative that some promote.

  73. And how come there is no ozone hole in the Arctic when over 80% of the world CFCs have been produced and consumed in the Northern hemisphere?

    “We’ll continue to have cold years with extreme Antarctic ozone holes for a long time to come,” Solomon says. “We can’t be sure that there will never be extreme Arctic ozone losses in an unusually cold future year, but so far, so good — and that’s good news.”

    And what is chemical basis of that assertion? Chemical reactions go faster as temperature rises. Where do these MIT researches store their perishable chemicals? In the frigde or in the oven? Cold is supposed to slow down chemical reactions, included the detradation ones, not to accelerate them, as the article suggest.

  74. ***
    “It’s really a success story of science and policy, where the right things were done just in time to avoid broader environmental damage,” says Solomon
    ***

    Prove it.

  75. Just The Facts says:
    April 15, 2014 at 7:33 pm

    “Gary Pearse says: April 15, 2014 at 4:12 pm

    I won’t go into it all again in detail, but expect there to be a CO2 hole, N2 hole, noble gases hole and methane hole coincident with the ozone hole (GP).

    (JTF) …Not to say that magnetic and chemical are not necessarily factors, but what portion of the Ozone “Hole” can’t be explained by dynamical effects within polar vortices?”

    JTF, your illustrated presentation is indeed convincing and I have no argument with the presence of such powerful dynamic factors as the vortex. And yes, it does make a bit of a crucible for reaction and even my theory requires some reaction to make ozone in the first place. However, there is no question that the gases I cite have the magnetic properties I cite, so, to me, the only question is the matter of magnitude of effect. Unfortunately, because of the CFC forgone conclusion, they don’t measure the atmospheric gases I suggest, but rather reaction products in the atmosphere.

    Here is my challenge: a) if CO2, N2, CH4, Ne, Ar, Xe, O3 are all depleted at the height of the O3 hole AND O2 is more abundant than average atmosphere; b) if the depleted elements are more abundant relative to average atmosphere in the temperate zone to the equatorial zone AND O2 is somewhat depleted there, this would be support for a magnetic effect and its magnitude would be qualitatively measured by the degree of fractionation of these gases between these geographies. Fair enough? The person I’m approaching for an estimate of the effect from first principles is an engineering physicist I have worked with in the development of an idea of mine for an industrial application of magnetics (it has nothing to do with gases but I have this type of data). Perhaps the atmosphere is a little more interesting and complex than even we skeptics think it is – dynamical, chemical and physical properties of the atmosphere as a whole and of its constituents.

  76. Eli Rabett says: April 15, 2014 at 9:18 pm
    urederra says: April 16, 2014 at 5:01 am

    the principle difference between the Arctic and Antarctic wrt ozone depletion is that the south is a lot colder.

    And how come there is no ozone hole in the Arctic when over 80% of the world CFCs have been produced and consumed in the Northern hemisphere?

    “The vortex is most powerful in the hemisphere’s winter, when the temperature gradient is steepest, and diminishes or can disappear in the summer. The Antarctic polar vortex is more pronounced and persistent than the Arctic one; this is because the distribution of land masses at high latitudes in the northern hemisphere gives rise to Rossby waves which contribute to the breakdown of the vortex, whereas in the southern hemisphere the vortex remains less disturbed.”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polar_vortex

    “Towards the end of the southern winter season, planetary-scale wave events do begin to form and propagate upward into the stratosphere. These waves erode the vortex, decelerate the jet stream, warm the polar region, and increase ozone levels. While the northern polar vortex usually persists to March or April, the southern vortex persists an additional 1–2 months (November or December). In addition, temperatures remain quite cold (below 195 K) in the southern vortex to early October.”

    http://ozonewatch.gsfc.nasa.gov/facts/vortex_NH.html

    “Ozone depletion over Antarctica did occur without delay, but required several days longer to deplete to the 220 DU “ozone hole” threshold. Once this threshold had been reached the ozone hole size grew very rapidly. At the same time the areas at which temperatures were below 78C (the temperature to form Polar Stratospheric Clouds) also grew to above normal levels as shown in Figure 1c. The result was that the 2008 ozone hole grew to have the fifth largest single day size. Figure 1b shows that at this same time the SH polar vortex became larger than normal. The large size of the SH polar vortex persisted through October, November and December. In fact this year the polar vortex persisted beyond any previous year back to 1979. Consequently, the area of depleted ozone below 220 DU also persisted to the latest date.”

    http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/stratosphere/winter_bulletins/sh_08/

    “However, it is clear from the TOMS data that ozone transport and especially the timing of the vortex breakdown can have a large influence on the monthly mean total ozone, especially for October and November, when the vortex breakdown usually takes place. When the vortex breakdown occurs early (late) the October mean ozone is high (low).”

    http://geotest.tamu.edu/userfiles/213/GL013i012p01193.pdf

    The trend towards toward a later vortex breakdown, i.e. greater persistence;

    Stratospheric Polar Vortices – Waugh et al.

    delays “the erosion of the vortex, deceleration of the jet stream, warming of the polar region, and increase in ozone levels”, thus the “trend over the 1980s and 1990s toward a later vortex breakdown” is the likely the primary cause of the Ozone “Hole” during October.

  77. Gary Pearse says: April 16, 2014 at 6:33 am

    Here is my challenge: a) if CO2, N2, CH4, Ne, Ar, Xe, O3 are all depleted at the height of the O3 hole AND O2 is more abundant than average atmosphere; b) if the depleted elements are more abundant relative to average atmosphere in the temperate zone to the equatorial zone AND O2 is somewhat depleted there, this would be support for a magnetic effect and its magnitude would be qualitatively measured by the degree of fractionation of these gases between these geographies. Fair enough?

    What evidence do you have that “O2 is more abundant than average atmosphere” “at the height of the O3 hole” within the polar region, during the polar night, i.e. within the Polar Vortex?

  78. This is one of my favorite threads! What a delightful and educational discussion about the actual science of a topic that is so poorly understood by so many ever since the Montreal Protocol. Many thanks to all who have contributed. This site is terrific.

  79. the Ellen Swallow Richards Professor of Atmospheric Chemistry and Climate

    That’s…just…wrong.

  80. The ozone destroying properties of CFCs were never “discovered”. They were theorized based on computer models.

  81. “wbrozek says:
    April 15, 2014 at 3:36 pm
    george e. conant says:
    April 15, 2014 at 3:22 pm
    CFC’s way to heavy to get above troposphere

    Buoyancy does not apply to gases or liquids dissolved in gases. If it did, you would never see clouds above the ground since liquid water is much denser than air.”

    For a gas distribution , check “scale height’

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scale_height

    The formula is H = kT/Mg. for air, M is about 29. For Freon-11, the molar mass is
    137.37 , so the scale height for freon-11 is about 29/137.37 the scale height of air.

  82. Of course there’s no ozone hole in the arctic, because ozone levels are correlated to stratospheric temperatures, they only get depleted when it’s too cold. It just means that stratospheric temperatures in the arctic are not as low as in antarctic. It’s good that there is still some honnest research out there. I’ve always wondered about that CFC scam, because since CFCs are heavy gases, their molecular weight is such that they should be concentrated in the lower troposhpere, and couldn’t reach the altitude of stratosphere in the first place. Well, we’re off for another highlander 2 remake with CO2 anyway, since the theory mostly comes from the same scientists.

  83. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scale_height

    Interesting stuff there:

    “For planetary atmospheres, scale height is the vertical distance over which the pressure of the atmosphere changes by a factor of e (decreasing upward). The scale height remains constant for a particular temperature”

    From which it follows that if the temperature changes then the height of the atmosphere changes.

    Then, since density also reduces, there is a cooling effect to offset the initial temperature change.

    So, if GHGs absorb energy from the ground they will become warmer but they and the other molecules to which they conduct that warmth will rise higher to offset any potential effect on surface temperature.

    That brings us to issues of the adiabatic lapse rate and the effective emission height.

    Note that “Density is related to pressure by the ideal gas laws” which is what I have been saying here and elsewhere for some time.

    Note too, the links to the scale heights for other Solar System bodies.

    Where does radiative theory deal with the thermal effect of changes in density via variations in the scale height ?

  84. Notably, the ozone “hole” is bigger in the hemisphere with less human population. Would that not mean that it has nothing to do with human activity?

  85. Alan McIntire says:
    April 15, 2014 at 3:28 pm
    When there’s sunlight, ultra-violet rays create Ozone. Ozone is unstable, and quickly breaks down. Those long Arctic and Antarctic winters give the Ozone plenty of time to break down naturally, without being replenished by more sunlight created Ozone.

    Unfortunately for your theory this isn’t what happens! During the winter the ozone concentration doesn’t decline, this occurs in the spring after the sun rises there.

    http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/gmd/dv/spo_oz/1220plot.html

  86. Alejandro Rodriguez says:
    April 16, 2014 at 9:12 am

    Notably, the ozone “hole” is bigger in the hemisphere with less human population. Would that not mean that it has nothing to do with human activity?

    _____________________________________________________________________________

    Actually Ozone is one of the gasses in car exhaust, so it makes sense that there is more ozone where people live. And if you say that never makes it to the upper atmosphere I’m going to scream.

  87. Ozone production over Antarctica is limited due to the fact that very little ultraviolet light reaches the atmosphere there (because UV has to pass through the atmosphere closer to the equator and is blocked by the ozone present there). Therefore, I believe that diffusion is required to maintain ozone levels above Antarctica. The problem is that a circular wind blows during the month of October and prevents diffusion resulting in ozone-destroying dust or chemicals (all natural) depleting the concentration of ozone. When the wind stops blowing, diffusion brings fresh ozone in from Australia and other areas.

  88. “””””…..Tom K says:

    April 16, 2014 at 10:13 am

    Ozone production over Antarctica is limited due to the fact that very little ultraviolet light reaches the atmosphere there (because UV has to pass through the atmosphere closer to the equator and is blocked by the ozone present there). …..”””””

    Well Tom, the hand is a good bit quicker tan the eye, only in trickery.

    Let’s suppose the sun is five degrees above the Antarctic horizon. Tan (5) = 0.0875

    We’ll call it 1/12. So if the ozone is 50 miles high, then that long air path starts 600 miles from the Antarctic; or where the ozone hole edge is.

    So nyet on anything like tropical ozone levels.

    But your point is valid, the low altitude of the sun, makes for a long air mass path to the Antarctic.

    My Infra-red Hndbook, gives calculated earth spectra from outer space, and has plots for various sun angles out to 80 degrees (10 deg altitude). While the CO2 absorption bands don’t show a huge angle dependence, the 9.6 micron ozone hole in fact shows great angle sensitivity.

    Very simple, the actual ozone layer is very thin, so an oblique path through it, can be much longer than in the case of a very thick layer going all the way to the surface, as in CO2.

    So I agree with you, Antarctica does not get to make a lot of ozone anyway.

  89. “””””…..elmer says:

    April 16, 2014 at 9:57 am

    Alejandro Rodriguez says:
    April 16, 2014 at 9:12 am …..”””””

    Start screaming then, because the lower atmosphere contains a whole lot of ozone poisons, like pool chlorine, and ozone itself can get broken down by just blue-green radiation from the sun.

    So low level ozone gets destroyed long before it could make it up there.

  90. “””””…..Phil. says:

    April 16, 2014 at 9:23 am

    Alan McIntire says:
    April 15, 2014 at 3:28 pm
    When there’s sunlight, ultra-violet rays create Ozone. Ozone is unstable, and quickly breaks down. Those long Arctic and Antarctic winters give the Ozone plenty of time to break down naturally, without being replenished by more sunlight created Ozone.

    Unfortunately for your theory this isn’t what happens! During the winter the ozone concentration doesn’t decline, this occurs in the spring after the sun rises there. …..”””””

    But Phil, while that may be the case, it is also true that ozone is quite absorptive in the blue green region, and the big clip off the top of the air mass zero solar spectrum to give the surface (even air mass one) spectrum, is largely due to ozone.

    So yes; in the spring when the sun rises, the sun angle is low, so the solar UV is strongly attenuated, but the blue green less so (but still attenuated) ;so I believe the sun at that time can destroy, what it cannot yet re-create, till it gets higher and the UV increases.

  91. “””””…..archonix says:

    April 16, 2014 at 12:55 am

    Everyone seems to forget that the southern ozone hole was completely unexpected when it was found……”””””

    Well No ! The ozone hole was only “unexpected” by those incapable of expecting one.

    If you don’t expect something, you usually don’t go searching for it; well hell you don’t even know what it is that you are not expecting, so how would you know how and where to search.

    The known variable color Temperature of surface solar spectrum radiation, that has a seasonal variation as well as erratic longer term variations, could only be the consequence of earth effects not solar effects (the seasonal part).

    So early Air Force researchers, were already looking for some earth source of solar shortwave spectral changes with the seasons.

    I don’t know if they thought ozone might be a cause or not, let alone a reason for seasonal changes.

  92. Readers need to find and look closely at good modern plots, of both the extra terrestrial (air mass zero) and tropical surface (air mass one) solar spectra. They clearly explain how TSI at 1362-6 W/m^2 becomes around 1,000 W/m^2 at the surface, and the biggest chunk of that 25% or so chop, is a big clip of the peak of the curve (wavelength scale) in the 400-600 nm region.

    Your curves should state that atmospheric O2 and O3 are a big cause of that loss. But also take note that the ordinary Raleigh scattering that gives us a blue sky, is clearly attenuating (by scatter) in the blue region around 450-70 nm, near the solar peak.

    But Oxygen and Ozone both absorb significantly near the solar spectrum peak.

    Ozone is quite unstable, which is why even radiation in the 500 -600 nm (blue to yellow) can break it down to oxygen.

    So Ozone DOES NOT need chemicals to break it down; the sun can do it just fine.

    But at least in the tropics, the solar EUV also breaks up O2 to give extremely reactive O, which immediately gloms on to another O2 to form ozone.

    I once read a rather informative essay, by a then quite well known chemist essay writer, who explained how it is oxygen getting broken down by solar UV to make ozone, that is the real protector from high energy photons. Is it lost on some people, that the UV bands that ozone is credited with protecting us from (UV-A-B C-whatever) are the very destroyers of the ozone.

    So the sun itself destroys the ozone, but in the tropics, with small sun angles (from zenith), the EUV can make it fast enough to keep some there.

    Also look at “justthefacts” atmospheric graph that shows the principal ozone layer being around 20-25 km high.

    Of note; at least to this observer, is that the ozone layer is quite considerably higher in altitude than those exotic chemistry clouds, that infrequent visitor Eli Rabbett asserts are what is doing a number on the ozone in the Antarctic, but don’t form in the arctic.

    Well in sunny California, I perpetually have to wear my Foster Grants in the daytime, because my eyes are quite sensitive to the solar peak rays, even at air mass 1.5, which is about what I get here.

    So I’m not a believer in Eli’s chemistry; well the chemistry might be correct (I don’t know), but it clearly isn’t in the right place to do any harm to the ozone layer. Well one man’s opinion, anyway.

    By the way, I use false color plots all the time to reveal subtle changes in patterns.

    So that great blue hole over Antarctica looks quite ominous; but it is a horrific exaggeration of reality.

  93. george e. smith says:
    April 16, 2014 at 12:50 pm
    Readers need to find and look closely at good modern plots, of both the extra terrestrial (air mass zero) and tropical surface (air mass one) solar spectra. They clearly explain how TSI at 1362-6 W/m^2 becomes around 1,000 W/m^2 at the surface, and the biggest chunk of that 25% or so chop, is a big clip of the peak of the curve (wavelength scale) in the 400-600 nm region.

    Your curves should state that atmospheric O2 and O3 are a big cause of that loss. But also take note that the ordinary Raleigh scattering that gives us a blue sky, is clearly attenuating (by scatter) in the blue region around 450-70 nm, near the solar peak.

    But Oxygen and Ozone both absorb significantly near the solar spectrum peak.

    Ozone is quite unstable, which is why even radiation in the 500 -600 nm (blue to yellow) can break it down to oxygen.

    George, the data I’ve seen for Ozone photolysis says that UV below 325nm is required to break the bonds, see any ref on the Chapman mechanism.

    Also look at “justthefacts” atmospheric graph that shows the principal ozone layer being around 20-25 km high.

    Of note; at least to this observer, is that the ozone layer is quite considerably higher in altitude than those exotic chemistry clouds, that infrequent visitor Eli Rabbett asserts are what is doing a number on the ozone in the Antarctic, but don’t form in the arctic.

    The PSCs form between 15 and 25 km which is exactly where the ozone is depleted:

  94. This disproportionate madness has advanced to a point where ozone depleting substance use is questioned for laboratory testing of medicines. Similarly to cAGW, this is also based on unsubstantiated hypothesis. They are both rooted from either cold and calculated cruelty or stupidity of elephantine proportions. Either way, those speeding up the natural selection by poverty, starvation, hypothermia and/or illness of the weakest should be ashamed.

  95. Alan McIntire says:
    April 16, 2014 at 7:30 am
    For a gas distribution , check “scale height’

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scale_height

    The formula is H = kT/Mg. for air, M is about 29. For Freon-11, the molar mass is
    137.37 , so the scale height for freon-11 is about 29/137.37 the scale height of air.

    Thank you for that. However I must admit I am not 100% sure about this, but I think we were talking about two different things here. A while back, I looked at radon concentrations in the air and they were very close high up as well as near the ground. I do not believe that what you say contradicts what I said. My interpretation of what you are saying is that if our atmosphere was 100% Freon, then it would have a certain very low height on Earth. But that does not mean that in our present atmosphere Freon cannot be very well mixed to great heights. At 0.04%, CO2 certainly does not decrease as fast as your number would indicate.

  96. Just The Facts says:
    April 16, 2014 at 6:52 am

    Gary Pearse says: April 16, 2014 at 6:33 am

    “What evidence do you have that “O2 is more abundant than average atmosphere” “at the height of the O3 hole” within the polar region, during the polar night, i.e. within the Polar Vortex?”

    None. I was hoping Nasa might have measured it. Perhaps a proper measure would be the combined O2 and O3 since the latter would have been created from O2. Now an additional fact: the colder the temperature, the more magnetic is oxygen. Here is an experiment on Youtube at Harvard showing the difference between N2 and O2

  97. ““While there is certainly some depletion of Arctic ozone, the extremes of Antarctica so far are very different from what we find in the Arctic, even in the coldest years,” says Susan Solomon, the Ellen Swallow Richards Professor of Atmospheric Chemistry and Climate Science at MIT, and lead author of a paper published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences”

    Interestingly, I just came across another paper by Susan Solomon, “The mystery of the Antarctic Ozone ‘Hole'”, from 1988:

    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1029/RG026i001p00131/abstract

    “Total ozone levels over Antarctica have declined by about 50% over the past decade, principally during the spring seasons. This unprecedented and unanticipated change in the total ozone column has precipitated a great deal of research into the dynamics and chemistry of the Antarctic, and their contributions to the observed behavior of ozone there. Observations of the total ozone column and its vertical profile over Antarctica are reviewed. Theoretical models to explain the mysterious change in ozone abundances are described, along with observations of Antarctic temperatures. Both chemical and dynamical processes occurring in Antarctic spring may be related to polar stratospheric clouds. The radiative and chemical properties of these clouds are summarized. Available observations of other chemical species besides ozone (e.g., nitrogen dioxide, chlorine monoxide) are also discussed. The current status of the evidence supporting various theories of the behavior of ozone in the Antarctic is summarized.”

    It reads like propaganda versus sober science and reminds me of this recent paper from the University of East Anglia, “Mysterious new man-made gases pose threat to ozone layer”;

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2014/03/09/mysterious-new-man-made-gases-pose-threat-to-ozone-layer/

    and this old article from, Time – Feb 17, 1992:

    “What does it mean to redefine one’s relationship to the sky? What will it do to our children’s outlook on life we have to teach them to be afraid to look up?

    –Senator Al Gore, Earth in the Balance

    The world now knows that danger is shining through the sky. The evidence is overwhelming that the earth’s stratospheric ozone layer–our shield against the sun’s hazardous ultraviolet rays–is being eaten away by man-made chemicals far faster than any scientist had predicted. No longer is the threat just to our future; the threat is here and now. Ground zero is not just the South Pole anymore; ozone zone holes could soon open over heavily populated regions in the northern hemisphere as well as the southern. This unprecedented assault on the planet’s life-support system could have horrendous long-term effects on human health, animal life, the plants that support the food chain and just about every other strand that makes up the delicate web of nature. And it is too late to prevent the damage, which will worsen for years to come. The best the world can hope for is to stabilize ozone loss soon after the turn of the century.

    If any doubters remain, their ranks dwindled last week. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration, along with scientists from several institutions, announced startling findings from atmospheric studies done by a modified spy-plane and an orbiting satellite. As the two craft crossed the northern skies last month, they discovered record-high concentrations of chlorine monoxide (CIO), a chemical by-product of the chlorofluoro-carbons (CFCs) known to be the chief agents of ozone destruction.

    Although the results were preliminary, they were so disturbing that NASA went public a month earlier than planned, well before the investigation could be completed. Previous studies had already shown that ozone levels have declined 4% to 8% over the northern hemisphere in the past decade. But the latest data imply that the ozone layer over some regions, including the northernmost parts of the U.S., Canada, Europe and Russia, could be temporarily depleted in the late winter and early spring by as much as 40%. That would be almost as bad as the 50% ozone loss recorded over Antarctica. If a huge northern ozone hole does not in fact open up in 1992, it could easily do so a year or two later. Says Michael Kurylo, NASA’s manager of upper-atmosphere research: “Everybody should be alarmed about this. It’s far worse than we thought.” http://faculty.washington.edu/djaffe/GEI/w3a.pdf

  98. Gary Pearse says: April 16, 2014 at 4:51 pm

    None. I was hoping Nasa might have measured it. Perhaps a proper measure would be the combined O2 and O3 since the latter would have been created from O2.

    I haven’t seen any measurements “at the height of the O3 hole”, however much higher up, i.e. “above the mesopause” there does appear to be “low, perhaps exceedingly low, [O]“:

    “Abundances of atomic oxygen and ozone have been measured by various techniques over northern Scandinavia during the MAP/WINE campaign in the winter 1983–1984. On 10 February at Kiruna, Sweden, rocket experiments used resonance fluorescence and twin path absorption at 130 nm to measure [O]between 70 and 178 km. Rocket-borne measurements of nightglow at 557.7, 761.9 and 551.1 nm and at 1.27 μm have also been obtained and [O]values derived from the atmospheric band intensities. Ozone abundances between 50 and 90 km have been determined from rocket-borne measurements of the ν3 9.6 μm nightglow intensity from Andøya, Norway, and Kiruna. These have been compared with [O3] measured on the same day from the Solar Mesospheric Explorer satellite, using measurements of dayglow at 1.27 μm, and with results from other rocket launchings in MAP/WINE. The results show evidence of low, perhaps exceedingly low, [O] and below normal [O3] above the mesopause. Below 75 km at night [O3] exceeded earlier and subsequent observations in the campaign. The measurements were made during a minor stratospheric warming, characterised by an offset polar vortex centred near the measurement zone.”

    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0021916987900237

    I will keep my eyes out for measurements of oxygen within the stratospheric polar vortex.

    Now an additional fact: the colder the temperature, the more magnetic is oxygen. Here is an experiment on Youtube at Harvard showing the difference between N2 and O2.

    That experiment really isn’t representative of atmospheric physics. Firstly, they are using liquid oxygen, “Gaseous oxygen is paramagnetic also but is moving too fast to be affected by the magnets.”

    http://www.physlink.com/education/askexperts/ae493.cfm

    Secondly, the magnet they use in the experiment is “a large magnet”, the “magnetron magnet is big and heavy, with conical pole pieces” and a “strong field”. Even then, “the poles are extended with washers to leave about a one centimeter gap”, in order to achieve the desired effect:

    http://sciencedemonstrations.fas.harvard.edu/icb/icb.do?keyword=k16940&panel=icb.pagecontent217390%3Ar%241%3Fname%3Dindepth.html%2Cicb.pagecontent216756%3Ar%241%3Fname%3Dindepth.html&pageid=icb.page91943&pageContentId=icb.pagecontent217390&state=maximize

    In comparison the “coil gap of a typical loudspeaker magnet” is “10 kG to 24 kG”, whereas “strength of Earth’s magnetic field at 50° latitude” is “580 mG”, i.e. more than 4 orders of magnitude less:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orders_of_magnitude_%28magnetic_field%29

    As such, the influence of Earth’s magnetic field on chemical constituents within the Polar Vortex are likely de minimis in comparison to the centrifugal force of the Polar Vortex, i.e.:

    “Antarctic vortex: The combination of drastic temperature and corresponding pressure drop along with the rotation of the Earth on its axis produces a spinning/rotating volume of air. The rotational speed of the winds commonly reaches as high as 180 mph. The motion of these winds form an impenetrable barrier such that the trapped air inside is unmixed, as it is separated from the air outside, and remains quite cold (temperatures drop below 80 Celsius). Inside the whirling volume of freezing air, the cold temperatures facilitate the condensation of gases into particles that eventually for polar stratospheric clouds.”

    http://books.google.com/books?id=LflaqbSX1xAC&pg=PA30&lpg=PA30&dq=polar+vortex+speed+rotation+stratosphere+mph&source=bl&ots=2vU3tmZCAC&sig=b1tM3_FwjKlrp-0vIKwYxRtLrwU&hl=en&sa=X&ei=yYcuU7e4KcTI0AGZoYDoCg&ved=0CHYQ6AEwCQ#v=onepage&q=polar%20vortex%20speed%20rotation%20stratosphere%20mph&f=false

    “The peak August wind value is 84 m/s (190 mph) at 5 hPa (about 37 km). This peak tends to occur at latitudes around 60°S.”

    “As the amount of sunlight decreases and temperatures drop in southern polar region, the night jet winds increase. So too does the degree of isolation. At higher altitudes, the polar vortex begins to develop in the March-April (early fall) period and is fully developed by May, corresponding to the onset of the period of complete polar night darkness. At lower altitudes, the vortex develops more slowly, not becoming fully developed until the June-July (early to midwinter) period. This vortex development is also illustrated in Figure 11.15 in a latitude-versus-time plot showing the evolution of the winds on the 50 hPa (approximately 20 km) surface. Both figures are based on data from 1979-1995.”

    “The polar night jet reaches its maximum wind speed in the August-September (mid- to late winter) period. It breaks up in the November-December (mid- to late spring) period. Figure 11.13 shows us that the polar night jet is almost always centered at 60°S. In contrast to this southern polar night jet, the northern hemisphere polar jet is weaker in mid-winter, and has decreased in strength by late winter (February-March). The Antarctic polar night jet breaks up in mid-to-late spring (October-December), nearly 2 months later in the southern seasonal cycle than the breakup of the Arctic polar night jet in the northern seasonal cycle. This is due to the faster winds of the southern polar jet and the colder temperatures and greater degree of isolation of air inside the Antarctic polar vortex than their northern counterparts.”

    http://www.ccpo.odu.edu/~lizsmith/SEES/ozone/class/Chap_11/11_3.htm

  99. “Patrick says:
    April 16, 2014 at 2:57 am
    “Nick Stokes says:

    April 16, 2014 at 2:43 am

    climatereason says: April 16, 2014 at 12:48 am
    “So the appearance of the hole in modern times due to man is complete speculation based on physics theory.”
    So is the safety of the design of any modern bridge.”

    We’ve been building bridges a lot longer than we “noticed a hole” over a magnetic pole of a very short lived, volatile, gas. But good one matey, made me chuckle!”

    Patrick

    What Nick said is beyond stupid, We know through testing not theory the strength of steel concrete and through math the forces place on a bridge can be calculated, modern are built on long time tested know quantities, there is no speculation. When a bridge fails we generally can determine the cause when a certain bridge failed

    In Minnesota a few year ago all speculation an guess ended when it was determined that the gusset plates were made of 1/2 inch steel instead of 3/4 as originally specified, we also know the bridge stood there for over fifty years before the flaw was revealed when the state and the construction company overloaded its “build”, not it design although one could speculate maybe it not wise to stress a fifty year old structure like that but the design was not the problem.

    Comparing the ozone hole and why it occurs to bridge design is infantile and show a small mind. How a bridge is built and test is understood science. where what and how the the ozone hole is created is basically speculation. We do not have good measurement as to what the gases are and how they interact up there. since there are no chart quantifying the lack of sunlight temperature and the gas mix they yes we have some measurements but it like having a blind man sampling water he may be able to tell if it fresh or salty but he would have no idea if he was on the pacific ot the atlantic or the great lakes or the Mississippi, on top of the the bulk of chlorine and fluorine in the atmosphere comes from the oceans, these facts of course need to be hidden since they do not help the anti CFC crowd.

    All I know for sure is I am pissed every new air conditioner i buy. I am told how more efficient the new one is, as oppose to the old one, yet to run it takes more energy to run it and end up costing me more money. Funny their efficiency number on replacing CFC don’t pencil out in the real world also.

  100. “Werner Brozek says:
    April 16, 2014 at 4:14 pm

    … A while back, I looked at radon concentrations in the air and they were very close high up as well as near the ground. …”

    The higher the lapse rate, the higher the greenhouse effect. If different gases follow a “scale height’ distribution, there’s little convection, a large greenhouse effect.
    If gases are evenly distribued over a larger range than that “scale height” factor, that’s an indication that there’s a very strong negative feedback due to convection, when due to heating, large parcels of air are lifted higher in the atmosphere.

  101. Obviously there are a lot of misconceptions here. Let Eli start with this one

    “But Oxygen and Ozone both absorb significantly near the solar spectrum peak.”

    The peak of the solar spectrum is in the green, not the UV (btw evolution would say that that is where people would see best, and you know what that is where people see best), right about where the Stefan Boltzmann law says that a light source like the Sun would peak.

    To continue, if you look at the absorption spectrum of ozone, it is a continuum between ~300 – 200 nm, very much like a bell curve. Thus ozone absorbs all of the solar radiation between 300 and 200 nm. What happens at shorter wavelengths, well, oxygen, O2 starts absorbing strongly, so higher up, above the ozone layer, the oxygen absorbs all the sun light in the < 200 nm region.

    Further, if you look at the solar spectrum, you see that the intensity falls off strongly below say 350 nm (There is an exception to this Lyman alpha 124 nm radiation from hydrogen, but that too gets absorbed very high in the atmosphere).

  102. Alan McIntire says:
    April 17, 2014 at 9:18 am

    Thank you! This may be a good point to bring up on the next article on man-made CO2 where Ferdinand Engelbeen gets involved.

  103. “””””…..Eli Rabett says:

    April 17, 2014 at 10:52 am

    Obviously there are a lot of misconceptions here. Let Eli start with this one

    “But Oxygen and Ozone both absorb significantly near the solar spectrum peak.”

    The peak of the solar spectrum is in the green, not the UV (btw evolution would say that that is where people would see best, and you know what that is where people see best), right about where the Stefan Boltzmann law says that a light source like the Sun would peak……”””””

    Given that Phil elaborated on Eli’s statement, that some fancy chemicals form clouds right where ozone depletion occurs, and rereading the ozone altitude chart that was supplied here by justthe facts, which seems to show the peak of ozone concentration lies somewhat above Eli’s clouds, I will retract my assertion, that the ozone layer is well above Eli’s clouds; only some of it is above those clouds.

    However, no misconception here Eli; the solar spectrum, as you well should know, does not follow the Planck Black Body radiation law, and especially near the peak wavelength which is actually shorter, than the Planck Law predicts; but has a significant anomalous higher peak, shorter wavelength than the Planck law predicts.

    I’m not sure exactly how the Stefan Boltzmann law got involved in this.

    But MY standard reference text on such matters is “The Infra-Red Handbook”, which I’m sure is well known to both Eli, and Phil. (The handbook, not that it is my standard reference.)

    Anyhow, I am not going to bother to give the details of that text, since I have done so, in gory detail at least 20 times, here on WUWT.

    And the solar spectrum curves in that text show overlapping air mass zero and air mass one spectral curves, including significant absorption near the sun spectral peak, which the text book claims is due to O2 and O3.

    If it was possible to cut and paste to this site, I could post those very curves, and also the standard solar spectral table values for air mass zero, and air mass 1.5 (maybe it’s 2.0); and I can also reference the original peer reviewed papers that are the source of that data.

    So if my data is good enough for the United States Navy, who commissioned this text, and also for the United States Air Force, who did much of the studies, then it is good enough for me.

    But If Eli, has more up to date peer reviewed data, that he would like to share with us, I’m sure Anthony would allow him to post it here.

    I must admit, that I don’t quite understand, why it is that Ozone, would exhibit a “Continuum spectrum”, since such spectra are usually seen with plasmas, that involve transitions from an ionized state, or else due to thermal energy collisions between molecules, that are a function of Temperature and density.

    Given that climatologist assert that the main atmospheric gases do not emit thermal continuum (Planckian) radiation spectra; an assertion I reject, it is difficult to see how ozone, in earth’s atmosphere would have detectable spectra of that nature, in addition to its molecular spectrum due to the molecular structure and energy levels.

    But I’m willing to learn, and would enjoy knowing more about ozone continuum spectra.

    I must admit, that I have never ever read, any definitive statement of the wavelength(s) necessary for dissociation of O2, nor the precise wavelengths that break down O3 to O2 + O.

    It is frustrating to have no access to basic information that any and every worker in the weather/climate field ought to have at their fingertips at all times.

    I know I keep ALL of the pertinent information in my fields in my head at all times; so I don’t have to giggle or Wikipedia anything to do my job.

    But my apologies to Eli Rabbett, for doubting his assertion of weird clouds at ozone levels. But if we can have ice clouds, at noctilucent altitudes, why not other clouds at ozone altitudes.

    Do we have any photographs of such clouds, or are they just too visible spectrum transparent to show up in photos ??

    I must read up on ozone continuum spectra in the UV.

  104. For a Black Body radiation spectrum, the Planck spectral radiant emittance versus wavelength spectrum, contains almost exactly 25% of the total energy at wavelengths below the peak wavelength. I have never actually performed that integration myself, to find out if that fraction is exact, but every reference have ever seen says it is 25%, and all the plotted curves show it as that.

    They also show that just 1% of the total radiant energy lies at wavelengths shorter than one half of the peak wavelength, which would be 250 nm for a BB spectrum peaking at 500 nm. And 99% of the total radiant energy lies below 8.0 times the spectral peak wavelength, which would be at 4.0 microns, so less than 1% of the radiant energy from such a source (and the sun) lies beyond 4.0 microns, so the CO2 asymmetrical stretch mode, has little effect on incoming solar energy, and also the 10.1 micron peaked, near BB emission, from a 288 K mean earth surface, would also have less than 1% of its radiant energy below 5.05 microns, which also leaves that CO2 band out in the cold.

    Now in the hottest tropical deserts that do most of the earth’s radiant cooling, the asymmetrical stretch CO2 band would start to have some absorption of outgoing energy.

  105. Just The Facts says:
    April 16, 2014 at 8:04 pm

    Gary Pearse says: April 16, 2014 at 4:51 pm

    GP: “Now an additional fact: the colder the temperature, the more magnetic is oxygen. Here is an experiment on Youtube at Harvard showing the difference between N2 and O2.”

    JTF, I realize the experiment is not one that reflects the physics of the atmosphere – it was just a neat demonstration that the unique magnetic susceptibility of oxygen is real- but you don’t have to go to as far as liquid oxygen to see a substantial increase in the magnetic susceptibility of oxygen (and other substances) with declining temperature. I haven’t found a good link to show this and I’m not a capable electronic manipulator of illustrations for this medium, but within the temperatures that can be experienced above the poles, the mag suscept. can double and triple. Yes, the force isn’t strong, but when the entire medium acted upon is the very fluid atmosphere and there are two mutually supportive effects added together: pushing away all the gases except oxygen would by itself suck oxygen into the voided area by the pressure difference. When you have the oxygen actually attracted into this region the effect is reinforced. Your vortex mechanism may totally overwhelm mine when it is active. I still would like to see as good a job measuring distribution of the standard gases in the atmosphere. Here is one for CO2 (just located), of interest, particularly, the South Polar region – the pattern even looks like lines of magnetic force although this might be an artifact of data points.

  106. Grammar question:
    ” When sunlight hits these clouds, it sparks a reaction between chlorine from chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), human-made chemicals once used for refrigerants, foam blowing, and other applications — ultimately destroying ozone.”

    A reaction between chlorine and what? What is the sound of one hand clapping?

  107. A post of mine did not post; that happens some times. It was a response to Eli’s response to my response to his response.

    I’m not going to reproduce it all; I’m tired of stupid machines that fail to do what they are told to do.

    But for the record, In view of Phil’s post, I would retract my comment about Elis weird chemistry clouds. The rest of my earlier post I stand by, based on my standard References on solar radiation physics; mainly The Infra-red Handbook, which I’m sure Eli and Phil are well aware of; and probably have their own copies of.

    My apologies to Eli, re the cloud chemistry .(which is NOT in my references.)

  108. Do we have any photographs of such clouds, or are they just too visible spectrum transparent to show up in photos ??
    Anything to oblige George.

    I must read up on ozone continuum spectra in the UV.

    As I recall it’s because the transition is to energy levels in the excited state of ozone, a pre-dissociated state which has no energy minimum. In those states there are no discrete vibrational energy levels and therefore you get a continuum spectrum.

    Excited state B in this diagram: http://www.pci.tu-bs.de/aggericke/PC4e/Kap_III/Praed_1.gif
    See:
    Hollas, J. Michael (2003). Modern spectroscopy (4th ed.). Wiley. p. 253. ISBN 978-0-470-84416-8

  109. WRT O2 magnetic susceptibility, this is not a function of the state of the oxygen (gas liquid solid) but rather the molecular orbitals involved in the bonding. Oxygen molecules have two unpaired electrons with parallel spins in the two pi* orbitals. This makes O2 paramagnetic, e.g. having high magnetic susceptibility

    See

    http://www.chem.queensu.ca/people/faculty/mombourquette/firstyrchem/molecular/orbitals/index.htm

    towards the bottom or look under molecular orbitals in any GChem book.

  110. Thanks Phil; I’ll look up that stuff. It would seem that The Michael J. Hollas book, is not among the 200 odd Physics Texts on my bookshelf; I can’t buy them all. I even have a couple on Chemistry; one by Linus Pauling. I was privileged to attend a lecture by him on the chemistry and molecular structure of sickle cell anemia; which I’m given to understand was the first disease specifically attribute to the shape of a specific molecule; in this case, haemoglobin. I’m sure WUWT readers think I just make this stuff up, since I virtually never either read or cite Wikipedia, the standard yuppie reference for everything.

    On radiation Physics, my most complete reference is “The Infra-Red Handbook” Third Printing
    edition from ERIM for the US Navy. In their section 3-4 on the sun as a natural light source, they give a table and plot of the extra-terrestrial solar spectrum. Much of the material was generated by the US Air Force, and the published extra-terrestrial solar spectrum table, which is table 3-17 in the book, and plotted as fig. 3-6, which also includes the sea level; air mass one solar spectrum.

    The specific paper reference; 3-28, is by M.P. Thekakara; “Evaluating light from the Sun.” Optical Specta, Optical Publishing, Pittsfield Mass, Vol 6 No 3 March 1972 pp32-35

    That reference pegs the peak of the ex-earth spectrum at 485 nm, which the 1931 CIE chromaticity diagram saya is blue; not green.

    And Thekakara’s air mass one sea level solar spectrum, shows an O3 absorption band from about 480 nm up to 680 nm, which is just on the long wavelength side of the 450 nm (blue) peak of the sea level solar spectrum. I believe I said essentially that in my first response to Eli Rabbett above.

    Yes it does show an O3 absorption band from 250 to 300 nm, which I presume is identical with the continuum band that Eli and Phil refer to.

    As I said above, I understand how ionized gases produce continuum spectra, beyond the usual atomic line spectra, since the captured electron by the originally ionized atom, can have any value of energy whatsoever; but I don’t see how a neutral atom, can produce a continuum spectrum from “excited states”, which would seem by definition to produce line spectra. And Thermal continuum spectra, due to molecular collisions, in gases, are of course low energy photons; not UV.

    And I still for the life of me don’t see what any of this has to do with the Stefan Boltzmann Law that Eli mentioned in his post.

    But thanks Phil for the citations; seems like I need a newer radiation Physics Text book.

    I’ve paid enough money as a taxpayer, that NASA/NOAA should give me one.

  111. This is a not bad image of the solar spectrum overlaid with a black body spectrum showing, that if anything the solar spectrum is UV poor and IR rich by a small amount

    Most of the sharp lines in the solar spectrum are atomic (metal) absorptions in the solar atmosphere.

    The spectrum at the bottom of the atmosphere shows a number of water vapor and carbon dioxide overtone and combination bands in the NIR (between 700 and 4000 nm)

    http://www.calpoly.edu/~rfield/SolarFlux.htm

    Finally, you have to be careful comparing spectra taken at different resolutions, because the lower resolution stuff smears out the bands.

  112. Can’t even keep up. Hollas is very good.

    Also
    “A reaction between chlorine and what? What is the sound of one hand clapping?”

    To start a lot of the Cl atoms in the stratosphere are tied up in the adduct ClONO2. This species decomposes on the polar stratospheric cloud particles and basically gets turned into nitric acid, HNO3, and Cl2. At first light the Cl2 falls apart to give a huge pulse of Cl. You need light in the 300-400 nm region to dissociate the Cl2 which is why the hole appears in the spring and not the winter

    Cl + O3 –> ClO + O2
    ClO + ClO + M –> Cl2O2 + M
    Cl2O2 + hv –> Cl + ClO2
    ClO2 + M –> Cl + O2 + M
    and around you go

    Summary of all this

    http://www.atmos.washington.edu/academics/classes/2011Q2/558/solomon1999.pdf

  113. george e. smith says:
    April 17, 2014 at 9:23 pm
    Thanks Phil; I’ll look up that stuff. It would seem that The Michael J. Hollas book, is not among the 200 odd Physics Texts on my bookshelf; I can’t buy them all. I even have a couple on Chemistry; one by Linus Pauling. I was privileged to attend a lecture by him on the chemistry and molecular structure of sickle cell anemia; which I’m given to understand was the first disease specifically attribute to the shape of a specific molecule; in this case, haemoglobin.

    Right and due to a mutation in a single base!

    I’m sure WUWT readers think I just make this stuff up, since I virtually never either read or cite Wikipedia, the standard yuppie reference for everything.

    I often cite Wikipedia because other posters complain if I cite papers!

    As I said above, I understand how ionized gases produce continuum spectra, beyond the usual atomic line spectra, since the captured electron by the originally ionized atom, can have any value of energy whatsoever; but I don’t see how a neutral atom, can produce a continuum spectrum from “excited states”, which would seem by definition to produce line spectra.

    Here’s the potted version George.
    As a result of LCAO (linear combination of atomic orbitals) there are a variety of excited electronic states (molecular orbitals), some are bonding and others antibonding. The antibonding ones don’t have an energy well so there’s no bond between the two atoms to vibrate and therefore no energy levels. Consequently when excited, any energy is accessible, hence the continuum.
    There are some relevant diagrams here:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Molecular_orbital_diagram

    But thanks Phil for the citations; seems like I need a newer radiation Physics Text book.

    I’ve paid enough money as a taxpayer, that NASA/NOAA should give me one.

    You’re welcome, good luck with that. :-)

  114. Eli’s Wiki graph, is better resolution than the my 1972 graph, but mine looks otherwise like a slightly smoothed version of Eli’s; the near peak anomalous stuff has somewhat the same characteristics.

    And Thekakara gives 5770 K for the TSI matching BB Temperature; but in those days, and further back in my school days TSI was 1353 W/m^2 But that was almost certainly based on balloon and rocket measured data, corrected for the presumed residual atmosphere He gives 5900 K for the best BB shape fit Temperature.

    Wiki’s graphs, are not a good shape fit at 5777 K.

    Amazing how those ancients got so close. He also shows the 700 nm region water band, and an Oxygen and water band overlapping (bands) at around790 nm, then lots of water bands from 830 to 2.0 microns and beyond, with CO2 first showing at 1.5 and 1.9 microns and 2.5 microns.

    Somewhere, I have seen solar spectrum curves, way out to the radio region, and way down in the mud, by orders of magnitude. They are not continuous, and they don’t all correspond to the same Temperature.

    There’s some million degree sections in there, which I presume come from coronal regions..

    Thanks Eli and Phil, anyway for the references; I can see I need some more books.

    The Stanford Bookstore, only seems to carry what the profs are teaching from, and usually writing themselves.

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