Scientists claim they have observed first signs of healing in the Antarctic ozone layer

New research has identified clear signs that the hole in the Antarctic ozone layer is beginning to close.

A false-color image showing ozone concentrations above Antarctica on Oct. 2, 2015. CREDIT NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center
The Ozone Hole at its Largest . A false-color image showing ozone concentrations above Antarctica on Oct. 2, 2015. CREDIT NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

Scientists from the University of Leeds were part of an international team led by Professor Susan Solomon of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to confirm the first signs of healing of the ozone layer, which shields life on Earth from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays.

Recovery of the hole has varied from year to year, due in part to the effects of volcanic eruptions.

But accounting for the effects of these eruptions allowed the team to show that the ozone hole is healing, and they see no reason why the ozone hole should not close permanently by the middle of this century.

These encouraging new findings, published today in the journal Science, show that the average size of the ozone hole each September has shrunk by more than 1.7 million square miles since 2000 — about 18 times the area of the United Kingdom.

The research attributes this improvement to the 1987 Montreal Protocol, which heralded a ban the use of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) — then widely used in cooling appliances and aerosol cans.

Professor Solomon said: “We can now be confident that the things we’ve done have put the planet on a path to heal. We decided collectively, as a world, ‘Let’s get rid of these molecules’. We got rid of them, and now we’re seeing the planet respond.” Co-author Dr Ryan R Neely III, a Lecturer in Observational Atmospheric Science at Leeds, said: “Observations and computer models agree; healing of the Antarctic ozone has begun. We were also able to quantify the separate impacts of man-made pollutants, changes in temperature and winds, and volcanoes, on the size and magnitude of the Antarctic ozone hole.”

University of Leeds colleague and co-author Dr Anja Schmidt, an Academic Research Fellow in Volcanic Impacts, said: “The Montreal Protocol is a true success story that provided a solution to a global environmental issue.”

She added that the team’s research had shed new light on the part played by recent volcanic eruptions – such as at Calbuco in Chile in 2015 – in Antarctic ozone depletion.

“Despite the ozone layer recovering, there was a very large ozone hole in 2015,” she said. “We were able to show that some recent, rather small volcanic eruptions slightly delayed the recovery of the ozone layer.

“That is because such eruptions are a sporadic source of tiny airborne particles that provide the necessary chemical conditions for the chlorine from CFCs introduced to the atmosphere to react efficiently with ozone in the atmosphere above Antarctica. Thus, volcanic injections of particles cause greater than usual ozone depletion.”

The ozone hole begins growing each year when the sun returns to the South Polar cap from August, and reaches its peak in October – which has traditionally been the main focus for research.

The researchers believed they would get a clearer picture of the effects of chlorine by looking earlier in the year in September, when cold winter temperatures still prevail and the ozone hole is opening up. The team showed that as chlorine levels have decreased, the rate at which the hole opens up in September has slowed down.

Key facts

  • Scientists from the British Antarctic Survey discovered in the mid-1980s that the October total ozone was dropping. From then on, scientists worldwide typically tracked ozone depletion using October measurements of Antarctic ozone
  • Ozone is sensitive not just to chlorine, but also to temperature and sunlight. Chlorine eats away at ozone, but only if light is present and if the atmosphere is cold enough to create polar stratospheric clouds on which chlorine chemistry can occur
  • Measurements have shown that ozone depletion starts each year in late August, as Antarctica emerges from its dark winter, and the hole is fully formed by early October
  • The researchers focused on September because chlorine chemistry is firmly in control of the rate at which the hole forms at that time of year, so as chlorine has decreased, the rate of depletion has slowed down
  • They tracked the yearly opening of the Antarctic ozone hole each September from 2000 to 2015, analysing ozone measurements taken from weather balloons and satellites, as well as satellite measurements of sulphur dioxide emitted by volcanoes, which can also enhance ozone depletion. And, they tracked meteorological changes, such as temperature and wind, which can shift the ozone hole back and forth.
  • They then compared yearly September ozone measurements with computer simulations that predict ozone levels based on the amount of chlorine estimated to be present in the atmosphere from year to year. The researchers found that the ozone hole has declined compared to its peak size in 2000. They further found that this decline matched the model’s predictions, and that more than half the shrinkage was due solely to the reduction in atmospheric chlorine and bromine
  • Chlorofluorocarbon chemicals (CFCs) last for up to 100 years in the atmosphere, so it will be many years before they disappear completely
  • The reason there is an ozone hole in the Antarctic is that it is the coldest place on Earth — it is so cold that clouds form in the Antarctic stratosphere. Those clouds provide particles, surfaces on which the man-made chlorine from the chlorofluorocarbons reacts. This special chemistry is what makes ozone depletion worse in the Antarctic.


Further information

Dr Anja Schmidt is an Academic Research Fellow in Volcanic Impacts and Hazards at the University of Leeds’ School of Earth and Environment. Dr Ryan R. Neely III is a Lecturer in Observational Atmospheric Science at the Leeds-based National Centre for Atmospheric Science and Leeds’ School of Earth and Environment.

Scientists from the Atmospheric Chemistry Observations and Modeling (ACOM) Laboratory at National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado, also worked on the research, which was supported in part by the National Science Foundation and the US Department of Energy.

* The paper, Emergence of Healing in the Antarctic Ozone Layer, is published in Science today.


Industrial chlorofluorocarbons that cause ozone depletion have been phased out under the Montreal Protocol. A chemically-driven increase in polar ozone (or “healing”) is expected in response to this historic agreement. Observations and model calculations taken together indicate that the onset of healing of Antarctic ozone loss has now emerged in September. Fingerprints of September healing since 2000 are identified through (i) increases in ozone column amounts, (ii) changes in the vertical profile of ozone concentration, and (iii) decreases in the areal extent of the ozone hole. Along with chemistry, dynamical and temperature changes contribute to the healing, but could represent feedbacks to chemistry. Volcanic eruptions episodically interfere with healing, particularly during 2015 (when a record October ozone hole occurred following the Calbuco eruption).

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July 2, 2016 3:13 pm

So its healing in September but not August or October. This seems strange to me and, If I had the expertise, I would look at their data and statistics.

Reply to  DMA
July 2, 2016 3:55 pm

September/October is when the “hole” is largest.

Tom in Florida
Reply to  John Finn
July 2, 2016 5:06 pm

Since ozone is unstable it must be constantly created by UV, and since the Antarctic is basically sunless most of its winter, it would seem logical that this is when less ozone should be seen.

Reply to  John Finn
July 2, 2016 5:34 pm

So why would there be a “heeling” trend when Septembers are studied but no trend in other months? What is different in September that allows the average September hole to close that changes in anticipation of Thanksgiving?

Santa Baby
Reply to  John Finn
July 2, 2016 8:35 pm

It’s mostly an economic success story for DuPont? And there is a similar hole over Arctic about 6 months earlier in the year. I have read 2 studies that does not support the scientific basis for the Montreal convention. And the Sun has probably gotten less active the last years. The Ozone “hole” is caused by the air up there becoming very very cold.

Reply to  John Finn
July 2, 2016 10:07 pm

The whole concept of a “hole” is fallacious spin.
What is the origin of the graphic at the top of this ariticle? It is unattributed and has a bogus unscientific scale. What kind of scientist replaces a true scale with meaningless “high and low” . I have seen another version of this graph and the blue and green areas represent around 200 and 300 dobson units.
A reduction of 30% is not at “hole”, it is a variation.

Reply to  John Finn
July 2, 2016 10:09 pm

Sorry the graph is attributed to NASA, I meant there is no link to the source.

Reply to  John Finn
July 2, 2016 10:21 pm

OK, here is the NASA graphic with a proper scale legend.
My question is who derived the appropriately name “false-color” legend for the headline graphic, What is the source URL for that? Was it provided with the press release?
There is deliberate masking of the true nature of the “hole” by whoever produced that graphic. It is spin , not science.

Samuel C Cogar
Reply to  John Finn
July 3, 2016 6:59 am

Yup, both Tom in Florida and Santa Baby ….. “got it right”.
Atmospheric ozone (O3) is unstable and must be constantly created by the UV radiation in Solar irradiance (Sunlight) , thus the per se Ozone Hole “waxes and wanes” relative to the amount of UV radiation entering the atmosphere high above or atop Antarctica, ……. and “yes”, it was an economic success story for DuPont when they were instrumental in convincing the public and other parties of the importance to accuse and declare chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) as the “whipping-boy” responsible for atmospheric ozone depletion (Ozone Hole) and should be punished for said dastardly act by banishment of production and use of said CFC’s. (DuPont held the patent rights on Freon production, which was about to expire, and DuPont didn’t want their competition to “freely” produce and sell Freon.)
Quoting article:

•They then compared yearly September ozone measurements with computer simulations that predict ozone levels based on the amount of chlorine estimated to be present in the atmosphere from year to year.

HA, …… computer simulations + estimated quantities = 100% correct prediction.
Quoting article again:

The ozone hole begins growing each year when the sun returns to the South Polar cap from August, and reaches its peak in October – which has traditionally been the main focus for research.

Well “DUH”, September 22nd is the Autumnal Equinox which signals the “end of Winter” (or start of Spring) in the Southern Hemisphere …… and the Solar irradiance doesn’t have much “UV power” in it until mid-October thus the reason the Ozone Hole “reaches its peak in October”.
Just like in the Northern Hemisphere, whereby the Spring equinox occurs on March 20th, and the Solar irradiance doesn’t have much “UV power” in it until mid-April.

ian hilliar
Reply to  John Finn
July 3, 2016 11:23 pm

According to Dobson, the “Relative Ozone Lack” lasts about 3 months, and breaks down in November when the winter westerlies die down and the polar vortex, which goes right up to the stratosphere, breaks down and allows infilling from outside. The colder the stratospheric temp. the bigger the ozone deficit.

Richard M
Reply to  DMA
July 2, 2016 5:02 pm

With good reason. Last October the hole was the largest on record. It appears they cherry picked a period where random variation showed a decrease.

Reply to  Richard M
July 2, 2016 11:09 pm

Despite the so-called “healing”, last October was the largest ever hole. This contradiction has been attributed to a relatively small volcanic eruption in Chilli.
So what about the effects of the two massive stratospheric eruptions during the time they were originally noticing the “hole” in the mid 80s and 90s. El Chichon was in 1982 ( coincidence ? ) , the even larger Mt. Pinatubo eruption was in 1991.
Here is the effect those eruptions had on lower stratospheric temperature:comment image

They then compared yearly September ozone measurements with computer simulations that predict ozone levels based on the amount of chlorine estimated to be present in the atmosphere from year to year. …. They further found that this decline matched the model’s predictions,

So they don’t even have any actual measurements of atmospheric clorine gas on with which to compare the ozone variations, neither do they have any experimental evidence of the proposed chemical prcesses in the relevant atmospheric conditions. It another non validated model. . They ‘estimate’ chlorine, hypothesise the reactions and then say it “matched”.
Well reducing the whole, artificial explanation into as binary : match / not match conclusion also tells me they pulling wool over our eyes. I want to see a graph and a correlation coefficient, not “matches”.
The political motivation here is in plain sight. They are trying to Montreal worked to justify Paris accord.
With the obvious fudging of the evidence, I don’t believe a word of it.
This is politics, not science.

Reply to  DMA
July 3, 2016 6:44 am

The Ozone hole was discovered the same time as Dupont’s patent on CFC’s expired. What a fortunate co-incidence for Dupont, as the Montreal Protocol forced everyone to switch over to Dupont’s patented replacement for CFC’s.
“in a turnabout in 1986 DuPont, with new patents in hand, publicly condemned CFCs”

ian hilliar
Reply to  ferdberple
July 3, 2016 11:18 pm

ozone hole was “discovered “in 1957. Gordon Charles Dobson mentions the :interesting scientific phenomenon” inj his 1964 Article “40 Years of Ozone at Oxford-A History”.. Not a lot of cfcs in Antarctica back in the 1950s, unless you are talking about the naturally occurring cfcs produced by Mt Erebus.

Reply to  DMA
July 3, 2016 3:55 pm

Most CFCs were generated in the NORTHERN hemisphere. Why isn’t there a bigger hole over the Arctic? Answer: CFCs are not the problem.
O3 is created by UVC from the sun interacting with O2. Angle of incidence of the sun over the small latitudes is high, so lots of O3 over the tropics. Angle of incidence over the poles is low, so much less O3. That’s why ozone layer grows & shrinks with the seasons. South pole is slightly flatter than north pole, so less O3 over south pole.
Again, if CFCs were the cause, why doesn’t the northern hemisphere, with it’s much greater population and industry, have a bigger hole than the south?

Reply to  DMA
July 3, 2016 11:46 pm

If I recall right, they were surprised that the October hole was of record size while the September hole was much smaller. It couldn’t be that they went with the September hole or model results because the October hole did not fit the model results?

george e. smith
Reply to  DMA
July 5, 2016 11:59 am

I thought life on earth evolved in an oxygen free atmosphere, with presumably no ozone.
A somewhat well known chemist essayist asserted that ozone is the end product of oxygen just doing its job of absorbing high energy solar photons, to create atomic oxygen, and hence ozone.
If the ozone layer wasn’t there; it would just be somewhere else, perhaps at lower altitude.
In any case, the hole has always been there, just never noticed until somebody noticed it.
The well known variable apparent color temperature of sunlight, both seasonal and random, is ample evidence of ozone fluctuations.

July 2, 2016 3:15 pm

One thing that has always bothered me about this “Ozone Hole” problem is that 90 % of the “Ozone Killing” chlorofluorocarbons are generated in the Northern Hemisphere, so why do they only seem to affect the Antarctic (which is a semi closed system) ???

Reply to  marcus
July 2, 2016 3:55 pm

“semi closed” means not completely closed. Read the whole article; a brief description of the reason is near the end.

Patrick MJD
Reply to  marcus
July 3, 2016 5:09 am

Indeed. CFC’s released in the NH migrate to the SH as was the claim the 80’s? It’s a miracle of anti-physics! Of course using the word “healing” just tickles the emotion strings. The whole article is bullcarp!

Reply to  Patrick MJD
July 3, 2016 6:24 am

Was there ever an observation year without an ozone hole? If not, then the ozone hole is natural, which means that healing is bogus. Are there any ill effects coming due to the ozone hole? If not, then why refer to a reduction as healing?

Reply to  Patrick MJD
July 3, 2016 7:27 am

As usual, “We have angered the Gods,” but our continued Good Behavior means Gaia is now “healing.”
As “Bill the Cat” in the funny papers would say, “Aaack! Phppttttt!”

Peter Fraser
July 2, 2016 3:28 pm

The ozone hole over parts of Antarctica and the Southern Ocean have waxed and waned seasonally since observations began. The newspaper report I read of this press release inevitably made the link between this “success” story (world reduction in fluorocarbons leading to the ozone hole reduction) and the need to reduce CO2 thus having another “success” in limiting global warming. Fluorocarbon reduction was easy as there are practical alternatives for refrigeration. Apart from nuclear there are currently no practicable alternative to fossil fuels.

Reply to  Peter Fraser
July 2, 2016 10:16 pm

The whole problem with “the hole” is that there is absolutely no evidence that this has not always been the case. First observations showed ozone was thinner over Antarctica, later observations showed it had reduced further. Enviros started what has now become the established alarmist method of taking two data points, linking them with a straight line and projecting way out into the future on the baseless assumption that this “trend” will continue.
The did the same with variations in the gulf stream, as soon as it was discovered that its flow rate was not one of the universal constants of nature it was, OMG if this trend continues Europe will be like Canada.

Reply to  climategrog
July 3, 2016 3:57 pm

It’s just another example of discounting the null hypothesis by jumping to a conclusion that supports a preconception.

george e. smith
Reply to  climategrog
July 5, 2016 12:19 pm

Standard optics handbooks, reporting on the sun, as a natural “light” source , commonly refer to the seasonal and purely random variations in the apparent color Temperature of the sun as a thermal light source. Then they ascribe it to random and seasonal variations in the short wavelength end of the lower atmosphere solar spectrum. These observations date from long before somebody looked for an ozone hole and found it, and long before chloro-fluorocarbons.
As for the gulf stream, it will reverse its flow, when the earth reverses its direction of rotation.
Earth’s tidal bulge contains both potential and kinetic energy components. When the bulge runs into the coast ahead of it, that KE doesn’t just disappear. It gets converted into additional potential energy, which results in a transient increase in the sea level over and above the equilibrium level it would have in the absence of any land.
Once that conversion is completed on the Eastern coast of the Americas, it has to collapse, and that extra high sea has to move to somewhere else away from the equatorial regions, which means go north and south, where gravity is greater, and centrifugal force is weaker, towards both poles.
Adding a pinch of salt or notsalt, is not going to change a thing, so long as the earth keeps rotating the same way. If it switches, then we will have a warm tropical current flowing up the California coast, and we will have those fabulous tropical game fishes, instead of some crummy salmon.
But the Atlantic salmon will make a great comeback.

July 2, 2016 3:32 pm

The ozone hole will never close permanently. The ozone hole outlines the magnetospheric footprint. Cold comes from space down the magnetospheric footprint.
This is what controls the size of the polar caps.
These are the 2 doors in the greenhouse that we call earth, and are controlled by the interaction of the solar wind, the earths magnetic field and the IPMF…
More energy(energy soak) comes down these than man is capable of trapping with his CO2. Because of the inflow of colder neutrals and ion mans signal will always be in the noise..

July 2, 2016 3:39 pm

My response when I first saw that in the UK Telegraph was that it was more wishful thinking than a provable result. I suspect that some of this ozone hole stuff has come about because we were able to measure something and found something rather than finding something and the thing responsible for it.
But, there is the hypothesis. It makes the prediction of less hole in the future on a consistent basis. We will see the result.

July 2, 2016 3:39 pm

The Montreal Protocol may very well have saved the ozone hole, who knows? The problem is that global warmists take this issue and conflate it to mean they are right about global warming too, when they are two entirely different issues (CO2:temperature and CFCs:Ozone depletion)
The fallacy is:
Bob is right about about issue A.
Therefore, Bob is right about issues B, C and D.

Reply to  Jim Watson
July 2, 2016 5:45 pm

That is precisely my problem.

Mickey Reno
Reply to  Jim Watson
July 2, 2016 8:30 pm

There’s no evidence that the Montreal Protocols have had any effect whatsoever on the so-called “ozone hole” over Antarctica. That doesn’t stop anyone from looking at the “hole’s” annual or seasonal variability and projecting future trends. I think that this kind of silly practice doesn’t advance human understanding by one iota, nor does it do anyone (except perhaps for Keynesian economists like Paul Krugman) a single bit of good.

Doug in Calgary
Reply to  Jim Watson
July 2, 2016 8:35 pm

It’s too bad we don’t know how long the “hole” has been there since it was conveniently “discovered” in the ’80’s. If it’s been thousands of years then Bob isn’t right about A.

Reply to  Doug in Calgary
July 2, 2016 10:58 pm

It was re-discovered in the ’80’s. It was first discovered in 1956 by Dobson and a couple years later, it’s (natural) cause was explained in a paper by Rigaud & Leroy. It’s never going away.

Reply to  Doug in Calgary
July 3, 2016 7:30 am

All this “science” is nothing more than a fish becoming aware of the water in which it’s always been swimming. But people have been primed by thousands of years of anthropocentric, apocalyptic religions to believe it’s always “all about us.” It’d be funny to watch if it weren’t so pathetic.
Guess somebody ’round kindergarten must’ve slipped me the Red Pill . . .

george e. smith
Reply to  Doug in Calgary
July 5, 2016 12:23 pm

It’s always been there as evidenced by the seasonal and random variations in the apparent color temperature of surface solar spectrum sunlight.

Reply to  Jim Watson
July 2, 2016 8:44 pm

Is there a simple explanation why the chlorine in human created fluorocarbons is so much worse than the chlorine in the oceans? Surely the chlorine given off by wave action would swamp our measly contribution?

george e. smith
Reply to  hamilc
July 5, 2016 12:32 pm

I believe that the reason relates to the chemical stability of fluorine compounds, because of its reactivity. That enables chloro-fluorocarbons to survive until they get high enough to encounter the higher energy UV photons, which eventually can break the fluorine bonds.
At lower altitudes where those high energy UVs can’t reach, the other halogens end up reacting with something else in the atmosphere, and get removed, before they can ascend to the upper atmosphere.
I would think that if chlorine can break up O3, that fluorine would do the very same thing; only faster.

Reply to  hamilc
July 6, 2016 6:39 am

Geo – Riddle me this. Why is it that our fluorocarbons, which are complex molecules, heavier than air, find it so easy to defy gravity and make their way into the high atmosphere but, ozone, which is a major constituent of ground-based smog and about the same weight as air, cannot seem to make its way into the outer atmosphere and help us out a bit? Why is it that EVERYTHING man does works out to make things worse – always?

Reply to  Bill Powell
July 6, 2016 12:36 pm

During a time of lower solar activity, such as now, the solar polar magnetic field strengths are much lower and more of the most energetic particles can escape from the sun. Our atmosphere is protecting us by reacting with those particles forming ozone, peroxides and nitrogenous oxides. Above the SH’s oceans more OH radicals are present, so peroxides are formed preferentially to ozone…..
So, there never was an ozone hole.
the problem is that peroxide concentrations were never checked….
when you check the absorption spectra of ozone and H2O2 you will find that they look almost identical. They are doing the same job: cooling the earth,
whilst the sun is at its brightest and most dangerous to humans (don’t go in the sun without a hat), earth is cooling…..
a paradox,
if ever there was one

July 2, 2016 3:44 pm

WooHoo and Hallelujah!! We’re saved…The ozone hole is Healed!
(/snarc tag not included. Please the Owner’s Manuel for proper installation)

July 2, 2016 3:45 pm

Dear Professor Solomon et al
I am always interested in good news. Could you please answer the following questions
1. How can the average ozone hole area in October at 22 msqkm and the area of temperature below -78C be only 8 msqkm. Temperature is a key controlling factor ?
2. The area of temperature below minus 78C ended late October, but the ozone hole blazed on until late December. How can this be?
Respectfully your

bit chilly
July 2, 2016 3:45 pm

“They then compared yearly September ozone measurements with computer simulations that predict ozone levels based on the amount of chlorine estimated to be present in the atmosphere from year to year. The researchers found that the ozone hole has declined compared to its peak size in 2000. They further found that this decline matched the model’s predictions, and that more than half the shrinkage was due solely to the reduction in atmospheric chlorine and bromine”
sure it is. anyone want to bet there is still a hole in the ozone layer down there come mid century. 50/50 the hole is bigger next year as well.

Reply to  bit chilly
July 2, 2016 3:57 pm

Heh, 50/50 the ozone hole will be bigger/smaller by 2100.

Samuel C Cogar
Reply to  bit chilly
July 3, 2016 7:25 am

The “quieter” the Sun is (no Sunspots) ….. the more likely the Ozone Hole will increase in size.
Or should I say, ….. less likely to recover all of its Wintertime O3 loss when the UV radiation returns.

July 2, 2016 3:48 pm

“Despite the ozone layer recovering, there was a very large ozone hole in 2015,” she said.
The Ozone hole is nothing of the sort. Down-welling cold air at the Poles strips the ozone from the poles and carries it towards the equator. You get these sorts of “holes” at the poles on Venus, Jupiter, Saturn, etc., etc.
The problem is that the length of observation is insufficiently long to have established the natural cycle, and thus any change is seen as unnatural.

Reply to  ferdberple
July 2, 2016 5:53 pm

Kinda like temperature on the global level, that. We have only been flying microwave temperature sounders since around Nimbus E. The CO2 temperature sounders could not go through clouds (odd that). The AMSU, etc. sounders have only been going since 1980. Too bad the old NEMS and SCAMS data from Nimbus E and F is no longer around as far as I know. It would all fit on a DVD these days I suspect. Analysis would take a day or two on my Mac if the various weighting functions, de-convolution stuff and what not was available. It would be interesting to push back the microwave record to the early 1970s. Staelin and Rosencranz et al. did a nice job with those sounders. Too bad Staelin has passed. He was a good guy.

Reply to  ferdberple
July 4, 2016 3:06 am

Quite right. Only rare comments note that, as the ‘hole’ develops, there is a concomitant INCREASE in the ozone surrounding it – and a DECREASE as the ‘hole’ dissipates. These ‘holes’ also occur associated with the Tibetan Plateau and rarely with the Andaman ice cap. The common features appear to be high altitude and ice caps, which might explain why the Arctic ‘hole’ is weak or absent.
Another point about Antarctica is that the Mount Erebus active volcano is close to the edge of the ‘hole’. This volcano spews out some 450,000 tons of CHLORINE per year, which was more than half of the total amount of chlorine contained in CFCs produced worldwide, and that was in 1990! (ref EIR Vol 17, No 46, Nov 30, 1990).
All of this leaves me bemused at suggestions that man is responsible for the ‘hole’ and that banning CFCs (much to DuPont’s benefit, but that’s another story) is repairing same.

Reply to  yippiy
July 4, 2016 3:19 am

Did anyone check the peroxide concentration in the middle of the “hole”?

July 2, 2016 3:49 pm

More Susan Solomon blather.
Correct me if I am wrong, but I understand there is absolutley no empirical evidence that stratospheric ozone in polar locations shows any correlation with concentrations of halogenated hydrocarbons (natural or man-made). Is there even any credible data on these CFC concentrations??
Ozone is produced naturally in the stratosphere by solar UV radiation interacting with oxygen molecules, and solar UV varies by 5-10 percent over annual and decadal timescales. so ozone should be expected to vary similarly
The “human causation of ozone depletion” was a BS hypothesis 20 years ago, and it remains unvalidated
These pseudo-scientists drive me batty

Tom Halla
Reply to  GeologyJim
July 2, 2016 4:00 pm

i agree. The “ozone hole” was discovered just aboiut the time they started to have the ability to measure it, so the CFC hypothesis has little baseline evidence.

Reply to  Tom Halla
July 2, 2016 4:18 pm

They have been measuring “it” since 1957. They have been observing a gradual thinning of the ozone layer above the antarctic from the mid-1960s at a rate which coincides with accumulation of CFCs in the atmosphere.

Reply to  GeologyJim
July 2, 2016 4:47 pm

Here is a link for one of the experiments cited in the above links.

Reply to  Slipstick
July 2, 2016 4:50 pm
Reply to  Slipstick
July 2, 2016 11:49 pm

Thanks, Slipstick, here is the money graph from that link: the “direct evidence” that is it anthopogenic chlorine as the cause:
So there is a striking anti-correlation but ONLY across less than 2 degree latitude of that transect. Either side of that narrow interval there is not obvious correlation whatsoever.
That NASA flight went down from Chilli and that latitude is just inside the Antarctic circle over the tip of the Antarctic peninsula,
At higher latitudes the correlation falls apart. There is some serious explanation needed as to why man-made chlorine compounds are responsible for this massive climatic variation, over an area larger than the whole of the Antarctic continent but are only seen to “work” over a narrow 1.5 degree band !
Note also that NASA only says : “strong evidence that manmade chemicals are involved in the Antarctic ozone loss process.” They do not say more than “involved”.

Crispin in Waterloo
Reply to  GeologyJim
July 2, 2016 8:43 pm

You are on the right track. Bromine is a very important factor and it mostly comes from the ocean. Nothing to be done about it. There are agricultural sources of bromine of course.
According to Prof Lu of Waterloo the main interaction is between bromine and any available chlorine (minor and mostly not from human chemicals) and galactic cosmic rays.
As others have pointed out, it is not a hole, and the rising of the sun is necessary to have the chemical reaction complete. The GCRs set up the destruction. Removing CFC’s completely will not change the situation. Either the continent will have to move or the sun should become very active so the magnetosphere increases dramatically in size. That seems unlikely during my lifetime no matter what my ultimate age will be. Lu has it right (and used an actual atmospheric chamber, not a model with cherry-picked years) and the CFC alarmists have it wrong.
Check Eli Rabbet’s ‘take down’ of Prof Lu by demonstrating that the satellite data showed none of the effect predicted by Lu’s theory. See prof Lu’s reply that Eli had picked a satellite that didn’t pass over the region affected by the phenomenon, and Lu’s provision of data showing the theory is vindicated by measurements. Ozone over Antarctica has a powerful control over the venting of heat from the South Pole region, enough to explain all the temperature changes of the past 50 years, says Lu.
See Eli run and hide. It is on Eli’s blog, unless he removed it.
The paper above doesn’t cover the validated alternative explanation even though the GCR effect has been observed and replicated in a lab. It means the CFC explanation HAS to have been supported by cherry-picking or a model so wonky it can prove it was anything including my Aunt Matilda’s cooking cause the ozone hole.
Chlorine and bromine are involved, and the vast majority of it comes from the ocean just like most of the CO2.

Reply to  Crispin in Waterloo
July 3, 2016 7:28 am

This is another example of “Since all forest fires were caused by vulcanism, lightning, or impacts of extraterrestrial origin prior to man’s discovery of fire production, one fool with a match cannot start a forest fire and all evidence to the contrary should be ignored” reasoning.

Reply to  Crispin in Waterloo
July 3, 2016 7:32 am

The point is avoid sunbathing nude in Antarctica. “Problem” solved! 😉

July 2, 2016 3:59 pm

“Healing”? Science gives way to anthropomorphism.

July 2, 2016 4:13 pm

blockquote> The “human causation of ozone depletion” was a BS hypothesis 20 years ago, and it remains unvalidated /blockquote>
I thought pretty much the same – and it’s still quite possible that ozone depletion is due to natural factors, – but having looked at ALL the data I reckon that CFCs are the most likely explanation.
Ground based observations of stratospheric ozone above the antarctic have been made since 1957. They agree quite closely with the satellite observations. No hole is apparent in the earlier data but there is a measured thinning of the ozone layer throughout the 1970s. The hole (i.e. an area below a specific threshold of ozone “thickness”) is observed by both ground-based and satellite measurements.

Brett Keane
Reply to  John Finn
July 2, 2016 7:53 pm

Interational ‘Year of the Quiet Sun’, c.1964, 7yrs after the IGY……….Some of us know what that means. Dobson understood, I think. The BAS proto-hippies didn’t seem to.

July 2, 2016 4:18 pm

bullcrap….They have no history and have no way of knowing what’s normal and what’s not

Reply to  Latitude
July 2, 2016 4:22 pm

They know that no hole was evident in the 1950s and early 1960s. And they know that the ozone layer was rapidly thinning throughout the 1970s.

Reply to  John Finn
July 2, 2016 4:42 pm

I’m more interested in knowing if the ozone layer had also thinned in 19th, 18th, 17th, centuries, for example. Then a true comparison of natural vs cfc’s could be determined. Just knowing from 1950 is BS, as that is simply a correlation.

Reply to  John Finn
July 2, 2016 5:11 pm

exactly kokoda……was the 50’s and 60’s some freak event that will never happen again?
Why do people assume that some snapshot of something… normal

Brett Keane
Reply to  John Finn
July 2, 2016 7:43 pm

John Finn
July 2, 2016 at 4:22 pm :
John Finn, if you check the chemistry, you find that the available energy is not there to run the CFC/Ozone reactions. Normal halogens from seawater,, and UV flux strregths, they tell a different story. For starters:
Iodine, bromine, and chlorine in winter aerosols and snow from
Barrow, Alaska
Department of Geology and Geophysics, 54-1220 M.I.T., Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 12, 1353–1365, 2012
Signs point to UV etc. doing the job at both ends, and it is in decline slowly as the sun quietens. But this process is uneven and seasonal.

Crispin in Waterloo
Reply to  John Finn
July 2, 2016 8:59 pm

There is no knowledge of the ozone hole before it was discovered accidentally in the 70’s.

Geoff Sherrington
July 2, 2016 4:21 pm

Scientists do not react favourably to peer reviewed scientific papers like this, when the abstract opens with non-scientifis social chatter.
There is no place in scientific reports for chattering class belief and speculation.

July 2, 2016 4:24 pm


Reply to  Salvatore Del Prete
July 2, 2016 4:41 pm

You are absolutely correct, all that is needed is the documentation and explanation

Reply to  Kiwikid
July 2, 2016 10:54 pm

the correlation between the cycles of ozone thinning and frostflower creation suggests the human created four-times-heavier-than-air HCl’s *might* not have been a contributor at all. We find what.. Chlorine and bromine and even iodine.. so where’s the fluorine so prevalent in human created HFC’s ? If the HCl’s and HBr’s can supposedly make it up there, why not HF’s?

Reply to  Kiwikid
July 2, 2016 10:57 pm
Reply to  Kiwikid
July 2, 2016 11:26 pm

Such documentation and explanation have existed since 1959 in a paper by Rigaud, P. and B. Leroy. When the ozone depletion panic erupted, they re-published their work in 1990:
“Presumptive Evidence for a Low Value of Total Ozone Content Above Antarctica in September, 1958”, Anales de Geophysique, 1990, Volume 8 (11), pp. 791 – 94.

Reply to  Kiwikid
July 4, 2016 3:16 am

Karl – you ask about Hfs. They are present. Mount Erebus emits about 480 tons per day along with some 1,230 tons of HCl. That is each and every day and Erebus is around the edge of the ‘holes’.

Reply to  Salvatore Del Prete
July 2, 2016 11:10 pm

Right you are. NASA noticed it in their satellite photos in 1985 and pushed the enviro-panic button. One of their people (quite sensibly) thought that such a large “hole” shouldn’t have appeared so suddenly and looked at archived photos, and sure enough, there it was, going all the way back to 1972 when their satellite photos began. Previously they had thought what they were seeing was refractive distortion caused by the curvature of the earth’s atmosphere.

July 2, 2016 4:26 pm

This is not the first time scientists have announced the good news that the hole in the ozone layer is healing. This story dates back to 2006.
Everything affects the ozone layer. I am skeptical that either group of scientists have adequately controlled for all the possible variables. Here’s a prediction that the hole will be particularly large 2019-2020.

July 2, 2016 4:27 pm

Did anyone notice the influence of the volcanoes appears to outweigh the supposed influence of man-made CFCs?

Reply to  oeman50
July 2, 2016 6:18 pm

It is pretty obvious that Ozone levels are determined by volcanoes.
It takes more than 25 years for Ozone to rebuild after a stratospheric volcanic eruption. The last one was 1991 so we are right on schedule for the rebuild time-line.
The other issue is that Antarctic Ozone does not disappear in the September/October Ozone hole period. It is merely redistributed to the 45S to 55S latitudes by the south polar vortex and after September/October, it moves back in to the south polar areas. The highest Ozone levels in the stratosphere on the entire planet are in the September/October period in the 45S to 55S latitudes. Big deal. Hole at the poles, highest levels on the planet just 20 to 30 degrees away.

Reply to  Bill Illis
July 2, 2016 11:36 pm

The 1991 Mt. Pinatubo eruption injected more “ODC’s” into the stratosphere than were emitted by all human activity in a year. NASA detected it drifting toward Canada and warned that there would be massive ozone depletion over that country in the summer. I remember the 3 inch, panic inducing headlines well. It didn’t happen. That fall there was a small column in the back pages of the paper reporting that scientists were at a loss to explain why.
Never let the facts get in the way of a good environmental scare.

July 2, 2016 4:37 pm

Visit the official ozone hole website and just look at the data they publish there.
Notice the incredible growth of the hole from 1979 to 1989. Since then, it’s been flat to rising slightly. I don’t seen any healing since then. It would take a true master statistician to make this data show healing. I suspect they are saying that things would be a lot worse if not for the Montreal treaty.
But, of course, money has been made. And power has been obtained. Those are the important things.
Do you all remember the hysteria about the ozone hole before they signed the Montreal treaty? Where is that hysteria today?
It is amazing they publish this data on line.

Reply to  joel
July 3, 2016 12:26 am

Thanks for the link Joel. Here is a plot of the sept-oct max each year. Basically it has been flat since just after Mt Pinatubo. Since it is claimed that CFCs stay in the atmosphere for “hundreds of years” and the Montreal protocol, signed in 1990 took about a decade to even start to take effect. It become pretty hard to maintain that it had any causal effect on the “healing” of the ozone hole.comment image
Look like another of the pesky ‘hiatus’ things.

Reply to  joel
July 3, 2016 4:47 am

blockquote> Notice the incredible growth of the hole from 1979 to 1989.
That occurred to me at first – but just looking at the “hole” dimensions is misleading. It’s the actual layer thickness which shows the true effect. In 1979 it was about 200 DU but in 1957(until about 1965) ground based observations show it was over 300 DU. In more recent times it’s dropped to below 100 DU.
Volcanic eruptions act as a spur but they’re not the whole story. There’s something else going on which does coincide with the accumulation of CFCs in the atmosphere.

Bohdan Burban
July 2, 2016 4:49 pm

Mt Erebus is a strato-volcano ( 3,794 metres, 12,448 ft above sea level) that has been belching tremendous volumes of hydrochloric acid, hydrofluoric acid and carbon dioxide) into the Antarctic stratosphere for several decades.

Reply to  Bohdan Burban
July 7, 2016 4:52 am

Into the troposphere not the stratosphere from a lava lake, the HCl and HF are minor components of the plume. Tropospheric O3 depletion in the plume has been observed due to BrO chemistry up to 30 km downstream.

Reply to  Phil.
July 7, 2016 8:32 am

Hi Phil.
I am impressed with your knowledge of TOA chemistry.
Do you know if ever they checked for peroxides inside ‘the hole’

FJ Shepherd
July 2, 2016 4:53 pm

Nowadays, after following the climate alarmist scam for a few years, whenever the heading has “scientists claim” in it, I smile and move on.

July 2, 2016 4:56 pm

In terms of welfare of almost all life on Earth the ozone “hole” is a big so what . It occurs only in the polar night when there is no UV to create O3 and disappears when the Sun reappears . It never will not happen .

Crispin in Waterloo
Reply to  Bob Armstrong
July 2, 2016 9:02 pm

It occurs in the polar spring, not the night.

Reply to  Crispin in Waterloo
July 6, 2016 6:53 am

After… the long polar night. ; )

July 2, 2016 4:58 pm

What about the impact of the outgassing from Mt Erebus? It ejects large amounts of Cl2, SO2 and other gases etc and the residues are over the entire continent.

Reply to  POQ
July 3, 2016 2:54 am

Tich, that’s natural Chlorine, not man-made so it doesn’t count.
Nature’s output is something like four orders of magnitude greater
than man-kinds, but apparently the halons in manmade CFCs are

July 2, 2016 5:22 pm

…OMG…NASA still does real science !
“NASA’s Juno spacecraft set for close encounter with Jupiter”

July 2, 2016 5:22 pm

This looks like the “money shot” to me;
” “We can now be confident that the things we’ve done have put the planet on a path to heal. We decided collectively, as a world, ‘Let’s get rid of these molecules’. We got rid of them, and now we’re seeing the planet respond.” Co-author Dr Ryan R Neely III, a Lecturer in Observational Atmospheric Science at Leeds, said: “Observations and computer models agree; healing of the Antarctic ozone has begun. We were also able to quantify the separate impacts of man-made pollutants, changes in temperature and winds, and volcanoes, on the size and magnitude of the Antarctic ozone hole.” ”
*See? The modelers ought to be believed, they have demonstrated their skill, and we all need to act collectively based on what they tell us. They are the scientific experts after-all, and they have reached a consensus.*

Reply to  JohnKnight
July 2, 2016 11:39 pm

My thought too. They need to provide a “win” so they can knock down the growing level of doubt and get back to the scheduled program.

George M Hebbard
July 2, 2016 5:47 pm

A side comment, refrigeration Freon was blamed for the decrease in the Ozone layer, but the replacements, negotiated with Dupont to not start a scientific battle, were in some ways worse. R134a is not as efficient at R-12, for example. One of the current replacements is CO2, which requires higher compressor pressures, and hydrocarbons, which are too cheap for anyone to get rich on. Arguably, R-134a in an auto cabin is less safe than a small amount of iso-Butane as the former can cause a heart attack. And the latter has ‘way less explosive energy than gallons of gas in the fuel system or the power of closely packed lithium ion batteries or hydrogen cells.
And the beat goes on…

July 2, 2016 5:48 pm

I swear on a stack of bibles I read on here the hole was the largest on record very recently, perhaps even last year.

Reply to  MattN
July 2, 2016 5:51 pm
Reply to  MattN
July 2, 2016 5:56 pm

Stop being holier than thou, ya hear. All you dang holey rollers around here.

Reply to  MattN
July 2, 2016 6:29 pm

Don’t you go blaspheming now. I’m sure you’ll have your “Come to Gaia” moment soon enough. 🙂

July 2, 2016 6:37 pm

The “ozone hole” was spotted the first time they looked for it. Last year was touted as a “near record” huge ozone hole. I’ll bet this is just normal natural variation and I also wonder if the weak solar cycle is having an impact. Lets see what it looks like come southern hemisphere spring later this year.

July 2, 2016 6:38 pm

“…In areas where ozone concentrations were reduced significantly, from about 68°S to the pole (90°S), low levels of ozone were associated with high levels of chlorine monoxide. Low levels of chlorine monoxide were associated with normal levels of ozone in areas north of 68°S. Clearly these results (and others) are consistent with the hypothesis that chlorine (and bromine atoms) from CFCs and other chemicals with the potential to deplete ozone are responsible for the declining concentration of stratospheric ozone over the south pole…”

CFC molecules? What happened to the fluorine concentrations?
Either they didn’t bother to measure the fluorine or the results didn’t support their hypothesis.
Cherry picked.
Nor were there any obvious attempts to verify chlorine sources other than automatically assumed man caused… Confirmation Bias at work and play.
Then again, every tie I see that Solomon name it means bad science, bad research and it’s always man’s fault with climate doom approaching.

Reply to  ATheoK
July 7, 2016 3:55 am

The relative stabilities of the halogen compounds that are involved in the ozone destroying reactions mean that the effectiveness is in the order Br>Cl>>F. F is sequestered in the atmosphere in the form of HF unlike Cl and Br and therefore plays no part in the O3 depletion.

Reply to  Phil.
July 8, 2016 7:30 pm

Resulting HF remainders should leave detectable fluorine levels as proof that CFCs are involved in degrading the ozone.
No fluorine, no proof; just shallow flimsy distractions and claims.

Reply to  ATheoK
July 9, 2016 2:26 pm

I wonder if Phil. was involved in bringing the ozone scare to the public?
funny that scientists involved in the ozone – and CO2 scare seldom or never apologize.
I suppose it must be because they made money out of it….

Reply to  Phil.
July 10, 2016 10:00 am

Ya gotta love the bafflegab chemistry response, while leaving fluorine’s final stable state as HF.
HF is not stable, especially with other atmospheric molecules bouncing around.

Reply to  ATheoK
July 10, 2016 10:42 am

True. Phil. is not exactly an apologist for the teachers of the unfounded AGW – and ozone scares.

Reply to  Phil.
July 11, 2016 8:57 am

ATheoK July 8, 2016 at 7:30 pm
Resulting HF remainders should leave detectable fluorine levels as proof that CFCs are involved in degrading the ozone.
No fluorine, no proof; just shallow flimsy distractions and claims.

That’s your province! Fluorine has been measured in the stratosphere for decades, as I stated above it isn’t involved in the degradation of O3 for well known thermodynamic and chemical kinetic reasons. Try learning about the subject rather than making unjustified assumptions with no facts to back them up.
Check out: Stolarski, R. S. and Rundel, R. D. (1975), Fluorine photochemistry in the stratosphere. Geophys. Res. Lett., 2: 443–444. doi:10.1029/GL002i010p00443
“The photochemistry of fluorine in the stratosphere is surveyed in order to estimate the effect on ozone of fluorine atoms released by the breakdown of chlorofluoromethanes. The catalytic efficiency for ozone destruction by fluorine is found to be less than 10−4 that of chlorine in the altitude range from 25 to 50 km.”
ATheoK July 10, 2016 at 10:00 am
Ya gotta love the bafflegab chemistry response, while leaving fluorine’s final stable state as HF.
HF is not stable, especially with other atmospheric molecules bouncing around.

More nonsense with no scientific basis for it!
Bond enthalpies are:
H-F 562 kJ/mol
H-Cl 431
H-Br 366
H-I 299
Also HF has a very high boiling point wrt the others and has a high affinity for water due to its hydrogen bonding ability. For related reasons HF is a weak acid when in solution unlike HCl and HBr which are strong acids.
“Many of these fluorine-containing species deplete stratospheric ozone, and are regulated by the Montreal Protocol. Once in the atmosphere they slowly degrade, ultimately leading to the formation of HF, the dominant reservoir of stratospheric fluorine due to its extreme stability.”
“Unlike HCl, HF cannot react with OH, as the reaction is endothermic. In addition, photolysis cannot occur to any significant extent in the stratosphere, making HF an essentially permanent reservoir of stratospheric fluorine.”
Most of the fluorine from CFCs ends up as HF in the stratosphere, the total HF in the stratosphere increased by a factor of 3-4 between 1978 and 1989.
R. Zander, M.R. Gunson, J.C. Foster, C.P. Rinsland, and J. Namkung, “Stratospheric ClONO2, HCl, and HF
concentration profiles derived from ATMOS/Spacelab 3 observations – an update”, J. Geophys. Res. 95, 20519, 1990.
R. Zander, M. R. Gunson, C. B. Farmer, C. P. Rinsland, F. W. Irion, and E. Mahieu, “The 1985 chlorine and fluorine inventories in the stratosphere based on ATMOS observations at 30 degrees North latitude”,
J. Atmos. Chem. 15, 171, 1992.
More recent measurements show the stratospheric fluorine continues to increase at about 1%/yr.
This paper concludes that:
“In the lower altitudes these budgets are dominated by the large mixing ratio of CFC-12. At its peak CFC-12 contributes around 39 % of total fluorine. Other species are much less important. HCFC-22 contributes 15 % at its maximum and combined contribution of the other HCFCs and HFCs used in this study peaks around 10 %. The remaining CFCs and halons used in this study contribute a maximum of about 23 %. As altitude increases HF overtakes CFC-12, between 21 km in the extra-tropics and 28 km in the tropics as the most dominant species in the total fluorine budget.”
The 2015 paper referred to above has the following conclusion:
“The observed global HF trends reveal a substantial slowing down in the rate of increase of HF since the 1990s: 4.97±0.12%year−1 (1991–1997; HALOE), 1.12± 0.08 % year−1 (1998–2005; HALOE), and 0.52±0.03 % year−1 (2004–2012; ACE-FTS)”

Reply to  Phil.
July 11, 2016 10:37 am

Hi Phil.
I am really not interested in this debate around F2 and HF as I think the quantities involved are too small. The sun constantly makes so much more ozone and peroxides and N-oxides from the basic substances available in the air that your favorites HF and F2 are inconsequential. If it were not so you and I would not be alive/ living.
What I am interested in knowing if ever they measured the peroxide content inside “the hole”?
I suspect that if they did measure it, they would get a surprise.

Reply to  Phil.
July 11, 2016 2:49 pm

HenryP July 11, 2016 at 10:37 am
Hi Phil.
I am really not interested in this debate around F2 and HF as I think the quantities involved are too small. The sun constantly makes so much more ozone and peroxides and N-oxides from the basic substances available in the air that your favorites HF and F2 are inconsequential.

They’re inconsequential because they don’t participate in the O3 destruction reactions, regardless of concentration.
ATheoK brought them up as some imagined refutation of CFC’s role in O3 depletion, so I refuted it.
I referred to your peroxide question below.

July 2, 2016 6:46 pm

ozone chemistry of the stratosphere occurs only above the tropics. the reason we have any ozone at all at the greater latitudes is that they are taken there by atmospheric circulations like the Brewer-Dobson.
if you look at total column ozone (tco) above the tropics you don’t find any trends that would suggest depletion or healing.
a more comprehensive and more convincing test is to look at latitudinally weighted mean global tco. there, too, we find no evidence of depletion or of healing because there are no trends in mean global tco.

Mickey Reno
Reply to  chaamjamal
July 3, 2016 8:43 am

I’ve always been a little curious why the Antarctic near surface ozone counts seemed to go up in winter while the “Ozone hole” was forming and total column ozone was going down.
A possible explanation of this, apart from the chemistry of UV based ozone creation/destruction, and for why ozone levels at the poles behave so differently from the tropics, has to do with the potential for thermal collapse of the tropopause during winter, allowing stratospheric air, including ozone, to sink toward the surface, where it can be moved by more unpredictable winds. Unfortunately this one is pay-walled.
I would also note that if the atmosphere actually shrinks over Antarctica during winter due to the cold, then space based measurements of total column ozone that look through the atmosphere parallel to the surface, might actually be looking through less mass, and hence provide misguided results. I’m not making an assertion that this is so, only raising the question.

July 2, 2016 6:49 pm

There is so much rotten science here, as there has been for decades, that it defies belief. In the so-called ‘hole’, the implication is that there is zero ozone. So what is the limit of detection for ozone that they are working with? What is their definition of a hole? How many PPM or PPB of Ozone inside and outside of the hole? It will not be ‘zero’ inside of it, but just less than some arbitrarily defined concentration. What is the boundary condition for a hole, or not a hole? Who decided what that boundary concentration should be and why? Politics, politics, politics, and all because someone with an ax to grind, wanted to ban chlorofluorocarbons as though there was a relationship.
This is like the definition of an ore-body, which can appear or disappear overnight, or grow larger or shrink, depending upon the market price of the metal, but is not left up to the manipulation of political vested interests, or environmentalists with some fear to foment.

tony mcleod
Reply to  jsuther2013
July 2, 2016 7:12 pm

Just another greenist, alarmist snow-job . The theyists want to steal our rights and sell them to feather their own nests and achieve their goal of world socialism. How can we trust any of them? I’m starting to have serious doubts about the “so-called” theory of electricity.

July 2, 2016 6:59 pm

I’m sure there’s no connection to the weak solar cycle 24.

July 2, 2016 7:08 pm

Who cares? No one live permanently in the antarctic, and the few people who are there don’t spend a lot of time outside in beach wear so the they are unlikely to get too sunburned.

Mike McMillan
Reply to  Tom Trevor
July 2, 2016 11:44 pm


Reply to  Mike McMillan
July 3, 2016 5:12 am


July 2, 2016 7:29 pm

Correlation a maybe (not last time I looked at the actual figures), causation not proven. I always thought it was an interaction of the magnetosphere, and the sun’s radiation, which also correlates well given the fall in the number of sun spots. But a natural cause for the existence of the hole in the ozone layer doesn’t fit the narrative, so I guess you would not be allowed to do the research.
My understanding was that there is little reduction in the production of CFC’s world wide as there were massive subsidies to destroy them, perversely resulting in new production being necessary. The article does not mention CFC levels.

July 2, 2016 7:40 pm

The fun part is when you realize that the original prediction about “closing the ozone hole” was that, if everyone followed the Montreal Protocol to the letter and completely stopped using CFCs by the early 1990s, the ozone hole would START to close by 2050. Due to the long atmospheric half-life of CFCs (on the order of a century), upper-atmospheric effects from their breakdown products were supposed to keep going for at least another three decades. We should still be in the down-trend, if they were right.
Since a number of countries were still producing “bootleg” CFCs until at least 2010, there should be approximately zero reduction in their level, worldwide. At best, the levels now should be at about the same level as 1980, when the effect was starting to peak.
So why is the ozone layer rebounding now? It completely breaks the hypothesis…

Reply to  cirby
July 3, 2016 12:48 am

Yes, but that proves it ! It’s like snowy winters prove global warming. You’re not very good at this climate business, are you?

Reply to  cirby
July 3, 2016 2:44 am

Possibly because it has always been there. It is alleged to
have been “discovered” by a British Antarctic Survey party
in 1984 (Wikipedia repeats the allegation). It was seen and
noted in 1958 or 1959 by a Swedish researcher.

Patrick MJD
Reply to  cirby
July 3, 2016 5:17 am

The hypothesis was…rubbish! Reality trumps models and…*yawn*…sorry I fell asleep with all this…climate doo…..ZZZZZZZ..z.z.z..z…z..z…..z..z.z………

Robert of Ottawa
July 2, 2016 7:54 pm

If the ozone hole is reducing then the Sun`s impact on the Earth`s upper atmosphere is weakening. is weakening.

Cinaed Simson
July 2, 2016 8:36 pm

The ozone hole over the Antarctic heals every summer. It’s not clear how they’re going to get rid of the polar vortex during the winter.

Jerry Henson
July 2, 2016 8:46 pm

“Last October threw a big scare into scientists who had been tracking the Antarctic. After years of slow decline, the ozone hole blew up to its biggest size ever.
“It was ‘Oh my God, how could there be this record large ozone hole’?’ Solomon said. “It was a huge setback.”
Read more here:
The switch from efficient R-12 to less efficient, more expensive alternatives has obeviously
been very effective. /sarc

July 2, 2016 9:25 pm

I give this absolutely zero credibility, based on past performance.

July 2, 2016 9:42 pm

Yawn. The Sun is going night-night and the ozone destroying reaction involving solar radiation and nitrogen gas is less effective. Wake me up when something notable occurs.

eddie willers
July 2, 2016 10:16 pm

So can I have my $5 CFC asthma inhaler back now?

July 3, 2016 12:06 am

The Ozone Hole 2015
NASA Report
The ozone hole over Antarctica grew relatively large in 2015, according to data acquired by the Ozone Monitoring Instrument (OMI) on NASA’s Aura satellite and the Ozone Monitoring and Profiler Suite (OMPS) on the NASA-NOAA Suomi NPP satellite.
On October 2, 2015, OMI observed that the hole had reached its largest single-day area for the year. The image above, based on data acquired with OMI, shows the hole on that day. It spanned 28.2 million square kilometers (10.9 million square miles)—the fourth-largest area measured since the start of the satellite record in 1979. The largest single-day ozone hole recorded by satellite was 29.9 million square kilometers (11.5 million square miles) on September 9, 2000.

July 3, 2016 2:30 am

Oh look. The Queen of Computer Modelling alleges the
Great Antarctic Ozone Hole is healing. Let’s see, now.
(Counts on fingers, (this is an Apple and it doesn’t have
a scientific calculator. It might be dangerous.))
Yep, to a precision of +/- 1, this is the third time in the last
16 years I’ve heard this message. Because there’s a Computer
Model referenced this time, it must be true.
Nasa publish the annual “area” and its ozone content for each
year for late September or early October at
Nasa’s Ozone Watch .
Click on an “Annual Records” graph to get to the data page.
Then you too can play “Spot The Trend,” although the graphs
umm don’t show one very clearly.
Points to remember: the equipment measuring atmospheric
chlorine is located at McMurdo Base, which is 30 miles downwind
from Mt Erebus on Ross Island in McMurdo Sound of the Ross Sea.
Erebus has been a “live” volcano in continuous eruption since
1972 (the crater has had a pool of molten lava since then, which
is a definition of an eruption) and its plume has been measured
to contain about 1000 tonnes of Chlorine per day. That’s about
365,240 tonnes per year.
It has been estimated that about 1% of man-made CFCs are
photo-dissociated to provide the special chlorine needed to deplete
ozone. That would be about 7500 tonnes pa.
Have fun.

Reply to  sophocles
July 11, 2016 9:53 am

I suggest you stop reading Dixy Lee Ray as she is totally wrong on this subject! Emissions from Erebus are more like 20 tons/day which just drifts out of the crater and virtually none of it reaches more than 0.5km above the rim where in common with most such volcanic emissions it is washed out of the atmosphere and ends up in the snow below.
G. Zreda-Gostynska, P. R. Kyle, and D. L. Finnegan, “Chlorine, Fluorine and Sulfur Emissions from Mt. Erebus, Antarctica and estimated contribution to the antarctic atmosphere”, Geophys. Res. Lett. 20, 1959, 1993.

Reply to  Phil.
July 11, 2016 10:39 am

Yeah, except it already has a head start in altitude and location that man-made refrigerants don’t have. Why don’t our emissions get ‘washed out of the atmosphere?’ Are they not as heavy – further, I don’t think ours were simply released into the atmosphere in general.

Reply to  Phil.
July 11, 2016 2:38 pm

The HCl emissions are coincident with about a 1000 times more water emissions in which the HCl is very soluble, consequently it dissolves in the water and falls as rain/snow which is why it’s found in the Antarctic snow and ice. CFCs are not water soluble and don’t react with any constituent of the atmosphere and so have lifetimes in the troposphere of over one hundred years giving them plenty of time to reach the stratosphere (where they are routinely measured) once there the intense shortwave UV causes their slow photolysis generating the Cl atoms that cause the catalytic destruction of O3 in the vicinity of the PSCs in the Antarctic spring. Read this account of the discovery and development of the science associated with the polar O3 destruction:

A C Osborn
July 3, 2016 4:13 am

If the World levels of Ozone played any part in the “Ozone hole” then NASA’s own data shows this report to be nonsense.
There has been no increase in Atmosperic Ozone since 1957, in fact there has been a slight decline in many of the places measuring it.
Take a look cor yourself

July 3, 2016 5:05 am

So when the tides come back in, the sea is “healing”.
When the Sun rises, the daytime is “healing”.
When the sun sets, the night is “healing”.
Ice returns in Winter, The Ice Cap is “healing”
“Healing” ?
I don’t think that word means what they think it means.
“Healing” does NOT mean we’re on the upside of a cycle.

bit chilly
Reply to  RobRoy
July 3, 2016 4:49 pm

roflmao !

Patrick MJD
July 3, 2016 5:13 am

Four mentions of the word model(ing) and TWELVE of healing! I am sure they are serial!

July 3, 2016 7:21 am

not a hole, just an interesting picture of Jupiter’s auroracomment image

Reply to  ferdberple
July 3, 2016 7:23 am

somehow, “that is going to leave a mark” comes to mind. could solar ionization play a role in the ozone hole? for example, is ozone produced at the poles in winter?

Reply to  ferdberple
July 3, 2016 9:23 am

What stuck me odd about that is that its not arourae. Where is the southern one?
The top one look seriously offset so maybe the it’s around the back from this view. There seems to be considerable mis-alignment of the magnetic and rotational poles.
That’s already beautiful image, I expect we will see some interesting stuff coming back in the next few days. I hope the probe stands up to the environment they are throwing it into, long enough to get some good data back.
It’s a real kamakazi mission, it will be plunging into very hostile conditions .

Reply to  climategrog
July 3, 2016 12:01 pm
Reply to  climategrog
July 3, 2016 12:21 pm

listen what happens when Juno enters Jupiter’s magnetosphere

July 3, 2016 8:14 am

A friend sailed to Aruba via several other Caribbean islands a couple years back. Thinking I’d want sum rum, he asked me what I’d like him to bring me back. I asked him to look for both of us some R-12 refridgerant for our old cars and his boat’s fridge and freezer. I ended up with two cases of 16oz R-12 cans I used to get at Walmart for 68c/pound, NOT the $10/12oz the greedy ^%$$#$%% want now. (expletives deleted) An inspection of a can showed it was made in TENNESSEE long after Americans were not allowed to buy it to “save the ozone hole” BS. The rest of the world can still buy 16oz for less than a dollar, dammit!

Reply to  Larry Butler
July 3, 2016 1:47 pm

Larry , not exactly the same thing but during the second world war my father in law was in the American Third Army as they collided with the Red Army in Czechoslovakia at the end of the war. As you might imagine soldiers from both sides were pretty chummy after having defeated the Nazis so Dad noticed that the Russians were mounted in Studebaker duce and a halfs and pointed it out to one of the Russians there as an interpreter “I see you’ve got Studebaker trucks” to which the patriotic Russian proudly replied “yea, yea—we make them in the Soviet Union”

July 3, 2016 9:20 am

the energy coming from the sun has a chi-square distribution but the top can shift a bit, to the left or to the right, depending on the solar polar magnetic field strengths.
As it shifts, the amount of energy below the curve (TSI) remains more or less the same but if the solar field strengths are lower, obviously more of the most energetic particles can escape. This affects all reactions TOA that produce ozone, peroxide and nitrous oxide.\
ozone is increasing, not only above the southern hemisphere:comment image
In turn these substances affect the amount of UV reaching the oceans, hence we are currently globally cooling.
Interestingly enough, after looking at the A-spectra of ozone and hydrogen peroxide I was stunned. They are exactly the same, i.e. they do exactly the same job: protect us from the most harmful rays coming from the more sun. So there never was a ozone “hole” either. Another big hoax. Obviously, above the oceans, more OH radicals are present and the peroxide is formed preferentially to ozone [doing exactly the same thing as ozone]

Reply to  HenryP
July 3, 2016 1:27 pm

@ HenryP…I think that this remark of yours “…the energy coming from the sun has a chi-square distribution but the top can shift a bit, to the left or to the right, depending on the solar polar magnetic field strengths…”, very likely correlates with my idea that the shift in sunspot dominance between hemispheres is what causes the ENSO region to shift it’s sign. In the back of my mind, I thought that what I was looking at had to do with angular changes to incoming radiation. Which is the best way which I can think of for explaining what may be occurring.
The reason I first came to think about this was from looking at the Silso N/S hemispheric changes…
I immediately recognized, around 3 years ago, from viewing this low resolution graph that the hemispheric shifts in northern sunspot dominance correlated exactly with the cooling from the late 1940s to 1976/77. While the shift towards southern hemisphere dominance correlated with the warming trend we have experienced since 1976/77. Then when David Archibald made a post last year where a high resolution graph of the shifts from north to south could be seen in detail, I was able to cross reference every shift from north to south with shifts in the ENSO regions from negative back to positive conditions. So I also immediately recognized that your words which I first quoted are very likely the reason why the hemispheric sunspot change leads to changes in the ENSO regions, in my opinion.

Reply to  goldminor
July 4, 2016 10:47 am

low solar activity
most certainly means lower solar polar magnetic field strengths meaning more of the most energetic particles being released from the sun.
The sun is now at its brightest and most dangerous to humans in 87 years….don’t go in the sun without a hat! The atmosphere is trying to protect us making more ozone, peroxides and nitrous oxides. Sadly, nobody started even looking at the latter two chemicals up there…

Reply to  HenryP
July 4, 2016 12:24 pm

I live in the mountains of Northern California. I had noticed over the last 3 years, in particular, that the Sun seemed to feel hotter than I had ever noticed before. And I do pay attention and notice things in my life. Of course, there is also the fact that my hair has thinned considerably over the last decade or so.

Reply to  goldminor
July 4, 2016 12:42 pm

Hallo [this actually means: good health to you]
I live in Pretoria, South Africa and I have noticed the same thing. Compared to 40 years ago when I arrived here, the sun definitely feels hotter on my skin. I started not going out into the sun without a hat when I realised what is going on. Skin problems are definitely on the uptick here.
Paradoxically, as the atmosphere is protecting us against more of the most energetic particles being released from the [more spotless] sun, it causes more ozone, peroxides and nitrous oxides being formed TOA, causing global cooling, because these substances deflect more UV off from earth.
Go figure.comment image

Reply to  HenryP
July 4, 2016 3:29 pm

Hallo, to you!

Reply to  goldminor
July 4, 2016 12:57 pm

again, what I was trying to say here is not go out in the sun without a hat, especially when your hair is thinning…

July 3, 2016 9:40 am

No further info on this for some time? Why?

bit chilly
Reply to  ossqss
July 3, 2016 4:55 pm

it doesn’t fit with the “healing” narrative ,so i doubt it would pass pal review.

Reply to  ossqss
July 3, 2016 7:45 pm

Because the experiment on which it was based was shown to be flawed by at least two independent studies.

Reply to  Phil.
July 4, 2016 8:33 am

LInks to such studies Phil?

Reply to  Phil.
July 5, 2016 8:09 pm

Here’s one of them:
Basically Pope used a method for preparing Cl2O2 which had an impurity present and gave erroneous results.

July 3, 2016 9:54 am

Here is what the sept-oct max “hole” size has been, from NASA data:comment image
So 2015 was the “biggest evah” ( aka since 1979 ) by a gnat’s dick, a bit like warmest year contests.
However, it has clearly been pretty flat since about 1994, after Mt Pinatubo.
If NASA has actually provide monthly data instead of trying to focus on the annual max ‘hole’ size, there would be more insight into the relevance of those two eruptions.

Reply to  Greg
July 3, 2016 9:57 am

Yet another of those hiatus things….

Reply to  Greg
July 3, 2016 12:32 pm

Except that the “biggest evah” was in 2006.

Reply to  Greg
July 3, 2016 1:31 pm

One might interpret the above graph to be saying that the two volcanoes started the entire process.

Reply to  goldminor
July 3, 2016 1:48 pm

I’d say that would be pushing it a bit on the basis of that graph. There is only one point per year and its for a few weeks of sept-oct.
I’d want to see monthly data to get a clearer look at when changes occurred. In fact my graph is a little inaccurate since the date column given by NASA is just the year integer. This gives the impression that the increase in area is already under way before the eruptions. Plotting with and extra 0.75 years to align to September and it looks a lot more attributable.
I had a doubt because Mt.P was a larger eruption yet the response to El Chichon is stronger. However, Mt.P was quite close to the equator and spread fairly evenly to both hemispheres. El Chichon is much more of a SH event.
So there is prima facea evidence at least to indicate that the increasing ozone hole was indeed mainly caused by volcanoes.

Reply to  goldminor
July 3, 2016 1:52 pm

I’d say that would be pushing it a bit just on the basis of that graph ( at least as shown ). There is only one point per year and its for a few weeks of Sept-Oct.
I’d want to see monthly data to get a clearer look at when changes occurred. In fact my graph is a little inaccurate since the date column given by NASA is just the year integer. This gives the impression that the increase in area is already under way before the eruptions. Plotting with and extra 0.75 years to align to September and it looks a lot more attributable.
I had a doubt because Mt.P was a larger eruption yet the response to El Chichon is stronger. However, Mt.P is quite close to the equator and the eruption ejecta spread fairly evenly to both hemispheres. El Chichon is much more of a SH event.
So there is prima facea evidence at least to indicate that the increasing ozone hole was indeed mainly caused by volcanoes.

Reply to  goldminor
July 3, 2016 10:52 pm

Here is a modified graph with the dates more accurately reflecting the date at which the annual minimum occurs. There is a notable rise in the 2-3 years following each eruption and a ‘hiatus’ since 1995. Since IPCC claims that CFCs remain in the atmosphere for something of the order of 100 years and the 1990 treaty to years to come into effect, claims that this levelling off is a result of Montreal protocol seems unfounded.comment image

July 3, 2016 10:41 am

If the Ozone ‘Hole’ is ‘healing’, then it is because the Sun is doing something that makes it come to pass.
It is not because we are using fewer CFCs, less CO2, or less noise. It is time for more funding!!

Reply to  ntesdorf
July 3, 2016 11:26 am

right on!

July 3, 2016 11:30 am

The following letter segment shows why ozone regulation has very real economic consequences.
To House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Upton and Senate Environment and Public Works Committee Chairman Inhofe:
On behalf of the 60 organizations listed below and the millions of Americans represented, we urge you to take action on the Environmental Protection Agency’s National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS) for Ozone and to reform the rule making process for ozone and other pollutants regulated under NAAQS. Without changes to the ozone regulation and reform of the rule-making process, economic activity could be brought to a standstill in many areas across the country.
The ozone regulation has questionable benefits, but certain economic costs. Last year, when the EPA lowered the compliant level of ozone from 75 to 70 parts per billion (ppb), it estimated the regulation would cost $1.4 billion annually and admitted the cost of the regulation greatly outweighed the benefits of further ozone reductions. Previous cost estimates by the EPA ranged between $3.4 and $25 billion annually. The only way EPA could justify the regulation was to use questionable co- benefits. In reducing ozone, there may also be benefits from reductions of other pollutants, in this case particulate matter (PM). However, the EPA already has another set of regulations dealing exclusively with PM. Either the EPA has woefully inadequate standards for PM or it is effectively “double counting” the health benefits of PM reductions to justify the ozone regulation.
The EPA had to use questionable co-benefits to justify the regulation because of the tremendous reductions in ozone already achieved. Since 1980, ozone concentrations have fallen by 33%. In many areas across the county, ozone concentrations are nearing background levels – concentrations resulting from natural and non local man-made sources. Before finalizing the current regulation, EPA was considering an ozone standard so strict Yellowstone National Park would have been non-compliant….
Posted on AMAC

Reply to  TCE
July 4, 2016 4:21 am

Oh the irony of EPA rule making where the left hand forbids ozone creation at ground level and the right hand seeks to prevent its’ destruction at the top of the atmosphere. Hey, bureaucrats…can’t we just call it a wash? The various cfc formulations, Freon, Halon, etc. have, had…, many useful industrial applications with no known substitute. It just gets me how people that haven’t built anything in their lives insist on “100% bans” for very useful products. Not a 95% reduction or a 99.9% reduction; no, no, no, no, it has to be 100%. No more Primatene Mist for sufferers of asthma and the most effective decontamination where it really counts on space shuttles, satellites and aircraft. No, no, no. People that don’t do anything aren’t missing their freedom.

July 3, 2016 12:32 pm

sunspot minima
ozone hole heals?

Reply to  Leo Smith
July 3, 2016 1:58 pm

Well, solar cycle is a obvious thought but on the basis of the NASA data I plotted above I don’t see much sign of an 11y cycle in either direction, unless I’m missing something.
Can you point to evidence of solar min / max in that graph?

July 3, 2016 12:47 pm

This is more than a little off-topic.

JJM Gommers
July 3, 2016 2:07 pm

It saves the world — peculiar, the hole covers the Antarctic appr. 4 % of the global surface.

Jose Göttig
July 3, 2016 4:27 pm

It sound like they want to close the story. ¿It is winter? There is a hole.

July 3, 2016 6:30 pm

The issue was the hole’s growth during 80’s – 90’s. Continued growth posed a threat to populated areas in the Southern Hemisphere and an unknown effect on the oceans.

July 3, 2016 11:18 pm

Here is the NASA data with a light 1y low-pass gaussian filter. The El Chichon eruption seems to fit perfectly as causing an exponentially decaying effect increasing the size of the 220 DU “hole”. However, there is rise the pre-dates the Mt Pinatubo eruption ( by more than the spreading effect of the filter ) and considerable fluctuation in the plateau.
It would need a closer look at the smaller but more regional activity in Antarctica and Chilli to see whether this could also account for the annual variaiton or whether this has extra-terrestrial origins.comment image
One thing seems clear it was not the Montreal Protocol which stopped the increase in the ozone barely 3 years after it was signed !!

Reply to  Greg
July 4, 2016 3:23 am

The El Chichon eruption seems to fit perfectly as causing an exponentially decaying effect increasing the size of the 220 DU “hole”

I keep saying this but only because it’s true. Simply looking at the area of the “hole” is misleading. In the late 1950s the Antarctic ozone layer measured over 300 DU. The hole which appeared in the late 1970s was defined by a layer thinner than 220 DU. The average thickness of the hole in 2015 was around 120 DU and has fallen below 100 DU several times.
Thinning of the ozone layer pre-dates El Chichon. While El Chichon and Pinatubo might have acted as a spur for ozone loss, the before/after longer term rates of thinning were very similar.

Reply to  John Finn
July 4, 2016 10:14 am

what sort of spacial and temporal coverage is there behind you claims of late 1950s the Antarctic ozone layer? Data ??
What metric are you suggesting should be used to assess the “health” of the ozone layer?

Ed Zuiderwijk
July 4, 2016 12:21 am

Ah, the decline in solar activity kicking in.

Reply to  Ed Zuiderwijk
July 4, 2016 2:39 am


tony mcleod
July 4, 2016 2:35 am

So many world class atmospheric chemists on this site, dazzling.

July 4, 2016 9:27 am

In all of these comments I am the only one that actually say why the ozone hole is there with an actually physical mechanism… Amazing…

Reply to  Brant Ra
July 4, 2016 10:37 am

Hi Brant
I have give you a reasonable explanation here
did you check the peroxide content inside the hole and compare it with the peroxide concentration outside the “hole”

July 5, 2016 8:30 pm

It has always struck me as interesting, when we hear of the high rates of skin cancer rates for people in Australia and New Zealand, that these high rates tend to be for those of European extraction, while those for the indigenous peoples are very low.
This could mean that the suns rays have always been strong in the area because of the naturally occurring ozone holes – locals have had millenniums to adapt, whereas newcomers are disadvantaged accordingly.

Reply to  HenryP
July 8, 2016 10:40 am

so if you don’t know, just say so.
What we do know for sure is that ozone, a component in the air that is monitored at several places NH and SH, is increasing [in both hemispheres]
it would therefore be logical to assume that peroxides and N-oxides are also increasing…..
The reason why this is happening is because with the sun’s polar magnetic field strengths at ultra low strengths, more of the most energetic particles of the sun can escape. We are “lucky| to have an atmosphere protecting us against the most harmful rays of the sun.
Still, now is not a good time in the cycle [of 87 years] to go in the sun without good protection.

Reply to  HenryP
July 11, 2016 2:02 pm

We’re talking here about the Antarctic ozone hole and peroxides aren’t a player there. In the stratosphere the relevant compounds are OH and HO2 (odd hydrogen, HOx) which are both very reactive and depend on photolytically generated O atoms for their production. In the winter at the altitudes of the Ozone hole the O concentration is very low when the sun is below the horizon. The photochemical lifetime of hydrogen peroxide in the lower stratosphere is a couple of days and in the mesosphere a few hours.Over South Africa it could contribute but I doubt it. The mechanism of O3 degradation and generation is markedly different over the polar regions than in the rest of the stratosphere. Measurements in the polar stratosphere at altitudes of the ozone hole show very little H2O2(~none) compared with the tropics.

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