Exceptionally Large Ozone Hole Above Northern Europe Detected
By Marietta Gross - Scoop Media Auckland.
Scoop Report: According to a recently published study scientists have observed an exceptionally large ozone hole above Northern Europe, North America, Northern Asia and parts of the Arctic. The protecting ozone layer constricted by up to 60 per cent from February to March 2004, scientists from the University of Colorado wrote in the journal “Geophysical Research Letters”.
“This decrease comes unexpectedly”, says study author Cora Randall. One possible explanation is a particle storm sent by the sun. Heavy winds have also ballooned harmful nitrogen oxide and dioxide up into the atmosphere 30 kilometres above the Earth's surface.
Scientists from Canada, Sweden and Norway participated in the study.
The ozone layer protects the Earth against ultraviolet radiation from the sun. This layer is thinning and the phenomenon is a precursor to an ozone hole appearing.
Since the mid-1980s an ozone hole has appeared every year at the end of the Antarctic Winter. Up to now Europe and the Arctic has not witnessed ozone depletion to the same degree as on the other side of the globe above Antarctica, New Zealand and Australia. Too intensive ultraviolet radiation can cause skin cancer and damage plants.