Imagine you have a thin blanket enveloping you at all times that prevents things in the air from damaging your skin…
The ozone layer is pretty much that blanket. It’s an invisible, pale blue, protective shield that envelops and protects life on earth from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays.
? Ozone is a gas made up of three oxygen atoms and these molecules form a layer that is 3 to 5 millimeters thick around the earth.
? The ozone layer is between 15-30 kilometers above the surface of the Earth in the stratosphere where it absorbs UV rays, which is a form of radiation that can cause skin cancer, eye damage, and other health problems.
⚠️ Everything was safe and fine for billions of years, until the 1970’s when scientists discovered that the ozone layer is slowly depleting.
⚠️ Evidence revealed that certain man-made chemicals such as chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and nitrogen oxide (used in products like refrigerators, air-conditioners, and fire extinguishers) are responsible for damaging the layer.
⚠️ CFCs find their way into the ozone layer and break up oxygen molecules, thus thinning the ozone.
The depleting ozone layer is termed as the ozone hole.
World Ozone Day
? Is observed annually on September 16th and this year’s theme is “Ozone for life: 35 years of ozone layer protection.”
? According to the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) website, the slogan reminds us that not only is ozone crucial for present life on Earth, but that we must continue our efforts to protect the ozone layer for future generations.
How can we help?
♻️ Reduce the consumption of products that release ozone-depleting substances.
♻️ Create activities and raise awareness about the health and environmental concerns posed by these substances.
?? The ozone layer was discovered by scientists in 1913 and has been protecting the Earth for over 600 million years.
? The word “ozone” means smelly in Greek because the gas has a strong odour.