Ozone layer is the protective layer that surrounds the earth shielding it and its life forms from the dangerous UV radiation of sun. The depleting ozone layer is a major global concern, poses a serious threat to the life forms leading to exposure of carcinogenic UV radiation. For the first time in the past 35 years a study from United Nations confirmed a statistically significant and sustained increase of the stratospheric ozone. World Meteorological Organization and the UN Environment Programme reported that ozone hole over Antarctica has also stopped growing bigger anymore and only a decade back started to shrink. This improvement is a result of the Montreal protocol in 1987 that banned the manmade artificial gases/chemicals like chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) that damage the ozone layer adversely affecting the life on earth. “International action on the ozone layer is a major environmental success story. This should encourage us to display the same level of urgency and unity to tackle the even greater challenge of tackling climate change,” said WMO Secretary-General Michel Jarraud.
WMO senior scientific officer Geir Braathen said that the reports show a small increase in the total levels of ozone indicating the recovery of the ozone layer in terms of total ozone has just started. The size of the ozone hole decreased from 30 million square km in 2006 to the present size covering about 20 million square km. The ozone recovery is a good sign to the environment and encouraging to execute laws and efforts in controlling the global climate change which is another threat to the life on earth. United Nations announced that atmospheric levels of the main greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide, surged to another record high last year which was the was the biggest jump in last three decades. This is a matter of concern to be focused in the world leaders meeting later this month in New York for a UN climate summit. However recovery of the depleting Ozone layer is good news to all the life forms on this planet.
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