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Reaction Paper

Ozone Layer Depletion:


Myths and Facts

Submitted by:
Mr. Robert Anthony C. Manangan
Submitted to:
Mr. Ruel Atendido Avilla

Myths and Facts about Ozone Layer Depletion:

Ozone layer is one of an important layer present in the stratospheric region,


stratopause to be specific. It acts as a protective shield absorbing most of the
Sun's Ultra Violet (UV) radiation, ultimately protecting the life existing on Earth.
Excessive usage of refrigerants leads to the emission of chlorine and bromine
containing compounds ultimately depleting the ozone layer.
As we all know, or as our teacher taught us there is this Hole in the Ozone layer
caused by the Harmful chemicals like CFCs and other chemical compounds. But
as I searched more on the internet and also from other resource speakers, I
found out that there are myths surrounding about this Ozone Depletion thing.
And theses are some of the interesting myths that I found out, it also includes
the facts so that we will know the truth.
#1 Body sprays deplete Ozone layer!
This is the most common myth and it is pertaining to the fact that body spray
containers is made using aerosols. Aerosols are in no way responsible to ozone
layer depletion. In fact, aerosols has cooling effect on earth and there is a
concept called Global Dimming. May be, I can come up with a seperate post on
that.
#2 Volcanoes are responsible for Ozone layer depletion!
Chlorine compounds from volcanoes and other natural sources are soluble and
are washed out of the atmosphere. CFCs, by contrast, are not soluble and are
able to reach the stratosphere. A number of studies have shown that the
majority of chlorine in the stratosphere comes from man-made chemicals
(Rowland, Taubes, Russell et al). Moreover, volcanoes are not exploding on a
daily basis ejecting chlorine in atmosphere.

#3 CFCs being heavier than air cannot reach stratospheric region!


Air from the lower atmosphere extending far beyond stratosphere moved as a
mass not as an individual molecule. Hence, CFC travels along the hefty wind
and reaches the Stratopause where it depletes ozone layer. A number of
studies have found that CFCs and the products of their breakdown in the
stratosphere (Rowland, EPA).
#4 Ozone layer depletion occurs only in Antarctica!
Nope. It has been measured elsewhere across the globe, not just Antarctica.
#5 Montreal Protocol saved the Ozone layer

Ozone layer's depleting substances has never come down since montreal
protocol came into being. You can very well refer NOAA's scientific assessment
of ozone depletion: 2010
Myths are good to my concern. Because when there is a myth, there is an
opportunity to create awareness. Definitely it's a challenging task but you got
to do it.
Ozone does absorb some ultraviolet radiation, and excessive ultraviolet
radiation can be harmful. The facts don't support any conclusions regarding
whether ozone is increasing or diminishing over the long run, however, or
whether man is even more than just a small part of the cause.
There is overwhelming evidence that humans are responsible for the Antarctic
ozone "hole". And there is strong evidence that the ozone layer elsewhere has
been damaged. Three scientists who developed the ozone depletion theory
were awarded the Nobel Prize in chemistry. With so much evidence for an
environmental crises, it is little wonder that so many anti-environmental myths
have developed about ozone depletion.
Here are some of the common myths and facts about ozone depletion that I
found:
Myth: CFCs cannot reach the stratosphere because they are heavier than air.
Fact: Air in the lower atmosphere (which extends far above the stratosphere)
moves in masses, not as individual molecules. A number of studies have found
CFCs and the products of their breakdown in the stratosphere (Rowland, EPA).
Myth: CFCs cannot reach the stratosphere because they are heavier than air.
Fact: Air in the lower atmosphere (which extends far above the stratosphere)
moves in masses, not as individual molecules. A number of studies have found
CFCs and the products of their breakdown in the stratosphere (Rowland, EPA).

Myth: Volcanoes and other natural sources contribute much more chlorine than
CFCs to the ozone layer.
Fact: Chlorine compounds from natural sources are soluble, and so are washed
out of the atmosphere. CFCs, by contrast, are not soluble and so are able to
reach the stratosphere. A number of studies have shown that the majority of
chlorine in the stratosphere comes from man-made chemicals
Myth: The Antarctic ozone "hole" was there all along, it was discovered in the
1970's because that's when satellite measurements started.
Fact: The hole was discovered using a ground based instrument that had been
in use since 1956. There was no hole until about 1976. That means about 20
years with no hole. Since the 70s the hole has continued to increase in size and
intensity (Farman, et al, Jones & Shanklin).

Myth: The "hole" was present when the first measurements were made in 1956.
Fact: The first ozone measurements made in the Antarctic were lower than
similar measurements made in the Arctic. However, this is the natural
condition, not the decrease that is referred to as the ozone "hole". As noted
above, there was no "hole" during the first 20 or so years of measurement.
(Parson, Christie).
Myth: Some French researchers found an ozone hole in 1958.
Myth: Some French researchers found an ozone hole in 1958.
Fact: Paul A. Newman (Newman) looked at all the facts and found that "There is
no credible evidence for an ozone hole in 1958.
Myth: Spray cans deplete the ozone layer
Fact: Spray cans (in the United States) have not used CFCs as propellants for
about 20 years.
Myth: Of course there is an ozone hole in the winter, there is no sunlight to
make new ozone.
Fact: The ozone hole occurs in the spring, after the sunlight returns. There is
little destruction or creation of ozone during the winter (Parson)
Myth: DuPont supported the ban on freon because the patent was about to run
out.
Fact: The patent for making freon was issued in 1928, it ran out in the 1940s,
long before any concern about ozone depletion. (The History of Freon)

Reference:
Christie, Maureen, The Ozone Layer: A Philosophy of Science Perspective,
Cambridge University Press, 2000
Farman, et al., "Large Losses of Total Ozone in Antarctica Reveal Seasonal
ClOx/NOx Interaction", Nature, May 16, 1985, pp 207-210.
http://www.sciforums.com/threads/ozone-hole-fact-or-fiction.7017/
http://www.creatikaa.com/2015/09/myths-surrounding-ozone-layerdepletion.html