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The depletion of the earth stratospheric ozone layer as a result of the catalytic destruction of ozone by atomic halogens. The main source of these halogen atoms in the stratosphere is photodissociation of man-made halocarbon refrigerants, solvents, propellants, and foam-blowing agents (CFCs, HCFCs, freons, halons). The earth's stratospheric ozone layer plays a critical role in absorbing ultraviolet radiation emitted by the sun. (Source: InforMEA/MMA based on Wikipedia)
The fragile shield of ozone is been damaged by chemicals released on earth. The main chemicals that are depleting stratospheric ozone are chlorofluorocarbons which are used in refrigerators, aerosols, and as cleaners in many industries, and halons, which are used in fire extinguishers. The damage is caused when these chemicals release highly reactive forms of chlorine and bromine. Over the past 30 years ozone levels over parts of Antarctica have dropped by almost 40% during some months and a 'hole' in ozone concentrations is clearly visible in satellite observations. (Source: GEMET/WRIGHT)


Related terms:
ozone hole
ozone layer

In other languages

ozone layer depletion
appauvrissement de la couche d'ozone
agotamiento de capa de ozono
Китайский упрощенный
استنفاد طبقة الأوزون

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Венская конвенция
Роттердамская конвенция