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Ozone hole vigilence still required

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The recovery of the ozone layer over Antarctica cannot be taken for granted and requires constant vigilance.

Dr Jonathan Shanklin

One of the first scientists Dr. Jonathan Shanklin, who documented the annual thinning of the protective gas in the 1980s said that this year’s “hole” in the stratosphere high above the White Continent is the smallest in three decades. “Its good to see this, but we should not take this for granted and rather view this as an anomaly”, said Dr. Jonathan Shanklin.

The better than expected levels of ozone have been attributed to sudden warming at high altitudes, which can happen rarely.

“To see whether international treaties are working or not, you need to look at the long term” said Dr. Shanklin

Dr. Shanklin along with Joe Farman and Brian Gardiner first alerted the world in 1985 that a deep thining was occurring in the ozone layer above Antartica each spring. Ozone filters out harmful ultraviolet radiation from the Sun.

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