Global Warming:

Scientists say that the hole in the Earth's ozone layer that develops annually is relatively larger than usual this year and is currently bigger than Antarctica.

Iran PressSci & Tech: The annual hole in the Earth's protective ozone layer that appears over the Southern Hemisphere is 'rather larger than usual' — and is currently bigger than Antarctica.

Acting like a shield, ozone absorbs UV light from the sun. Its absence means more of this high-energy radiation reaches the Earth, where it can harm living cells. 

The ozone layer is depleted by chemical reactions driven by solar energy that involve the by-products of human-made chemicals that linger in the atmosphere, Daily Mail reported.

Each year, this causes a hole to form over the south pole between August and October — the southern hemisphere summer — peaking at the start of October.

The size of the hole is strongly dependant on weather conditions. Cold conditions last year saw one of the largest on record, while 2019's was the smallest. 

Following an average start this year, the hole has grown considerably in the last week, the European Union's Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service said.

As of yesterday, the hole covered an area of around 8.8 million square miles (23 million square km). 

In years with normal weather conditions, the hole typically grows to a maximum area of about 8 million square miles (20.7 million square kilometers).

Despite these natural fluctuations, experts expect the hole to close permanently by 2050 in response to restrictions on ozone-depleting chemicals introduced in 1987.


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