World Ozone Day is celebrated on September 16 to raise awareness of the problem of ozone depletion and to find possible solutions to preserve it. Let’s take a look at the history of World Ozone Day, its importance, and some facts about the ozone layer.
What is the Ozone Layer?
At ground level, ozone is considered one of the main air pollutants. We all know that ozone protects us from harmful UV radiation, but ground-level ozone is dangerous and pollutes the environment Due to human activities, the depletion of the planet’s ozone layer can be disastrous. It also causes photochemical smog and acid rain.
Causes of Ozone Depletion
The main cause of ozone depletion is human activities, mainly man-made chemicals containing chlorine or bromine. These chemicals, known as ODS, deplete the ozone layer. Since the early 1970s, scientists have observed a decrease in stratospheric ozone content, and this turned out to be more noticeable. The main ozone-depleting substances are chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), carbon tetrachloride, hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs), and methyl chloroform. Brominated fluorocarbons also contribute significantly to ozone depletion. SOD substances have a shelf life of about 100 years.
Effects of Ozone depletion
Ozone is responsible for protecting against the sun’s ultraviolet rays; Its depletion can cause serious health risks. Depletion of the ozone layer also negatively affects the environment, altering plant life cycles and food chains. Microscopic organisms such as plankton may not survive, so animals that depend on plankton may not be able to survive either. Depletion of the ozone layer can change the nature of the winds, which will lead to global warming and therefore to climate change around the world.
Harmful effects of Ultraviolet Rays
UV rays cause skin burns.
It causes skin cancer.
UV rays also speed up the aging of the skin.
Over-exposure to UV radiation weakens the immune system.
Prolonged exposure to UV rays damages the tissues of the eyes and can cause a ‘burning’ of the eye surface known as ‘snow blindness’.
Several pigments like the color used for coloring food, fabric, plastic, paint, ink, dyes, etc. absorb UV and change color.
World Ozone Day: History (Montreal Protocol)
On March 22, 1985, 28 countries ratified and signed the Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer. The Montreal Protocol was signed on September 16, 1 on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer and marks the International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer.
This date was chosen by the United Nations General Assembly in 1 resolution 49/114. Basically, it is an international treaty that aims to protect the ozone layer by reducing the production of substances believed to cause ozone depletion. That the Montreal Protocol was implemented on January 1, 1989. In 1994, the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed 16 September as International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer, to commemorate the signing of the 1 Protocol. Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer (resolution 49/114).
2012 marked the 20th anniversary of the Montreal Protocol. In addition, on this day, responsible people teach their surrounding community about the benefits of the ozone layer, and special events and programs are organized to disseminate information.
The Vienna Convention and the Montreal Protocol were the first treaties in the history of the United Nations to receive universal ratification on September 16, 2009. In October 2016, at the 28th meeting of the United Nations. Parties to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer reached an agreement in Kigali, Rwanda to phase out hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs). This agreement is known as the Kigali Agreement.
Significance of World Ozone Day
World Ozone day is also known as International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer and It is held annually on September 16th. Anniversary of the signing of the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer. On this day, people from all over the world are expected to join the Montreal Protocol to participate in negotiations and workshops.
There would be no life on Earth without the ozone layer; It is found in the upper atmosphere and is a highly reactive gas that protects life on Earth by absorbing harmful ultraviolet radiation from the sun, which is why it is also known as the ozone shield. It can cause many different skin conditions.
Preventive measures to save the Earth
Avoid using products containing chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) such as hair sprays, air fresheners, cosmetics, and sprays in plastic containers. Promote activities such as landscaping and gardening. Use environmentally friendly fertilizers. Pollution: Save gas and crude oil through regular maintenance by avoiding burning plastic or rubber tires.