The Ozone Hole Is Finally Healing

Nearly thirty years after an international treaty banned the use of chlorofluorocarbons, the Antarctic ozone hole is finally starting to heal. By mid to late century, it should be fully recovered.“This is a reminder that when the world gets together, we really can solve environmental problems,” Susan Solomon, an atmospheric chemist at MIT, told Gizmodo. “I think we should all congratulate ourselves on a job well done.”Solomon is lead author on a study published today in Science, which presents the clearest evidence yet that the Antarctic ozone hole is showing signs of long-term recovery. The researchers attribute this to the 1987 Montreal Protocol, which banned the use of chlorinated compounds in refrigerator coolants and aerosols, after scientists learned that these chemicals were making their way into the stratosphere and wreaking havoc on Earth’s ozone layer.

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