Q:

How can you protect the ozone layer?

A:

Quick Answer

Some of the ways to help protect and stop the depletion of the ozone layer include not buying products in aerosol cans, maintaining air-conditioning filters and units, using mass public transit or riding a bike instead of driving, and purchasing energy saving light bulbs and appliances. The ozone layer protects the earth from the suns harmful ultraviolet rays.

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Full Answer

Over time, the ozone layer has begun depleting due to man-made chemicals and emissions from vehicles and large appliances. Because of the damage to this extremely important atmospheric shield, Congress passed the Clean Air Act in 1990. The Clean Air Act required companies to stop producing products that damaged the ozone layer. One of these products is chlorofluorocarbons, or CFCs. These were used in a variety of products and caused significant damage to the ozone layer.

Even though the Clean Air Act regulates the use of chemicals that are harmful to the ozone layer, damage still occurs because of modern products. The ozone layer is expected to continue to deplete over the next few years. After the damage is controlled and the depletion stops, it is still likely to take around 60 years for the ozone layer to heal and build back up to its original state.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    Why does ozone depletion occur?

    A:

    Ozone depletion is caused by the discharge of hydrofluorocarbons, chlorofluorocarbons and other ozone-depleting substances that were once commonly used as solvents, refrigerants and insulating foams. The chemicals methyl chloroform, methyl bromide and halons also cause damage to the ozone layer and are used in commercial products such as industrial solvents, pesticides and fire extinguishers. When these ozone depleting chemicals enter the stratosphere, they are exposed to ultraviolet radiation from the sun and release chlorine atoms that begin a destructive cycle of the ozone layer.

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  • Q:

    What are the effects of pollution on the ozone layer?

    A:

    One of the greatest and most dangerous effects of pollution on the ozone layer is that it creates holes in the atmosphere, which allow powerful ultraviolet rays from the sun to reach the Earth’s surface. Many varieties of atmospheric pollutants — toxic chemicals, synthetic substances, such as DDT, and manmade chemicals — enter the atmosphere. They may remain intact and linger for decades, even up to a century, which gives them time to create considerable damage to the atmosphere.

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  • Q:

    What type of things can destroy the ozone layer?

    A:

    The chemical waste that humans create by using products such as aerosols and older air conditioners is the main cause of ozone depletion. The ozone layer is destroyed over time by products that contain chlorofluorocarbons. These are man-made chemical compounds comprised of chlorine, fluorine and carbon.

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  • Q:

    What are some solutions to prevent depletion of the ozone layer?

    A:

    Solutions to prevent depletion of the ozone layer involve banning the use of chemicals that cause ozone depletion, such as chlorofluorocarbons and hydrofluorocarbons. National laws and international treaties help accelerate the control of ozone-depleting substances.

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