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• Ozone depletion is the decrease in atmospheric ozone caused by human activities.
• Chlorofluorocarbons, or CFCs, are the most common cause of ozone layer depletion.
• The Montreal Protocol was adopted in 1987 to phase out the production and consumption of CFCs.

Ozone Depletion

Ozone depletion is the decrease in atmospheric ozone caused by human activities. This phenomenon has become a major environmental concern as it can have harmful effects on human health and the environment. It is believed that increased exposure to ultraviolet radiation due to ozone layer depletion can cause skin cancer, cataracts, and other health problems. Additionally, it can damage crops and create changes in global climate patterns.

Cause of Ozone Depletion

The most common cause of ozone layer depletion is chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), which are man-made chemicals used primarily in refrigeration and air conditioning systems, aerosol sprays, and foam products. When released into the atmosphere, these chemicals react with oxygen molecules to form chlorine radicals that destroy ozone molecules. Without the protection provided by the ozone layer, more ultraviolet radiation reaches Earth’s surface resulting in an increase in skin cancer rates, crop damage due to increased UV exposure, etc.

Montreal Protocol

In 1987, countries around the world came together to sign an agreement known as The Montreal Protocol which aimed at phasing out production and consumption of CFCs worldwide by 2000. This agreement was instrumental in reducing global emissions of CFCs by over 90% from pre-1987 levels and has been hailed as one of the most successful international environmental agreements ever made. Despite this success there are still some sources of CFC emissions left unchecked such as illegal dumping or improper disposal of old appliances containing CFCs that need to be addressed if we hope to further reduce global emissions of these harmful compounds.

Effects on Ozone Layer

Although many countries have taken steps towards phasing out CFC emissions since then, scientists believe that it will take decades for the ozone layer to fully recover from significant levels of damage caused by years of unchecked production and use of these compounds prior to 1987 when The Montreal Protocol was signed into effect. In addition to decreased levels of stratospheric ozone due to man-made pollutants like CFCs there are also natural phenomena such as volcanic eruptions that can contribute significantly towards further depleting our planet’s protective shield against harmful UV rays from space.


In conclusion it is clear that ozone layer depletion remains a major environmental concern despite concerted efforts made globally through various agreements like The Montreal Protocol since 1987 towards reducing our collective reliance on substances like chlorofluorocarbons (CFC’s). Although progress has been made towards restoring our planet’s protective shield against harmful UV rays from space much work still needs be done if we wish ensure a safe future for generations ahead!