Ozone depletion over North Pole screws up weather

The ozone layer protects life on Earth from harmful UV radiation – and also messes with the weather

Many people are familiar with the hole in the ozone layer over Antarctica, but what is less well known is that occasionally, the protective ozone in the stratosphere over the Arctic is destroyed as well, thinning the ozone layer there. This last happened in the spring months of 2020, and before that, in the spring of 2011.

Each time the ozone layer has been thinned out, climate researchers subsequently observed weather anomalies across the entire northern hemisphere. In central and northern Europe, Russia and especially in Siberia, those spring seasons were exceptionally warm and dry. In other areas, such as polar regions, however, wet conditions prevailed. These weather anomalies were particularly pronounced in 2020…

Whether there is a causal relationship between stratospheric ozone destruction and the observed weather anomalies is a matter of debate in climate research. The polar vortex in the stratosphere, which forms in winter and decays in spring, also plays a role. Scientists who have studied the phenomenon so far have arrived at contradictory results and different conclusions.

Read on, amigos. Contradictions, affirmation, the gamut of analysis expands.

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