International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer
International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer falls on September 16 every year. The ozone layer around our planet is like our favorite childhood blanket — safe, protective, and only requires a little attention and care in return. International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer is a day dedicated to giving back to our planet, and more specifically, the ozone layer.
HISTORY OF INTERNATIONAL DAY FOR THE PRESERVATION OF THE OZONE LAYER
The ozone layer is a protective layer of gas that shields the Earth from harmful ultraviolet rays from the Sun. While the Sun is essential for life, it also emits radiation that is too much for living beings to survive. This is where this layer of high concentration of ozone comes in and makes life as we know it possible for us.
In the late 1970s, however, scientists realized that human activity was destroying the ozone layer. They discovered a hole that was caused by ozone-depleting gases, often found in air conditioners, refrigerators, etc. This depletion of the ozone layer, in turn, was affecting life on Earth — the destruction of plants and ecosystems, increase in skin cancer, etc. The scientists’ discovery highlighted the importance of the ozone layer and the dire need to preserve it.
The international community rose to the occasion. In 1985, 28 countries adopted and signed the Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer, a formal declaration to come together and protect the ozone layer. In September 1987, the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer was drafted. This prompted countries to unite their efforts and eliminate 99% of all ozone-depleting substances. Owing to this successful effort, the ozone layer is healing.
To commemorate the signing of the Montreal Protocol, the United Nations General Assembly declared September 16 as the International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer in 1994. Also known as World Ozone Day, September 16 has since then been dedicated each year to the appreciation and preservation of this protective layer and the success of the Vienna Convention.
HOW TO CELEBRATE INTERNATIONAL DAY FOR THE PRESERVATION OF THE OZONE LAYER
Get electronic appliances serviced routinely and discard any old appliances that could be emitting ozone-depleting gases.
2.Upgrade your transportation
Heavy use of vehicles contributes to the depletion of the ozone layer. Plan your commutes and swap unnecessary vehicle use with walks, bicycles, and carpools.
The Earth is our home and we must all do our part each day to protect it. Make small changes in daily life and reduce your emission of ODSs.
5 INTERESTING FACTS TO KNOW ABOUT THE OZONE LAYER
1.It works hard
The ozone layer absorbs up to 98% of all harmful ultraviolet rays from the Sun.
2.It is Earth’s thermostat
It regulates the temperature and keeps our planet from overheating or freezing.
3.Not all ozone is good
The ozone found in the troposphere is harmful to human beings and urbanization is one of the leading causes for the increase of bad ozone.
4.It protects us from health issues
Nearly two million cases of skin cancer are prevented every year thanks to the Montreal Protocol.
5.It has a bright future
If all goes according to plan, the earth could restore the ozone layer to its 1980s level by 2050.
WHY WE LOVE INTERNATIONAL DAY FOR THE PRESERVATION OF THE OZONE LAYER
A. A day of celebration
It is a celebration of the work done under the Vienna Convention and the instantaneous action taken by the world’s governments for the environment.
B. Hard work pays off
The success of the Montreal Protocol is proof that if humanity plays its part in protecting the environment, the environment in turn heals and protects humanity.
C. Reminder to give back to nature
In the daily hustle and bustle of life, we sometimes forget that we are part of something bigger. This day gives us a nudge to slow down, look around, and care for and appreciate the planet that we call home.
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