Beware the Ozone

Ten years ago the ozone layer was a major topic. "The ozone is decreasing," headlines proclaimed. Then, it was just as quickly forgotten. It may not be growing so much but the ozone layer is still causing problems. The weather has been altered. Wet and dry extremes are the result. Desalination programs have been put on the backburner for now. They will be needed soon as the cycle swings back to dry.

The ozone hole shifts high-altitude wind circulation southward. Most notable for Australia has been the movement of the Southern Hemisphere jet stream to the south. This has severe effects. For example, in the north Britain has got very cold winters in recent years due to blocking of the Northern stream. Estimates are that Australia's weather has changed by a magnitude of 35 per cent. More rain has been brought here. With the impact from greenhouse gases this water evaporates very quickly, so the overall impact is dryness.

With the combination of ozone, greenhouse gases and El Nino the weather has become chaotic for Australia. Chlorofluorocarbon reduction has been successful. Nonetheless, we should not become complacent. Damage still persists in the Arctic. Besides, greenhouse gas emissions is doing more damage now than the depleted ozone. Australians need to consider the country as a whole. Eastern states are now soaking in water. Western Australia, however, is in drought.
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