The more you know

Greenhouse effect and ozone hole

Water vapor, carbon dioxide and other gases in the atmosphere behave like the glass of a greenhouse and retain infrared radiation near the earth’s surface. These gases, which are called “greenhouse gases”, play a fundamental role in regulating the temperature of our planet: if they were not there, the Earth would be, on average, a few tens of degrees colder; that is, it would be a huge, frozen perennial. On the other hand, if the concentration of “greenhouse gases” in the atmosphere increases, the average air temperature will also increase.
Ozone is a gas present in small quantities in the atmosphere; its concentration, which varies according to altitude, is particularly high between fifteen and thirty kilometers in height, where this gas forms a layer that envelops the entire Earth.
This ozone layer is particularly important because it acts as a protective shield against ultraviolet rays, which are continuously irradiated by the sun towards our planet, otherwise they would “burn” the entire earth’s surface. In the mid-seventies ozone decreased and there was talk of an ozone hole. If the ozone layer continues to thin, the vital balance of our planet could be upset. Ultraviolet rays are harmful to the skin and can alter the genetic makeup of different species, with unpredictable consequences.


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