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  Issue 73  History of the civil society

Action on ozone layer

Half a century of monitoring and action

On 16 September, the world will redirect its attention towards the ozone layer. The international day dedicated to the ozone layer protection which can be found in the Earth’s atmosphere, will be another occasion to remind ourselves on its importance, especially in times when it gets thinner and poorer.

The ozone layer, a layer in the Earth’s atmosphere which contains a high concentration of ozone is located lower in the stratosphere, that is 15-35 kilometres above the surface of our planet and it acts as a protective shield from the harmful UV radiation that comes from the sun and that can cause various diseases – from cataract to skin cancer, as well as damages to the environment. The existence of the ozone layer was discovered in 1913 by the French physicists Charles Fabre and Henry Bisson, and it was more precisely studied by the British meteorologist Dobson, who, between 1928 and 1958, set up a world network system for monitoring the ozone layer condition. That system has been functioning for about half a century, offering the scientists and the ecologists important information for the existence and the spread of the ozone layers. Since then, the existence of this global, environmental problem is a motive for action of many local and international civil society organizations. Every year, on the day dedicated to this problem, the activists for protecting the ozone layer call for the governments and the business-sector to limit or completely stop the use of substances that destroy the ozone layer, primarily the freyone.

 

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