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Science

Arctic Ozone Hole Will Be Severe This Year 90

Posted by michael
from the spf-5000 dept.
dirutz writes "Thought this year's weather patterns were odd? Next year's might be worse because of the thinning of the ozone layer. Looks like there's something to add to that list of New Year's resolutions/hopes/dreams."
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Arctic Ozone Hole Will Be Severe This Year

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  • I knew it!
  • by Giant Ape Skeleton (638834) on Saturday January 29, 2005 @08:05PM (#11516554) Homepage

    Rush Limbaugh says The ozone layer is a Liberal Myth.

  • by JFitzsimmons (764599) <justin@fitzsimmons.ca> on Saturday January 29, 2005 @08:15PM (#11516632)
    Maybe after everyone else has died from skin cancer, geeks will inherit the earth. That 'outside' thing was always overrated anyway.
    • "Maybe after everyone else has died from skin cancer, geeks will inherit the earth. That 'outside' thing was always overrated anyway."

      Yeah but until it becomes fashionable for femmes to become geeks, we'll be the last great generation.
      • It wouldn't be any fun if it were fashionable for us to be geeks. If the world ends, and there aren't enough female geeks to go around... well, the demand for cloning will rise, and it's not like we aren't equipped to deal with that.
  • Umm.. What? (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    The entire country has been covered with snow this winter. So much for global warming!
  • doesn't matter (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Madcapjack (635982) on Saturday January 29, 2005 @08:22PM (#11516671)
    It doesn't matter what scientists say. All the conservative ideologues *know* that scientists are environmentalist whackos.

    • i dont think. articles. in this manner. are helpful. especially. not to. science.
    • No, it's the environmentalist whackos that are being taken too seriously. Meanwhile, TRUE science is being swept under the rug in favor for media media hype and ratings.
      • Re:doesn't matter (Score:3, Insightful)

        by fm6 (162816)
        No, it's the greedy corporate interests that are being taken too seriously! Meanwhile, TRUE science is being swept under the rug in favor of profits and votes.
        • So whose fault is it? Corporations, or the people that pay for their goods and services?

          Rather then harp on the cold-hearted motivations of corporations; why not educate the very people who empower them?

          If you're an environmentalist, why fight momentum (such as the oil industry) when you would be for more effective in redirection. For example, take your engineering skills and apply them in the oil industry allow this industry to be more clean an efficient. Putting up political roadblocks is only going to
          • The idea that it must be either corporations or consumers to blame is too black and white. Most things are grey. I'd say its not only consumers and corporations to blame, but it is also the fault of voters, leaders, teachers and individuals.

            I agree with you that education is a noble goal. However, what you call 'harp[ing] on the cold-hearted motivations of corporations' could also be seen as 'educating the readers of this public forum'. Are you really saying that environmentalists should compromise th

          • Jeez dude, get a clue. I was making fun of kneejerk rightwing assholes by posing as the (almost identical) kneejerk leftwing asshole.
          • ... take your engineering skills and apply them in the oil industry allow this industry to be more clean an efficient.

            This leaves the following issues hanging:

            • Emissions from the users of the petroleum products.
            • Emissions from the producers of the crude oil (e.g. leaking natural gas)
            • Political/terrorist problems caused by the religious/philosophical tendencies of the suppliers of the crude oil

            You can get rid of all of those at once by engineering things so that they no longer need oil, or need a much s

            • Companies like Shell and Exxon will NOT and NEVER will go away anytime soon. If anything, they will reinvest their capitol on a hydrogen based infrastructure or even bio-fuels. Either way, the world still demands energy packed into something delivered in a nice package.

              The fact is, nothing yield more energy per unit like hydrocarbons. It's breaking those bonds into CO2 and H2O that provide the energy. Also, it's the cheapest and most effective way to store energy.

              • Industrial giants have gone bust before. US Steel? A shadow of its former self. HP? Once a powerhouse, it spun off its instrument division (its former heart and soul) in order to become a shrinking maker of computers. Railroads used to be hugely popular (and profitable) for moving both passengers and freight; now look at them. Changes in technology and teh resulting competition did them in.

                Shell and Exxon-Mobil are probably too big to survive the coming changes. If we get something like the artificial-phot

                • Shell and Exxon will not only survive, they will lead the changes once they pour all of their R&D into these new hydrogen producing technologies. Their shareholders will demand it once the wells start running dry and before it reaches $80 a berrel. After all, who would invest in a starup company with no previous history? At least the oil companies and all the gas stations can convert to E85 fuel and/or hydrogen. You cant start rebuilding fuel stations, pipelines, and refineries all over again. It's just
                  • Shell and Exxon will not only survive, they will lead the changes once they pour all of their R&D into these new hydrogen producing technologies.

                    You make several assumptions:

                    1. They will be able to catch up, after others have established market positions and have patent portfolios.
                    2. That they will have the money for R&D once the oil business starts fading.
                    3. That hydrogen is the key; maybe it's electricity, in which case the utility companies will eat the oil companies' lunches.

                    There are just too m

  • by FuturePastNow (836765) on Saturday January 29, 2005 @08:42PM (#11516793)
    how the thinning ozone layer affects weather patterns? I understand that increased UV causes skin cancer and all that, but what does it have to do with the weather?
    • It doesn't. Makes one wonder, if Michael isn't maybe hired by the right to post easily disproved myths, which only discredit the green faction as wackos, which will believe in anything.

      Maybe one should do that to the right-wingers.

      Oh, they are doing it themselves.
      Brace yourself for:
      "No consent"
      "Not provable"
      "Global Cooling"
      "Little Ice Age"
      "Sun fluctuations"
      "Earth has been warmer"
      "Earth has been cooler"
      Corrolar: "We are in an Ice Age"
      "We puny humans have no influence in comparison to the might of earth"
      "We
      • "Earth has been warmer"
        "Earth has been cooler"

        Surely you are not implying that this is a myth?

        Both of these statements are true, to a much higher degree of certainty than the existence of anthropogenic global warming at present.

        -ccm

      • Brace yourself for:
        "No consent"
        "Not provable"
        "Global Cooling"
        "Little Ice Age"
        "Sun fluctuations"
        "Earth has been warmer"
        "Earth has been cooler"
        Corrolar: "We are in an Ice Age"
        "We puny humans have no influence in comparison to the might of earth"
        "We mighty humans will handle any problem earth will throw at us"


        Hummm, I'm trying to find how this is derogatory to those conservative-minded people who believe in conservative ideals like the scientific method.

        Other than the "No consent" argument, which I don't qu
        • It seems my argumentation was to subtil, I have to remember that sarcasm doesn't work over the web.

          I wanted to point out that I am majorly dissapointed at inflammatory posts especially from "my" side (the "tree-huggers"), which take up arguments, which are easily disproved, and let the opponents paint us as irrational, fanatical panic-mongers.

          My later suggestion, that right-wingers (which, btw, I consider only a subset of the otherwise respectable group of conservatives) are doing it themselves, was an a
    • increase in passing radiation means increase in energy in the layer. this energy has to be released through things like faster winds and changes to the pressure zones. those changes then will screw up normal style movement of air currents and water currents.

      more or less.
      • True, but although the ozone hole does pass through shortwave radiation, it actually results in less absorption of longwave radiation. So in fact the ozone hole results in cooling rather than warming (stratospheric ozone is a greenhouse gas). The main impact of ozone thinning is likely to be on the location of the jet stream. Reference to this is Shindell and Schmidt, Geophys. Res. Lett, Sept. 25, 2004.
  • RTFA! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 29, 2005 @09:09PM (#11516916)
    The article does not say that severe weather causes ozone thinning. In fact, it says the opposite: the severe weather increases ozone thinning. The only result of ozone thinning that is mentioned is increased UV rays, and thus an increased risk of skin cancer.
  • The rest of the world would probably take all these alarmists a lot more seriously, if they would just get together, and all tell a co-ordinated story. But, let me quote from tfm

    =====
    The stratosphere, where the ozone layer lies, has seen its coldest winter for 50 years; there have also been an unusually large number of clouds.
    =====

    There is a simple cure for this ozone problem, lets just heat the planet up a little bit. umm, wait, that'll piss off all the global warming types.

    Dunno who to believe an

    • Warming the troposphere raises the tropopause, which means that the stratosphere (the zone which is not mixed by convection, and can thus support ozone) gets thinner and colder. This gives less room for ozone and more clouds etc. to catalyze its destruction.

      If you really wanted to be funny, you'd suggest fighting warming and ozone depletion with sulfur emissions (which make reflective clouds) and NOx and HC emissions (to replace stratospheric ozone with ground-level ozone, aka smog).

      • Not only that, but increasing greenhouse gas concentrations (which normally goes along with tropospheric warming) decreases the rate at which heat from the ground reaches the stratosphere, so the stratosphere actually gets colder above and beyond the effect of just raising the tropopause.

        It's like putting better insulation on a house. The inside of the house gets warmer, but the outside gets colder as less heat gets leaked out.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    I was under the impression that the US was doing pretty well when it came to phasing out ozone-depleting chemicals, which leads me to ask: who farted?

  • What about the polar bears?!? Has anyone thought of the polar bears?!??
  • Didn't we already give up CFCs and thus saved the ozone layer? What gives? Why is the ozone layer still opening if we gave up using CFCs?

    For those of you who don't know, CFCs are an all-around useful chemical. Not only is it completely harmless to human (save asphyxiation), it retards all kinds of fires instantly. The Navy used to use it on all of their ships to put out fires instantly. Guess what? Since it was deployed. hardly anyone got injured due to fire. Nowadays, fires on our Navy vessels are too com
    • Here's three good reasons why the hole is still there:

      1 - CFCs are very long lived, and it takes decades for CFCs to leave the atmosphere once released.

      2 - Other countries are still producing CFCs, though many are phasing it out.

      3 - There are still legacy appliances and manufacturing processes that use them.

      Using CFCs again would just make things worse, and no ozone would mean a lot more than just having to wear sunblock in the middle of winter, and plants (which we depend on for food) and animals are a
      • CFC makes it worse, how?

        (1) Refrigerators and air conditioners would be a lot more efficient and cheaper too. They would be safer as well.

        (2) Places where fire is dangerous can install the fire extinguishers that use CFCs, saving hundreds if not thousands of lives. If such a system were installed in the World Trade Center, the building would not have burned and it would not have collapsed. Of course, if they had finished the installation of asbestos, it would not have fallen either, but government strikes
  • Gravitational pull on large cold air masses can be seen using this tool.During full and new moon events, large cold upper air masses move away from the pole .They are pulled down in the direction of the equator.Because they move in the direction of least resistance, they travel over the land and not the warmer oceans.During the other phases of the moon they return to the arctic and revolve around the pole in a counter clockwise motion.kinda like the musical chairs game.I have been observing this event over
  • If this gas is SO important and we already use it to purify water. Why can't we make a shit load of it and send it up to the stratosphere?
    • If this gas is SO important and we already use it to purify water. Why can't we make a shit load of it and send it up to the stratosphere?

      How do you propose to get it up there? It is not very healthy at ground level so a ground level release won't work. It is so reactive that I doubt releasing it at even a few thousand feet would end up in enough reaching the stratosphere to make a difference anyway. I don't think we will be seeing any 100,000 ft high smokestacks in the near future either. Even if the

      • I guess weather balloons don't count. And if they can't reach that high I'm sure a fly-by with the space Shuttle dragging a long hose would work.

        Remember, if it's SO important, they could find a way to deliver the Ozone.
        After all, we did land on the moon 25 years ago, right?
        • Actually, the manufacture of the ozone would be supremely easy. The delivery of it would be difficult, not only for reasons mentioned, but for making sure it doesn't get released near the surface. Remember, ozone isn't exactly what people like to breathe ... I lived in Southern California for a number of years, and one of the key air quality alerts was the ozone alert.

          I actually had a discussion with my scientist father on this, and he said it was definitely doable. Perhaps an orbital or suborbital wit

    • Even in the stratosphere, ozone is fairly short lived. It is destroyed in the process of absorbing UV radiation, and is regenerated rapidly.

      The only reason that CFCs are such a big problem is that they can destroy about 100,000 ozone molecules before they finally leave the environment a few decades later. A pound of CFCs will destroy tens of tons of ozone in the course of its life, so even if ozone was long-lasting, it would take a crazy amount of ozone to replace what CFCs destroy.
  • No sunbathing at the north pole this year.
  • I have to say, these articles do help the everyday sheep learn what the ozone is, and what it does. I will always remember meeting a lady at the gas station. She was driving herself (and only herself) in her huge SUV. She was then commenting on how interesting the front page article about global warming was, and that I "should read it". I would like to point out that I was driving a 40mpg little car at the time (and still have it, 9 years later).

"What the scientists have in their briefcases is terrifying." -- Nikita Khrushchev

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