Describe how the ozone layer shields those on earth from harmful uv rays describe how ozone at ground level can harm us. you wil - Essay Example

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Name Instructor Course Date Ozone layer Ozone layer is part of the earth’s atmosphere with high concentrations of ozone. Ozone is the allotropic form of oxygen trioxide that is constantly in the air. The ozone layer, found 17 to 27 kilometers above sea level, is estimated to be 0.4 to 0.6 cm thick…
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Describe how the ozone layer shields those on earth from harmful uv rays describe how ozone at ground level can harm us. you wil
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Download file to see previous pages If the ozone layer gets ultra-thin, people would be exposed to more UV radiation. UV radiation is the leading cause of skin cancers. High levels of UV levels would also harm the wildlife and plants. If plants get affected, they are unable to carry out photosynthesis. Consequently, there would be a slowdown in the release of oxygen into the atmosphere (Miller and Spoolman 24). Scientists worry that the ozone layer is getting thinner and thinner every day. This trend began in the 1970s. Since the 80s, the level of the ozone layer has been decreasing at a constant rate. By the 90s, the level of the ozone layer had reduced by 3-4 % of the initial levels. Strong reduction in the ozone layer level has been observed in the Antarctica, where the decrease is up to 50 % (Roshchina 4). Ozone depletion is closely associated with the use of chemicals, especially chlorofluorocarbons. Chlorofluorocarbons were widely used in aerosol cans as coolants. The chemical compounds penetrate the upper atmosphere as a result of nuclear explosions, space flights, flights of supersonic aircraft, and applications of chlororganic fertilizers in agriculture as well as by other means (Roshchina 4). Some countries have since banned the use of those chemicals as well as other ozone depleting chemicals. The main effect of ozone depletion in the atmosphere is the increase in ultraviolet radiation to levels that are dangerous to all forms of life (250-320mm). Ultraviolet radiation strengthened by reduction in the level of the ozone layer around the earth causes chromospheres to be activated. This leads to biochemical changes in the cells. The result is the formation of tumors, skin cancers, cataracts, immune-system problems and other potential injuries to human beings. Changes in the ecosystem conditions can also be observed around the ground. Therefore, absorption of the ultraviolet radiation by the ozone layer protects living organisms. Protection of the nucleic acids and proteins is crucial because damage to these substances can result in mutations and even destruction of cells (Starr and Evars 44). Near the ground level, ozone is a pollutant. This is because it causes irritation of the eyes and respiratory tracts of human beings and wildlife. Ozone near the ground level also interferes with growth of plants. This usually occurs when nitrogen oxides and volatile organic compounds, released by combustion of fossil fuels, are exposed to sunlight. Ozone levels vary daily. The amounts of ozone depend on latitude, season and climate. The levels are normally high during the day and the warm seasons. Ozone pollution can be avoided by reducing the combustion of fossil fuels into the air (Starr and Evars 44). Ozone is toxic and corrosive. Repeated inhaling of ozone may permanently damage the lungs and lead to respiratory infections. Exposure to ozone may induce lung infection or aggravate existing respiratory conditions such as bronchitis, emphysema or asthma. It may also cause chest pain, coughing, throat irritation and congestion. It is dangerous to people who like to spent lots of time in the outdoors especially on a warm weather. Older people and children are at a higher risk in the population as their lungs have reduced capacity. Ground level ozone kills seedlings and damages leaves which makes plants more prone to harsh weather, pests and diseases (Miller and Spoolman 25). However, ozone has some potential benefits. It is essential in maintaining the thermal status of the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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