Rare hole opens up in ozone layer above the Arctic – scientists

A rare hole has opened up in the ozone layer above the Arctic, in what scientists say is the result of unusually low temperatures in the atmosphere above the north pole, according to The guardian.

The hole, which has been tracked from space and the ground over the past few days, has reached record dimensions, but is not expected to pose any danger to humans unless it moves further south.

If it extends further south over populated areas, such as southern Greenland, people would be at increased risk of sunburn. However, on current trends the hole is expected to disappear altogether in a few weeks.

Low temperatures in the northern polar regions led to an unusual stable polar vortex, and the presence of ozone-destroying chemicals such as chlorine and bromine in the atmosphere – from human activities – caused the hole to form.