FCE Distinguished Lecture on "The Ozone Hole: From Discovery to Recovery"
The ozone hole, the springtime large-scale depletion of the stratospheric ozone layer above Antarctic, was discovered in the early 1980s by Farman and colleagues from the UK. This unexpected ozone layer depletion was diagnosed and “understood” in a matter of a decade, or so. The ozone hole played a pivotal role in bringing the ozone layer depletion theorized by Molina and Rowland to the forefront and the actions of the world culminated in the Montreal Protocol. Now, due to the success of the Montreal Protocol, the ozone layer and the ozone hole are on their way to “recovery.” I will recount the science, policy, and actions that led to this success story in global environmental science and human action. I will exemplify some of the science behind the issue using work done in our laboratory. I will also touch up on why this global environmental issue was addressed by society and the possible lessons for other current environmental issues.