An anonymous reader quotes a report from CBC.ca: Scientists say the Southern Hemisphere ozone hole is larger than usual and already surpasses the size of Antarctica. The European Union's Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service (CAMS) said Thursday that the ozone hole, which appears every year during the Southern Hemisphere spring, has grown considerably in the past week following an average start. "Forecasts show that this year's hole has evolved into a rather larger than usual one," said Vincent-Henri Peuch, who heads the EU's satellite monitoring service. "We are looking at a quite big and potentially also deep ozone hole," he said. The Montreal Protocol, signed in 1987, led to a ban on a group of chemicals called halocarbons that were blamed for exacerbating the annual ozone hole. Experts say it's likely to take until the 2060s for ozone-depleting substances to be completely phased out. "[S]cientists have been closely monitoring the development of this year's ozone hole over the South Pole, which has now reached an extent larger than Antarctica," says the Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service. "After a rather standard start, the 2021 ozone hole has considerably grown in the last two weeks and is now larger than 75% of ozone holes at that stage in the season since 1979."
Vincent-Henri Peuch, Director of the Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service, adds: "This year, the ozone hole developed as expected at the start of the season. It seems pretty similar to last year's, which also wasn't really exceptional until early September, but then turned into one of the largest and longest-lasting ozone holes in our data record later in the season. Now our forecasts show that this year's hole has evolved into a rather larger than usual one. The vortex is quite stable and the stratospheric temperatures are even lower than last year, so it may continue to grow slightly over the next two or three weeks."
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