The ozone layer is extremely important for maintaining the optimum temperature on the Earth’s surface, according to a new paper published in the preprint science journal arXiv. Research results show that Without the ozone layer, the temperature would drop by about 3.5°C..
With a simple explanation, scientists argue that the Sun’s radiation plays a crucial role in determining the average global temperature. Some of this radiation is absorbed and reabsorbed, creating a greenhouse effect and a higher temperature. However, the climate as it is depends on several environmental changes; including ozone.
Most studies on the subject touch on the critical importance of the ozone layer in blocking ultraviolet radiation from the Sun, but the new paper attempts to understand the role of ozone on the planet’s temperature and climate.
According to researchers, the ozone layer is responsible for increasing the Earth’s average temperature. In a world where ozone (O3) is absent, the upper stratosphere cools, making the air unable to hold moisture, resulting in a much drier climate. In addition to the lack of moisture that makes it difficult for clouds to form, changes in Earth’s tropospheric stability will only allow clouds to occur in higher and lower regions.
“We found that the change in surface temperature is mainly due to the fact that the stratosphere is much colder in the absence of ozone, which makes it drier and significantly weakens the greenhouse effect. We also examined the effect of upper troposphere and lower stratosphere structure on cloud formation and global circulation,” write the researchers.
Earth without ozone layer
Using a 3D general circulation model called the Community Earth System Model (CESM), the scientists tested the effects of various O3 levels on Earth’s climate. Complementing the results with 1-dimensional radiative flux calculations, the scientists were able to discover the reason for the temperature change: This is mainly because the stratosphere is much colder in the absence of ozone.
After analyzing the data, they realized that With carbon dioxide (CO2) held constant, the global average temperature of the Earth’s surface will decrease with the depletion of the ozone layer.. Thus, complete removal of ozone will result in a maximum reduction of about 3.5°C.
“The ozone layer was formed by the oxygenation of the Proterozoic. While the oxygen itself has only minor radiative and climatic effects, the accompanying ozone has important implications for Earth’s climate.”
Source: Tec Mundo
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