The Montreal Protocol of 1987 placed strict controls on the release of ozone-depleting substances. A new study now shows what would have happened to the ozone layer in the absence of this critically important international treaty — and it wouldn’t have been pretty.
Finally, some good news about our troubled atmosphere: A UN study shows that the ozone layer is displaying early signs of thickening after years of depletion. It's on the road to recovery — an achievement that scientists say is due to political will.
In the ultimate cosmic cataclysm, two ultra-dense bodies collide. For less than a second, incredible amounts of super-charged particles explode forth. These blasts could wipe out most life on Earth...and it's probably happened dozens of times already.
Check out the stark difference between these two satellite images, taken on March 19, 2010 and March 19, 2011. The left image shows much more ozone (in red) over the Arctic than the right image. What's happened?
They've been hunted. They've been starved. They've been poisoned. Now, whales are being fried while they're still in the ocean.
If a medium-sized asteroid lands in the ocean, tsunamis won't be the only worry. Water vapor and sea salt thrown up by the impact could damage the ozone layer, leading to record levels of ultraviolet radiation that could threaten humanity.