Scientists from the European Union’s Copernicus Atmospheric Monitoring Service said Thursday that the ozone hole that forms every year over Antarctica is now larger than Antarctica.
Ozone depletes and forms a hiatus over the Antarctic in the Southern Hemisphere’s spring, from August to October. It usually reaches its largest size between mid-September and mid-October, according to Copernicus.
After growing “significantly” in the past week, the hole is now more than 75% larger than the ozone holes of previous years at the same point in the season since 1979 and is now larger than the continent it looms over.
“The development of the ozone hole this year is as expected at the start of the season,” Copernicus director Vincent-Henri Buch said in a statement.
“Now our projections show that this year’s gap has evolved into a larger-than-normal one.”
Last year’s hole also started exceptionally well in September, but then turned out to be “one of the longest ozone holes in our data record,” according to Copernicus.
So, there is another trend that is getting worse that will be overlooked or underestimated by many of those with the power to make changes.