When we say planet Earth is healing, we literally mean it.
According to reports, scientists have confirmed that the 1 million square kilometre wide hole in the ozone layer over the Arctic has finally healed. And, apparently the hole over the north pole has healed itself.
Earlier in March, scientists had spotted signs of a rare hole forming above the north pole and they though it was a result of low temperatures.
The ozone layer is extremely important as it shields Earth from the Sun's ultraviolet radiation that causes skin cancer. It was the biggest hole and it could have posed a direct threat to humans if it had moved further south to populated areas.
This piece of information was confirmed by Copernicus' Atmosphere Monitoring Service (CAMS) and Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) in a recent tweet and they also explained the reasons behind it.
But, get this, the closing of the hole has nothing to do with the reduction in pollution levels due to th ongoing lockdown. It's all because of the polar vortex, the high-altitude currents that are responsible for bringing cold air to the polar regions.
In the tweet, Copernicus ECMWF explains that this year, the polar vortex was extremely powerful, with cold temperatures inside it. And this resulted in the production of stratospheric clouds that destroy the ozone layer by reacting with CFC gases.
But, now that the polar vortex has weakened, normalcy is returning in the ozone layer over the polar regions. However, Copernicus ECMWF predicts this phenomena will take place again in the near future but, it won't affect the ozone layer much the next time.
In an interview with Euronews, Copernicus scientist Antje Inness said:
It is very unusual for such a strong ozone depletion to occur in the northern hemisphere, but this year's polar vortex was exceptionally strong and persistent, and temperatures were low enough to allow stratospheric clouds to form for several months.
Also, note that such holes in the ozone layer are quite common above the Antarctic at the South Pole especially during July to September but, the ozone layer hole above the Arctic at this time was unusual.
It was caused by the strong and consistent polar vortex that caused the concentration of more ozone-depleting chemicals than usual.
Now, whether all this is a result of climate change on Earth or not, is yet to be confirmed by the scientists.