World Ozone Day is September 16th
Ugh, these look pretty worn out, thought Annie as she was putting on her walking shoes.
LJ laced his boots and picked up his backpack, “ready? Hey, it looks like we need to walk to the shopping center and look for a new pair of shoes for you. Those have had it.”
“I know, but they are so comfortable and, I have had them for so long, the sole is nearly worn out, though, and they are losing their shape. Okay, let’s see if there’s a sale at the shoe store.”
Annie and LJ moved at their usual brisk pace, swinging their arms, getting their heart rate up to maximize walking benefits.
“Look at our beautiful blue sky. The air smells so fresh,” said LJ as he took deep breaths.
“Yes, I wonder if it has something to do with all the effort that has gone into protecting the earth’s ozone layer by the Montreal Protocol? It started in 1987 as a global agreement designed to stop the production of or strictly control ozone-depleting substances like aerosol sprays and chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) used in refrigerators and air conditioners. The protocol helped protect the ozone layer and even restored it. The Montreal Protocol’s work has also aided the global effort to address global warming. As a result, human health and our ecosystems are protected because harmful ultraviolet radiation was prevented from reaching the earth.”
“What exactly is the ozone?” asked LJ.
“It is a very fragile layer, like a shield of gas that protects the earth from the harmful sun’s rays. Because of the protection of the ozone layer, life on our planet can exist. We have fewer cataracts, skin cancers, and other health issues by restoring it, but a recent study shows a crucial section of the ozone layer is still declining. Scientists suspect that a banned substance, specifically CFCs continues to be produced. According to an article released by the World Economic Forum, the alleged culprit is located in East Asia. Another explanation for this continuing decline is climate change.”
“It sounds like all of us humans have a stake in the outcome. What can we do to help continue to restore the ozone layer and prevent that section from further decline?”
“Walking is one of the primary protectors of the ozone layer. By not using cars so much or carpooling and using bicycles and public transportation, there’s less pollution that erodes the ozone layer.
Using non-toxic, natural cleaning products like those sold at Grove Collaborative.
Shop at local farmers’ markets. By doing so, you get fresh food that has not traveled long distances. The longer the distance, the more nitrous oxide produced by the truck or train used to transport the food.
Maintain air conditioners; as they get older and less efficient, their CFCs escape into the atmosphere.
Don’t use aerosol spray for any reason. Even a tiny amount has a cumulative effect on eroding the ozone layer.”
As they approached the shopping center, LJ held the door open for Annie, “recycling also has to be a way to help preserve the ozone layer. By re-using, we cut down on the gasses released from dumps.”
“Yes, people can protect the ozone layer and learn more about it at the UN International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer.”
Annie and LJ are a fictional couple. Their storyline promotes healthy eating and earth-friendly practices.