What is the Ozone Layer?
Ozone (O3) is a naturally occurring gas in the atmosphere, therefore, the ozone layer is a layer in the stratosphere, approximately 12 to 20 miles above the surface of the Earth, that contains relatively high concentrations of ozone.
The ozone layer absorbs about 99% of the Sun's Ultraviolet Radiation that could potentially hurt all life forms on Earth. It is like a blanket that covers the Earth for protection.
The Issues about the Ozone Layer
The Ozone layer was discovered to be depleting about 50 years ago, and it was proven that chemicals like Chlorofluorocarbons (CFC) were contributing to the depletion of the layer. When scientists discovered this international treaties were established to prevent further depletion. Since the treaties to reduce chemicals harmful to the Ozone layer were passed, the ozone layer is expected to recover in the next 5 decades.
Ozone is a greenhouse gas, and since it is a greenhouse gas, that means it plays a vital role in the Earth's climate. Therefore, an increase in other primary greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide will interfere with the recovery of the Ozone layer. Just like if a man starts taking steroids, which are basically artificially made testosterone; the steroids end up replacing the testosterone that is naturally made by the body and eventually the body stops making the testosterone. That it why it is important that we still reduce our carbon footprint because if we don't, we will eventually suffer the consequences of a depleted ozone layer.
For more information on these topics, visit these sites: http://www.research.noaa.gov/climate/t_ozonelayer.html