Stratospheric clouds present in Polar Regions provide a surface for the reaction of hypochlorous acid and chlorine nitrate which on further reaction, gives molecular chlorine. HOCl and Molecular chlorine get photolysed to provide chlorine-free radicals. The radicals, on reaction with atomic oxygen, resulting in the production of more chlorine radicals. This regeneration of chlorine-free radicals results in a continuous breakdown of ozone in the stratosphere, thus almost permanently damaging the ozone layer. This phenomenon is known as the ‘ozone hole’.
Effects of ozone layer depletion:
The Earth is shielded from the harmful UV radiations of the sun by the ozone layer. When this layer gets depleted, a greater amount of radiations will enter the earth’s atmosphere. They are deemed harmful since they lead to skin cancer, cataract, ageing of the skin and also cause sunburns. They also prove fatal to phytoplankton, thus resulting in a decline in fish productivity. Excess exposure to these rays may, in some cases, also lead to mutation in plants. The moisture content of the soil decreases with an increase in exposure to UV radiations.Answered by Pragya Singh | 1 year ago