A to Z of ozone

Alternative energy sources

  • Eco-friendly sources such as hydroelectric power, solar power, wind power, biomass and tidal power used for generating energy rather than the conventional and depleting energy sources such as coal, oil, gas etc.

Acid rain

  • Due to the atmospheric pollution, rain, as it pours down, becomes acidic and can cause harm mainly to forests and lakes.


  • Have you seen the spray particles that come out of your deodorant or medicine cans? These are called aerosols — gaseous molecules of fine solid or liquid particles.


  • Creating a forest by raising trees in a specific region that’s barren or without any previous tree cover.

Algal bloom

  • A rapid increase of algae in water systems is called algal bloom. The cause of algal blooms could be temperature change, drastic disturbances in the ecosystem, etc. This phenomenon leads to the cut off of oxygen to the marine animals, thus endangering them.


  • Geologists and environmentalists have proposed to name this epoch starting from the advent of the industrial revolution as ‘Anthropocene’. It is a period marked by significant human impact on the earth’s geology and ecosystems, including, anthropogenic climate change.

Black carbon aerosol

  • When fossil fuels or bio fuels are burned incompletely, they emit black carbon aerosols, which contain carcinogens, a particle that causes cancer.


  • Anything that can be decomposed by living organisms such as bacteria, thereby avoiding pollution.

Carbon dioxide

  • It is a natural gas that occurs in the Earth’s atmosphere, sometimes naturally and otherwise due to the burning of fossil fuels.

Carbon Sequestration

  • The term refers to the act of putting into long-term storage the carbon that has immediate potential to become CO2, a greenhouse gas.


  • Also known as CFC, is an organic compound consisting of carbon, fluorine and chlorine. It was a main ingredient in refrigerators and aerosols applicants such as deodorants. CFC was phased out due to its harmful effect on the ozone and has been replaced with hydrofluorocarbons containing fluorine and hydrogen.

Climate change

  • Changes that affect the global climate. It is determined by measuring the average temperature, rainfall, etc. This could be caused by natural processes as well as human activity.


  • Protecting or preserving living creatures such as plants and animals and also resources such as water through conscious efforts.

Coral bleaching

  • Due to the waters getting too warm, the corals expel algae living in them. This process is called bleaching and is a stress response by the corals. Bleaching leaves corals more vulnerable and subject to mortality.


  • Deforestation is the cutting down of trees and transforming forests into cleared land. Due to this, nothing will absorb the carbon dioxide and monoxide, which will rise up to the ozone layer and cause its depletion.


  • You may have come across this term often in the context of coral bleaching events. A severe decline in a population of organisms over a period of time is called a die-off.


  • The earth’s ecosystem consists of its biological community — plants, animals and human beings. Ozone layer acts as a giant shade to the ecosystem, thus helping us all survive.


  • Liquid waste such as sewage and chemical from industries usually discharged into waterbodies such as seas and rivers.

Fossil fuels

  • When burnt, fossil fuels such as oil, coal and natural gas emit large amounts of carbon dioxide. This carbon dioxide reaches the ozone layer, reacts with it and destroys its molecules, leaving it extremely vulnerable.

Global warming

  • Man-made greenhouse gases have caused the temperature on Earth to increase at an alarming rate. This phenomenon is called global warming.

Greenhouse effect

  • This is the phenomenon by which the Sun’s heat is trapped in the Earth’s atmosphere, thus helping the planet to sustain life. It is possible due to the greenhouse gases such as methane, carbon dioxide and chlorofluorocarbons present in the atmosphere, which emit and absorb radiation.

Habitat fragmentation

  • A process during which larger areas of habitat are broken into a number of smaller patches of area. These areas are isolated from each other by a matrix of habitats unlike the original habitat


  • These compounds contain hydrogen and carbons and are found in abundance in fossil fuels. They are extremely harmful to the environment when burnt.

Infrared radiation

  • It is an electromagnetic radiation emitted by the sun. This is responsible for the heat we feel from the sun.


  • Our planet consists of atmosphere, hydrosphere and lithosphere. It is the rigid outer part of the Earth filled with crust and upper mantle.


  • Methane is a hydrocarbon consisting of carbon and hydrogen. It is an important greenhouse gas. Some studies claim that it is also affecting the ozone layer.

Nitrous oxide

  • It is an extremely powerful greenhouse gas found mainly by bacteria breaking down nitrogen in soils and oceans.

Ozone precursors

  • Nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide and other compounds react in the presence of sunlight to form ozone. These are commonly called ozone precursors.

Particulate matter

  • Particulate matter refers to all solid and liquid particles that are suspended in air. Many of them are hazardous. This complex mixture includes both organic and inorganic particles, such as dust, pollen, soot, smoke, and liquid droplets.


  • The dark oil which contains vast amounts of hydrocarbons, thus making it extremely harmful to the ozone layer.

pH level

  • It is indicative of how acidic or not water is. The pH level can be an indicatior of pollution in water.

Renewable energy

  • Resources such as biomass, hydro and thermal are called renewable energy sources. They replenish themselves and do not pollute the atmosphere, thus keeping the ozone from harm.


  • The earth’s atmosphere is divided into troposphere, stratosphere, mesosphere, thermosphere and exosphere. The ozone layer is a region in the stratosphere.


  • A combination of smoke and fog, it generally means air that has restricted visibility due to the pollution the air.

Trace gas

  • Atmosphere is made up of nitrogen, oxygen and some trace gases. The less common gases such as carbon dioxide, water vapour, methane and ammonia are called trace gases.

Ultraviolet radiation

  • It is an electromagnetic radiation found in the Sun and a large part of it is absorbed by the ozone layer. It is harmful and could cause cancer.

Zero waste

  • Zero waste is a philosophy that propagates that no trash is sent to landfills. It recommends the reuse of resources. It, infact, goes beyond recycling by taking a ‘whole system’ approach to the vast flow of resources and waste through human society. Zero Waste maximizes recycling, minimizes waste, reduces consumption and ensures that products are made to be reused, repaired or recycled back into Nature.

Zinc oxide

  • Worried that the sun might harm your skin? Look for a sunscreen that has zinc oxide as it is the most effective sun screen as it is said to reflect and scatter the sun’s rays.

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