World Ozone Day 2019: What Can You Do to Prevent Ozone Depletion?
The United Nations General Assembly proposed “World Ozone Day” for the awareness of one of the most critical barriers to our Earth. In a world where our actions are significantly affecting nature more than ever, it has become our responsibility to take care of the world and its creatures. Unfortunately, due to human misconduct, we are creating near-irreversible damage to Earth - this includes the damage to the Ozone layer. For the year 2019, the theme is “32 Years and Healing”, dedicating thirty decades worth of ozone protection efforts. At Hotel Miramonti we want to do our part in educating and helping to protect the environmental issues like climate change and the depletion of the atmosphere. Due to the ozone layer’s causal links to climate change, and with the Alpine glaciers melting rapidly, we are keen to educate and give a series of ways on how you can prevent ozone layer depletion. According to the Scientific Assessment of Ozone layer depletion, we can avoid up to 0.4 degrees Celsius of global warming this century if we give our full effort to implementing specific actions. Our Miramonti Boutique Hotel wants to join in the fight against climate change and ozone layer depletion, so here are a few ways in which you can decelerate the damage!
WHAT IS THE OZONE LAYER?
The Ozone layer is essential to the protection of our Earth; it is a gas in our atmosphere that primarily protects us from the UV rays of the sun, therefore, protecting us from intense ultraviolet exposure. If it wasn’t there, we would get instant sunburn and plants in our world would not be able to flourish. Some of the consequences of ozone layer depletion are:
The ultraviolet rays makes it difficult for planktons to survive, and therefore affecting the food chain of marine life.
It can cause pollution, acid rain and and photochemical smog that can damage ecosystems.
It can increase the rate of skin cancer, ageing and sunburn.
Ozone depletion inhibits plant growth, and therefore can lead to the loss of plant species and reduce global food supply.
What you can do
Update your fridge!
The main culprits are usually refrigerators, air conditioners and fire extinguishers, as they contain the substance hydrofluorocarbons (HFC’s) that destroy the ozone particles. Though the effect is relatively weak in comparison to other chemicals, it is not zero. 21st-century refrigerators use HFC’s; however, there are a handful of homes that have fridges that were made back in the 1970s which contains the stronger chemicals chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs). In 2003, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) found that large amounts were still being released in North America, which was quite worrying!
Minimise the use of cars
Nitrous oxide, along with other greenhouses gases, is one the most significant ozone-depleting substances released by human activities, mainly through vehicles. These greenhouses gases can destroy the ozone layer but also contribute to the phenomenon of Global Warming, which is a current issue in the world today. The IPCC states that we have only 12 years until we cannot reverse the consequences of climate change. So, if you can, opt for public transport, walking, biking or driving electric cars. Our Hotel in the Italian Alps, we receive many visitors that take the Bernina Express train through the Alps rather than taking the plane to Switzerland! Furthermore, many opt for E-Biking and Hiking in the Italian Alps, which are all very great options.
Preventing harmful chemicals & solvents
As we have said, HFCs and CFCs are the main culprits to ozone depletion, one of the ways you can reduce your impact is by trying to avoid using these chemicals in day-to-day use. This means checking the labels of deodorants, hairsprays and household chemicals, and opting for pump sprays over pressurised cans. Despite CFC’s being regulated, there is still room for reducing the use.
Opt for Local Products
In Hotel Miramonti, many of our ingredients used for our dishes in our Miramonti Restaurant are locally sourced, like the Valtellina cheese, Porcini mushrooms and vegetables. This is because nitrate oxide is found in many fertilisers and is one of the culprits for ozone depletion. So, if you can opt for local farmers that grow organically, it can help reduce your footprint on the ozone layer. Or if you decide to grow your fruits and vegetables, do go for fertilisers with fewer nitrate oxides in their formula.
We hope that this has given you the inspiration to help protect the Ozone! Looking to stay in the Italian Alps? Stay at Albergo Miramonti where you can Hike in the Alps, enjoy our Hotel Spa and even relax in our Cigar Lounge.