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Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
© Author(s) 2017. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
Research article
29 Nov 2017
Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP).
Stratospheric ozone measurements at Arosa (Switzerland): History and scientific relevance
Johannes Staehelin1, Pierre Viatte2, Rene Stübi2, Fiona Tummon1, and Thomas Peter1 1Institute for Atmospheric and Climate Science, ETHZ, Zürich
2Federal Office of Meteorology and Climatology MeteoSwiss, Payerne
Abstract. In 1926 the stratospheric ozone measurements of the Light Climatic Observatory (LKO) of Arosa (Switzerland) started, marking the start of the world's longest total (or column) ozone measurements. These measurements were driven by the recognition of the importance of atmospheric ozone for human health as well as by scientific curiosity in this by then not well characterized atmospheric trace gas. Since the mid-1970s ground-based measurements of stratospheric ozone have also been justified to society by the need to document the effects of anthropogenic Ozone Depleting Substances (ODSs), which cause stratospheric ozone depletion. Levels of ODSs peaked around the mid-1990s as a result of a global environmental policy to protect the ozone layer implemented by the 1987 Montreal Protocol and its subsequent amendments and adjustments. Consequently, chemical ozone depletion caused by ODSs stopped worsening around the mid-1990s. This renders justification for continued ozone measurements more difficult, and is likely to do so even more in future, when stratospheric ozone recovery is expected. Tendencies of increased cost savings in ozone measurements seem perceptible worldwide, also in Arosa. However, the large natural variability in ozone on diurnal, seasonal and interannual scales complicates to demonstrate the success of the Montreal Protocol. Moreover, chemistry-climate models predict a “super-recovery” of the ozone layer in the second half of this century, i.e. an increase of ozone concentrations beyond pre-1970 levels, as a consequence of ongoing climate change. This paper presents the evolution of the ozone layer and the history of international ozone research and discusses the justification of these measurements for past, present and future.

Citation: Staehelin, J., Viatte, P., Stübi, R., Tummon, F., and Peter, T.: Stratospheric ozone measurements at Arosa (Switzerland): History and scientific relevance, Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss.,, in review, 2017.
Johannes Staehelin et al.
Johannes Staehelin et al.
Johannes Staehelin et al.


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