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FACTS POINT TO A LOSS OF OZONE

It was with some disapproval that I read Gerald Durtschi's letter of Aug. 2 about the ozone issue. For members of the public who prefer the authority of measurements to Mr. Durtschi's statements, I recommend the following sources:

1. Richard Stolarski, "Scientific American," January 1988, p. 32. A graph on this page shows that Mr. Durtschi (and others) are mistaken in claiming that the Antarctic ozone hole may always have existed. The graph shows that in fact, the ozone hole did not start to appear until 1980, and that its development since 1979 has been dramatic.2. Guy Brasseur, "Nature," Vol. 352, pp. 668-9, August 22, 1991. The paper is based largely on satellite ozone measurements. It shows that as of 1991, it was known that stratospheric ozone loss is taking place at the latitude of the United States, and that the rate of that loss had accelerated since the mid-1980s. It is pointless to guess, as Mr. Durtschi does, that ozone loss is impossible.

Benjamin J. Taylor

Associate professor, physics and astronomy

Brigham Young University