Albert Masetti & Associates,  Consulting Engineers


January 1995 - Volume 3, No. 1


  • Recent Projects
  • Planning & Design Tip of the Month
  • "The Ozone Hole" - A Review


Construction "observation", traffic engineering, guide rail, guide signs, maintenance of traffic, cost estimating.


For design or rehab of facilities in salt air / salt water corrosive environments (piers, wharves, bridges, trestles, cooling systems), consider materials that are used aboard ship. The marine industry has been living with and designing for rust and corrosion for centuries and has developed equipment & materials that land lubber engineers are not used to or schooled in.


In 1963, Gordon Dobson (1889 - 1976) wrote "Observing the Atmosphere". He covered temperature, ozone {1} (including global anomalies), solar activity, ionosphere, aurora, Van Allen belts, and magnetic field {5}. It ws partly an effort to describe what had been learned during the celebrated IGY (International Geophysical Year) ... July 1957 thru December 1958 ... for which Dobson built 100 ozone measuring instruments (the first ones).

In March 1968, "Applied Optics" published Dr. Dobson's full-length article on the work done by his group at Oxford since 1922 to measure atmospheric ozone {2}.

Since then a number of books and papers have been published about atmospheric ozone. But they are scattershot rather than methodical ... collections of anecdotes ... stories. They present no data that can be readily compared to previous data in any consistent way. Although the new guys pay homage to Dobson by giving his name to the unit of measure, they NEVER refer to Dobson's 40+ years of work, or to his writings, or to his data.

For example, Dr. Dobson published the following graphic in both his 1963 and 1968 editions:

And in 1968, he published the following:

[0.25 cm = 250 Dobsons = 1/8" thickness of ozone spread thru 30 km of altitude!]

The new guys fuss over 6% "depletion"! A 6% variation of an average cannot be measured with ANY certainty thru 30 km of upper atmosphere!

Dobson's May to April graphs {2} of the first measurements of Antarctic ozone correlate with the Arctic cycle (adjusted by six months).

[Seasonality in the southern hemisphere is out of phase with ours.] Halley Bay is at 76 degrees S. latitude; Spitzbergen at 80 degrees N. latitude. Dobson also discovered ozone anomalies in Canada and northern India.

Instead of updating the early data, his successors homogenize data {3} and use one-time readings which tell us very little. They use selective data {4}, make retroactive adjustments, and devise theoretical models to create imaginary trends which they then pit against Dobson's documented observations and experiments ("The Hole in the Ozone Scare", Maduro & Schauerhammer, 1992). In 1982 Dobson's instruments were replaced and , voila!, the scary "hole" suddenly appeared.

Gribbin (1998) uses some undefined composite {3}, which shows little fluctuation over the years, in an effort to demonstrate long term stability of the ozone layer until the surprise "discovery" of ozone depletion. By contrast, Dobson data show minor fluctuation at the equator but DRAMATIC seasonal (and daily) variation at both poles {1}, {2} ... around 40% even in the 1950's (in the pre-Freon era) ... with a 60% difference between polar and equatorial readings! One could even say that the year-round normal polar ozone level is around 250, but INCREASES to 400+ with spring warming!! NO HOLES!!!

An apocalyptic graph {4}, with a misleading vertical axis, does not help us understand what is really happening, especially in light of the conflict with Dobson's work.

Other elements ignored by all of the disaster mongers include: Mt. Erebus, the surface caldera volcano 18 miles upwind of McMurdo; 1958 French polar vortex data; long-term solar cycles; 1988 Japanese data; bacterial and ocean floor interactions with CFCs; and gross oversimplifications in the computer models. (Maduro). Scientists are required to answer and satisfy ALL criticisms of their theories. But instead, the current crop is trying to bury and intimidate its critics.

Finally {5}, Dobson shows some of the major forces impacting the earth's atmosphere. Fewer and fewer scientists believe the "ozone hole" theory. Air conditioners, vaccine refrigerators, and Halon fire extinguishers are not threats. Man's forces are not as powerful as God's.

So let's be honest. We should repeal the law that bans CFC manufacture after 1995. The sky is not falling. Technology is not killing us. There is not now and never has been a "hole". (Just seasonal peaks!) Be of good cheer!! Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!!!


Other References Cited:
Farman, J.C., Gardiner, B.G., & Shanklin, J.D., Nature 315, 207 - 210 (1985).
McElroy, et al., Nature 321, 759-762 (1986)
Stolarski, R.S., Scientific American 258, 30-36, January 1988

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