6. An opening in the ozone layer - Earth.com

An Antarctica-based British scientist discovered a hole in the ozone layer in 1985 – a finding corroborated by NASA research. Damaging ultraviolet radiation can make its way in and hurt both plants and animals without this protective coat around the planet. This 1998 rendering shows the areas with the lowest amount of protective ozone in purple. And it highlights the layer’s massive opening, which hangs over Antarctica.

News coming your way
The biggest news about our planet delivered to you each day