The passive tracer method is used to estimate ozone loss from ground-based measurements in the Antarctic. A sensitivity study shows that the ozone depletion can be estimated within an accuracy of ~4%. The method is then applied to the ground-based observations from Arrival Heights, Belgrano, Concordia, Dumont d’Urville, Faraday, Halley, Marambio, Neumayer, Rothera, South Pole, Syowa, and Zhongshan for the diagnosis of ozone loss in the Antarctic. On average, the ten-day boxcar average of the vortex mean ozone column loss deduced from the ground-based stations was about 55±5% in 2005–2009. The ozone loss computed from the ground-based measurements is in very good agreement with those derived from satellite measurements (OMI and SCIAMACHY) and model simulations (REPROBUS and SLIMCAT), where the differences are within ±3–5%. The historical ground-based total ozone observations in October show that the depletion started in the late 1970s, reached a maximum in the early 1990s and stabilised afterwards due to saturation. There is no indication of ozone recovery yet. At southern mid-latitudes, a reduction of 20–50% is observed for a few days in October–November at the newly installed Rio Gallegos station. Similar depletion of ozone is also observed episodically during the vortex overpasses at Kerguelen in October–November and at Macquarie Island in July–August of the recent winters. This illustrates the significance of measurements at the edges of Antarctica.