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Climate change: Ozone layer protection

Punch on the web

International efforts to protect the ozone layer, the shield that protects life on Earth from the harmful levels of ultraviolet rays, have recorded some success.

According to a new report, the efforts have resulted in the stoppage of additional ozone losses and contributed to mitigating the greenhouse effect, according to a new report.

The executive summary of the Scientific Assessment of Ozone Depletion 2010 provides new information about the effects of climate change on the ozone layer and the impact of ozone changes on the Earth‘s climate.

The report was written and reviewed by some 300 scientists and inaugurated on the United Nations International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer. It is the first comprehensive update in four years.

The report reaffirmed that the Montreal Protocol was working.

It said,”It has protected the stratospheric ozone layer from much higher levels of depletion by phasing out production and consumption of ozone depleting substances.”

Given that many substances that deplete the ozone layer are also potent greenhouse gases, the report said that the Montreal Protocol had ”provided substantial co-benefits by reducing climate change.”

In 2010, the reduction in ozone depleting substances as a result of the Montreal Protocol, expressed in CO2-equivalent emissions (about 10 Gigatonnes per year), were five times larger than those targeted by the first commitment period (2008-2012) of the Kyoto Protocol; the greenhouse emissions reduction treaty; according to the United Nations Environmental Programme.

The report, published by the World Meteorological Organisation and UNEP, noted that an important remaining scientific challenge was to project future ozone abundance based on an understanding of the complex linkages between ozone and climate change.

Reacting to the report, UN Under-Secretary General and UNEP Executive Director, Mr. Achim Steiner, said,”This represents a further potential area for action within the overall climate change challenge. Today‘s report underlines that action to protect the ozone layer has not only been a success, but continues to deliver multiple benefits to economies including on efforts to meet the Millennium Development Goals.

”The contribution to combating climate change is one, but so are the direct benefits to public health. For without the Montreal Protocol and its associated Vienna Convention atmospheric levels of ozone-depleting substances could have increased tenfold by 2050. This in turn could have led to up to 20 million more cases of skin cancer and 130 million more cases of eye cataracts, not to speak of damage to human immune systems, wildlife and agriculture.”

The WMO Secretary-General, Mr. Michel Jarraud, said, ”The ozone-hole issue demonstrates the importance of long-term atmospheric monitoring and research, without which ozone destruction would have continued unabated and might not have been detected until more serious damage was evident.

”The Montreal Protocol is an outstanding example of collaboration among scientists and decision-makers that has resulted in the successful mitigation of a serious environmental and societal threat.

El contenido de las noticias que se presentan en esta sección es responsabilidad directa de las agencias emisoras de noticias y no necesariamente reflejan la posición del Gobierno de México en este u otros temas relacionados.


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