International Treaties and Cooperation about the Protection of the Stratospheric Ozone Layer

Vienna Convention

  • It is a Multilateral Environmental Agreement that was agreed upon at the 1985 Vienna Conference and entered into force in 1988.
  • It is one of the most successful treaties of all time.
  • It has been ratified by 197 states.
  • It acts as a framework for international efforts to protect the ozone layer.
  • These are laid out in the accompanying Montreal Protocol.
  • Vienna convention is not legally binding.

Montreal Protocol (MP)

  • Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer is a protocol to Vienna Convention for the Protection of Ozone Layer.
  • It is an international treaty that aims to protect the ozone layer by phasing out:
    • Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs),
    • Hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs),
    • Hydrobromofluorocarbons (HBFCs),
    • Carbontetrachloride (CCl4),
    • Methylbromide (CH3Br),
    • Bromochloromethane (CH2BrCl),
    • Methyl chloroform (CH3CCl3),
    • Halons.

Kigali Agreement (2016)

  • The Kigali Agreement amended the 1987 Montreal Protocol that was designed to close growing ozone hole by banning ozone-depleting substances.
  • This amended Montreal Protocol which was initially conceived only to plug gases that were destroying the ozone layer now includes HFCs responsible for global warming.
  • This move will help to prevent a potential 0.5oC rise in global temperature by the end of the century.
  • All signatory countries have been divided into three groups with different timelines to go about reductions of HFCs.
  • First group includes countries like US and those in European Union (EU). They will freeze production and consumption of HFCs by 2018. They will reduce them to about 15% of 2012 levels by 2036.
  • Second group includes countries like China, Brazil and all of Africa which will freeze HFC use by 2024 and cut it to 20% of 2021 levels by 2045.
  • Third-group countries like India, Pakistan, Pakistan, Iran, Saudi Arabia etc. will be freezing HFC use by 2028 and reducing it to about 15% of 2025 levels by 2047.
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