Drop in consumption level of CFCs, halons

Published: Thursday 31 December 1992

-- BETWEEN 1986 and 1990, the total consumption of ozone-depleting chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) by industrialised countries dropped from 971,342 tonnes to 636,588 tonnes -- a fall of 34 per cent. The industrialised countries' halon consumption, too, has fallen from 198,609 tonnes to 151,700 tonnes. Meanwhile, the CFC consumption of developing countries, which have got a grace period for phase-out of ozone-depleting substances, has increased from 18,791 tonnes to 26,193 tonnes, an increase of 39 per cent. But in real terms, this is only 2 per cent of the decrease achieved by industrialised countries. These figures, however, do not include the consumption levels in India and China as both these countries have only recently joined the Montreal Protocol nations and are yet to report their consumption figures to the Ozone Secretariat of the UN Environment Programme.

Consumption of both CFCs and halons in industrialised countries has dropped sharply since the 1987 Montreal Protocol. Austria has reported the sharpest drop between 1986 and 1990 -- 77 per cent. Spain is the only industrialised country where consumption has increased.

Amongst the developing countries, Brazil, Chile, the Philippines, Venezuela and Yugoslavia have reported a drop in CFC consumption. Because their total consumption of ozone-depleting substances has turned out to be more than 0.3 kg per capita -- the threshold stated in the Montreal Protocol -- Bahrain, Malta, Singapore and the Untied Arab Emirates have been clubbed with industrialised countries instead of developing countries. A decision is still awaited about South Korea.

Note: CFCs include CFC-11, CFC-113, CFC-114, CFC-115 and CFC-12. Halons include Halon-1211, Halon-1301 and Halon-2402. Figures of tonnages are weighted according to ozone-depleting potential.

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