What will it take to stop our ozone from going away?



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    In 1985, the Vienna Convention was adopted to formalize international cooperation on this issue of ozone depletion. Additional efforts resulted in the signing of the Montreal Protocol in 1987. The original protocol would have reduced the production of CFCs by half by 1998.

    After the original Protocol was signed, new measurements showed worse damage to the ozone layer than was originally expected. In 1992, reacting to the latest scientific assessment of the ozone layer, the Parties to the Protocol decided to completely end production of halons by the beginning of 1994 and of CFCs by the beginning of 1996 in developed countries.

    Because of measures taken under the Montreal Protocol, emissions of ozone-depleting substances are already falling. Levels of total inorganic chlorine in the stratosphere peaked in 1997 and 1998. The good news is that the natural ozone production process will heal the ozone layer in about 50 years.

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