Production and consumption of ozone depleting substances (CSI 006/CLIM 049) - Assessment published Dec 2010
Climate change (Primary topic)
Typology: Policy-effectiveness indicator (Type D)
- CSI 006
- CLIM 049
Key policy question: Are ozone-depleting substances being phased out according to the agreed schedule?
The total production and consumption of ozone depleting substances in EEA member countries has decreased strongly since the Montreal Protocol was signed in 1987, and it is nowadays practically zero. Globally, the implementation of the Montreal Protocol has led to a decrease in the atmospheric burden of ozone-depleting substances (ODSs) in the lower atmosphere and in the stratosphere. Many ODSs are also potent greenhouse gases. The phasing out of ODS under the Montreal Protocol has reduced global greenhouse gas emissions by an amount larger than the Kyoto Protocol is expected to deliver by the end of 2012.
Consumption of ozone depleting substances (EU-27), 1986-2009
Note: Consumption is defined as production plus imports minus exports of controlled substances under the Montreal Protocol. As with calculated production, the consumption of ODS can be negative, also because exports in any one year can exceed production and imports if they include ODS from carry-over stocks.
Production of ozone depleting substances in EU-27, 1986-2009
Note: Production is defined under Article 1(5) of the Montreal Protocol as production minus the amount destroyed minus the amount entirely used as feedstock in the manufacture of other chemicals. Since the figures are for each calendar year, it is quite possible that in some years the destroyed amounts and/or the feedstock figure may exceed the production figure of that year, if they include ODS from a carry-over stock. The calculated production could be negative in such cases.
Consumption and production of ozone-depleting substances has gone down markedly in EEA member countries, particularly in the first half of the 1990s. Before the Montreal Protocol was signed in 1987, EEA ODS production exceeded half a million ODP (ozone depletion potential) tonnes. ODS production was negative in 2007 and 2008, although it increased again in 2009 to reach 747 ODP tonnes. ODS consumption in EEA member countries fell from about 406 thousand ODP tonnes in 1986 to negative 1 516 ODP tonnes in 2009 (see figures 1 and 2).
Globally, the 1987 Montreal Protocol is widely recognised as one of the most successful multilateral environmental agreements to date. Its implementation has led to a decrease in the atmospheric burden of ozone-depleting substances (ODSs) in the lower atmosphere and in the stratosphere.
According to the 2006 assessment reports from UNEP’s Scientific, Environmental and Technology and Economic Assessment Panels under the Montreal Protocol, ozone depletion also influences climate change since both ozone and the compounds responsible for its depletion are active greenhouse gases. The implementation of the Montreal Protocol has therefore indirectly led to a stark reduction in emissions of these potent greenhouse gases, such as chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), which are outside the remits of the Kyoto Protocol. The phasing out of climate-changing ODS under the Montreal Protocol has reduced greenhouse gas emissions by an amount larger than the Kyoto Protocol is expected to deliver by the end of 2012. The reduction in GWP-weighted ODS emissions expected as a result of compliance with the Montreal Protocol have been estimated globally at 10-12 Gt CO2-eq per year between in 2010 (Velders et al. 2007). In contrast, the reduction of greenhouse gases under the Kyoto Protocol (assuming full compliance by all developed countries) is about -5% on average between 2008 and 2012 compared to base year emissions. This is equivalent to about 1 Gt CO2-eq on average per year during the Kyoto first commitment period (2008-2012).
UNEP’s Assessment concluded there are various options to achieve a global recovery in the ozone layer (i.e. returning to pre-1980 levels). These include addressing the strong growth in the production and consumption of hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) in developing countries and the immediate collection and safe disposal of large quantities of ODS contained in old equipment and buildings (the so-called ODS ‘banks’), which have a very significant ozone-depleting and global warming potential. At the EU level, the EU regulation on substances that deplete the ozone layer, which in many aspects goes further than the Montreal Protocol, also brings forward the production phase-out of HCFCs from 2025 to 2020.
The projected recovery of the ozone layer is sensitive to future levels of greenhouse gases and the associated changes in climate. On the one hand, climate change will influence the exposure of all living organisms to UV-B radiation via changes in cloudiness, precipitation, and ice cover. On the other hand, HCFCs both damage the ozone layer and contribute to global warming and their concentrations continue to increase in the atmosphere. Given these interlinkages, international efforts to safeguard the earth’s climate (e.g. UNFCCC and its Kyoto Protocol) and protect the ozone layer (Montreal Protocol) can be mutually supportive. In 2007, governments from developed and developing countries agreed to freeze production of HCFCs in developing countries by 2013 and bring forward the final phase-out date of these chemicals by ten years in both developed and developing countries (Montreal/Nairobi, 22 September 2007). This has been referred to as a historic agreement to tackle the challenges of protecting the ozone layer and combating climate change at the same time. However, while HCFCs have largely replaced CFCs in both developed and developing countries, in many HCFC applications there is now a gradual replacement with hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), which, although not ozone-depleting, are potent greenhouse gases.
The depth and area of the ozone hole over Antarctica remains large although it contracted in 2009 compared to 2008. Between 7 September and 13 October of 2009, the average ozone-hole area reached 21.7 million square kilometres, with a daily maximum of 24.1 million square kilometres (figure 3) - equivalent to about 6 times the territory of the EU. According to UNEP’s 2006 Assessment, failure to comply with the Montreal Protocol and the continuation of large agreed exemptions could delay or even prevent the recovery of the ozone layer – with additional implications for climate change.
A new 2010 report by the Scientific Assessment Panel of the Montreal Protocol concludes the Antarctic ozone hole provides the most visible example of how ozone depletion affects surface climate, leading to important changes in surface temperature and wind patterns. Overall, there is stronger evidence of the effect of stratospheric ozone changes on the earth’s surface climate, and also of the effects of climate change on stratospheric ozone. Increasing abundances of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide and methane are expected to significantly affect future stratospheric ozone through effects on temperature, winds, and chemistry. The report also highlights the substantial co-benefits between the protection of the ozone layer and climate change and presents a number of options for policy makers.
 Production of ODS went down to negative numbers in 2007 and 2008, although it increased again in 2009 to 747 OPD tonnes. Negative values are possible because ‘production’ is defined under Article 1(5) of the Montreal Protocol as production minus the amount destroyed minus the amount entirely used as feedstock in the manufacture of other chemicals. Therefore, calculated production may be negative if destroyed amounts and/or feedstocks (e.g. from a carry-over stock) exceed production. Consumption is defined as production plus imports minus exports of controlled substances under the Montreal Protocol. As with calculated production, the consumption of ODS can be negative, also because exports in any one year can exceed production and imports if ODS have been stockpiled.
 Consumption is defined as production plus imports minus exports of controlled substances under the Montreal Protocol. As with calculated production, the consumption of ODS can be negative.
 The ozone-hole area is determined from total ozone satellite measurements. It is defined to be that region of ozone values below 220 Dobson Units (DU) located south of 40°S. Values below 220 DU represent anthropogenic ozone losses over Antarctica.
“Synthesis report of the 2006 assessments of the Scientific Assessment Panel, the Environmental Effects Assessment Panel and the Technology and Economic Assessment Panel” http://ozone.unep.org/Assessment_Panels/
“Scientific Assessment of Ozone Depletion: 2006” http://ozone.unep.org/Assessment_Panels/SAP/index.shtml
“Environmental Effects of Ozone Depletion and its Interactions with Climate Change: 2006 Assessment” http://ozone.unep.org/Assessment_Panels/EEAP/index.shtml
“2006 Report of the Technology and Economic Assessment Panel” http://ozone.unep.org/Assessment_Panels/TEAP/index.shtml
“WMO GAW Research on Stratospheric Ozone” http://www.wmo.int/pages/prog/arep/gaw/ozone/index.html
“Executive Summary of the Scientific Assessment of Ozone Depletion: 2010” http://ozone.unep.org/Assessment_Panels/SAP/ExecutiveSummary_SAP_2010.pdf
Protection of the ozone layer – European Commission, DG Environment http://ec.europa.eu/environment/ozone/
Velders GJM ; Anderson SO ; Daniel JS ; Fahey DW ; McFarland M; ‘The importance of the Montreal Protocol in protecting climate’, PNAS, 2007 http://www.pnas.org/content/104/12/4814.full
Ozone depleting substances data (UNEP - Ozone Secretariat)
provided by United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)
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EEA Management Plan2010 1.3.1 (note: EEA internal system)
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This briefing is part of the EEA's report The European Environment - State and Outlook 2015. The EEA is an official agency of the EU, tasked with providing information on Europe’s environment.
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