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Indicator Specification

Global and European consumption of ozone-depleting substances

Indicator Specification
  Indicator codes: CLIM 049
Published 16 Dec 2020 Last modified 18 Dec 2020
11 min read
Ozone-depleting substances (ODS) are long-lived chemicals that contain chlorine and/or bromine and can deplete the stratospheric ozone layer. This indicator quantifies the current state of the ozone layer and the progress being made towards meeting the EU’s Montreal Protocol commitments.

EEA Briefing 'Ozone-depleting substances 2020'
https://www.eea.europa.eu/themes/climate/ozone-depleting-substances-and-climate-change/2020

Assessment versions

Published (reviewed and quality assured)
 

Rationale

Justification for indicator selection

The release of ozone-depleting substances (ODS) to the atmosphere leads to the depletion of the Earth's ozone layer, which is manifested most prominently in the occurrence of the annual ozone hole over the Antarctic. The stratospheric ozone layer protects humans and the environment from the harmful ultra-violet radiation emitted by the sun. Ozone is destroyed by chlorine and bromine atoms that are released to the stratosphere from anthropogenic chemicals — including CFCs, halons, 1,1,1 TCA, CTC, HBFCs, BCM, n-propyl bromide and HCFCs — as well as methyl chloride (MC) and methyl bromide (MB). The depletion of stratospheric ozone leads to increases in ambient UV radiation at the Earth's surface, which has a wide variety of adverse effects on human health, aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems, and food chains. This indicator tracks the annual maximum Antarctic ozone hole area to determine the state of the ozone layer and its recovery since the late 1970s.

Since the mid-1980s, various policy measures have been introduced to limit or phase out the production and consumption of ODSs to protect the stratospheric ozone layer against depletion. This indicator tracks progress towards the objectives of limiting or phasing out the consumption of ODS in the European Union.

Scientific references

  • No rationale references available

Indicator definition

Ozone-depleting substances (ODS) are long-lived chemicals that contain chlorine and/or bromine and can deplete the stratospheric ozone layer. This indicator quantifies the current state of the ozone layer and the progress being made towards meeting the EU’s Montreal Protocol commitments.

Units

Depending on the metric involved, this indicator uses the annual maximum Antarctic ozone hole area in square kilometres (km2) and ODS consumption weighted by the ozone-depleting potential (ODP) of the substances in ODP tonnes.

 

Policy context and targets

Context description

The 1987 United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Montreal Protocol is widely recognised as one of the most successful multilateral environmental agreements to date. Its implementation has led to a global decrease in the impact of ODS on the atmosphere. The agreement covers the phase-out of over 200 individual ODS including CFCs, halons, CTC, TCA, HCFCs, HBFCs, BCM and MB. The Montreal Protocol controls the consumption and production of these substances, not their emissions.

Following the signing of the Montreal Protocol and its subsequent amendments and adjustments, policy measures have been taken to limit or phase out the production and consumption of ODS to protect the stratospheric ozone layer against depletion. This indicator tracks the progress of EU Member States towards this limiting or phasing out of ODS consumption.

For the EU, the ratification dates were the following:

Treaty

Date of ratification

Vienna Convention

 17 October 1988

Montreal Protocol

 16 December 1988

London Amendment

 20 December 1991

Copenhagen Amendment

 20 November 1995

Montreal Amendment

 17 November 2000

Beijing Amendment

 25 March 2002

EU Member States have made tremendous progress in reducing the consumption and production of ODS since the signing of the Montreal Protocol. In that time, ODS production has fallen from over half a million ODP tonnes to practically zero, not including production for exempted uses. Since 2009, EU Member States have also been subject to the more stringent EU ODS Regulation (1005/2009/EC as amended by 744/2010/EU), which applies to additional substances and accelerates the phase-out of the remaining ODS in the EU.

Targets

The international target under the ozone conventions and protocols is the complete phase-out of ozone-depleting substances (ODS).

Related policy documents

Key policy question

Global and European consumption of ozone-depleting substances, aggregated level

Specific policy question

Global and European consumption of ozone-depleting substances, disaggregated level

 

Methodology

Methodology for indicator calculation

Maximum ozone hole area

This indicator presents the maximum ozone hole area in km2. The ozone hole area is determined from total ozone satellite measurements. It is defined as the region of ozone with values of below 220 DU located south of 40 °S. The maximum ozone hole area is provided in km2 by the Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service (CAMS — https://atmosphere.copernicus.eu/).

Consumption of ozone-depleting substances 

The indicator presents ODS consumption in units of tonnes of ODS, which is the amount of ODS consumed, multiplied by their respective ODP value. UNEP Ozone Secretariat data are already provided in ODP tonnes. All data can be downloaded from https://ozone.unep.org/countries/data-table.

Formulae for calculating consumption are defined by Articles 1 and 3 of the Montreal Protocol and can be accessed here: https://ozone.unep.org/.

Simply put, consumption is defined as production plus imports minus exports. Amounts destroyed or used as feedstock are subtracted from production. Amounts of MB used for quarantine and pre-shipment applications are excluded. Exports to non-parties are included, but are not allowed.

Parties report each of the above components annually to the Ozone Secretariat in official data reporting forms. The parties do not, however, make the above subtractions and other calculations themselves. The Ozone Secretariat performs this task itself.

Methodology for gap filling

No gap filling takes place.

Methodology references

 

Data specifications

EEA data references

  • No datasets have been specified here.

External data references

Data sources in latest figures

 

Uncertainties

Methodology uncertainty

Policies focus on the production and consumption of ODS rather than emissions, which are what actually harm the ozone layer. The reason is that emissions from multiple small sources are much more difficult to monitor accurately than industrial production and consumption. Consumption is the driver of industrial production. Production and consumption can precede emissions by many years, as emissions typically take place after the disposal of products in which ODS are used (fire extinguishers, refrigerators, etc.). The same is true for sales of ODS for certain uses and their actual use.

Data sets uncertainty

Data provided by the Ozone Secretariat and the EEA database on ozone-depleting substances are based on reporting from companies that produce, import, export, use or destroy ODS. A number of rigorous quality checks ensure a high degree of completeness and correctness. The quality of the data ultimately remains the responsibility of each reporting company.

Omissions and double-counting are theoretically possible because of the nature of the reporting obligation under the EU Ozone Regulation. It is estimated that such uncertainties affect a negligible part of the data.

Rationale uncertainty

Policies focus on the production and consumption of ODS rather than on emissions. The reason is that emissions from multiple small sources are much more difficult to monitor accurately than industrial production and consumption. Consumption is the driver of industrial production. Production and consumption can precede emissions by many years, as emissions typically take place after the disposal of products in which ODS are used (fire extinguishers, refrigerators, etc.).

Further work

Short term work

Work specified here requires to be completed within 1 year from now.

Long term work

Work specified here will require more than 1 year (from now) to be completed.

General metadata

Responsibility and ownership

EEA Contact Info

Peder Gabrielsen

Ownership

European Environment Agency (EEA)

Identification

Indicator code
CLIM 049
Specification
Version id: 4

Frequency of updates

Updates are scheduled once per year

Classification

DPSIR: Driving force
Typology: Performance indicator (Type B - Does it matter?)
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