Leapfrog the chemical treadmill
Go straight to climatefriendly options for refrigerants
THE WORLD is at a crossroads. Just like in 1990. That year, countries agreed to phase out the use of gases like chlorofluorocarbons (cfcs) that deplete the ozone layer of the atmosphere. Ozone protects the earth by blocking ultraviolet radiation that can cause diseases like skin cancer, damage crops and threaten the lives of other organisms.
cfcs, used as refrigerants, are also super greenhouse gases. A molecule of the most commonly used cfc—cfc-12—is 10,600 times more potent in causing global warm- ing than a molecule of carbon dioxide (CO2).
Under the Montreal Protocol, an international treaty to protect the ozone layer, developed countries phased out the production and consumption of cfcs by 2000 and developing countries by 2010. Countries moved from cfcs to hydrochlorofluorocarbons (hcfcs). hcfcs were touted as an interim solution as they were less harmful to ozone than cfcs.But they too caused global warming. The global warming potential (gwp) of hcfcs is a thousand times that of CO2 but comparatively less than that of cfcs.
But in 1990,countries had the option to