UNEP Celebrates 25th Anniversary of Ozone Treaty

11 November 2012: The UN Environment Programme (UNEP), together with the Government of Switzerland, convened a seminar titled “Protecting our Atmosphere for Generations to Come” on 11 November 2012, marking the 25th anniversary of the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer (Montreal Protocol).

The seminar brought the scientific community together with governments, international organizations and NGOs to reflect on the accomplishments of the treaty, including its benefits to the climate system. UNEP underscored that through the phase-out of ozone-depleting substances, the Montreal Protocol has eliminated emissions equivalent to 135 billion tons of carbon dioxide (CO2).

UNEP reports that the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) of the US found that the 2012 size of the Antarctic ozone hole is the smallest it has been in 20 years - 8.2 million square miles - in contrast with 11.5 million square miles in 2000.

The 24th session of the Meeting of the Parties (MOP) to the Montreal Protocol is convening in Geneva, Switzerland, from 12-16 November 2012. [UNEP Press Release] [IISD RS Coverage of MOP 24]