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Media Note
Office of the Spokesman
Washington, DC
September 22, 2007


Accelerated Phase-Out of Ozone-Depleting HCFCs

Editor's Note: This fact sheet was revised October 16, 2007, to add the "service tail" time periods allowed for the reduction and phase-out of HCFCs.

Following a proposal and strong endorsement by the United States, the 191 Parties to the Montreal Protocol reached an historic agreement to accelerate efforts to ensure recovery of the stratospheric ozone layer at a meeting in Montreal that concluded Friday, September 21, 2007. The Parties agreed to speed up by a decade the phase-out of hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs). HCFCs were originally considered transition chemicals used as substitutes for chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) because they deplete the ozone layer less. The agreement also holds the promise of substantial benefits for the climate system as it will spur development of new alternatives to HCFCs that have low or no global warming affect.

Specifically, the Montreal Protocol Parties agreed:

  • That developing countries will push forward setting their baseline for production and consumption of HCFCs from 2015 to 2009-2010.
  • That developing countries will also freeze production and consumption of HCFCs in 2013 instead of 2016.
  • That developed countries will phase out production of HCFCs by 2020, allowing for a tail from 2020-2030 to meet servicing needs in installed equipment.
  • That developed countries will reduce HCFC consumption by 75% in 2010, 90% in 2015 with a phase out in 2020, allowing for a service tail from 2020-2030.
  • That developing countries will reduce their HCFC production and consumption by 10% in 2015, by 35% in 2020, by 67.5% in 2025 with a phase-out in 2030, allowing for a service tail from 2030 to 2040.
  • The overall effect of these measures will be to reduce potential emissions of ozone damaging chemicals by approximately 47% from business as usual.
  • With this agreement, the world will avoid emitting nearly one million tons of ozone depleting chemicals into the atmosphere.
  • Assuming the adoption of substitute refrigerants that are commercially available today, with this agreement, the world will avoid nearly 3,000 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions into the atmosphere.
  • If countries transition to new refrigerants not yet invented that have no global warming impact, this agreement will enable the world to avoid as much as 16,000 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions into the atmosphere.

As part of this historic agreement, Montreal Protocol Parties also agreed that funding for developing countries from the Protocol’s Multilateral Fund will be stable and sufficient to enable them to comply with the accelerated phase out.

2007/794



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