Permanent success or temporary relief?

Permanent success or temporary relief?
Time counts. Every action is necessary.
Mami Nerina Roland Randrianarivello

Mami Nerina Roland Randrianarivello 4 minutes

Since their inception, hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) have been major players in the fight against ozone layer depletion. And global warming.

These materials, which are used primarily as refrigerants and blowing agents for insulating foams, have shown much lower radiation power than their predecessors, chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs).

Significant decrease?

According to a study published in the journal Nature Climate Change, the radiation power of HCFCs has decreased significantly.

Concretely, The decrease of 61.75 milliwatts per square meter (mW/m²) since 2021 indicates that HCFCs are trapping less heat in the atmosphere than before.

The amount of chlorine-containing compounds (EECl) in the atmosphere also decreased by 321.69 parts per trillion. This means that The presence of ozone-depleting substances in the atmosphere has decreased significantly.

These results are somewhat encouraging. Thus, we note that Positive development in the fight against climate change And protection of the ozone layer.

Effective framework?

The success of the Montreal Protocol in reducing HCFCs demonstrates the effectiveness of international cooperation in managing environmentally harmful substances. Initially, CFCs were replaced by HCFCs which, although still harmful, have less ozone-depleting potential.

With the development of alternative solutions that are not degrading to the ozone, HCFCs are being phased out, and global production is expected to end by 2040..

Success under circumstances

Despite this progress, many challenges remain.Although HCFCs are less persistent in the atmosphere than CFCs, they are still emitted through leaks from old equipment and chemical production processes. Projections indicate that HCFC radiative energy will not return to 1980 levels until 2082, and EECl until 2087.

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The slow phase-out of HCFCs from existing equipment and their continued use as feedstocks in the production of materials such as HFCs further complicates this process.

And for success to be permanent, It is essential to continue monitoring, controlling and reducing emissions of HCFCs and their alternatives. The transition to low-carbon alternatives and improved management practices will determine whether we see lasting success or just a temporary respite in the fight against climate change.

References :Western, LM, Daniel, JS, Vollmer, MK And others. Reduction in radiative forcing and equivalent effective chlorine from HCFCs. Nat. Adapt. Chang. (2024). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41558-024-02038-7

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About the Author: Octávio Florencio

"Evangelista zumbi. Pensador. Criador ávido. Fanático pela internet premiado. Fanático incurável pela web."

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