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The ‘Montreal Protocol’ Designed To Heal the Ozone Layer May Have Also Fended Off Several Degrees of Warming

Public Policy

In 1987, dozens of nations adopted the Montreal Protocol, agreeing to phase out the use of chlorofluorocarbons and other chemicals used in refrigerants, solvents, and other industrial products that were breaking down Earth’s protective ozone layer. It was a landmark achievement, the most successful example of nations pulling together in the face of a complex, collective threat to the environment. Three decades later, the atmospheric ozone layer is slowly recovering, preventing additional levels of ultraviolet radiation that cause cancer, eye damage, and other health problems. But the virtues of the agreement, ultimately ratified by every country, are more widespread than its impact on the ozone hole. Many of those chemicals are also powerful greenhouse gases. So as a major side benefit, their reduction over the last three decades has already eased warming and could cut as much as 1C off worldwide average temperatures by 2050.

Now, a new study in Nature highlights yet another crucial, if inadvertent, bonus: reducing the strain that ultraviolet radiation from the sun puts on plants, inhibiting photosynthesis and slowing growth. The Montreal Protocol avoided “a catastrophic collapse of forests and croplands” that would have added hundreds of billions of tons of carbon to the atmosphere, Anna Harper, a senior lecturer in climate science at the University of Exeter and a coauthor of the paper, said in an email. The Nature paper, published August 18, found that if production of ozone-depleting substances had continued ticking up 3% each year, the additional UV radiation would have curtailed the growth of trees, grasses, ferns, flowers, and crops across the globe.

The world’s plants would absorb less carbon dioxide, releasing as much as 645 billion tons of carbon from the land to the atmosphere this century. That could drive global warming up to 1C higher over the same period. It would also have devastating effects on agricultural yields and food supplies around the globe. The impact of rising CFCs levels on plants, plus their direct warming effect in the atmosphere, could have pushed temperatures around 2.5C higher this century, the researchers found. That would all come on top of the already dire warming projections for 2100.

18 Comments on "The ‘Montreal Protocol’ Designed To Heal the Ozone Layer May Have Also Fended Off Several Degrees of Warming"

  1. Cloggie on Sat, 21st Aug 2021 3:22 am 

    Germany, Russia and Ukraine are in agreement for the latter two to become major hydrogen suppliers to Germany/Europe. Transport can be done via existing pipelines.

    Additionally, hydrogen can be mixed with natural gas, while gradually increasing the hydrogen share:

    “Nord Stream 2 could be used for hydrogen”

    Europe is too densely populated to be 100% self-sufficient with renewable energy. It doesn’t need to. We have more than enough potential suppliers of hydrogen: Russia, Ukraine, North-Africa, ME, Australia.

  2. Mark ingraham on Sat, 21st Aug 2021 6:33 am 

    Cfcs are fake. Humans create ozone and the layer is thinner so humans would only ever cause cooling.
    Ozone bonds are like 500kj/mol and CFC is similar so each CFC only has energy for a few ozone.

  3. Duncan Idaho on Sat, 21st Aug 2021 5:37 pm 

    Tennessee radio host who criticised vaccine efforts dies of Covid-19

    Darwin getting rid of the less fit.
    Being stupid is a liability with this virus.

    Better for our genetics.

  4. Duncan Idaho on Sat, 21st Aug 2021 6:02 pm 

    GOP leader who opposed COVID vaccine dies after battling virus for several weeks

    Getting rid of the stupid is great for our race.

    Hint: Look what this idiot looked like

  5. Duncan Idaho on Sat, 21st Aug 2021 6:05 pm 

    Conservative Radio Host Who Mocked Vaccines Dies of COVID-19

    Is this the same idiot?

    There are so many—

  6. Biden's hairplug on Sun, 22nd Aug 2021 2:20 am 

    Today’s news wrap-up:

    The Taliban has humor!

    “Taliban soldiers wearing US army gear mock iconic WW2 image of Marines raising flag on Iwo Jima in 1945 and release footage showing them armed with American weapons while roaming Kabul”

    So who will be next to follow the example of Afghanistan?

    “Taliban triumph means more worries in Africa”

    They have a local chapter of the Taliban called “al-Shabab”. Remember that name.

    UK-media promoting new Conservative leadership:

    “‘Of course I want a leadership position’: Tom Tugendhat speaks from Europe’s new refugee front line after his electrifying Commons speech on the Afghan crisis sparked predictions he’ll be our next PM”

    Tugendhat is a Catholic closet Jew, although he looks very English, who is an EU-Remainer, fulminates against the Afghanistan debacle and Biden… and Putin. And you guessed it, he is very much against antisemitism and pro-Israel (but so was Hitler). He hangs out with Mikhail Khodorkovsky and supporters of Navalny.

    That’s all you need to know that this is not our guy.

    And Tony Baloney chimes in as well:

    “TONY BLAIR: America’s retreat is imbecilic – and tells our enemies we don’t have any interests or values worth defending”

    The Anglo despair is tangible, especially in Britain.

    The Brexit vote was a vote against continental Europe and in favor of Anglostan. It begins to dawn on our English friends that this is no longer 1945, and they might have made a terrible mistake in 2016, with their Brexit vote, a few months before Trump conquered the White House. Now it turns out that England bought itself a ticket for the Titanic.

  7. Biden's hairplug on Sun, 22nd Aug 2021 3:03 am 

    They are with the back against the wall!

    “French director’s new documentary puts Taiwan’s struggle in the spotlight”

    The name of the French director is Alain Lewkowicz, but this surname doesn’t sound very French. More like a 1938 refugee from the East.

    This guy very well understands what it would mean for his closet Global Zion project if China were to take over Taiwan, after China took over Pakistan and Afghanistan from the West first. He pretends to be concerned about Taiwanese “democracy”, but he isn’t. He is concerned about the fate of his beloved globalism (the entire world under control of Washington), that’s now on the way out.

    Things are all moving in the right direction now, for white nationalists with global reach, who aim for the restoration of the European World, that was temporarily subjugated by assorted inconveniences such as Soviets and Anglo-Zionists.

    Soviets no longer exist, good riddance to those, and Anglos are geopolitically on the way out. And some of them might even be refactored into proud Europeans.

    Oh, and Uncle Schmull doesn’t need to apply, once this is all over.

  8. Cloggie on Sun, 22nd Aug 2021 11:40 pm 

    Heineken kicks off electric inland shipping in the Netherlands:

  9. Cloggie on Mon, 23rd Aug 2021 2:20 pm 

    New video where Canadian, currently living in Amsterdam, compares in depth cycling infrastructure Amsterdam vs Calgary:

    Cycling is getting ever more important. In the Netherlands, 25% of the cycling kilometers are done by e-bike. The expectation is that the e-bike will become 100% common in a couple of years time and will replace ever more commuter kilometers, for a fraction of the energy of a car. I’m contemplating buying one myself as well, soon. In principle, with an average of 34 car km per day, this distance could be bridged by a fast e-bike as well and ever more people drive to their work by e-bike.

  10. dissident on Mon, 23rd Aug 2021 3:46 pm 

    PCFCs are super potent greenhouse gases that take a long time to be photolyzed in the stratosphere. It is not “may” but “did”.

    Imagine having catastrophic climate change because of aerosol cans that use compounds that absorb IR thousands and tens of thousands more than CO2.

  11. slope game on Mon, 23rd Aug 2021 7:12 pm 

    Imagine a catastrophic climate shift caused by aerosol cans that contain chemicals that absorb thousands and tens of thousands of times more IR than CO2.

  12. Duncan Idaho on Wed, 25th Aug 2021 2:53 pm 

    Anti-vaxxer attorney who represents numerous Jan. 6 defendants is hospitalized with COVID-19
    “I’ve seen chipmunks with their heads stuck in Mountain Dew cans that were better adapted to their environment than today’s lumpish throng of anti-vaxxers.”

  13. Duncan Idaho on Wed, 25th Aug 2021 5:05 pm 

    First came a spike in cases, then hospitals overflowed, and now Florida has ‘a backlog of bodies’

    At least Florida is excelling at something–

  14. FamousDrScanlon on Wed, 1st Sep 2021 2:57 pm 

    Clog, so?

    Canada is a car culture. Unlike Europe, almost all of the automobile infrastructure in Canada was built on virgin land. We wuz Built for the Car because we had the money & room to do it. I bought my first car at 16. Me, my older brother & our parents lived in a modest sized house 1980’s & we had 5 insured & running vehicles (dad had 2) & we were pretty typical in that regard.

    Old crowded Europe, with some cities over 2000 years old, had to make a limited amount of room & many sacrifices & accommodations for automobiles. Calgary is on the great N American prairie & could build endless suburban sprawl for centuries. The prairie is so flat & expansive you can watch your dog run away from home for 3 days.

    The comparison between Euro cities vs N American cities is meaningless & a straw man. 90% of the reason there are more cyclists in Europe is out of necessity. They simply lack the physical space for car commuting N American style, but feel free to make a virtue out of it if you need to.

    If you gave a new car with a free, premium, downtown reserved parking spot to an everyday Amsterdam 9 to 5 office job commuter-slave, he’d throw his fucking bike in the river, burn rubber & boot around Holland Dukes of Hazard style….Yee Haw!!

    We don’t need no stinkin bikes…

  15. Cloggie on Wed, 1st Sep 2021 3:29 pm 

    Hey lookies, apneaman has somewhat recovered from the fatal blow his beloved but now outgoing NWO has suffered recently in Kabum. Sorry bout dat.

    About cars… you may have missed that once Holland went in the same direction as North-America did and does. Until it was recognized that the car is a disaster, that only impresses fossil-fuel addicted cancer monkeys, glued to their car seats.

    Canada: 30
    Holland: 22

    You might as well ROLL a Canadian to his work. There is no way this life form has enough energy to commute to his work by pedal power.

    If you change the design of your city and make it bike-friendly and car-unfriendly, you get the desired results. Nothing to do with necessity, but smart design.

    btw there is not much congestion difference between Amsterdam and Calgary: #238 vs #338.

    This Canadian, bored to death with Canada, has seen the light:

  16. Sissyfuss on Sun, 19th Sep 2021 2:47 pm 

    This is the Sissyfuss just passing through and yes, WASF still.

  17. Sissyfuss on Sun, 19th Sep 2021 2:50 pm 

    It’s the Sissyfuss just passing through and yes, WASF still.

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