The Montreal Protocol
The Montreal Protocol gets the basic solution correct, but there are continuing threats to achieving sustainable scale (see Continuing Risks in Proposed Solution). There are problems of coverage and compliance and the timing of the phase out. While a total ban on ozone depleting compounds is the stated goal, there are a number of loopholes that allow continued use. Several steps are needed to provide a more comprehensive solution from a scale perspective. Empowering the body to take rapid action on any substances or threats to the health of the atmospheric ozone layer would also be an advance. A number of amendments to the Protocol would be helpful:
- More rapid phase-out of the anthropogenic production of ozone-depleting substances
- Total elimination of methyl bromide
- Eliminating HCFCs as early as possible
- Containing and destroying halons and CFCs in existing equipment
- More rapid collection and destruction of existing stocks of ozone-depleting substances; as well as preventing the escape of substances awaiting destruction.
- Adding short-lived ozone-depleting substances to the list of banned substances; simply understanding them requires new science, e.g. short-lived organic chlorine, bromine and iodine containing gases.
- Understanding ozone depletion’s interconnection with climate change.
- Increasing the number of countries that have ratified the convention from 184 members to all nations.
- Setting out an enforcement system to stop the illegal manufacture, trade and use of banned atmospheric ozone depleting substances.
- Closing loopholes in the current agreement, such as the exemption for EU exports of CFCs to developing countries. Supportive policies from WTO, World Bank, IMF and other institutions, such as:
· Recognition by the WTO of the supremacy of the Montreal Protocol in all areas that the protocol deals with including bans and phase outs.
· Use of WTO enforcement mechanisms for countries, such as Singapore, that are not in full cooperation.
· World Bank ban on all financing of ozone depleting substances in all policies (eg. Export Import Banks and the Equator Principles private banks as well).