Scientists recently published a study that points out the fact that 40-60% of the global emissions of a banned chemical originate from China. Back in the 1980s, 197 countries from all around the globe agreed to sign The Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer, a treaty that had the core purpose of keeping the production level of CFC-11 and the CFC-11 emissions as low as possible.
This chemical is mainly used in the production of fridges or foams, and it has tremendously damaging effects on our climate by thinning the ozone layer that protects our atmosphere from dangerous radiations coming from the sun.
Chinese manufacturers took the blame
However, the treaty being signed, studies conducted in this concern show that instead of the expected decrease in the global emission of CFC-11 that would’ve allowed the ozone layer to heal slowly, an actual increase of this emissions has been recorded since 2013. Later investigations in this regard show that a considerable amount of this emissions, roughly half of the total, originate from somewhere around Shandong, located in the eastern part of China.
This has also been certified by Chinese manufacturers that confirmed that they were indeed using CFC-11 in the production of foams. They also explained that they continued to use this chemical, which was secretly produced in some factories because it was cheaper and had better qualities.
Scientists also state that about 7,000 tons of CFC-11 were emitted since 2013 only in that area, which is roughly twice than what was expected before this report.
CFC-11 emissions might delay the healing of the ozone layer
The government of China is now trying to identify and shut down the production facilities that use this chemical so the problem can be settled.
This chemical is roughly 5,000 more potent than carbon dioxide in regards to the impact it has on our planet’s climate. Although UN officials stated that, by 2030, the ozone layers should be completely repaired, if the Chinese emissions aren’t ceased anytime soon, this process might be delayed by tens of years.
Emmy Skylar started working for Debate Report in 2017. Emmy grew up in a small town in northern Manitoba. But moved to Ontario for university. Before joining Debate Report, Emmy briefly worked as a freelance journalist for CBC News. She covers politics and the economy.