The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has revealed that an update from the Scientific Assessment Panel (SAP) to the Montreal Protocol confirmed the ozone layer was recovering, and ozone levels are expected to return to 1980 levels by around 2066 over the Antarctic.
According to a press statement issued by Corporate Affairs Department of EPA and copied the Ghanaian Times over the weekend stated that, Since the Inception of the Montreal Protocol in 1987, there have been significant reductions in the production and consumption of Ozone-Depleting Substances (ODS), leading to the gradual recovery of the ozone layer.
The statement noted that the Protocol has demonstrated that international cooperation and environmental treaties can effectively address global environmental challenges.
EPA noted that, to mark this year’s International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer, it partnered with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Ghana and engaged some community members and students from tertiary and secondary schools to raise awareness about ozone layer, its impacts and the issues of its depletion.
“This outreach which forms part of activities in commemorating World Ozone Day and the outstanding advancements made in Ozone Layer restoration, was undertaken in the Ashanti, Eastern, Volta and Western Regions of Ghana,” the statement said.
World Ozone Day is observed on September 16 every year to spread awareness among people about the depletion of Ozone Layer and find possible solutions to preserve it.
This year’s World Ozone Day is on the theme; “fixing the ozone layer and reducing climate change” reminds us to be committed to protect the ozone layer and our planet for generations to come.
To phase out hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) in the country, the statement highlighted that, Ghana consented to Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol in 2019, which aims to phase down the production and consumption of HFCs which were gases with high global warming potential that replaced ozone-depleting substances in the cooling industry to enhance the energy efficiency of cooling appliances.
It stated that EPA’s partnership with the UNDP, has over the years implemented strategies and initiatives of its global commitment under the Montreal Protocol to phase out Ozone Depleting Substances, including import restriction measures.
“By banning these harmful substances, we enable the ozone layer to slowly recover, protect public health, safeguard ecosystems, and mitigate climate change.
The Agency, with support from UNDP, has provided technical training for Refrigeration and Air Conditioning technicians, workshop owners where they are trained on good refrigeration practices, hydrocarbon as an alternative refrigerant and hydrocarbon technology transfer, raise awareness among key stakeholders on the Montreal Protocol and Kigali amendment’s regulations on ODSs,” EPA said.
According to the statement, the UNDP Resident Representative in Ghana, Angela Lusigi noted that, as the government of Ghana works tirelessly to address pressing ozone challenges, UNDP reaffirms its commitment to support the government in halting ozone depletion and foster a sustainable and safe environment future for all.
This, the statement noted that the World Ozone Day provides an opportunity for countries to celebrate the achievements of the Montreal Protocol and rally support for national compliance efforts among the public and key stakeholders.
The EPA commended the tireless coordinated efforts of international bodies, governments, industry players, environmental scientists, and researchers who have played a pivotal role in reducing the production and consumption of Ozone-Depleting Substances in the country.
BY CECILIA LAGBA YADA
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