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Global Climate Change Digest

A Guide to Information on Greenhouse Gases and Ozone Depletion
Published July 1988 through June 1999



Item #d95nov98

In September, the U.S. environmental group Ozone Action released a report raising alarm over EPA regulations that will allow U.S. production of CFCs for essential uses and for export to developing countries past the end of 1995, the deadline for ceasing general production of CFCs set by the Montreal Protocol. However, articles in Intl. Environ. Rptr. (pp. 721-722, Sep. 20), Chem. Eng. News (pp. 8-9, Sep. 18), and Global Environ. Change Rep. (pp. 1-3, Oct. 6) suggest that this charge is misleading because the regulations are consistent with the Protocol, and that CFC producers consider the claim irresponsible. (The original Montreal Protocol of 1987 allowed exceptions to the general phaseout deadline for essential uses of CFCs, and for temporarily supplying the needs of developing countries until the worldwide phaseout, now set for 2005.) The latter article, an extensive analysis, also states that some of the information in the Ozone Action report concerning future CFC production is misleading or wrong. However, the Ozone Action report makes other points relating to the phaseout of CFCs that have not been similarly challenged. (See Reports/Ozone Depletion, this issue--Nov. 1995.)

On Oct. 19, Ozone Action and the Environmental Law Foundation filed suit against refrigerator manufacturers and retailers, charging that labeling new refrigerators "CFC-free" is misleading to the public, since those using HFC-134a as a refrigerant still contain insulating foam blown with HCFCs. (See Global Environ. Change Rep., pp. 6-7, Nov. 10, 1995.)

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