The Ozone Mafia

Now that the Kyoto Protocol has been ratified, with even Russia belatedly signing on, a threat is emerging against an earlier landmark in international environmental protection – the Vienna Convention and the Montreal Protocol for defending the stratospheric ozone layer. The threat comes from an unlikely source: organized crime.

The reason is simple. To protect the stratospheric ozone layer, international agreements have been reached to ban the use and trade of the ozone-destroying chemicals called chlorofluorocarbons (CFC’s). In order to replace these chemicals with others that are more benign, the equipment in which they are used – like freezers, coolers, and units for foam plastic production – must be substituted for new ones.

But it’s much cheaper, although forbidden, to use the old equipment and refill them with CFC’s when needed than to buy new machines and use the more environmentally benign but more costly alternatives. As with any ban, a market was thus created – and with it a business opportunity for well organized and environmentally reckless criminals.

To continue reading, please log in or enter your email address.

To access our archive, please log in or register now and read two articles from our archive every month for free. For unlimited access to our archive, as well as to the unrivaled analysis of PS On Point, subscribe now.

required

By proceeding, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy, which describes the personal data we collect and how we use it.

Log in

http://prosyn.org/9Cb2CLW;

Cookies and Privacy

We use cookies to improve your experience on our website. To find out more, read our updated cookie policy and privacy policy.