Stratospheric Ozone Depletion Ground-level (tropospheric) ozone: harmful pollutant Stratospheric ozone: shields the Earth surface from UV rays.
Stratospheric Ozone Depletion F. Sherwood Rowland and Mario J Molina (1974) –CFCs break down in the upper atmosphere –Release chlorine –Chlorine reacts with ozone, –Ozone layer depletion Paul Crutzen (1970) –Nitrogen oxides –may deplete the ozone layer More UV radiation – skin cancer, cataracts, damage to other organisms, materials, crops
Global Commons Problem Non-excludable Free access Subtractable: more CFCs less ozone layer Private benefits of averting depletion exceed cost No central governing authority Scientific uncertainty International cooperation required
Act I Unilateral Action U.S. Regulations –In 1978 US unilaterally banned the use of CFC propellants in spray cans Canada, Norway, Sweden –Also restricted the use of CFC aerosols
Act II Deadlock 1977-1985: complete deadlock, some symbolic actions Opponents to further regulation in US EC not interested to limit use in aerosols, suspects US of using science to advance commercial interests.
Act III The Breakthrough The Vienna Convention on the Protection of the Ozone Layer (1985) -Encouraged research, cooperation among countries and exchange of information. -For the first time nations agreed in principle to tackle a global environmental problem before its effects were felt, or even scientifically proven. The Montreal Protocol (1987) –Production and consumption of 5 CFCs to 50% of 1986 levels by June 30; 1998. Freeze 3 Halons.
Act III Broaden Participation The 1990 London amendments –Complete ban on 15 CFCs, 3 halons, carbon tetrachloride by 2000, and methyl chloroform by 2005 –Multilateral Fund: funds the incremental costs incurred by developing countries in phasing out their consumption and production of ODS. $240 million fund over the following three years China, India and Brazil joined
Incentives for Developing Countries Later deadlines (10 years) for phasing substances out in LDCs (Article V countries) Trade restrictions: –Trade with non-parties restricted; Multilateral Fund: –By 2001, 1.2 million contributed to the fund; 3500 projects in 124 countries.
Act IV Tight International Regulations Amendments adopted at Copenhagen (1992), Vienna (1995), Montreal (1997) and Beijing (1999). Ninety-six (96) chemicals are presently controlled by the Montreal Protocol, including: –Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and Halons. –Carbon tetrachloride –Methyl chloroform –Hydrochlorofluorocarbons –Methyl bromide
Caveats Imperfect compliance in Eastern Europe Illegal trade in CFCs –Supply: production still legal in some parts of the world; imperfect compliance by some former communist countries –Demand: older equipment (car AC, etc.), high prices because of excise tax before total phase-out.
Discussion What explains the success of the Montreal Protocol?
US Hegemony/Leadership US participation critical But institutions necessary: –Establish and strengthen scientific consensus –Issue linkage and incentives to broaden participation: developing countries had considerable negotiation leverage –Change negotiating proposal – from aerosol ban to comprehensive limits on ODS use and production –Address compliance problems: Eastern Europe; illegal trade, other request for exemptions Realist logic deceptively straightforward
Industrial Interests CFC substitutes found, but: –Alternatives known by 1980 in industry, but active research abandoned; –Research further advanced after 1986, by 1988+ major advance in finding CFC alternatives Concentrated benefits + relatively small number of actors - facilitate collective action But regime still important: –Shift of industrial process/interests unlikely without threat of regulations. –Even weak regime can motivate technological innovation; –Technology Assessment Process – brought users and smaller producers on board; provided information on the technical feasibility of reductions
The Role of Science Placed the issue on policy agenda Consensual science – necessary for cooperation; –WMO/NASA Assessment (1986)-authoritative, peer reviewed assessment on stratospheric ozone: large losses if CFCs grow by about 3% –Ozone Trends Panel (1988): ozone hole; CFCs the main culprits –Depends on participation, sponsorship, procedures, outputs
Implications Institutions should allow adaptation Early targets important for innovation irrespective of stringency Feedback b/w regulation, technology and innovation Repeated negotiations and ratcheting up effects Authoritative, consensual science