International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer

16 September, 2015

Wilton Park reflects upon the UK’s ongoing work to combat climate change and protect the environment.

Today, we join the world in celebrating the International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer. It marks the passing of twenty eight years since the drafting of The Montreal Protocol which set the controls and prohibitions of nearly one hundred chemicals that were shown to be causing a reduction in the ozone layer in the atmosphere.

This year’s theme, ‘30 Years of Healing the Ozone Together – ‘Ozone: All there is between you and UV’’, notes the continuing fragility of the situation. There is a need to sustain that same cooperation amongst emerging industrialised economies and the ongoing challenge.

The Montreal Protocol marks an example of effective global cooperation on the environment; with the amount of ozone depleting substances declining and the recovery of the layer expected around the middle of this century. This has had enormously helpful impacts on broader global efforts to address climate change, and has also had massively positive implications for protecting the polar regions.

The achievements to date have depended on effective and efficient international environmental cooperation with the necessary political will to sustain the measures in place, but as the mission goes on, that same international cooperation needs to be kept alive to meet all the challenges that face the planet’s ecosystems.

Wilton Park has worked on many events furthering environmental cooperation and dialogue. These include Climate change: implications for international resilience and for security, a UK led G8 effort to discuss climate impacts in fragile states, and the practicalities of improving international leadership on those issues.

Our event on Real green economies examined moves towards making growth environmentally friendly. The event brought together a wide range of participants to evaluate the merits and flaws in efforts to match economic expansion with sustainable environmental policy.

In response to the rising sea level threat posed by the melting icecaps, we ran Sustainable economic growth in small island states. The vulnerable geography of these countries leaves their populations and industries particularly exposed to the consequences of warmer polar regions caused by greenhouse gas emissions and the ozone hole. Discussion focused on how local and international stakeholders can mitigate risks and cooperatively build stronger societies.

Furthermore, our event European low carbon infrastructure projects looked frankly at how low carbon priorities can be maintained across regional infrastructure projects in Europe. The dialogue analysed potential ways environmental cooperation can be secured without hindering economic development; ensuring robust and stable returns to investors as well as cleaner infrastructure and energy for European societies.

The same cooperative momentum that drove the Montreal Protocol’s success is not only needed to meet the challenges of the ozone layer, but all environmental issues within the twenty first century. Wilton Park is proud to continue to work towards and support this vital cooperation.

Related events

Real green economies (2014)

Climate change: implications for international resilience and for security Meeting of climate security officials from interested G8 countries (2013)

European low carbon infrastructure projects (2013)

Sustainable economic growth in small island states: challenges and opportunities (2012)

Additional Information

International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer (UN website)

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