Chlorofluorocarbons: An Overlooked Climate Threat

Posted by Laura Sanders Fri, 02 Oct 2009 17:00:00 GMT

The Environmental and Energy Study Institute (EESI) invites you to a briefing about the stockpile of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) in old equipment and building infrastructure, and the enormous potential for these potent greenhouse gases to accelerate climate change. These CFC “banks” store the equivalent of 18 billion tons of carbon dioxide, approximately one-third of which will be emitted over the next decade under business as usual. This briefing will explain how CFCs contribute to climate change, opportunities in international treaties and pending federal legislation such as the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 (H.R. 2454) to incentivize safe collection and destruction, and the pros and cons of alternative gases.

Speakers for this event include:

  • Paul Ashford, Managing Director, Caleb Management Services; Co-Chair, Montreal Protocol Task Force on Ozone Depleting Substances Bank Management
  • Jeff Cohen, Senior Vice President of Science and Policy, EOS Climate
  • Kevin Fay, President, Alcade & Fay

Decades ago, CFCs were identified as detrimental to the stratospheric ozone and are being effectively phased out by the Clean Air Act and the 1987 international treaty known as the Montreal Protocol. These chemicals are now also known to be greenhouse gases with a global warming potential of up to 11,000 times as strong as carbon dioxide. Unfortunately, millions of products such as refrigerators, air conditioners, fire extinguishers and aerosol cans that contain CFCs are still in use around the world and are nearing the end of their usable lives. The next 10-20 years present a unique one-time opportunity to prevent emissions from these products as they are retired and therefore mitigate ozone damage and global climate change.

This briefing is free and open to the public. No RSVP required. For more information, contact Amy Sauer at (202) 662-1892 or [email protected].