Oman marks international day of preserving ozone layer
Represented by the Ministry of Environment and Climate Affairs, Oman marked the International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer, that is held on September 16 every year, under the title ‘Keep Cool and Carry on’.
The event was organised at the ministry’s building in Al Khuwayr, and included the launch of the third edition of the ‘Ozone umbrella protects the future of our children’.
H E Najeeb bin Ali al Rawas, Undersecretary in the Ministry of Environment and Climate Affairs, said Oman has ratified both the Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer and the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer and their amendments in London, Copenhagen, Montreal and Beijing, according to Royal Decrees since 1998.
Ibrahim bin Ahmed al Ajmi, director general of Climate Affairs, said, “The researchers and scientists noticed during the mid 70s a level of erosion and depletion in the ozone layer over the South Pole due to human and industrial activities, with the main cause to be the use of halon and chlorofluorocarbons (CFC).
“In 1994, the United Nations General Assembly decided to celebrate the International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer in commemoration of the signing of the world countries on the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer. This protocol specifies the procedures and strategies that must be followed internationally, regionally and locally in order to gradually phase out ozone-depleting substances.”
Ajmi explained that in order to ensure the reduction of ozone-depleting substances, Oman has implemented several programmes, efforts and procedures.
They include control of the import of ozone-depleting substances, as well as the implementation of several projects and studies in cooperation with some international environmental organisations, notably the refrigerant management plan project, the final phase-out plan for CFCs, and the monitoring of ozone-depleting substances several times over the past years.
“The Montreal Protocol is one of the most successful environmental treaties in history. It establishes binding controls on the production and introduction of ozone-depleting substances, and has a global ratification of 197 parties," said Khalid al Kalali, UNEP Policy and Enforcement officer at Regional Office for West Asia.
“Not only through the commitment of all countries but also through the daily practices of all individuals around the world, we were able to phase out more than 99 per cent of ozone-depleting substances.”