India’s ratification of the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer for the phase-down of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) has been approved by the Union Cabinet. By 2023, a national strategy for phasing out hydrofluorocarbons will be established, after the necessary engagement with all industry players. By mid-2024, amendments to the current legal framework, the Ozone Depleting Substances (Regulation and Management) Rules, will be completed to enable adequate control of hydrofluorocarbon production and consumption in order to guarantee conformity with the Kigali Amendment.
What is the Kigali Amendment
Hydrofluorocarbons, often known as HFCs, will be phased out of production and consumption by Parties to the Montreal Protocol under the Kigali Amendment. The Montreal Protocol, which went into force in 1989, is an international convention that aims to safeguard the ozone layer by phasing out the manufacturing of a number of chemicals that cause ozone depletion, including chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs). HFCs were launched as a non-ozone-depleting alternative to CFCs like R-12 and HCFCs like R-21. While HFCs do not destroy the ozone layer in the stratosphere, they have a high global warming potential of 12 to 14,000, which has a negative influence on the climate. Recognizing the growing usage of HFCs, particularly in the refrigeration and air-conditioning industries, the Montreal Protocol Parties agreed in Kigali, Rwanda in 2016 to add HFCs to the list of banned chemicals and set a schedule for their gradual decrease by 80-85 percent by the late 2040s. Prior to the Kigali Amendment, all modifications and changes to the Montreal Protocol had universal acceptance. The signing parties have been split into three groups: the first group comprises of affluent and established economies such as the United States, the United Kingdom, and the European Union, which will begin phasing out HFCs in 2019 and decrease them to 15% of 2012 levels by 2036. The second category includes developing economies like China and Brazil, as well as certain African nations, which will begin phasing out emissions by 2024 and decrease them to 20% of 2021 levels by 2045. The third category includes rising nations and some of the world’s warmest climates, such as India, Pakistan, Iran, and Saudi Arabia, which will begin phasing out HFCs by 2028 and lower them to 15% of their levels in 2024-2026 by 2047. It also includes a provision for a multinational adaptation and mitigation fund for poor nations. The phase-out of HFCs is anticipated to save up to 105 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent greenhouse gas emissions. By 2100, avoid a global temperature rise of up to 0.5 degrees Celsius while continuing to maintain the ozone layer.
Montreal Protocol and India
On June 19, 1992, India became a Party to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer. Since then, India has ratified the Montreal Protocol’s modifications and has fulfilled the Montreal Protocol’s phase-out objectives for all Ozone Depleting Substances. According to the Kigali accord, India would phase down HFCs in four stages beginning in 2032 and ending in 2047, with a cumulative decrease of 10% in 2032, 20% in 2037, 30% in 2042, and 85% in 2047.
Source: Press Information Bureau