Sweden joins Philippine National CFC Phaseout Plan

On the Philippines’ local front of global war against harmful ozone-depleting substances (ODS), Sweden has joined the World Bank in helping the country implement a landmark chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) phaseout plan.
     The Philippines is gearing up to fulfil its commitment to gradually phase out CFC use by 2010, as a signatory to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer. With the World Bank recent approval of a US$10.8 million grant to stop the manufacture and use of ODS, the country will jumpstart the implementation of the Philippine National CFC Phaseout Plan (NCPP).
     Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Elisea G. Gozun said this landmark phase-out plan is the first to be jointly developed by the World Bank and a bilateral donor country Sweden. It is also the 4th phaseout plan submitted by a country to the World Bank executive committee of the Multilateral Fund for the Implementation of the Montreal Protocol.
     “The NCPP is a product of careful study by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, with the help of international experts, to identify problem areas in sectors that will be affected by the shift to ozone-friendly chemicals. We have put in place viable solutions and alternatives which will help the Philippines comply with its international commitments,” she added.
     ODS such as CFCs are chemical substances known to slowly deplete the ozone layer, allowing the entry of lethal ultraviolet (UV) rays that cause sunburns, eye damage, skin cancer and even damages the immune system. UV rays also affect the food chain by destroying microscopic planktons, which is the basic food of growing fish and other marine life.
     CFCs are used mainly as active ingredients in aerosols and sprays, in the production of foam cushioning, as well as cooling agents in refrigerators and air conditioners.

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