For the past few months we have been reporting on Climate Change conferences and initiatives geared at responding to Climate Change in Belize. Well, it is a complex discussion, scientifically and economically. And one of the foremost issues is protection of the Ozone layer. Today the National Ozone Unit along with other stakeholders held an Ozone Open House to commemorate International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer. The main idea is to highlight the success so far in substituting the ozone depleting substances namely Chloro-flouro-carbons and Hydro-fluoro-carbons (HCFC) - which are the stuffed use din refrigerators and air conditioners to make them cold. Those have been replaced with safe substances known as hydrocarbons. This may all seem like heavy science, but there's a real human dividend. Chief Environmental Officer, Martin Alegria told us more:
Martin Alegria, Chief Environmental Officer
"The ozone depleting substances as we called them or ODS, they were discovered back in the late 70s and early 1980s, like 83/85. The global community came together and said if we don't do anything about protecting the ozone layer and addressing these ozone depleting substances we won't be here for a while. Displayed here today you will see is exactly what I started saying that we need to acknowledge those people who have been working arduously behind the scenes and up front in trying to assist the ozone layer protection. With us here today you will see displays by the private sector; those who import not only the gasses or those alternates that are being use in the interim as we call them right now, but also the equipment that these new replacement gasses as we called them are using. I think the ozone layer protection program has been one of the success stories in global environmental management. It's a success story because of the partnerships that governments have built with private sector, with key stakeholders, the refrigeration technician etc. So it is something that we need to acknowledge and recognize keep layers as we celebrate this day today."
This year's theme is "Ozone Layer Protection: The Mission Goes on".