Events in Uzbekistan mark 35 years of profound achievements with the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer

September 19, 2022
Photo: UNDP Uzbekistan

TASHKENT: 16 September 2022 – Thirty-five years ago the world was at risk of losing its ozone layer, which protect the planet and all life on it from the harmful effects of ultraviolet radiation from the sun.  The layer was being destroyed by industrial-era artificial substances like chlorofluorocarbons, methyl bromide and carbon tetrachloride, putting all life at risk of extinction.

On 19 December 1994, the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed 16 September as the International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer, commemorating the date, in 1987, on which the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer was signed. The Montreal Protocol is the multilateral environmental agreement that regulates the production and consumption of man-made chemicals referred to as ozone depleting substances. When released to the atmosphere, those chemicals damage the ozone layer, Earth’s protective shield that protects humans and the environment from harmful levels of ultraviolet radiation from the sun. The Montreal Protocol is considered to be one of the most successful environmental agreements of all time that has been ratified by every country on Earth - all 198 UN Member States.

Photo: UNDP Uzbekistan

The theme for the 2022 International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer is Montreal Protocol@35: Global Cooperation Protecting Life on Earth, which sends out a stronger call for joining efforts than ever. If all international environmental treaties like the Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer and its Montreal Protocol had been as successful, the humanity would have a better friendly and healthy environment. Therefore, it is necessary to strengthen global cooperation in order to protect life on Earth for ourselves and the generations to come.

In Uzbekistan, the achievements were marked at a series of events held at Tashkent State Technical University (TSTU), jointly organized by the State Committee of the Republic of Uzbekistan for Ecology and Environmental Protection and UNDP within the dedicated project funded by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and in partnership with the University.

Photo: UNDP Uzbekistan

“This year, it is gratifying to see the joint initiatives of ozone champions, the key actors in the field of ozone layer protection in Uzbekistan. We have awarded a one-year scholarship to female students in the field of refrigeration and air conditioning to encourage them to commit to exemplary careers in this area, thereby increasing their role in the technical field and contributing to the strengthening of gender equality,” said Doina Munteanu, Deputy Resident Representative, UNDP in Uzbekistan.

Today, celebrating this date together with the Tashkent State Technical University, we also awarded the winners of a number of competitions held as part of a joint project to protect aimed at the protection of ozone layer. The competition, which supports the policy of gender equality, determined three winners who received an educational grant for one year to continue their studies in the field of "Technological machines and equipment (Refrigeration Engineering)" at the Faculty of Mechanics at TSTU. This also implies replenishment of the ranks of female technicians.

Photo: UNDP Uzbekistan

Awarding of the winners of the international scholar article contest took place as part of the event. The participants of the competition demonstrated their knowledge and experience, which, in the opinion of the Evaluation Committee, will help the decision makers in future activities and policies for the protection of the ozone layer.

As part of series of events on International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer, together with Ministry of Public Education, lessons on the importance of ozone layer protection were conducted throughout the country. We believe, schoolchildren’s ecological knowledge is crucial to reinforcing our joint efforts in taking care of the environment.