Quantifying contributions of chlorofluorocarbon banks to emissions and impacts on the ozone layer and climate

Megan Lickley*, Susan Solomon, Sarah Fletcher, Guus J. M. Velders, John Daniel, Matthew Rigby, Stephen A. Montzka, Lambert J. M. Kuijpers, Kane Stone

*Corresponding author for this work

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Abstract

Chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) banks from uses such as air conditioners or foams can be emitted after global production stops. Recent reports of unexpected emissions of CFC-11 raise the need to better quantify releases from these banks, and associated impacts on ozone depletion and climate change. Here we develop a Bayesian probabilistic model for CFC-11, 12, and 113 banks and their emissions, incorporating the broadest range of constraints to date. We find that bank sizes of CFC-11 and CFC-12 are larger than recent international scientific assessments suggested, and can account for much of current estimated CFC-11 and 12 emissions (with the exception of increased CFC-11 emissions after 2012). Left unrecovered, these CFC banks could delay Antarctic ozone hole recovery by about six years and contribute 9 billion metric tonnes of equivalent CO2 emission. Derived CFC-113 emissions are subject to uncertainty, but are much larger than expected, raising questions about its sources.
Original languageEnglish
Article number1380 (2020)
Number of pages11
JournalNature Communications
Volume11
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 17 Mar 2020

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    Lickley, M., Solomon, S., Fletcher, S., Velders, G. J. M., Daniel, J., Rigby, M., Montzka, S. A., Kuijpers, L. J. M., & Stone, K. (2020). Quantifying contributions of chlorofluorocarbon banks to emissions and impacts on the ozone layer and climate. Nature Communications, 11(1), [1380 (2020)]. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-15162-7