Climate action: UN celebrates 100th Kigali ratification

Liberia is the latest country to commit to reducing the use of hydrofluorocarbons, commonly found in fridges and air conditioning units

The Big Zero report

Liberia has become the 100th country to ratify an international agreement to reduce the use of a climate-warming super greenhouse gas.

The Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol was agreed by countries across the globe to reduce hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) – a powerful greenhouse gas commonly found in fridges and air conditioning units – by 85% between 2019 and 2036.

Estimates suggest emissions avoided by 2100 could reach 5.6 to 8.7 gigatonnes of CO2-equivalent per year.

In total, it would be more than 10 years’ worth of current annual emissions of CO2 due to human activities, helping avoid up to 0.4°C of global warming by the end of the century.

According to the the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), replacing HFCs also creates an opportunity to increase the energy efficiency of cooling technologies by 10% to 15%, significantly reducing energy costs for consumers.

Other recent countries to ratify the Amendment include Bangladesh, Sierra Leone, the Holy See and Romania.

Inger Andersen, UNEP Executive Director said: “As we deal with the impacts of the global pandemic, it is crucial not to forget climate action. Climate change could cause even more misery and disruption than COVID-19; we must be resolute in our efforts to limit it.

“The Kigali Amendment reaching 100 ratifications is therefore great news. The Amendment is a powerful tool for keeping our planet cool. I thank those states which have ratified it and encourage the 98 others to follow suit and help to ensure a safer future for all of humanity.”

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