Ozone Depleting Substances (ODSs) are man-made chemicals used for the purposes of refrigeration, air-conditioning, and fumigation. The emission of ODSs has been damaging the stratospheric ozone layer which acts as Earth’s “umbrella” – protecting living things from too much ultraviolet radiation from the sun. But through domestic and international action, the ozone layer is healing and should fully recover by about 2065.
Fiji operates under an international treaty called the Montreal Protocol adopted in 1987 and ratified by 197 states. Fiji was the first developing country among the Pacific Island Countries to become a party to this multilateral environmental agreement. Fiji has achieved advanced chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) phase-out since 2000 through strong enforcement of its ODS Act 1998 and technical assistance from the projects under the Refrigerant Management Plan (RMP). The Government through the Department of Environment has ratified the following agreements/amendments to the Montreal Protocol:
|Agreement/Amendment||Date of Ratification|
|Vienna Convention (1985)||23.10.1989|
|Montreal Protocol (1987)||23.10.1989|
|London Amendment (1990)||09.12.1994|
|Copenhagen Amendment (1992)||17.05.2000|
|Montreal Amendment (1997)||19.02.2007|
|Beijing Amendment (1999)||19.02.2007|
The two sectors that the Department specifically looks at are refrigeration and air-conditioning (for both land and marine-based applications) and the fumigation industry for quarantine and pre-shipment purposes only. These sectors are essential in economic growth to tourism and other industries, however, full compliance is critical to achieving environmental standards and minimizing any damage to the ecosystem.