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IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release No: 1124-07
September 18, 2007

Department of Defense Garners Awards for Ozone Sustainment

            The U.S. Department of Defense and individual military services are being honored with multiple awards from the United Nations Environmental Programme and by the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency for advancements in ozone sustainment. The awards come as part of the 20th anniversary of the signing of the Montreal Protocol, considered as one of the most successful environmental treaties of all time
 
            The “Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer,” is designed to protect the ozone layer by freezing the use and production of ozone-depleting substances, such as chlorofluorocarbons (CFC) and halons, because these compounds significantly damage the stratospheric ozone layer. Today, 191 countries have signed the treaty.
 
            The Defense Department made major contributions to the success of this treaty. Despite having some of the most demanding requirements for the use of CFC refrigerants and halon fire suppressants, DOD has spearheaded research, development, and testing efforts to identify suitable alternatives, and has one of the most aggressive and effective ozone-depleting substances phase-out programs in the world. As a result, since 1989, DOD has reduced usage of ozone damaging substances from over 12 million pounds down to less than half a million pounds, a 96 percent reduction.
 
            The full list of United Nations awards that are being presented to the DOD and military services can be found at: http://ozone.unep.org/Public_Information/4C_PublicInfo_Awards.shtml .
 
            The full list of awards from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is available at: http://www.epa.gov/ozone/awards .
 
            The United Nations and the EPA are planning a number of activities with officials in Montreal, Canada, to commemorate the anniversary of this important treaty.