Protecting the ozone layer
Ozone-depleting chemicals in Finland
The manufacturing, marketing, use and export of ozone-depleting substances and products that contain them is generally prohibited in Finland. Exceptions include the unavoidable use of such products for certain analytical processes in laboratories, and in the maintenance of refrigeration equipment that contains HCFC compounds with re-used or regenerated gases (until 31.12.2014)- import and use of virgin HCFC's is forbidden . Ozone-depleting substances have never been manufactured in Finland.
In Finland ozone-depleting substances may still occur in equipment in use, particularly in refrigerants and insulation foams. When no longer in use, ozone-depleting substances and any equipment or materials containing them are classified in Finland as hazardous wastes.
Action to prevent ozone depletion
Two major international agreements aim to protect the ozone layer. The Vienna Convention sets out a framework for scientific and technical co-operation related to the monitoring of the ozone layer; while the Montreal Protocol controls the manufacture, use and trading of ozone-depleting substances. Finland has ratified the Vienna Convention (in 1986), and the Montreal Protocol (in 1988), as well as the Protocol’s four subsequent amendments.
Finland has additionally transposed the EC Regulation on ozone-depleting substances, which ensures that the requirements of the Montreal Protocol are met in the European Community, and also includes some stricter controls than those set in the Protocol. The European Commission issues permits and quotas related to imports of ozone-depleting substances to Finland on the basis of this Regulation.
Finland’s national legislation sets out detailed controls over the maintenance and safe disposal of equipment containing ozone-depleting substances, including requirements related to the competence of maintenance and waste disposal staff.
Controls over the use of ozone-depleting substances in Finland are supervised by the authorities as defined in the Environmental Protection Act, the Waste Act and the Chemicals Act.
Finland participates actively in Nordic co-operation projects organised under the auspices of the Nordic Council of Ministers to combat ozone depletion.
In 1991 the Government of Finland established the Finnish Trust Fund, to help more developing countries to join the Montreal Protocol. Funding was provided for a total of twenty developing countries, who have all subsequently been able to ratify the Protocol.
Research into ozone is closely linked to research on climate change. Finnish scientists have contributed greatly to international work in this field. Research conducted at the Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) focuses on ozone in the both the stratosphere and the troposphere, as well as the related chemical reactions in the atmosphere. The FMI’s Arctic Research Centre maintains one of the longest-running time series of data on atmospheric ozone concentrations in the Arctic