Hypothesis that CFCs damage ozone layer

Until scientists Mario Molina and F. Sherwood Rowland successfully challenged the belief that chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) were harmless, CFCs were used in numerous domestic and industrial applications such as spray cans and refrigerators. Molina’s and Rowland’s research showed that CFCs could thin the stratospheric ozone layer, leading to increased levels of ultraviolet radiation exposure and posing a severe threat to humans and ecological systems. The research also drew public attention to the negative effects of CFCs on the global climate. Since the end of the 1980s and the signing of the Montreal Protocol, measures to phase out CFCs have met with significant success. In 1995, Molina and Rowland received the Nobel Prize for Chemistry.

Further Readings: 
  • Christie, Maureen. The Ozone Layer: A Philosophy of Science Perspective. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2001.