Depletion Date: March 4, 1996
(The Scientist, Vol:10, #5, pg.9 & 12, March 4, 1996)
(Copyright ©, The Scientist, Inc.)

Editor's Note: Three months ago, the Nobel Prize in chemistry was presented to three researchers "for their work in atmospheric chemistry, particularly concerning the formation and decomposition of ozone." In announcing the awarding of the 1995 prize to Paul Crutzen of the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry in Mainz, Germany; Mario Molina of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology; and F. Sherwood Rowland of the University of California, Irvine, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences noted that they "showed how sensitive the ozone layer is to the influence of anthropogenic compounds."

The selection of ozone research pioneers as 1995 chemistry laureates hardly settled the issue of ozone-layer depletion, however. A few atmospheric scientists, as well as members of the United States Congress, have continued to debate whether the global decision to...

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