September 16 is observed globally as the United Nations ‘International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone layer’ or ‘World Ozone Day’. The United Nations had declared this day as ‘International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone layer’ on December 19, 2000. This day is significant as it was on this day in 1987 that the Montreal Protocol on ‘Substances that deplete the Ozone Layer’ was signed by 45 member countries of the United Nations.
History of the World Ozone Day
A fragile gas shield present in one of the atmosphere’s layers, the ozone layer is crucial for life on planet Earth. It acts as a protective shield from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet radiation. On September 16, 1987, 45 member countries of the United Nations had signed the Montreal protocol, designed to stop the production and import of substances that cause a depletion of the ozone layer. The protocol was designed to reduce the concentration of these substances in the atmosphere.
Celebration of Ozone Day by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP)
The UNEP observes this day by declaring a new theme every year. Based on the theme, conferences and events are organised the world over. The theme for 2019, “32 years and healing”, celebrated 32 plus years of the protection of the Ozone layer. The theme for 2020 is “Ozone for life: 35 years of ozone layer protection”. For this year, the UN has organised several events to observe the day.
Celebration by Common People
It is not only the United Nations that observes this day. Schools and institutions worldwide also celebrate Word Ozone Say by organising activities related to the ozone layer, ozone layer depletion, saving of the ozone layer, etc.