Mario Molina Cause of Death – Nobel laureate who Revealed Threat to Ozone

Mario Molina’s Cause of Death 

He shared the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for research that showed how chemicals in hair spray and other products could cause grave environmental damage. Mario Molina, who shared a Nobel Prize for work showing the damage that chemicals used in hair spray and refrigerators wreak on the ozone layer, which led to one of the most successful international efforts to combat environmental risk, died on Oct. 7 at his home in Mexico City. He was 77. Dr. Molina, a United States citizen born in Mexico, was a “trailblazing pioneer of the climate movement,” former Vice President Al Gore said by email, adding that Dr. Molina’s efforts “to understand and communicate the threat to the ozone layer changed the course of history.” Dr. Molina and F. Sherwood Rowland of the University of California, Irvine, found that chemicals known as chlorofluorocarbons, or CFCs, would deplete the ozone layer in the upper atmosphere. Their discovery reshaped global environmental policy.

The implications of their findings were dire: Without the protective ozone, an increase in ultraviolet radiation would put the health of many species, including humans, at risk. The two scientists pushed for a ban on CFCs, beginning for both of them a lifetime of science-based environmental advocacy through congressional testimony and interviews. Their work led to the 1987 Montreal Protocol, a landmark international environmental treaty to phase out the production of the compounds. That treaty had an unanticipated beneficial effect: It would later turn out that many of the ozone-destroying gases are also potent greenhouse gases. Without the treaty, climate change would have progressed even more rapidly than it has. In 1995, the two men shared the Nobel Prize with Paul J. Cruzan of the Max Planck Institute in Germany. The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences said in its announcement of the award that “the three researchers have contributed to our salvation from a global environmental problem that could have catastrophic consequences.”


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