Ozone Blog

A blog written by Rajendra Shende, Former Head of the OzonAction Branch, in his personal capacity. This blog does not reflect the policy or position of UNEP or the DTIE OzonAction Branch.
Oct 14

Written by: ozonAction
10/14/2008  RssIcon

16th September 2008, early morning in Tokyo. I woke up on the 8th floor of my hotel room when the building shook. I realized that it was one of those earthquakes in Japan. I had the feeling of sitting on the top branch of a tall tree being swayed by heavy winds .My instincts were confused. I called the receptionist of the hotel and asked, "Is there an earthquake? What should I do? " I was expecting an answer like "Run down the staircase, or get under the table!" Instead, a cool Japanese response came, "No, it's nothing, have a nice day!'. I started feeling very childish. My whole life was in the hands of Japanese engineers who constructed this 'quake-proof' skyscraper. And I was standing there absolutely still, asking a helpless question which evoked equally a helpless response. I thought, may be one day, God will punish us for scrapping his sky!

In that week of 16th September, it was not the only tremor that shook me. In a press release of WMO on 17th September, I read, "The Ozone hole is larger than seen last year." Though I knew that the ozone hole will not disappear so soon, the information in the WMO press release was like the earth tremor that I felt on the morning of 16th September. We all know that CFCs already released into the atmosphere for the last 60 years are making their upward journey like advancing war battalion. And UNEP's Science Assessment Panel consisting of 310 scientists from 34 countries inform us that even after total phase out of CFCs in 2010 we will not see recovery for the next 50 - 60 years! God is having us pay up for our sins in the past. My Indian friend, after reading the WMO press release asked me, "Is it true? What to do?" I responded, "No, nothing, have a nice day!"

The world market too went down the hill like rolling stones during that week. I felt tremors every day of that week when I surfed the internet. Billons were getting lost every day. I said to myself "maybe God is punishing the
markets for their greed!" I called my son who is a financial analyst in Dublin and asked him "What to do? I still feel these market tremors!" May be he was expecting the down fall the way I expected larger Ozone hole. Prompt came the response from him, "No, nothing, have a nice day!".

Categories: 2008
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