A study showed that replacing harmful ozone chemicals with “environmentally friendly” alternatives inadvertently allowed compounds harmful to water and food contamination, as York University researchers studied the long-term impact of the 1987 Montreal Protocol designed to reduce the use of CFCs (CFCs).
According to the British Daily Mail newspaper, many companies have replaced CFCs with substances known as perfluorinated alkyl carboxylic acids (scPFCAs), Which do not degrade in the environment.
The researchers say that scPFCAs It has become more prominent since the 1990s, but due to its failure to collapse, it has accumulated instead in the Arctic.
It is important to study CFCs in more detail before producing more, because of the potential risks, lead researcher Professor Kura Young said.
The move was made to limit the use of CFCs according to an international environmental agreement to regulate the use of ozone-depleting chemicals, but researchers of the new study say they have not taken into account the long-term consequences.
And prepare ScPFCAs It is part of a group of synthetic chemicals called perfluoroalkyl materials (PFAS), Which is difficult to destroy, and is used ScPFCAs In automotive, electrical and electronics applications as well as in industrial processing and construction industries.
Professor Young said: “Our results indicate that global regulation and the replacement of other environmentally harmful chemicals contributed to the increase of these compounds in the Arctic,” adding that the results “show that regulations can have important and unexpected consequences.”
They can travel these new materials over long distances in the atmosphere and often end up in lakes, rivers and wetlands, causing irreversible pollution and affecting the health of freshwater invertebrates, including insects, crustaceans and worms.
The current drinking water treatment technology is also unable to remove it, and it has already been found to accumulate in human blood, as well as in the fruits, vegetables and other crops that we eat.