"Ozone Layer Scientist Who 'Saved the World' Dies"

"F. Sherwood Rowland, the Nobel prize-winning chemist who sounded the alarm on the thinning of the Earth's ozone layer, has died at 84."

"The Nobel prize was awarded more than two decades after Rowland and post-doctoral student Mario Molina calculated that if human use of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) – a propellant in aerosol sprays, deodorants and other household products – continued at an unchanged rate, the ozone layer protecting it from excessive ultraviolet radiation would be depleted after several decades. Their work built upon findings by the atmospheric scientist Paul Crutzen.

Their prediction caught enormous attention and was strongly challenged partly because the non-toxic properties of CFCs were thought to make it environmentally safe.

Rowland was among three scientists awarded the 1995 Nobel for chemistry for explaining how the ozone layer is formed and decomposed through chemical processes in the atmosphere."

The Associated Press had the story March 12, 2012.

Source: AP, 03/12/2012