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Any of various organic compounds primarily consisting of carbon, chlorine, and fluorine, such as trichlorofluoromethane, Cl3CF (CFC-11), and dichlorodifluoromethane, Cl2CF2 (CFC-12). Once used extensively as refrigerants, aerosol propellants, foaming agents, and solvents, they have been found to be major components responsible for the destruction of atmospheric ozone, the creation of the ozone holes, and (in certain cases) contributing to global warming. CFC-12, for example, is c.12 000 times as effective at absorbing solar infrared radiation as carbon dioxide. Their withdrawal from use worldwide is governed by the Montreal Protocol.

Subjects: Environmental Science.

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