Nobel laureate Paul Crutzen

The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences awarded Dr. Paul Crutzen from the Max-Planck Institute for Chemistry with the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 1995. Professor Mario Molina from MIT, Cambridge, MA, USA and Professor F. Sherwood Rowland from the University of California, Irvine, USA, also received the prize for their chemistry research dealing with the atmosphere, especially the formation and depletion of ozone. Paul Crutzen has been an honorary professor at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz since 1993.


Excerpt from the statement:

[...] Through their ground-breaking achievements, Paul Crutzen, Mario Molina and Sherwood Rowland have allowed us to now understand the chemical processes behind the formation and depletion of ozone. Their most important contribution is that they have proved how sensitively the ozone layer reacts to the emissions of certain air pollutants caused by mankind. It turned out that the thin ozone layer is like an Achilles' heel for humankind, which can be seriously damaged by seemingly moderate changes to the composition of the atmosphere. Thanks to their explanation of the chemical mechanisms that determine the concentration of atmospheric ozone as well as their warnings on the consequences of unrestrained emission of ozone-damaging gases, the three scientists made an important contribution towards protecting us all from a global environmental problem that could have catastrophic consequences.