The World Meteorological Organization is warning about illegal production of an ozone-destroying chemical.
The organization cites a report from earlier this year that found a variety of chlorofluorocarbon known as CFC-11 was on the rise in the atmosphere again after years of steady decline. The increase was likely caused by illegal chemical factories across China.
CFCs were once used in products from refrigerators to hairspray. But in the 1980s, an agreement called the Montreal Protocol required that CFCs be phased out because they were shown to deplete the ozone layer.
The Environmental Investigation Agency released another report in November warning that this new, illegal, production of CFC-11 could produce a "bank" of the chemical stored away in other products which could be released later.
The buildup in the atmosphere and potential banking of the chemical could act as a global warming double-whammy. That's because in addition to depleting the ozone layer, CFCs act as a greenhouse gas.
This new report from the World Meteorological Organization revealed some other concerning findings as well: Carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide — gases that are some of the main drivers of climate change — reached record levels in 2017.