When Did Mario Molina Die

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Michael Fassbender

Renowned Atmospheric Chemist Mario Molina Dies at 77

Renowned atmospheric chemist and Nobel laureate, Mario Molina, passed away at the age of 77. Molina, an MIT Institute Professor Emeritus, was known for his groundbreaking discovery that chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) had the potential to destroy the ozone layer in the Earth’s stratosphere. His work and advocacy for environmental causes have left an indelible mark on the scientific community and the world at large.

Early Life and Education

Mario Molina was born on March 19, 1943, in Mexico City, where his passion for science was ignited at a young age. His early scientific endeavors, supported by his aunt, a chemist, led him to pursue a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM). He furthered his studies with a postgraduate degree in polymerization kinetics from the Albert Ludwig University of Freiburg, West Germany, and obtained a PhD in physical chemistry from the University of California at Berkeley in 1972.

Pioneering Research on CFCs and Ozone Depletion

In the early 1970s, Molina, along with F. Sherwood Rowland, conducted pioneering research that revealed the detrimental effects of CFCs on the ozone layer. Their work, which demonstrated that these compounds could lead to ozone depletion in the upper atmosphere, was a watershed moment in environmental science. This discovery ultimately contributed to the ratification of the Montreal Protocol, the first global treaty aimed at reducing CFC emissions.

Nobel Prize and Environmental Advocacy

In 1995, Molina was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, alongside F. Sherwood Rowland and Paul Crutzen, for their groundbreaking research on the depletion of the Earth’s ozone layer. Molina’s dedication to environmental causes extended beyond his scientific research, as he actively advocated for the participation of scientists from developing countries in global environmental efforts. His commitment to this cause was exemplified by his establishment of the Molina Fellowships at MIT, funded by a portion of his Nobel Prize money.

Legacy and Contributions

Throughout his career, Molina continued to make significant contributions to the field of atmospheric chemistry, particularly in studying the interface between the atmosphere and biosphere to better understand global climate change. His impact extended beyond the scientific community, as he collaborated with policymakers and researchers to address environmental challenges, notably working on projects to reduce air pollution in Mexico City.

Molina’s humanitarian efforts and scientific contributions were widely recognized, as evidenced by the numerous accolades and honors he received, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Barack Obama in 2016. His legacy lives on through the Mario Molina Center for Strategic Studies in Energy and the Environment, an organization he founded to promote sustainable development and economic growth through the integration of science and public policy.

Remembering Mario Molina

Mario Molina’s passing marks the end of an era in environmental science. His pioneering research, unwavering dedication to environmental advocacy, and commitment to nurturing the next generation of scientists have left an enduring legacy. Molina’s impact on the scientific community and the world serves as a testament to the profound influence of his work and the indelible mark he has left on the planet.


### FAQs

#### 1. What were Mario Molina’s significant contributions to environmental science?
Mario Molina’s groundbreaking research on the detrimental effects of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) on the ozone layer and his advocacy for environmental causes were among his significant contributions to environmental science.

#### 2. What was the impact of Mario Molina’s research on the Montreal Protocol?
Mario Molina’s research on CFCs and ozone depletion played a pivotal role in the ratification of the Montreal Protocol, the first global treaty aimed at reducing CFC emissions and protecting the ozone layer.

#### 3. What was the focus of Mario Molina’s work at MIT?
During his time at MIT, Mario Molina focused on studying the interface between the atmosphere and biosphere to gain a better understanding of global climate change.

#### 4. What was the significance of the Molina Fellowships at MIT?
The Molina Fellowships, established by Mario Molina using a portion of his Nobel Prize money, aimed to encourage the participation of scientists from developing countries in global environmental efforts.

#### 5. What was the legacy of Mario Molina’s environmental advocacy?
Mario Molina’s legacy includes the establishment of the Mario Molina Center for Strategic Studies in Energy and the Environment, an organization dedicated to promoting sustainable development and economic growth through the integration of science and public policy.

#### 6. What honors and awards did Mario Molina receive for his contributions to environmental science?
Mario Molina received numerous accolades and honors, including the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and the United Nations Champion of the Earth Award, in recognition of his significant contributions to environmental science and advocacy.

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FAQs

1. What were Mario Molina’s significant contributions to environmental science?
Mario Molina’s groundbreaking research on the detrimental effects of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) on the ozone layer and his advocacy for environmental causes were among his significant contributions to environmental science.

2. What was the impact of Mario Molina’s research on the Montreal Protocol?
Mario Molina’s research on CFCs and ozone depletion played a pivotal role in the ratification of the Montreal Protocol, the first global treaty aimed at reducing CFC emissions and protecting the ozone layer.

3. What was the focus of Mario Molina’s work at MIT?
During his time at MIT, Mario Molina focused on studying the interface between the atmosphere and biosphere to gain a better understanding of global climate change.

4. What was the significance of the Molina Fellowships at MIT?
The Molina Fellowships, established by Mario Molina using a portion of his Nobel Prize money, aimed to encourage the participation of scientists from developing countries in global environmental efforts.

5. What was the legacy of Mario Molina’s environmental advocacy?
Mario Molina’s legacy includes the establishment of the Mario Molina Center for Strategic Studies in Energy and the Environment, an organization dedicated to promoting sustainable development and economic growth through the integration of science and public policy.

6. What honors and awards did Mario Molina receive for his contributions to environmental science?
Mario Molina received numerous accolades and honors, including the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and the United Nations Champion of the Earth Award, in recognition of his significant contributions to environmental science and advocacy.

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