A study of the reduction of sulfur dioxide to elemental sulfur by carbon monoxide on a La/sub 0/ /sub 5/ Sr/sub 0/ /sub 5/ CoO/sub 3/ catalyst a perovskite oxide, to determine the effects of oxygen and water on SO2 reduction showed that in the presence of 5 to 16% oxygen, the reaction between sulfur dioxide and carbon monoxide still occurred if there was sufficient carbon monoxide in the gas to react with all the oxygen. At 600C, all the sulfur dioxide was removed at 5 to 16% oxygen levels. Water vapor at 2% did not adversely affect the reaction. The unwanted by-products, hydrogen disulfide and carbonyl sulfide, were reduced at contact times below 0.25 sec. During the reaction, the catalyst itself reacted with sulfur to give metal sulfides. When reagent grade CO/sub 2/O/sub 3/ was substituted for perovskite oxide, the maximum conversion of 98% of sulfur dioxide was attained at 550C, but an unacceptably high concentration of carbonyl sulfide was formed; within 1 hr, the sulfur dioxide conversion fell to 60%. The perovskite oxide reaction may be useful in removing sulfur dioxide from fosill fuel stack gases.