EU F-GAS DEBATE: Draft Regulation gets tougher on HFCs

By Klara Skačanová, Oct 04, 2012, 19:28 2 minute reading

The leaked EU F-Gas proposal seen by foresees reductions of emissions from fluorinated gases by up to 79% by 2030 through the introduction a phase-down scheme, bans on HFCs in certain sectors as well as strengthening the current provisions related to containment and recovery. The draft regulation is expected to evolve with certain provisions changing before it is officially released by the European Commission in the coming weeks.

This new regulation will replace the current Regulation on fluorinated greenhouse gases No 842/2006 (F-Gas Regulation) and will apply to the whole European Economic Area (EEA), including 27 countries of the European Union as well as Switzerland, Norway, Liechtenstein and Iceland. Following the adoption of the Regulation, the European Commission will have the right to issue delegated acts to adapt the provisions according to market developments.

More action on reducing f-gas emissions

In light of the EU objective to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 80-95% by 2050 compared to 1990 levels, emissions from f-gases need to be cut by 70-78% in the same period, which means that more action is necessary as recognised by the European Commission.

Draft proposal goes further than current Regulation

The draft proposal extends the scope to include the sector of reefers, refrigerated trucks and trailers. In addition to strengthening the provisions of the current F-Gas Regulation that mainly focuses on containment and recovery of equipment relying on f-gases, the proposal will introduce the concept of a phase-down, which will set a cap on the annual consumption of HFCs using the average over the period 2008-2011 as a basis for calculation. Bulk HFCs placed on the market will be frozen in 2015 and then gradually reduced as of 2016, to 45% in period 2021-2023 and 21% by 2030.

In parallel, placing on the market prohibitions will apply to equipment using HFCs in certain sectors:

  • Domestic applications as of 2015
  • Commercial applications (hermetically sealed) as of 2017
  • Commercial applications (others) as of 2020
  • Industrial refrigeration with capacity over 100 kW as of 2020
  • Movable room air conditioning systems (hermetically sealed) as of 2020

For commercial and industrial refrigeration equipment that relies on HFCs with global warming potential (GWP) higher than 2150 the placing on the market prohibition will become effective earlier.

Moreover, according to the draft seen by provisions on training and certification will extend to cover alternative refrigerants (including natural refrigerants). EU F-Gas debate series will closely monitor the developments related to the F-Gas proposal as well as positions of associations, NGOs and others and will report on it in a special ‘EU F-Gas debate’ series that will be ongoing for several months.

In the ‘EU F-Gas debate’ series we will also bring relevant studies and events to your attention. To this end, the ATMOsphere Europe 2012 conference that will bring together policy-makers involved in designing and shaping of the F-Gas proposal will be an important platform for industry representatives to voice their views on the draft regulation. The event will take place on 6-7 November 2012 in Brussels.


By Klara Skačanová

Oct 04, 2012, 19:28

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