Thierry Vanlancker, president of DuPont Chemicals & Fluoroproducts has hit out at Mercedes, stating that there is no basis for allowing one automaker not to comply with MAC Directive.
In a statement, Mr Vanlancker said: “We have seen some statements in media coverage suggesting the hope that the European Commission will allow a single automaker to forego compliance with the MAC Directive.
There is no basis, technical or otherwise, for such an agreement, particularly when that automaker’s arguments about safety have been discredited by their industry peers.
DuPont believes that allowing one automaker to forego compliance, even with substantial penalties, will undermine the Directive and undermine the EU’s future ability to enforce environmental regulation.
It would set a dangerous precedent whereby one company could opt out of an existing EU law, based on self-designed tests that nobody else in the industry sees as relevant.
For the EU to succeed in its sustainability goals, certainty of legislation is essential to drive investment for innovation.
The MAC Directive is critical to the EU Sustainability program and automakers have had several years to identify a solution to comply.
After years of extensive testing, the consensus view among automakers, including Daimler, was that HFO-1234yf was the best solution, in terms of safety, performance, cost effectiveness and overall sustainability.
Extensive peer-reviewed testing has indicated that HFO-1234yf is safe.
Testing by Daimler has been reviewed by automakers from around the world under SAE International, the world’s leading automotive engineering organization, and Daimler’s testing was seen as not representing any real life crash conditions.
This group concluded that the chances of exposure to a fire involving HFO-1234yf are only three in a trillion, and that this is much smaller than other risks that are considered acceptable. Daimler is the only automaker in the world who claims that its cars have a problem using the refrigerant safely.
Since the EU MAC Directive was established in 2006, automakers – with active involvement of Daimler - have reviewed several options to comply with the MAC directive.
That included CO2, HFO-1234yf and other refrigerant options. After intense testing HFO-1234yf was retained by Daimler as the best overall option.
We note that the mentioned timeline for CO2 introduction keeps shifting further in the future thus effectively delaying the effect of an environmental legislation by at least 6 years or more compared to the intent of the law.”