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F-Gas review: HFC cap and phase-down announced

The European Commission has today announced its review of the F-Gas Regulation, including a significant reduction in HFC usage by 2030.

The new proposal contains a range of measures to reduce emissions of HFCs, including a cap and phase down of 79 per cent by 2030, and bans on use of HFCs in domestic, hermetically sealed commercial systems and other applications.

However, the mooted ban on the use of HFCs in new industrial and commercial refrigeration equipment has failed to materialise, despite studies conducted for the European Commission that show that new equipment bans can be implemented in all the key sectors by 2020.

The European Commission (EC) said in a statement: “Today’s proposal introduces a phase-down measure that from 2015 limits the total amount of the most significant group of f-gases - (HFCs) - that can be sold in the EU, and reduces this in steps to one fifth of today’s sales by 2030.”

The proposal calls for a ban of f-gases in in domestic, hermetically sealed commercial systems (usually small) and some other applications where “viable, more climate-friendly alternatives are readily available”.

The EC added: “A fair and cost-effective contribution by the F-gas sector to this objective would require reducing F-gas emissions in the EU by two-thirds of today’s levels by 2030.”

The European Union has a binding target to cut carbon emissions by 20 per cent by 2020 and non-binding targets to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 80-95 per cent by 2050.

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