French Revolt Over Proposed HFC Tax

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FRANCE: Twenty ac and refrigeration manufacturers, contractors, and end user associations have announced opposition to the French government’s plan to introduce a tax on HFC refrigerants.

In July, the French environment minister Nicolas Hulot announced a proposed tax on HFCs as part of its Climate Plan. In an industry reeling from huge increases on high GWP refrigerants this year, the new tax, which is expected to be included in the budget for 2018, could add well over €100/kg on a refrigerant like R404A.

The 20 associations listed in the opposition document cover food processors; air conditioning, refrigeration and heat pump manufacturers, distributors and installers; refrigerant distributors; refrigerated transport and warehouses, small traders and catering companies.

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AHRI Calls for EPA Appeal of DC Circuit SNAP Decision


The AHRI Government Affairs and Executive Committees voted last week to express the industry’s preference that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) appeal the recent decision of the three-judge panel of the U.S. District Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit that found that the EPA lacks authority to regulate HFC refrigerants under Section 612 of the Clean Air Act. The deadline for appeal is September 22. Should the EPA decide not to appeal, it is likely that one of the other parties to the lawsuit will choose to do so. AHRI has been in conversations with both the EPA and the White House in the wake of this decision to provide information on the industry’s position and to discuss what other implementation tactics might be available in the event this ruling stands.

In its decision, the court found that although EPA has the authority under Section 612 to address substitutes that are ozone-depleting substances (ODS), it does not have the authority under that section to restrict the use of previously acceptable substitutes that are not ozone-depleting. The August 8 decision has called into question whether any acceptable non-ODS substitute can be restricted under the agency’s Significant New Alternatives Policy (SNAP) program once the EPA deems it an acceptable alternative for an ODS substance, regardless of any potential risks.

AHRI’s interest in an appeal stems from the association’s strong support for the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol, which sets forth a global orderly phase down of HFC refrigerants. In the event the U.S. ratifies the treaty, the court ruling could complicate its implementation in this country. The prospect of additional HFC regulation by state governments also factored into AHRI’s interest in an appeal. Contact: Allison Edwards.

NEWS: Industrial Supply Company Pleads Guilty

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Industrial Supply Company Pleads Guilty to contravening the Ozone-Depleting Substances Regulations, 1998

KITCHENER, ON, Sept. 13, 2017 /CNW Telbec/ – Canadians value a safe and a clean environment. Environment and Climate Change Canada’s enforcement officers work hard every day to make sure individuals and companies are following Canadian environmental laws.

On September 7, 2017, Fastenal Canada Ltd., of Kitchener, Ontario, was fined $265,000 after pleading guilty in the Ontario Court of Justice to two counts of contravening the Ozone-Depleting Substances Regulations, 1998 made pursuant to the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999. The fine will be directed to the Environmental Damages Fund.

Environment and Climate Change Canada’s enforcement officers investigated Fastenal Canada Ltd., revealing that, from November 2012 to January 2015, the company imported and sold aerosol products containing hydrochlorofluorocarbons—a regulated ozone-depleting substance.

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UK begins ratification of Kigali deal on HFCs



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The UK has committed to nearly wipe out hydrofluorocarbons (HFCS) as part of a landmark UN agreement which aims to prevent 0.5C of global warming by the end of the century.

The Kigali amendment to the UN Montreal Protocol, agreed by almost 200 nations in October 2016, forces countries to reduce HFC refrigerant gases from appliances such as air conditioning units and refrigerators. As part of the UK’s commitment to the deal, the country will reduce HFCs by 85% between 2019 and 2036.

Announcing the UK’s start of the ratification process yesterday (5 September), Defra Secretary Michael Gove said: “Adopting this ambitious target will mark the UK as a world leader in tackling climate change.

“Not only will this deal reduce global carbon emissions by the equivalent of around 70 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide by 2050 – the same as 600 coal fired power stations would produce during that time – it will also help to protect our health, our agriculture and the wider environment.”

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