UPDATE: Canada to align with the US on limiting the use of HFCs

By Klara Skačanová, Dec 11, 2014, 17:27 3 minute reading

At the UN Climate Summit held in New York on 23 September, the Canadian Environment Minister announced that the government would soon publish a Notice of Intent to regulate HFCs in-line with the proposals recently published by the US Environment Protection Agency (EPA). Update: In December 2014, a Notice of Intent was published specifying that the government considers prohibition of R134a and other high GWP refrigerants in commercial refrigeration. Consultati

With the aim to raise the political momentum for a global climate agreement next year in Paris, the UN Climate Summit held in New York saw several announcements and commitments by governments and private organisations. Among these announcements was the Canadian Minister for the Environment, Leona Aglukkaq, who outlined in her speech that the government plans in reducing the emissions of HFCs: “We are proud to announce that Canada will be taking pre-emptive action to reduce and limit harmful HFC emissions, before they increase," she said.

Regulatory proposals will align with recent US SNAP proposals

Building on Canada’s successful approach of integrating with the US as its largest trading partner, the new legislation regulating the use of HFCs will be in-line with the recent proposals of the US Environment Protection Agency under the Significant New Alternative Policy (SNAP) Programme. One of the proposed rules could prohibit the use of some high-GWP HFCs in certain applications where low-GWP refrigerants are available and already in use. The affected applications include commercial and stand-alone refrigeration systems as well as mobile vehicle AC. The second of the proposed rules issued in July 2014 foresees the listing of four hydrocarbons as acceptable in six different refrigeration & AC sectors.

Government intends to prohibit R134a in new commercial refrigeration

The Notice of Intent published by the Ministry of Environment indicates that the government is considering prohibition of the manufacture and import of high GWP refrigerants, including R134a, R507 series and R404A in commercial refrigeration:
  • Condensing units and supermarket systems
  • Stand-alone units
  • Vending machines

The measures would only relate to new equipment, while the existing installations using high-GWP refrigerants would be allowed to continue to be serviced and operated. In the process of developing the proposed regulations Canada will take account of the EPA rule under the SNAP Programme as they are finalised.

With the issue of the Notice of Intend the Environment Ministry has launched a consultation process and interested industry representatives and other parties are invited to send their comments by 16 January 2015 to OzoneProtectionPrograms@ec.gc.ca.

Over 20 countries and 10 organisations support global HFC phase down

More than 20 countries and 10 international organisations supported a joint statement on a global phase down of HFCs under the Montreal Protocol, highlighting the need to begin formal negotiations in 2014. Supporters of the joint statement also committed to promote public procurement of climate-friendly, low-GWP alternatives and welcome complementary private sector-led efforts, including the formation of the Global Cold Food Chain Council. The Council will convene refrigeration system manufacturers, food suppliers, ocean and road transportation providers and food retailers to accelerate the transition to energy efficient refrigeration systems using low-GWP refrigerants.

United Technologies and Carrier are amongst those supporting the formation of the Council Global Cold Food Chain Council. "CO2 as a natural refrigerant holds great promise across the cold chain as a preferred environmental choice for refrigeration," said David Appel, president at Carrier Transicold & Refrigeration Systems.

Carbon pricing backed by over 70 governments and 1,000 businesses

73 national governments, 11 regional governments and more than 1,000 businesses and investors indicated support for pricing carbon, which would reflect the true costs relating to emissions. Together, these leaders represent 52% of global GDP, 54% of global greenhouse gas emissions and almost half of the world’s population.

In addition, several countries pledged their financial contributions to mitigate climate change. For example, France will provide $1 billion (€0.78 billion) to the Green Climate Fund, while other smaller contributions brought the total to $2.3 (€1.79) billion.


By Klara Skačanová

Dec 11, 2014, 17:27

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