Monday, June 17, 2013

HFC Agreement

Recently on June 7, 2013, President Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping met for talks in Rancho Mirage, California. One of the agreements to come out of the talks was an agreement for both countries to work together to reduce HFC production. The statement reads

"Regarding HFCs, the United States and China agreed to work together and with other countries through multilateral approaches that include using the expertise and institutions of the Montreal Protocol to phase down the production and consumption of HFCs, while continuing to include HFCs within the scope of UNFCCC and its Kyoto Protocol provisions for accounting and reporting of emissions."

Basically, the big news is that the two biggest producers and users of HFCs agreed with each other to work on reducing their use. Europe has already started their reduction of HFC use and their regulation of F-gasses. F-gasses are their catchy phrase for all fluorinated refrigerants. I believe the F part tells us what they think of them.  There is no need for immediate panic. Notice that the agreement basically says they believe that reducing HFC production and use is something good to do. There are not yet any targets, timetables, or details. However, it clearly lays out that HFC refrigerants will be with us for a far shorter period of time than the CFCs and HCFCs they replaced. You can read more details and background in this White House Press Realease.

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