USA: The US EPA is being urged to make HFC refrigerant leaks an actionable offence under the country’s Clean Air Act.

The Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) is calling for the leakage and venting of HFCs to be treated in the same way as HCFCs. Under Section 608 of the Clean Air Act, owners and operators of large refrigeration and air conditioning equipment must promptly identify and repair leaks of HCFCs and restrict the amounts of these gases that can be emitted. Regulations issued under Section 608 currently do not currently give the EPA the ability to control emissions of HFCs.

A statement on the EIA’s website says: “Expanding the Section 608 regulations to include HFCs would be a significant step forward in incentivising responsible leak and venting management. In addition to avoiding heavy fines from the EPA, by undertaking state-of-the-art refrigerant management supermarkets and manufacturers would actually save money that would be spent on purchasing more HFC refrigerants to replace the ones that leaked and paying technicians to refill leaky equipment. Just like upgrading to a new refrigerator or air conditioner—which includes all the good features of the previous version but even better function—extending Section 608 to include HFCs and strictly enforcing it should come as an easy decision to both the EPA and industry.”