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F-gas revision expected to pass Euro vote

EUROPE: The proposals for the revision of the European F-gas regulation are expected to pass tomorrow’s European parliamentary vote with a large majority. 

Today’s F-gas debate in Strasbourg, which also encompassed discussions on revisions to the ozone-depleting gases regulation, saw European commissioner Nicolas Schmit calling on members to “strongly endorse” the compromises, “so that we can move on to implementation and make sure these emission savings and other benefits can be achieved as quickly as possible”.

While the majority of speakers were clearly in favour of the proposals, opposition came from the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) Party and the Identity and Democracy Party.

EU environment committee rapporteur Bas Eickhout described the F-gas revision proposals as “a very good example of a regulation that would improve the environment and at the same time improve European competitiveness and European industry”. 

“It means that all the F-gases will be out of our economy and will be replaced by natural alternatives and that is a very clear prospect for all the investors from now on. If you are working on heat pumps and air conditioning, cooling systems, you know where to go to, you need to invest in the natural alternatives,” Eickhout said.

Accepting the concerns about the heat pump roll-out, Eickhout insisted that a good compromise had been reached: “Thanks to the negotiations with council and my colleagues and the commission, we have had a good compromise that is giving a clear signal also for the market, certainly for the heat pumps for consumers, but at the same time also making sure that this acceleration of expansion of heat pumps can be achieved.” 

Bas Eickhout: “a support for European innovation”

He also saw the new regulation as supporting European industry. “This regulation and this revision of the regulation is a support for European innovation for achieving natural alternatives. And that not only makes us a very good environmental law, but it also makes it a very strong law for European competitiveness.”

Ideological

Danilo Lancini of the Identity and Democracy Party called the compromise “an ideological result” adding that it would hamper the development of heat pumps.

“You’ve got too many people in this Parliament who think that they can eliminate F-gases but they think that more dangerous technologies have to be used in order to do so because we’ve got deadlines which are far too soon,” he said.

“We don’t have the technical wherewithal to meet those targets rather we need more balance something closer to the initial proposal.”

“We are in the vanguard when it comes to refrigeration. We’re making ideological choices which will impact our excellence and our operators need stable and clear standards which defend their environment without neglecting to protect their businesses,” he added.

Related stories:

Europe agrees F-gas deal5 October 2023
EUROPE: The European Parliament and Council has reached a provisional deal which will see specific bans on the use of HFCs and HFOs and a complete phase out of HFCs by 2050. Read more…

F-gas deal “will drive innovation” – 5 October 2023
UK: The London-based Environmental Investigation Agency has welcomed today’s agreement on a revised European F-gas regulation, saying it will drive innovation while supporting decarbonisation goals. Read more…

F-gas revision will prolong reliance on fossil fuels – 5 October 2023
EUROPE: The European Partnership for Energy and the Environment (EPEE) has expressed its disappointment with the F-gas regulation revision and says it will prolong the reliance on fossil fuels. Read more…

New F-gas rules a significant burden – 5 October 2023
BELGIUM: The European Heat Pump Association (EHPA) has described today’s F-gas revision deal as creating a significant burden for industry in the short term. Read more…

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