ITALY: A leading Italian refrigeration association has called for the rejection of the F-gas revision amendments proposed by the ENVI committee and for a greater emphasis on energy efficiency.
In a document sent to Italy’s ministry of the environment, industry associations and government decision makers, refrigeration manufacturers and installers association Assofrigoristi urges that the amendments to the text approved by the ENVI committee be rejected in the European parliament vote scheduled for March 29-30.
It insists that the F-gas regulation must emphasise the importance of the total equivalent warming impact (TEWI) of systems rather than just direct emissions (GWP).
It also urges that HFOs, which it says are “low GWP and high energy efficiency” must be left as a possible solution in the push to reduce the use of fluorinated greenhouse gases.
Assofrigoristi insists that we can no longer afford to pay attention only to direct emissions (resulting from potential emissions) and systematically neglect the climate impacts of indirect emissions.
With indirect emissions calculated to be between 70%-85% of total emissions, the association says it is essential to achieve a high level of energy efficiency from the equipment, which may also depend on the refrigerant gas used.
Assofrigoristi also takes issue with the “natural” refrigerant philosophy. “We want to highlight that the “natural refrigerant = environmental benefit” theory is highly questionable and should not be adopted as an aprioristic ideology.”
It argues that just because the basic molecules turn out to be already present in nature does not mean that their production and placing on the market in cylinders is a natural process. “The production of these substances occurs mostly as a by-product of industrial processing and subsequent remediation and purification,” Assofrigoristi claims.
The need for training is also not ignored, with Assofrigoristi calling for mandatory training on all alternative refrigerants as part of the F-gas certification process and placing particular attention to the environment, the efficiency and safety of the systems and of those who work with them.
“However, the skills must be ready before the legislator imposes the new solutions,” it insists.
“For this it is necessary that the European Commission and the European Parliament deliberate in such a way as to have the time and economic-financial resources available necessary to create an environment of trained technicians on a European scale a concretely achieve the goal of ecological transition.”
Download the Assofrigoristi position paper here.
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