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Lack of detail in F-gas revision is concern

EUROPE: Leading European industry groups have expressed continuing concerns at the F-gas proposals despite the more industry-friendly stance adopted by the Council of Ministers.

On Wednesday, the European Council agreed to an easing of the F-gas quota step down and a delay on some of the proposed product bans amongst a number of changes to the revision proposals.

“While some market prohibitions are postponed, our concern with the lack of granularity remains,” the group of 10 leading European associations and global partners said in a statement.

“The bans must account for the various applications, in particular multi-family and industrial buildings, and environments in which equipment is installed. These systems are not ‘one size fits all’ and failure to be precise will lead to complications implementing the regulation at best, and serious safety risks at worst.”

The 10 associations, representing home appliance manufacturers, refrigeration, air conditioning and heat pump contractors, equipment and component manufacturers, refrigerant producers, the foam industry and Japanese importers, also expressed concerns at the lack of trained individuals to deal with flammable refrigerants. 

“It is critical that time is allowed to ensure widespread technician training and certification to avoid accidents involving systems with alternative refrigerants, and that periodic inspections and leak checks take place to ensure safe and energy-efficient operation,” the statement said.

“Regarding the phase downs, the risk of a shortage of refrigerant remains as there is not enough quota added to support the postponement of some equipment bans. The safety clause for heat pumps deployment is well noted, but the process for releasing additional quantities and inclusion of a maximum value still causes serious supply chain and business planning complications for industry, and putting such clause into motion will take too long to react to market shortages,” it adds.

Related stories:

Member states loosen F-gas revision proposals7 April 2023
EUROPE: The EU Council of Ministers has taken a far more relaxed approach to the F-gas regulations, easing the quota step down and pushing back some of the proposed product bans. Read more…

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