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Report stresses need for refrigerant management

USA: The extent to which minimising refrigerant leaks and maximising end-of-life recovery and reclamation can avoid fluorocarbon emissions in the USA is spelled out in a new report.  

The report, The 90 Billion Ton Opportunity: Lifecycle Refrigerant Management, is published by the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA), Institute for Governance & Sustainable Development (IGSD), and Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). 

As the title suggests, It lays out the “significant opportunity” for US federal and state policymakers, major corporations, and equipment owners and operators to avoid fluorocarbon emissions equivalent to 90 billion tonnes of CO2 this century.

The American Innovation and Manufacturing (AIM) Act – the legislation that phases down HFCs in the US by 85% over the next 15 years – contains new provisions yet to be implemented regarding just that.

“The AIM Act grants EPA the authority to minimise leaks and maximise recovery, reclaim, and destruction. This makes a wide range of options available at the federal level to make lifecycle refrigerant management a climate policy priority,” said Durwood Zaelke, president of the Institute for Governance & Sustainable Development.

Many in industry agree that reducing wasteful refrigerant leaks and increasing the amount of refrigerant reclaimed is a worthy goal. “Increasing refrigerant reclamation is a win-win for businesses and the environment,” said Bruce Ernst from refrigerant management company A-gas, who was also a technical advisor to the report’s authors.

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