Refrigerant Regulatory Landscape

Environmental concerns about ozone depletion and global warming have led over time to the development of evolving global and regional regulations, which has had significant implications for refrigerants across applications. Those who design, purchase, install, and service equipment air conditioning and refrigeration equipment should consult their specific country's current regulations, codes, and standards to aid with refrigerant selection for each intended use.

Much of today's regulatory landscape for refrigerants traces its roots to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer¹ (aka the Montreal Protocol). Finalized in 1987, the Montreal Protocol is an international treaty, designed to protect the stratospheric ozone layer by phasing out the production of ozone-depleting substances. This protocol mandates the incremental phaseout of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs).

Under the treaty, CFCs have been phased out globally. Ultimately, the treaty aims to reduce HCFC usage 99.5% below 1987 baseline levels by 2020, with a complete HCFC phaseout by 2030. Since the treaty's ratification, the Kigali Amendment2 and resulting regional regulations have expanded the Montreal Protocol's scope to include reduction and phase down schedules for hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs).

HCFC Phaseout Timelines and Implementations

Once HCFC refrigerant production ceases based on regulatory requirements, reclaimed product and available inventories may enable continued aftermarket use for some period of time. It is important to consult your country’s local regulations for phaseout schedules and laws governing the continued use, sale, and handling of HCFC refrigerants, as this varies by country.

Chemours offers a full portfolio of Freon™ refrigerants based on HFCs that are non-ozone depleting.

Expanded Focus on Greenhouse Gases

The timeline for implementing the Kigali Amendment to phase down the use of HFCs varies by country. Several countries have already ratified Kigali Amendment and others continue to do so. Australia, Japan, Mexico, and many European, Asia Pacific, and Latin American countries have ratified the amendment3 and are committed to its goals. As of June 2019, the United States, China, Russia, and India had not yet ratified the amendment. To address these longer-term regulations, Chemours developed a new generation of low GWP, hydrofluoroolefin- (HFO) based Opteon™ refrigerants.


  • 欧盟 F-Gas 法规

    欧盟 F-Gas 法规 4 (EU 517/2014) 旨在比基加利修正案中规定的时间内更快地减少氟化温室气体 (F-gas) 的排放。该法规包括采取多面的方法,通过以下方式确保全面减少排放:

    • 实施配额制度,从 2015 年开始在欧盟市场管理 HFC 类制冷剂,到 2030 年逐步降至 2015 年基准用量的五分之一。
    • 禁止使用在低环境影响替代品可用的特定应用中使用某些高全球变暖潜值的含氟气体。
    • 要求改进维修操作方法,例如在设备使用寿命结束时进行泄漏检查和气体回收,以减少现有设备的含氟气体排放。

  • 美国环境保护署和州级法规

    1990 年《清洁空气法案》部分章节制定了 EPA 重大新替代品政策 (SNAP) 方案5,以识别和评估臭氧消耗物质的替代品。该方案包括一些影响不同制冷剂使用的强制要求,公布了认可和不认可的替代品清单。这些清单会根据新的调查结果不时更新。

    虽然由于法律上的挑战,2018 年撤销了部分 SNAP 规定,但 EPA 正在重写并计划于 2019 年底公布这些部分 - 特别是第 20 和 21 条规定。

    除了 EPA 法规外,加州空气资源委员会 (CARB) 拟定了州级法规6,规定了禁止在特定制冷和空调应用中使用某些高全球变暖潜值 HFC 制冷剂的具体期限。其他各州,包括华盛顿和佛蒙特州也在颁布类似的法规。

  • 日本倡议和法规

    《日本臭氧层保护法案》⁷引入了政策措施,扩大了原有含氟气体措施的范围。该法案将重点从含氟气体的回收和销毁转移到包括整个生命周期:制造、维护和泄漏检查。针对 CFC、HCFC 和 HFC 排放颁布了独立法规《氟碳化合物合理使用和妥善管理法》。日本法律还提倡在指定产品中使用低全球变暖潜值制冷剂。

  • 加拿大政府法规

    2016 年 12 月对法规的修订使加拿大能够履行《蒙特利尔议定书》下的现行义务。最近一次修订为《蒙特利尔议定书基加利修正案》,为 HFC 逐步淘汰时间表拟定了框架。除其他项目之外,法规还规定了许可制度和 CO₂ 当量分配。加拿大环境及气候变化部⁸发布了五份情况说明书,以协助受监管实体遵守法规。