Groups aim to phase out certain HFC refrigerants

Thursday, February 4, 2016

The Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) and the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) issued a joint letter to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to show support for the change in status of certain refrigerants used in liquid chillers under the Significant New Alternatives Policy (SNAP) program effective January 1, 2025.

The effective date was decided after the groups held long discussions regarding the global warming risks associated with chillers, possible safe alternatives, improved system efficiency, rational product development timelines and the avoidance of market migration.

“This is another example of industry and efficiency advocates working together toward environmental progress, while allowing sufficient time and predictability for manufacturers,” said Stephen Yurek, president and chief executive officer of the AHRI. “We are grateful to the members of AHRI’s Liquid Chillers Product Section, who worked diligently to reach this agreement.”

The EPA is expected to decide soon whether or not to agree to this recommendation that aims to remove R-134a, R-410A, and R-407C from the list of acceptable substitutes in all new air-cooled and water-cooled chillers using centrifugal, screw, scroll, and all other compressor types.

Manufacturers will be designing and releasing products with alternative refrigerants before 2025: the proposed date simply indicates the endpoint of the long process members of industry face redesigning their product lines.

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