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Europe must take the lead to phase out HFCs

Group welcomes European Commission’s move to reduce emissions

 

LONDON: The London-based Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) today welcomed a move by the European Commission to reduce emissions of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), the super greenhouse gases used in refrigeration and air conditioning, and urged the European Union to work towards phasing out the chemicals by 2020.

The call came as the Commission published its final report on the progress made to reduce emissions of the gases over the past five years and launched a public consultation to identify new methods for reducing HFC use and emissions.

“EIA is pleased that the Commission has recognised that the current situation is not satisfactory and that more needs to be done to reduce emissions of these super greenhouse gases,” said EIA Senior Campaigner Clare Perry. “We are particularly pleased that the Commission recognises that the best way to stop F-gas emissions is to stop using them. Climate-friendly alternatives are available.”

Alternative refrigerants such as hydrocarbons, ammonia and carbon dioxide have become increasingly commonplace in Europe and around the world, and will be able to replace F-gases in the coming years.

“This is a golden opportunity to end emissions of one of the six main types of greenhouse gas, and we are urging the Commission to propose a phase-out of F-gases in Europe by 2020,” added Perry.

“Phasing out HFCs is the most significant, immediate, cost-effective and rational strategy available in the short-term for combating climate change. The EU must show global leadership by rapidly phasing out HFC use in its own market for a global phase-out to become reality.”

Interviews are available on request; please contact Clare Perry at clareperry@eia-international.org or telephone +34 664348821, or Alasdair Cameron at alasdaircameron@eia-international.org or telephone 020 7354 7960.

 

EDITORS’ NOTES

1. The Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) is a UK-based Non Governmental Organisation and charitable trust (registered charity number 1040615) that investigates and campaigns against a wide range of environmental crimes, including illegal wildlife trade, illegal logging, hazardous waste, and trade in climate and ozone-altering chemicals.

2. EIA recently published a two-page background document on F-gases; read it here

3. The Commission’s announcement can be found here.

 

Environmental Investigation Agency
62-63 Upper Street
London N1 0NY
UK
www.eia-international.org
Tel: +44 207 354 7960
Fax: +44 207 354 7961

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