EU agrees to phase out HCFCs as part of ozone-layer recovery effort

25 March 2009 14:57  [Source: ICIS news]

PARIS (ICIS news)--Further restrictions will be placed on the use in Europe of ozone-depleting substances, such as hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) and methyl bromide, after a vote in the European Parliament on Wednesday.

The Parliament backed Commission proposals to update legislation on the protection of the ozone layer in light of scientific developments.

Under the new regulation, the use of virgin HCFCs would be banned from 2010 and the use of recycled HCFCs would be allowed under certain conditions until the end of 2014.

The production of HCFCs for export - mainly to developing countries where the phase-out period lags behind the EU’s by about 10 years – would cease by 2020, five years earlier than the original deadline of 2025.

HCFC production for export would be limited to 35% of current production in 2010, 14% in 2014 and 7% in 2017, before stopping completely on 1 January 2020. Only laboratory and scientific purposes would be excepted from this ruling.

The regulation also confirmed a ban on the use of halon 1202 and methyl bromide from March 2010, including its use for quarantine and pre-shipment applications to prevent the introduction and spread of pests through international trade.

“The new legislation should help the ozone layer recover from 2050 onwards and also contribute to our efforts to mitigate climate change,” said EU environment commissioner Stavros Dimas.

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By: Philippa Jones
+44 20 8652 3214

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