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European F-gas phase down remains on track

27 Oct 2023



EUROPE: Despite a 1% increase compared to 2021, the EU-wide placing on the market of HFCs in 2022 was 3% below the maximum quantity allowed under the F-gas phase down. 

The latest figures published by the European Environment Agency reveal that, measured in CO2 equivalents, the total supply of F-gases to the EU in 2022 was 13% higher last year. However, this figure is affected by the very-high-GWPs gases SF6, PFCs and NF3

About two thirds of this increase in F-gas supply was due to a 50% increase in SF6 supply, while HFCs account for roughly one third. As a result, the EU-27 F-gases supply is roughly the same level as observed 2019-2020 for the EU including the UK. 

The figures do not include the widely reported illegal HFC imports, which the EEA report continues to refer to as “alleged”.

Refrigeration, air conditioning and heat pumps continue to be the key F-gas applications, contributing about 70% to the F-gas supply figures, measured in CO2 equivalents. 

Imports of HFCs in RACHP equipment have been rising by 40% since 2020, mainly in split and multi-split air conditioning equipment. The EEA report speculates that this may be linked to an anticipation of bans in the upcoming revision of the F-gas regulation. 

Quota authorisations needed to cover imports of refrigeration, air conditioning and heat pump equipment in 2022 exceeded the amount of quota authorisations newly issued in that year. This led to a 9% decrease of the amount of unused quota authorisations banked by equipment importers. However, the EEA reports that the current size of this reserve still accounts for four times the amount of such equipment imported in 2022. 

The report was produced by the European Topic Centre on Climate change mitigation, a consortium of 15 European organisations working in partnership with the European Environment Agency. It is available here.

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