HFC phase-down: update on the Kigali Amendment and the EU F-gas Regulation

In the European Union, the F-gas Regulation’s objectives were broadly respected in 2017; at an international level, the Kigali Amendment came into force on January 1, 2019, with currently 67 ratifying states.

In Europe, two legislations regulate the phase-down of HFCs: the Regulation (EU) No 517/2014, also called F-gas Regulation, which only concerns Europe, but also the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol, which is international.

The first one was adopted in 2014 and has been applied since January 2015. It replaced an older regulation: (EC) No 842/2006 and succeeded in stabilising the fluorinated gas emissions at 2010 levels. The current regulation strengthens existing measures and introduces a number of far-reaching changes. By 2030, it aims to reduce the EU's F-gas emissions by two thirds compared to 2014 levels.

The Kigali Amendment is an international agreement which was adopted during the 28th Meeting of the Parties (MOP28) to the Montreal Protocol, in October 2016. In order to enter into force by January 2019, it had to be ratified by at least 20 Parties. It is the case since November 2017 (see IIR news 22555). The Kigali amendment therefore entered info force on January 1, 2019. The list of the countries that have ratified the treaty is available following this link. 67 countries have ratified until now, including Japan in December 2018.

The table below compares the HFC phase-down objectives in both legislations. They are expressed in terms of placing on the market for the F-gas Regulation and in terms of consumption/production for the Kigali Amendment and cannot be compared directly.

Comparison of HFC phase-down schedules


According to the report Fluorinated greenhouse gases 2018 published by the European Environment Agency (EEA), the European Union was in line with the F-gas Regulation provisions since, in 2017, the quantity of HFCs placed on the market was 0.4% below the 2017 overall market limit (-7% of the baseline quantity, corresponding to 170.3 MT CO2 eq) set by the F-gas Regulation quota system. However, next figures published will be carefully examined due to the “big cut” (-37%) which was set for 2018.

The supply of F-gases, which reflects the actual use, increased by 3% in mass, but decreased by 2% in CO2 equivalents, reflecting a move towards lower GWP gases. In that respect, large increases were observed for the low GWP HFOs and HCFOs.

Also the EU's HFC consumption in 2017 was already 12% lower than the first limit to be reached in 2019 under the Kigali Amendment.

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