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Euro industry calls for “realistic” F-gas vote

March 01, 2023

Euro industry calls for “realistic” F-gas vote

Twelve leading associations and groups active in the European HVACR market have called on the European Parliament’s environment committee to reject amendments which would ban F-gases.

The amendments first raised by the environment committee’s rapporteur Bas Eickhout in October, proposed even stricter revisions to the F-gas regulations than those in the original European Commission document.

Industry has previously warned that the current F-gas revision proposals present an unrealistic timeline for phase out, risk equipment safety and efficiency, seriously impact the necessary accelerated heat pump roll out and jeopardise the EU’s REPowerEU objectives.

In a letter addressed to members of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI), and sent in advance of Wednesday’s committee vote on the amendments, says that, if passed, the amendments would “undermine Europe’s carbon neutrality goals, slow down the building renovation rate and uptake of heat pumps, and risk existing equipment becoming obsolete instead of being repaired”.

“Several of the committee’s amendments are simply impossible for industry to achieve,” commented EPEE director general Russell Patten. “The 12 co-signers of this letter whilst supporting the further phase down of HFCs, are gravely concerned that they will undermine Europe’s carbon neutrality goals and slow down the process of building decarbonisation,” he said.

In particular, the groups, which also include ASERCOM, AREA, Eurovent, the European Heat Pump Association and the Japanese manufacturers’ body JRAIA, are seeking the removal of a number of “particularly problematic” amendments.

These include proposed HFC quota levels that the groups say will not support the service needs of existing equipment or the roll-out of new energy-efficient heating and cooling equipment. It also calls for the removal of “unfeasible bans” on gases without sufficient consideration of safety, applicability, energy efficiency and cost.

Paolo Falcioni, director general of European home appliance group APPLiA, another of the co-signees, said: “ENVI’s proposal leads to an unrealistically strict scenario leaving the market with no possibility to meet consumers’ demand for renewables and highly efficient cooling and heating technology.”

Thomas Nowak, secretary general of the European Heat Pump Association (EHPA) urged MEPs of the ENVI committee to take a “realistic position” to enable the deployment of heat pumps across the EU, “recognizing the diversity in building tradition, safety standards and building codes’.

Marco Masini, president of ASERCOM, the component manufacturer group, commented: ASERCOM’s members are already striving to provide solutions for the fastest transition to very low GWP solutions, but we need to do it by providing those in a steep but fluid and achievable industrial cycle.”

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