Environmental Protection

Some in Congress Urge Faster Phase-Out of Hydrofluorocarbons

A letter from U.S. Sen. Tom Carper, who chairs the Clean Air and Nuclear Safety Subcommittee, and 15 colleagues asks EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy to take action to accelerate the process.

U.S. Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del., who chairs the Senate Environment & Public Workers Subcommittee on Clean Air and Nuclear Safety, is among 16 members of Congress who have signed a letter urging EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy to use the agency's authority to accelerate the phase-out of hydrofluorocarbon compounds, saying they could account for approximately 20 percent of greenhouse gas pollution by 2050. U.S. Rep. Scott Peters of California is among the other signers, according to a release posted by Carper's office.

"We are writing to ask your agency to pursue commonsense policies that accelerate the replacement phase down of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) in this country and globally," the letter states. "We believe the agency can ensure we continue to have affordable, safe refrigeration and air conditioning, while also driving greenhouse gas emissions down. Recognizing that it may take some time to amend the Montreal Protocol and incorporate those changes into US regulations, we believe the EPA does not need to wait to implement smart policies that can help accelerate these transitions in the United States and globally. We encourage you to focus your agency on HFC applications where technology solutions and alternative products are already available or soon to be in the market, similar to what the European Union has done with their Mobile Air Conditioning Directive. The agency should look to where market transitions are already underway and where EPA action could hasten the pace of those transitions, both domestically and elsewhere. We think that such actions would not only have significant cost-effective environmental benefits but would also strengthen the Administration's hand in the Montreal Protocol negotiations."

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