February 17, 2014
The Alliance for Responsible Atmospheric Policy (Alliance) has offered its support for the negotiation of an amendment to the Montreal Protocol which would curtail the global growth of greenhouse gas emissions from hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs). Their statement of support was delivered at the US Stakeholder Meeting on 2014 HFC Activities under the Montreal Protocol co-hosted by the US State Department and the Environmental Protection Agency on Friday, February 14, 2014.
"We are ready to work to ensure the avoidance of rapid global growth scenarios in the use of HFCs and the development and implementation of substitute technologies that allow for a manageable transition around the globe," stated Alliance Executive Director Kevin Fay at the stakeholder meeting.
The so-called North American Amendment (NAA) was originally proposed by the US, Canada and Mexico in 2010. HFCs are substances widely used in air conditioning, refrigeration, appliances, foam insulation and other foam products, electronics, aerosols, and metered dose inhalers. The measure would include HFCs under the mechanisms of the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer and mandate a gradual phase down in their use. Upon adoption of this amendment countries which are parties to the Montreal Protocol would be obligated to adopt their own phase down plans at the national level. While the Alliance has previously acknowledged the NAA, it has never specifically endorsed its negotiation and completion. It does so now and offers to work with other industry groups around the globe. The Alliance maintains that details of the plan must be addressed relating to the phase down schedule, incentives for stakeholders to adopt alternatives and mechanisms to encourage the ratification of the amendment by developing countries whose use of HFCs is rapidly increasing.
The Montreal Protocol has been lauded as one of the most successful multilateral agreements ever to address environmental concerns, as demonstrated by its successful previous phasedowns of ozone depleting chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs). HFCs have served as substitutes for CFCs and HCFCs, but science has indicated that the substances could be a significant contributor to climate change if not better managed.
The Alliance is a coalition of businesses and associations that use HCFCs and HFCs the Alliance represents its members in domestic and international discussions regarding atmospheric protection and climate change mitigation. It supports policies which allow its members to be global partners in efforts to preserve the natural environment, while balancing near-term human and economic needs.
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