California seeks to adopt SNAP ruling

California seeks to adopt SNAP ruling

California is proposing to adopt the US EPA’s plans to prohibit the use of certain HFC refrigerants, despite a recent court ruling them illegal.

The California Air Resources Board (CARB) has called a public workshop to discuss the SNAP rulings as they relate to prohibitions on certain HFCs in stationary refrigeration and air conditioning end uses. In addition, it will use the workshop to further evaluate the proposed HFC mitigation strategies identified in CARB’s adopted Short Lived Climate Pollutant (SLCP) Strategy for potential future rulemakings.

In August, the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia’ decided that the EPA could not use a section of the Clean Air Act to target HFCs. Under the EPA rules, high GWP refrigerants including R404A, R134a, R407C and R410A were to be removed from the EPA’s SNAP list for use in certain new products from as early as January 1, 2021.

The case brought by refrigerant manufacturers Mexichem and Arkema was not supported by the two largest US refrigerant manufacturers Honeywell and Chemours and, despite its enviro-sceptic stance, the EPA rule was also defended by the Trump administration, which sent attorneys to argue the case. The Court of Appeals decision has since been challenged by Chemours and Honeywell.

At the workshop, CARB says it will present an overview of HFC emissions sectors, reduction efforts to date, the draft regulatory language for incorporating US EPA SNAP Rule provisions into state regulations, and next steps on the HFC mitigation strategies identified in the SLCP Strategy.

Approved in March, the SLCP Strategy describes the level of reductions needed to ensure that California continues to support the 2020 goals, meets its 2030 climate change goals, and remains on course to meet its 2050 goals.

The public workshop will be held on October 24 at the CalEPA Headquarters Building, 2nd Floor, Sierra Hearing Room 1001 I Street, Sacramento, California 95814, from 10:00 to 14:00.

For those unable to attend the workshop in person, a live video/audio webcast will be available here.