US Proposes Plan to Slash Emissions of Powerful Greenhouse Gases
Author: Rob Garver
The United States’ top environmental regulator this week announced a proposal to intensify an effort to reduce emissions of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), a highly potent greenhouse gas, in line with an international agreement the U.S. ratified in September, 2022. The Environmental Protection Agency’s proposal aims at a 40% reduction in the emission of HFCs from historical levels beginning in 2024 by sharply reducing the number of production and consumption allowances that the government issues to businesses that use the chemicals. HFCs are most widely used in refrigeration and cooling devices, often at an industrial scale. They can also be used in aerosol sprays and in making various kinds of foam. The U.S. move builds on an existing system of allowances that limits the amount of HFCs in use in the country in a given year. The idea is to reduce the use of the chemicals to bring the U.S. in line with the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol, an international environmental treaty.