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Alternatives to HFCs: Path to a Sustainable Future Mark W. Roberts International Policy Advisor Environmental Investigation Agency Joint SEAP & SA Networks.

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Presentation on theme: "Alternatives to HFCs: Path to a Sustainable Future Mark W. Roberts International Policy Advisor Environmental Investigation Agency Joint SEAP & SA Networks."— Presentation transcript:

1 Alternatives to HFCs: Path to a Sustainable Future Mark W. Roberts International Policy Advisor Environmental Investigation Agency Joint SEAP & SA Networks of ODS Officers Paro, Bhutan

2 Accelerated HCFC Phase-out Schedules


4 Assumption of BAU Replacement Pattern of HCFC Consumption by HFC Consumption Adopted for Developing Countries Compound Consumption R-404A R-410A HFC-134a HFC-245fa Not-in- kind HCFC-22 66.5% 35% 55% 10% HCFC-141b 30.0% 50% 50% HCFC-142b 3.5% 50% 50% Total HFC consumption 23% 37% 2% 15% 23% Conclusion: Velders et al. predicted 77% Conversion from HCFCs to HFCs as Article 5 countries phase out HCFCs based upon the observed conversions in non- Article 5 countries.



7 CompoundUseAtm. Lifetime GWP GWP (100 Yr) (20 Yr) HFC-23Waste gas/Refrig24314,800 12,000 HFC-32Refrigerant4.9675 2,330 HFC-125Refrigerant293,500 6,350 HFC-134aMulti-use13.61,430 3,830 HFC-141bFoam9.3750 2,250 HFC-142bFoam17.92,310 5,490 HFC-152aRef. and Foam1.5190 1,100 HFC-245fa Foam7.6 1,030 3,380 HFC-404ARefrigerantAC34.23,922 6.010 HFC-407cRefrigerantAC & T1774 4,115 HFC-410aRefrigerant AC>332,088 4,340 GWP of Common HFCs

8 Two Long-term Options for Eliminating HFCs 1. Using fluorine-free substances with low or zero- GWP. The major proven low-GWP alts include: Ammonia GWP - 0 Hydrocarbons such as propane, isobutane, propylene, and pentane GWP <4 Methyl Formate, Methylal GWP <25 Dimethyl ether GWP - 1 Water CO 2 - 1 Others

9 Two Long-term Options for Eliminating HFCs, Cont 2. Not in kind alternatives, alternative methods and processes, examples include: Roll-ons, pump sprays and other alternates to aerosols Fiber insulation materials Dry-powder asthma inhalers Building designs that avoid the need for air conditioning


11 Barriers to Use of Low-GWP Alternatives Many low-GWP alternatives are currently in use, but there are some barriers to use in some sectors, such as: Regulations that prohibit use of flammable or toxic alternatives Insufficient supply of components Increased investment costs Lack of trained technicians But the current use of low-GWP alternatives shows that these can be overcome Denmark has banned all HFCs and still continues to have one of the highest standards of living in the world

12 HFOs and Mid-Range GWP HFCs: Secondary Choices HFOs: e.g., HFC-1234yf, HFC-1234ez Price Supply Current production of HFC-1234yf uses HCFC-22 and produces HFC-23 resulting in either bogus credits or climate impact Going through EU REACH evaluation where these questions will be studied.

13 Energy Efficiency of Natural Refrigerants in Certain Sectors Refrigerants can have two distinct climate impacts: Direct emissions Indirect emissions from energy use, over the life of the equipment the indirect impact may be larger Best combination is low-GWP alternative with high energy efficiency High energy efficiency can also off-set higher initial capital costs

14 HFOs and Mid-Range GWP HFCs: Secondary Choices Mid-level GWP e.g. HFC-32 and HFO/HFC blends Better than high-GWP HFCs such as HFC-410a Higher climate impact to climate particularly where 20 year GWP is used. For example, HFC-32 has an atmospheric life of only 4.9 years so even a 20 year GWP under estimates its climate impact and the 20 year GWP is 2,330 more than HCFC- 22 Will need to be phased out eventually, disrupting industry again Good temporary transition if no other choice, however, better to transition to low-GWP alternative or in another sector where low-GWP alternatives exist

15 MLF Pioneering Commercialization Of Low-GWP Alternatives Foam Blowing: Cyclopentane, other hydrocarbons, CO2 (water), supercritical CO2, methyl formate, methylal and CO2/hydrocarbon blends. Solvents: Iso-paraffin, siloxane (KC-6), water-based Window Air Conditioners: Propane

16 Low-GWP Alternatives Available for Supermarkets: HFC-Free Possible Self Contained Units: Propane, isobutene, hydrocarbon blends and CO2 Condensing Units: CO2 (EU and Japan) Rack Systems: CO2, glycol, trans-critical CO2 and cascade systems with CO2 and ammonia Central plants: ammonia and ammonia/CO2, water distributed system using HCs or CO2 Packaged systems: ammonia and CO2 work but increase costs at present, can be replaced by rack or central plant systems Refrigerated Transport Systems: CO2 and hydrocarbons (EU)

17 Energy Efficiency in the Refrigeration Sector Domestic refrigeration: Isobutane standard for refrigerators and freezers in EU and has a 10-30% higher efficiency than HFC-134a and also reduces noise level Retail Stand-alone units: HC-290 10-25% higher energy efficiency than HFC unit. CO2 can have slightly better energy efficiency in moderate and indoor climates

18 Energy Efficiency Savings in Refrigeration Sector Industrial refrigeration: Ammonia systems generally 15% more efficient than their HFC counterparts. A replacement of a 3.2 MW HCFC-22 system for ammonia resulted in a 40% reduction in energy consumption, new plant utilizes heat recovery and water heating by a heat pump resulting in a 1.4 million British pound annual savings. Payback time 2.7 years.

19 Proven Low-GWP Alternatives Foams Polyurethane foam: Rigid - CO2, supercritical CO2, hydrocarbons, methyl formate, methylal Polyurethane foam: Flexible – CO2, hydrocarbons, methyl formate Extruded polyurethane boardstock: CO2, hydrocarbons and blends, inert gases,

20 Current and Potential Low-GWP alternatives-Air Conditioning Heat Pumps: CO2, ammonia, hydrocarbons Unitary AC (ducted and non-ducted): hydrocarbons, CO2 combined systems Window units: hydrocarbons and CO2 Packaged Terminal AC: hydrocarbons, ammonia and CO2 Chillers: Ammonia and hydrocarbons

21 Drivers of the Development of New Low-GWP Alternatives EU F-gas Review – Phase-down likely Short Lived Climate Pollutant Initiative Consumer Goods Forum Pledge – HFC-free (including HFOs) in new equipment starting 2015 National Laws: Denmark, India HFC Amendment Proposals SNAP Program

22 Benefits of Leapfrogging HFCs There are substantial market opportunities both as Article 2 countries engage in secondary transitions out of HFCs due to their climate impacts and as Article 5 countries make there initial transitions away from HCFCs. Consuming Article 5 countries can avoid the cost and disruption to their industries of yet another phase-out by transitioning directly from HCFCs to low-GWP or not-in-kind alternatives.

23 Mark W. Roberts Senior Counsel and International Policy Adviser The Environmental Investigation Agency 122 Kirkland Drive Stow, Massachusetts 01775 Tel: +1.978.298.5705 Cell: +1.617.722.8222

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