Adoption of HC refrigerant in European air conditioners is “unrealistic”

BELGIUM: European manufacturer group Eurovent has dismissed as “totally unrealistic” claims by the European Commission that hydrocarbon refrigerants could replace HFCs in air conditioning systems by 2030.

The claims are suggested in the backgrounder presented earlier this month by the European Commission to industry stakeholders, outlining the preliminary findings of the fluorinated gas review.

As previously stated by the Cooling station, the information document presents a proposal to ban HFCs with a GWP of 750 or more in new stationary air conditioning and heat pump equipment with an output greater than 12 kW. This would effectively ban R410A.

Eurovent disputes a study scenario that suggests hydrocarbon refrigerants could be used in up to 90% of small heat pumps from 2025, and in all large split and VRF air conditioners by 2030.

In a statement, Eurovent said it considers the alternative scenarios unrealistic and expressed skepticism about the modeling assumptions used.

“Eurovent’s data on the current market penetration of non-fluorinated refrigerants shows that this modeling is totally unrealistic, raising questions about the assumptions underlying it,” the statement said.

“In addition, the study consultant does not appear to have taken into account the regulatory and standardization barriers that still significantly prevent the use of flammable refrigerants in heating and air conditioning equipment in many countries of the world. EU, unlike the commercial refrigeration sector where these restrictions have already been relaxed. ”

Eurovent Deputy Secretary General Francesco Scuderi pointed out that Eurovent has always been big supporters of F-gas regulation and the transition to low-GWP refrigerants, but admitted that he was intrigued by the preliminary findings of the review study.

“With the exception of the commercial refrigeration sector, where non-fluorinated refrigerants already represent a preponderance of new products on the market, we do not see a realistic path between the current situation and the substitution milestones suggested by the models. The study places the global competitiveness of our industry on a fragile footing, which would be a great victory for fossil fuels, ”he said.

Eurovent represents more than 1,000 European companies, mostly small and medium-sized companies.

Related stories:

F-gas magazine plans to ban R410A
BELGIUM: A ban on the use of R410A in new stationary air conditioners and heat pumps is being considered as part of the revision of the European regulation on F gases (517/2014). Read more…


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