Type of Notification
regular notification
Date of Distribution
2018.10.05
WTO Country
Agency Responsible
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
Notified Document Details
<p style="margin:2px !important;">Protection of Stratospheric Ozone: Revisions to the Refrigerant Management Program's Extension to Substitutes</p>
ICS Code
Covered Products
<p style="margin:2px !important;">Refrigerants</p>
Description of Content

The Clean Air Act (CAA) prohibits knowingly venting or releasing ozone-depleting and substitute refrigerants in the course of maintaining, servicing, repairing, or disposing of appliances or industrial process refrigeration. On 18 November 2016, EPA finalized a rule that updated the existing refrigerant management requirements and extended requirements that previously applied only to refrigerants containing an ozone-depleting substance (ODS) to substitute refrigerants such as hydrofluorocarbons that are subject to the venting prohibition (i.e., those that have not been exempted from that prohibition). The Agency is revisiting the aspects of the 2016 Rule that apply to equipment containing such substitute refrigerants. This action proposes changes to the legal interpretation that supported that rule and amendments to the regulations based on the revised interpretation. More specifically, in connection with the proposed changes to the legal interpretation, EPA is proposing to revise the appliance maintenance and leak repair provisions so they apply only to equipment using refrigerant containing a class I or class II substance. Based on this proposed limitation of the leak repair requirements, this document further proposes to revise the list of practices that must be followed in order for refrigerant releases to be considered de minimis to clarify that the reference to following leak repair practices only applies to equipment that contains ODS refrigerant. EPA is also taking comment on whether, in connection with the proposed changes to the legal interpretation, the 2016 Rule's extension of subpart F refrigerant management requirements to such substitute refrigerants should be rescinded in full. Additionally, EPA is proposing to extend by six to twelve months the 1 January 2019 compliance date for when appliances containing only substitute refrigerants subject to the venting prohibition must comply with the appliance maintenance and leak repair provisions.

Relevant Documents

83 Federal Register (FR) 49332, 1 October 2018; Title 40 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 82. Will appear in the Federal Register when adopted.

Final Date of Comments
2018.11.15
Document Online Link (EN)
Notified Under
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