Biden’s EPA To Sharply Cut Highly Potent Hydrofluorocarbons

First Rule is a Key Step to Combat Climate Change

The Biden Administration is finalizing its first major ruling in the fight against climate change on Thursday by limiting the production and use of hydrofluorocarbons used in most refrigerators and air conditioners.

Following through on a law passed last year by Congress, the EPA ruling is intending to curb HFC’s by 85% over the next 15 years.

The legislation was passed in December 2020 in the bipartisan $900 billion coronavirus relief bill, and was touted as the most significant climate legislation in at least a decade.

HFCs are greenhouse gases that are thousands of times more powerful than carbon dioxide. They often leak through pipes or appliances that use compressed refrigerants and are considered a major driver of global warming. 

The White House stresses that the efforts are not only to tackle global warming, but will support jobs as alternatives are manufactured.

“It’s a win on climate and a win on jobs, and American competitiveness,” Gina McCarthy, the White House national climate coordinator, told reporters in an online briefing Wednesday evening. “It’s really — frankly, folks — a very big deal.”

The HFC provision was supported by an unusual coalition that included major environmental and business groups, including the National Association of Manufacturers, American Chemistry Council and the Air-Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Institute. The chemistry council represents major companies including Dow, DuPont, Honeywell, Chemours and Arkema.