EPA Trivializes Concerns of Home Appliance Industry & Moves Forward with Early HFC Ban Date in Final SNAP Rule

AHAM is disappointed by EPA's decision to deny the home appliance industry the time it needs to cost effectively transition from hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) refrigerant used in domestic refrigeration to newer alternatives.

Early this year, AHAM asked for cooperation from government and safety authorities to voluntarily phase down the use of HFC refrigerants used in household refrigerators and freezers by 2024, enabling the industry to respond to full market needs.   In its earlier announcement, AHAM noted that the emergence of alternatives will enable the industry to phase out the use of HFCs. However, some of the next generation refrigerants are flammable so a transition will require a cooperative effort from manufacturers, refrigerant suppliers and the safety standards bodies in the U.S. and Canada, as well as the relevant federal safety, environmental and energy agencies in both countries.

In essence, the EPA has set a ban date that will dramatically impact the industry even though the industry is not in control of a key barrier that is currently in place to transition successfully, which is the charge size limitation,” stated Kevin Messner, AHAM’s Senior Vice President of Policy and Government Relations, referring to the need to revise the current UL safety standards.  Unfortunately, EPA's decision to not grant a 2024 ban date imposes additional and needless costs on U.S. consumers for virtually no environmental benefit.

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The Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM) is the trade association representing manufacturers of major, portable and floor care home appliances and suppliers to the industry. AHAM is headquartered in Washington, D.C. and maintains an office in Ottawa. AHAM is the single voice providing the home appliance industry and its customers leadership, advocacy and a forum for action — developing and implementing credible solutions for public policy, standards and business decisions. You can visit AHAM’s web sites at http://www.aham.org