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Ozone Regulations Update, December 1999

On 21 December 1998, the Environment Council reached Political Agreement on the Commission proposal for a new regulation on ozone-depleting substances – COM (1998) 398 final. The final compromise package, while less ambitious than the Commission proposal, goes further than the Montreal Protocol and therefore maintains the tradition of Community leadership in this important area. The main elements of the Political Agreement are:

•A more ambitious phaseout schedule for use, production and supply of Methyl bromide as an agricultural pesticide

Date New EU Regulation Montreal Protocol
1 January 2001 -60% -50%
1 January 2003 -75% -70%
1 January 2005 Phaseout Phaseout

•A cap of the use of MBr for quarantine and pre-shipment at average of 1996-98 use, with provision further to restrict this use in future as alternatives are introduced.

•Use bans for HCFCs progressively extended to all applications.

Application Date for ban Approximate share of EU HCFC-use
All new systems except those below. 1 January 2001 4%
Fixed air-conditioning with less than 100 kW cooling effect. 1 January 2003 1,5%
Reversible air-conditioners/heat pumps. 1 January 2004 1,5%
Refilling of virgin HCFCs in refrigeration and air-conditioning equipment existing at that date. 1 January 2010 25%
Polyethylene and safety integral skin foams. 1 January 2000 2%
Extruded polystyrene foams except in use for insulated transport. 1 January 2002 10%
Polyurethane foams for appliances, flexible faced laminates and sandwich panels except where used in insulated transports 1 January 2003 37%
All other foams (including those exempt above) 1 January 2004 10%
Solvents except for precision cleaning in the aerospace/aeronautics industry. 1 January 2002 6%
Solvents used for precision cleaning in the aerospace/aeronautics industry. 1 January 2009 3%

•Reduction to 2,0% of the limit (‘cap’) for placing HCFCs on the European market, followed by a staged reduction designed to mirror the decrease in demand as a result of the use bans shown above.

•An immediate freeze on HCFC production and a staged reduction starting in 2008 with phaseout 2025. A ban on exports of HCFCs to countries that have not ratified the Copenhagen amendment (non-Parties) from 1 January 2004.

•An immediate ban on sales of CFCs, and ban on sales and use of halons and other fully halogenated substances.

•Ban on use of CFCs for refilling refrigeration systems from 1 January 2001. Ban on use of non-critical halon fire-fighting equipment from 1 January 2003 and mandatory decommissioning of non-critical halon systems by 1 January 2004.

•An export licensing system for the remaining trade in ODS and ban on "import" for repackaging and "export", so called Inward processing of CFCs.


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