How is the supply of fluorinated greenhouse gases to the EU market developing?

Policy Question
Indicator codes: CSI 044 , CLIM 048

Key messages

Fluorinated greenhouse gases reported under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change accounted for approximately 3 % of overall greenhouse gas emissions, expressed in tonnes COequivalent, in the EU in 2017. There was a 3 % decline in fluorinated greenhouse emissions in the EU in 2015, the first time a decline had been observed in 15 years. In 2016 and 2017, total fluorinated greenhouse gas emissions decreased by a further 1 % and 2 %, respectively. Increases in SF6 were offset by decreases in HFCs and NF3.

The supply of fluorinated greenhouse gases to the EU, measured in CO2 equivalents, has been decreasing since 2010, with the exception of 2014, which saw extraordinarily high levels of hydrofluorocarbon imports prior to the EU-wide hydrofluorocarbon phase-down, coming into effect in 2015 under the EU F-gas Regulation (Regulation (EU) No 517/2014).

The supply of unsaturated hydrofluorocarbons and hydrochlorofluorocarbons that have low global warming potential (GWP) approximately doubled each year from 2014 to 2017, replacing hydrofluorocarbons that have high global warming potential. However, trends in the use of non-halogenated refrigerants, which can also substitute hydrofluorocarbons, are not covered by statistics.

The EU is on track to phase down the use of hydrofluorocarbons, in terms of both complying with its internal targets under the EU F-Gas Regulation since 2015, and reaching the hydrofluorocarbon consumption limit, in effect since 2019, under the Montreal Protocol.

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