China Announces Plans to Further Implement Kigali Amendment to Phasedown HFCs
16 October 2021-- China’s Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE) announced at a press briefing that it will issue additional hydrofluorocarbons (HFC)-related policies and measures to ensure compliance with the requirements of the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol on Substances That Deplete the Ozone Layer. According to MEE, next steps include:
- Amending China's National Plan for the Implementation of the Montreal Protocol to identify the roadmap for HFC phasedown, including prioritized areas and policy measures (Article 5 of the Regulation on the Administration of ODS and HFCs (Draft Amendment for Comments) provides that MEE takes the lead to draft National Plan for the Phaseout of ODS and the Phasedown of HFCs for submission to the State Council for approval);
- Implementing permit management system on the import and export of HFCs by 15 December 2021, in coordination with the Ministry of Commerce and the General Administration of Customs;
- Promulgating HFC production-project control policies to provide clearer guidelines for industry; and
- Researching and introducing a quota- and record-management system for the production, sale, and consumption of HFCs.
A week prior to the briefing, on 8 October 2021, MEE, the National Development and Reform Commission, and the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology jointly released the amended List of Controlled Ozone-Depleting Substances in China, which now includes HFCs. The List’s key regulatory functions include:
- Identifying the controlled substances to be phased out in China in accordance with the Montreal Protocol;
- Reflecting key uses and the phasedown timeline for these substances, which now include HFCs;
- Clarifying that the definition of controlled substances includes blends containing listed substances and also includes substances in containers for transportation or storage; and
- Exempting substances contained in ODS or HFC-consuming products from control requirements.
The Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol entered into effect in China on 15 September 2021. On the same day, China implemented a circular aimed at controlling the emissions of HFC-23 by-products. Since that time, China has continued to release additional measures and announce plans for Kigali Amendment implementation.
The Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol, agreed by the Parties in October 2016, represents the single biggest piece of climate mitigation to date. A fast HFC phasedown can avoid up to 0.5°C of future warming by 2100. To date, 127 countries have ratified the Kigali Amendment. Beyond phasing down HFCs, improving the energy efficiency of cooling equipment has the potential to at least double the climate benefits of the Kigali Amendment in the near term.
Additional IGSD China resources:
- IGSD, China Takes Steps to Address HFC-23 Emissions in Advance of International Ozone Day (15 September 2021).
- IGSD, China Announces Further Steps Toward Reduction of Non-CO2 Super Climate Pollutant Emissions (28 April 2021).
- IGSD, China to Accept Kigali Amendment on HFCs and Strengthen Action on Other Non-CO2 Greenhouse Gases (16 April 2021).
- A. Phadke et al., Chinese policy leadership would cool global air conditioning impacts: Looking East, Energy Resource & Social Science (August 2020).
- IGSD, China Regulation on the Administration of Ozone Depleting Substances and Hydrofluorocarbons (Draft Amendment for Comments) (original Chinese and English reference translation) (21 May 2020).
- IGSD, China Green and High-Efficiency Cooling Action Plan (original Chinese and English reference translation) (13 June 2019).
- X. Sun & T. Ferris, The Kigali Amendment’s and China’s Critical Roles in Evolving the Montreal Protocol, Natural Resources & Environment (Fall 2018).