In terms of freon regulation, many international standards related to some refrigerant gases and greenhouse fluorinated gases require HFC monitoring. They follow European 517/2014 F-GAS regulation.
KYOTO protocol and greenhouse gas
The Kyoto Protocol was adopted on 11 December 1997 by 38 industrialised countries including France and started on 16 February 2005 – date on which 55 countries (representing 55% of CO2 emissions) had signed it. In this protocol, signatory countries are committed to reduce emissions of 6 major greenhouse gases: CO2 (carbon dioxide), CH4 (methane), N2O (nitrogen protoxide), HFC (hydrofluorocarbon), PFC (perfluorocarbon) and SF6 (sulfur hexafluoride).
GWP : GLOBAL WARMING POTENTIAL
Each HFC fluid (hydrofluorocarbon refrigerant fluid) was classified with a GWP value (Global Warming Potential). This is an indicator on a gas harmfulness in relation to the greenhouse effect on a determined period. The reference fluid is the carbon dioxide (CO2) whose GWP equals 1. Below is a table of major HFC with their GWP over 100 years:
tightness and atmosphere control
Current legislation on fluorinated gases tends to progressively reduce the use of hydrofluorocarbons (HFC) used in refrigerant systems like hat pumps, air conditioners, refrigerators and freezers, evaporators… The aim is to reduce them over 79% within 2030.
3 critical points are revealed:
Every structure that uses equipment containing more than 5 tons of refrigerant – CO2 equivalent – has to be controled every 12 or 24 months. For quantities between 50 and 500 tons, this control has to be made every 6 to 12 months. Beyond 500 tons CO2 equivalent, this control has to be made every 3 to 6 months.
Refrigerant gas leak detection
Every refrigerant structure, air conditioning system, heat pump or fire protection that contain more than 500 tons CO2 equivalent must be equipped with a leak detection system with alarm. This refrigerant gas leak monitoring system has to be checked every 12 and is designed to simply meet safety requirements with a continuous monitoring of the refrigerant system.
For housing, offices, public access buildings with air conditionning systems, installation of a HVAC regrigerant leak detectors for inhabited spaces is recommended .
Restrictions of use
Furthermore, structures using HFC must respect progressive restrictions of use. From 2015, only domestic refrigerators and freezers containing HFC with a GWP rate under 15 are authorized. This restriction tends to extend through years to professional installations with a GWP rate under 150.