The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has moved to restrict the use of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), extremely powerful planet-heating gases found in refrigerators and air conditioning units that are the target of an international push for phasing out. In the first move by Joe Biden’s administration to directly cut a greenhouse gas, the EPA has proposed a rule to drastically reduce the production and import of HFCs in the US by 85% over the next 15 years. The step is a significant one as Biden seeks to cut total US emissions in half by the end of the decade. It’s estimated that if the world phased out HFCs the planet would avoid 0.5C in heating by the end of the century – a huge figure in the context of global climate goals that seek to avoid what would be a disastrous 1.5C rise in the Earth’s average temperature.
Guardian 3rd May 2021 read more »