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In late 2016, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) revised Section 608, which deals with refrigerant management regulations. A number of requirements under this section are set to change. They concern the handling requirements that are applicable to ozone depleting refrigerants, and fortify the existing regulations by incorporating a number of best practices to extend these to hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs).
The EPA has estimated that these revisions, when implemented, will cut down emissions from products such as refrigerators and air conditioners, which have a detrimental effect on the climate, to the tune of 7.3 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (MMTCO2eq) and 114 ozone-depletion weighted metric tons (ODP tons) annually.
The Rule in a nutshell
Set out with the intention of reducing the emissions from refrigerants of ozone-depleting substances; the essence of the new EPA rule can be summarized under the following:
- The Refrigerant Management Program has now been enlarged to include substitute refrigerants such as HFCs. A few such substitute refrigerants were exempt earlier from Section 608
- It sets a lower leak threshold for ozone-depleting implements such as refrigerators and air conditioners that contain 50 lbs. or more refrigerants. This is the new, lowered leak threshold slab:
o 30% for industrial process refrigeration (IPR) from 35%
o 20% for commercial refrigeration equipment from 35%
o 10% for comfort cooling equipment from 15%.
- Additionally, the new revised Section 608 requires quarterly or annual maintenance leak inspections for equipment that exceed the threshold leak rate limit
- It also requires operators and owners to report systems that exceed the limit of 50 lbs. or refrigerant leak by one and a quarter times in a year
- It defines products whose sale is restricted because of the excess leak rate.
- The new revised EPA Section 608 also requires technicians to document the refrigerant that they recover during disposal for systems that have a charge size varying from five to 50 lbs.
Gain clarity on the EPA’s new revised Section 608
All the ways of understanding and practically implementing the provisions of the EPA’s new revised Section 608 will be offered with clarity at a webinar that is being organized by Compliance4All, a leading provider of professional trainings for all the areas of regulatory compliance.
This webinar will have Keith Warwick, a professor at Yuba College in Marysville California and instructor at the University of Washington, who has significant experience teaching engineering, safety and related subjects, as speaker. To understand the nitty-gritty of the EPA’s revised Section 608 and ensure that you do not invite punitive actions from the agency, please register for this webinar by visiting EPA Section 608
Delving into all the aspects of the new revised Section 608
This webinar will discuss all the elements pertaining to the EPA’s new revised Section 608, such as technician certification, refrigerant sales restriction, service practices, recovery and recycling equipment, recordkeeping, repairing refrigerant leaks, appliance disposal, and refrigeration reclamation.
Keith will also explain how ozone depleting substances (ODS) are split into two groups under the Clean Air Act, class I ODS such as chlorofluorocarbons (CFS) and class II ODS such as hydro chlorofluorocarbons (HCFC).
The major gain of attending this webinar is that it will help the participants to understand the EPA’s new revised Section 608, which will help them to avoid violations, citations and fines. Violations of the EPA’s new revised Section 608 leads to citations which require addition of physical improvements, which can be expensive. The EPA can also shut down a facility for an extended period.
Keith will cover the following areas at this webinar:
o General discussion of the Clean Air Act
o How to utilize consultants
o Technician certification
o Refrigeration reclamation
o Recovery and recycling equipment
o Regulatory involvement with facility and process
o Discussion of class 1 ODS
o Discussion of Class 2 ODS.