Global F-gas policy developments and Japan’s NR market potential discussed at Tokyo JACSES Symposium

By Past Member, Apr 10, 2013, 11:59 2 minute reading

On 25 March, the Japanese Center for a Sustainable Environment and Society (JACSES) organised a Symposium to discuss the latest global policy trends and developments addressing the prevention of global warming and protection of the ozone layer. Speakers from government, industry and academia got together to talk about needed F-gas management and upcoming revision of national policy.

The first speaker, Tatsuya Hanaoka from the National Institute for Environmental Studies (NIES) presented an analysis of two seminal pieces of legislation, the Montreal and Kyoto Protocols addressing the protection of the ozone layer and the mitigation of global warming, respectively. Focusing on the international problematic of fluorocarbons, Dr. Hanaoka pointed out the lack of an international framework governing the regulation of production and consumption of HFCs and the reduction of emissions caused by CFCs, and HCFCs.

Solutions to the fluorinated Gas problematic

On behalf of the Japanese government Hiroki Iwamatsu from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), and Masaya Okuyama from the Ministry of Environment addressed several topics including an upcoming revision of national policy and the on-going close cooperation with Japanese industry for natural refrigerant technology development.

Mr Iwamatsu summarised the direction of future F-gas oriented measures. According to the Japanese government increasing emissions of HFC gasses can be addressed using several tools:
  • National reference setting and promoting F-gas free and low GWP products
  • F-gas production phase down;
  • User-oriented refrigerant leakage regulation or progress in collection of F-gases from used products

Over 10 years of natural refrigerant technology development by METI

For over 10 years METI has been involved in the development of natural refrigerant technology in cooperation with Japanese industry. Through the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organisation (NEDO), Japanese government helped develop and bring to market CO2 heat pumps in early 2000s. In 2005 – 2010 period, NEDO led research into commercial CO2 refrigeration systems – cutting edge technology now being installed across Japan with 100 stores already in operation.

According to Mr. Iwamatsu’s presentation, in one of the latest projects planned until 2015, NEDO is working on the development of highly efficient F-gas free commercial air-conditioning equipment technology.

The Japan Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Industry Association (JRAIA) addressed the refrigerant management problematic and leakage prevention measure. An NGO called Stop Freon, was represented by Takako Momoi, who spoke about their historical contributions in starting the F-gas debate and in raising the awareness of the problematic in Japan and on the international scene.

Japan - a growing market for Natural Refrigerants

Today, Japan has a 98% share of CO2 heat pumps in the domestic water heater market and over the years has installed tens of thousands of absorption chillers and ammonia systems. The latest developments in the commercial refrigeration sector, and the switch to CO2, indicates that the time has come for Japan to catch up in a sector where Europe has so far been leading. The upcoming revision of the F-gas regulation and either the introduction, or absence of, market incentives for natural refrigerants technology will play an important role in future developments.


By Past Member

Apr 10, 2013, 11:59

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