The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced the availability of approximately US$15 million (€13.7 million) in grant funding ‒ made possible by Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act ‒ for pilot projects/programs to address the climate crisis through the reclamation and destruction of HFCs.
Through Biden’s Investing in America agenda, the funding follows the EPA’s October 6 proposed ruling under the American Innovation and Manufacturing (AIM) Act to manage and reuse existing HFCs. The proposed ruling seeks to accelerate the industry transition to more efficient and climate-safe refrigerants, reduce wasteful leaks from existing equipment and support HFC recycling and reclamation efforts.
Under the AIM Act, the EPA is soliciting U.S. grant applicants in the following program areas:
- Boosting the reclamation of usable HFCs through pilot projects using new or better technologies.
- Lowering barriers to increase HFC reclamation through innovative strategies, programs or pilot projects.
- Destroying unusable or unwanted HFCs through pilot projects using innovative technologies.
The EPA states it is seeking projects that “thoughtfully and actively engage with disadvantaged communities,” providing such communities benefits and mitigating potential negative impacts and risks.
According to the press release, the EPA anticipates making four to nine grant awards to eligible applicants.
On December 7, the EPA will hold a one-hour public webinar to provide an overview of the grant, including eligibility, evaluation criteria, applicable dates and the application process. You can register for the webinar here.
This EPA webpage contains further information about the grant and how to apply. The deadline for grant applications is February 16, 2024.
“These grants under President Biden’s Investing in America agenda will spur far-reaching innovation that aims to reduce costs, improve efficiency, and expand the use of new and existing HFC reclamation and destruction technologies,” said Joseph Goffman, Principal Deputy Assistant Administrator for the Office of Air and Radiation.
Preventing global warming
Last year, Biden ratified U.S. participation in the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol, an international agreement to phase down HFCs to help prevent up to 0.5°C (0.9°F) global warming by 2100.
Under the AIM Act, the Biden administration seeks to phase down HFCs to achieve a 40% HFC reduction by 2028 relative to the U.S. 2024 baseline and an 85% reduction by 2036. “Increasing HFC reclamation for reuse will reduce the need for additional production and support the national phasedown,” the EPA said.
“Destroying unwanted HFCs helps prevent climate-damaging emissions,” Goffman said. “That and reclaiming HFCs helps us fight climate change and meet our targets under the HFC phasedown program.”
“These grants will spur far-reaching innovation that aims to reduce costs, improve efficiency, and expand the use of new and existing HFC reclamation and destruction technologies.”Joseph Goffman, Principal Deputy Assistant Administrator for the Office of Air and Radiation