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Press Release

State of Fluorocarbons Recovery from Commercial Freezer/Air Conditioner in FY 2003

November 19, 2004

Ministry of the Environment released the state of the recovery of fluorocarbons from the class-1 specified equipment (i.e. commercial freezer/air conditioner) in FY 2003. The class-1 fluorocarbons recovery operators reported to the prefectural governors the amount of fluorocarbons recovered from the class-1 specified equipments in FY 2003 in compliance with the Law concerning the Recovery and Destruction of Fluorocarbon (hereinafter referred to as the "Fluorocarbons Recovery and Destruction Law"). The aggregated value obtained from those reports was was approximately 1,889 tons (96.5% compared to FY 2002).

The Fluorocarbons Recovery and Destruction Law obliges the operators to recover refrigerant fluorocarbons when equipment is disposed. The law obliges the class-1 fluorocarbons recovery operators which are authorized to recover refrigerant fluorocarbons from commercial freezer/air conditioners when they are disposed to report the amount of recovered fluorocarbons in the previous fiscal year to prefectural governor. The prefectural governors shall report this information to the competent ministers (Minister of the Environment and Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry). The competent ministers are obliged to summarize and disclose the collected information on recovery and destruction of fluorocarbons from specified equipments. (Tables 1 & 2)

In order to accomplish thorough recovery of fluorocarbons, strenuous efforts are essential since recovered fluorocarbon is decreasing compared to FY 2002 and the rate of recovery is expected to be low (1). In this respect, Ministry of the Environment has been working on measures to promote fluorocarbons recovery which may include the revision of the whole system itself. We hope to sort out all possible choices for improvement measures within FY 2004 (March 31, 2005).

  1. The estimation made by industry indicates that there were 6,800 tons of refrigerant fluorocarbons in commercial freezers/air conditioners disposed of in FY 2003. Based on the figure, the recovery rate of refrigerant fluorocarbons was estimated to be around 28%.
  2. According to a report (published on June 21, 2004) submitted by destruction operators, the amount of fluorocarbons delivered to class-1 destruction operators by class-1 recovery operators was 2,022 tons. This figure is 134% of the figure reported by recovery operator, which was 1,509 tons. This difference is considered to include fluorocarbons collected during the repairing or maintenance besides disposal.
  3. The report on fluorocarbons recovery by class 2 recovery operators (mobile air conditioners installed on motor vehicles) are aggregated by prefectural governments and are notified to the competent Ministers. The information is summarized to be released on and around December. 2004

* Table 1    State of Fluorocarbons Recovery Reported by the Class-1 Recovery Operators in FY 2003
* Table 2    Changes in Collected Fluorocarbons

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