The Alliance for Responsible Atmospheric Policy’s Refrigerant Imports Committee hosted a virtual side event for the 42nd Meeting of Open-Ended Working Group entitled, “Curtailing Illegal HFC Imports: The Role of Effective Trade Enforcement.” The Side event featured representatives from the Cooling Post, European Commission, UN Environment Program (UNEP), Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA), and European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF). The focus of the side event was to evaluate the best practices from F-Gas Regulations counter-active measures against the growth of HFC Imports. As much as 33 million tons of illegal material has come into the EU since the prices for these compounds skyrocketed in 2018 from starting the EU HFC phasedown.

Three primary areas of action that the panelists agreed would incentivize more robust management of the European Market lessen the saturation from illegal imports:

  1. Making collaboration between custom administration easier and mandate mandatory reporting and data sharing from import stations.
  2. Generate more detailed and translatable licensing codes to allow custom agents to more readily identify illegitimate packaging to confiscate the fraudulent material within.
  3. Develop punitive measures, especially in EU border states where a majority of illegal material is stored before being transported into the EU.

The recorded session can be dowloaded here.