Revision of the ozone depleting substances regulation

EESC opinion: Revision of the ozone depleting substances regulation

Key points


  • Welcomes the Commission proposal for the revision of ozone-depleting substances (ODS) regulation to improve its structure and raise the level of ambition in order to meet the European Green Deal objectives and, simultaneously, provide maximum protection for citizens against toxic, cancer-causing substances.
  • Underlines the importance that the main rules of both the regulation for the ozone-depleting substances and the fluorinated gas regulation are consistent with each other (e.g. regarding custom controls, leakage rules and definitions).
  • Is in favour of a transparent universal monitoring system applicable in all EU Member States. This system should also be easy to implement in countries outside the EU because of the pioneering role that the EU currently fulfils.
  • Calls for the number of exceptions to the prohibitions to be kept to a minimum, and for derogations from the list of prohibited substances only to be possible in exceptional and necessary cases. The exempted uses should be strictly controlled in order to avoid abuse.
  • Calls for urgent action to introduce effective legislation in the Member States to prevent leakage of ODS in order to avoid endangering the atmospheric environment and the living conditions of the population.
  • Recommends that ODS management contained in existing equipment, foams and other products not yet released to the atmosphere should be part of a waste management system with overarching policies, legislation and regulations for specific waste streams already in place. As this is a great challenge, especially for developing countries, the EU needs to demonstrate feasible solutions and an adequate legal framework.
  • Is concerned that quantitative limits of ODS for feedstock use have been entirely dismissed. Narrowing feedstock exemptions under the new regulation has multiple environmental benefits. There should be a focus on environmentally friendly alternatives.