U.S. and China Moving Forward on Steps for HFC Phase Down

Building on the joint statement released by President Obama and President Xi in June, the two leaders have released another joint statement on the phase down of hydroflourocarbons (HFCs). The recent joint statement shows that next steps will involve the creation of “an open-ended contact group to consider all relevant issues.”

Formation of this type of group is a required first step towards amending the Montreal Protocol. The U.S. and China agreeing to support the creation of such a group therefore shows the two countries beginning to move towards formal support of negations.

The following is a press release from the White House with new developments bolded for convenience:

Building on their June 8 accord on hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) in Sunnylands, President Obama and President Xi agreed at their bilateral meeting as a next step to establish a contact group under the Montreal Protocol on HFCs to consider issues related to cost-effectiveness, financial and technology support, safety, environmental benefits, and an amendment to the Montreal Protocol.

The agreement between President Obama and President Xi on HFCs reads as follows:

We reaffirm our announcement on June 8, 2013 that the United States and China agreed to work together and with other countries through multilateral approaches that include using the expertise and institutions of the Montreal Protocol to phase down the production and consumption of HFCs, while continuing to include HFCs within the scope of UNFCCC and its Kyoto Protocol provisions for accounting and reporting of emissions. We emphasize the importance of the Montreal Protocol, including as a next step through the establishment of an open-ended contact group to consider all relevant issues, including financial and technology support to Article 5 developing countries, cost effectiveness, safety of substitutes, environmental benefits, and an amendment. We reiterate our firm commitment to work together and with other countries to agree on a multilateral solution.

For more see: 3 Big Takeaways from the New Global Commitment to Phase Down HFCs

Also see: United States, China, and Leaders of G-20 Countries Announce Historic Progress Toward a Global Phase Down of HFCs


Photo credit: Whitehouse.gov