First and foremost, I’m going to try and keep Politics out of this. It doesn’t matter how I feel about this administration. The changes coming are going to affect the Refrigerant industry significantly.
Today it was announced by the Obama administration that they are going to be pushing for the phase-out of R-134A Refrigerant. R-134A is THE Refrigerant that is used in all automotive applications as of 1994. Prior to 1994 it was R-12 Refrigerant but that was banned in accordance to International law and was replaced with R-134A. Now it looks like R-134A is on it’s way to be banned.
From what I’ve read about the press statement is that there is nothing mandatory yet on R-134A phaseout. Everything is voluntary. That being said many major chemical companies have agreed to reduce production of R-134A and other major companies that use R-134A Refrigerant have said that they will be using an alternative Refrigerant.
As I said above, nothing is changing today… but since this statement came out I can almost guarantee that R-134A pricing is going up, and going up fast. I will have to give props to the Obama administration to announcing this as the summer season comes to an end. This lets the changes sink over the winter and hopefully a lot of the hype as well. If this was announced in May I could have seen R-134A prices go over $200.00 a jug. Hopefully, price doesn’t spike too bad and if it does it will be short lived.
For more on this announcement check out the Washington Post article.