ARB PIO: (916) 322-2990
New design for auto A/C recharging canisters
Will reduce releases of powerful greenhouse gas
SACRAMENTO - This summer do-it-yourself auto mechanics who want to recharge their car’s air conditioning will find a redesigned self-sealing canister of refrigerant that is sold with a $10 deposit, refunded when the empty can is returned.
The new can and deposit program are the result of regulations adopted by the Air Resources Board in January 2009, designed to reduce the emissions of the refrigerant used to recharge vehicle air-conditioning systems. Known as R-134a, this chemical is 1300 times more effective at trapping atmospheric heat than carbon dioxide. Just 24 ounces of R-134a has the global warming potential of one ton of carbon dioxide, roughly equivalent to the emissions from a car driven from Los Angeles to New York.
“This is a practical and cost-effective solution,” said Air Resources Board Chairman Mary D. Nichols. “No longer will partially spent canisters be tossed into the garbage allowing the remaining refrigerant to leak into the atmosphere as a powerful greenhouse gas. Now, that gas will be safely captured, and the can itself will be recycled.”
Consumers purchasing the new canisters will be given instructions about the new program and how to recharge their car’s air conditioning. The $10 deposit will be refunded within 90 days upon return of the used canister with the original receipt.
ARB staff worked closely with manufacturers and distributors to develop the regulation, including a pilot project that created roll-out strategies and determined the amount of the deposit.
The regulation is part of the state’s effort to quickly reduce climate-changing emissions as required by AB 32, California’s Global Warming Solutions Act.
The program which will eliminate the equivalent of over 250,000 metric tons of carbon-dioxide emissions per year at a cost of about $1 per can is part of the state’s effort to reduce climate-changing emissions as required by AB 32.
The reductions are achieved through:
- Better canister technology – a self-sealing valve will prevent loss of remaining unused gas;
- Improved instructions for using the product;
- A deposit-and-recycling program to recover refrigerant remaining in a used canister; and,
- A manufacturer-developed consumer education program for recharging an air conditioner.
Informational video on updated canisters:
For more information go here: http://www.arb.ca.gov/cc/hfc-mac/hfcdiy/hfcdiy.htm .
ARB's mission is to promote and protect public health, welfare, and ecological resources through effective reduction of air pollutants while recognizing and considering effects on the economy. The ARB oversees all air pollution control efforts in California to attain and maintain health based air quality standards.