SACRAMENTO: Today the Air Resources Board approved regulations limiting emissions of climate-changing chemicals from air canisters used to blow dust off equipment such as computer keyboards to cameras, the nation's first for consumer products.
In addition to greenhouse gases, the board's decision will reduce smog forming emissions and toxic air contaminants. The regulation establishes specifications for consumer products that will annually reduce:
The greenhouse gas cuts will come from replacing the use of HFC-134a with HFC-152a in gas-duster canisters. HFC-134a is known to have a massive heat-trapping potentialand is rated 1,300 times more damaging to the climate than carbon dioxide.
"We are getting a lot of bang for our buck on this regulation because these seemingly benign air canisters emit an especially potent greenhouse gas," said ARB Chairman Mary Nichols. "This measure also reduces ozone and other toxic air contaminants with a viable propellant alternative readily available so consumers shouldn't see much change in the effectiveness of these products."
ARB monitors and controls emissions from all chemically formulated consumer products because of their potential contribution to ground level ozone. The agency's authority was extended to reduce climate-changing emissions with the passage of AB32 in 2006.
The removal of HFC-134a from gas-duster canisters is the second regulation passed as measure aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions while ARB works on a "scoping plan" that will lay out the agenda for reducing California's greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels.
For more information on the consumer products regulation go to: http://www.arb.ca.gov/consprod/regact/cpwg2008/cpwg2008.htm .
For more information on climate change and AB32 go to: http://www.arb.ca.gov/cc/cc.htm .
The Air Resources Board is a department of the California Environmental Protection Agency. 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.