North America

New Jersey Enacts Bill to Regulate HFCs

Governor Phil Murphy of New Jersey (U.S.) last Tuesday, January 21, signed into law a bill that prohibits the sale or installation of certain equipment containing HFCs in accordance with previously vacated federal regulations.

New Jersey joins California, New York, Washington and Vermont as U.S. states that have adopted the federal regulations, known as the Significant New Alternative Policy (SNAP) rules 20 and 21, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The EPA abandoned the rules following a 2017 U.S. Court of Appeals ruling that said they were not supported by federal law. Other states have plans to regulate HFCs, including Connecticut, Delaware and Maryland.

New Jersey is also one of 24 states (plus Puerto Rico) making up the U.S. Climate Alliance, which has pledged as a group to reduce HFC emissions.

The New Jersey bill (A-5583/S-3919) was sponsored by Nancy Pinkin, Yvonne Lopez, Raj Mukherji, Bob Smith, Christopher Bateman, all member of the State Assembly.

Among its provisions the bill would apply to supermarket systems, remote condensing units and stand-along units as of July 1, 2020, and to cold-storage warehouses as if January 1, 2023.

Under the bill, manufacturers are required to disclose HFCs used in their equipment in the form of a label. It also allows the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to adopt regulations consistent with the regulatory standards of other states that have adopted restrictions on the use of HFCs, or a model rule established by the United States Climate Alliance.

The bill stipulates that no later than December 1, 2020, the DEP will to Governor Murphy, a report providing recommendations on how to increase the use of substitutes with low global warming potential, and how to structure a state incentive program to reduce uses of HFCs in the state.