in  the   Federal  Sector
What are MFCs?
Hydrofluorocarbons (MFCs) are extremely potent greenhouse
gases (GHGs) commonly used in refrigerators, air conditioners,
and a variety of other applications within federal facilities (see
Figure 1). The use and emissions of MFCs are growing rapidly
as they are increasingly adopted as replacements for ozone-
depleting substances (ODS) being phased out under the Clean Air
Act and as economic growth spurs demand for new equipment,
especially in the refrigeration/air-conditioning (AC) sector.
President Obama's Climate Action Plan (CAP)—announced
in June 2013—calls for international and domestic action to
reduce GHGs, including high-global warming potential (GWP)
MFCs. Among other things, the CAP calls for his Administration
to transition to equipment that uses safer and more sustainable
alternatives to MFCs.
Figure 1: Key HFC Refrigerants Used in the United States and their
Climate Impact Relative to Carbon Dioxide*
- i Ron
REDUCING HFC EMISSIONS in the Federal Sector
What Are the HFC Reporting Requirements for Federal Agencies?
Federal agencies must report annually an inventory of absolute
GHG emissions for the preceding fiscal year to the White
House Council on Environmental Quality Chair and the Office
of Management and Budget Director. Agencies must conduct
all GHG reporting and inventories in accordance with the CEQ
Guidance and the latest Technical Support Document. Currently,
the Federal Greenhouse Gas Accounting and Reporting
Guidance1 and Technical Support Document2 provide ways to
estimate  emissions of HFCs from the  refrigeration/AC sector.
In 2010, federal agencies reported HFC emissions of nearly
2.2 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent, with
five agencies accounting for 98% of reported emissions
(Department of Defense, Department of Energy, Tennessee
Valley Authority, National Aeronautics and Space
Administration, and United  States Postal Service).3
What Should Agencies Consider in Their HFC Reporting?
When developing annual GHG emission inventories, federal
agencies should consider a broad list of equipment that
commonly emit HFCs. This equipment includes:

•  Motor vehicle air conditioning systems
•  Stationary AC systems (e.g., chillers, commercial unitary
   AC systems and packaged terminal AC systems)
•  Small commercial refrigeration systems found in cafeterias
   (e.g., plug-in display cases, glass door bottle coolers, and ice
   cream freezers and condensing units)
•  Large commercial refrigeration systems found in
   commissaries (e.g., condensing units and rack systems)
•  Domestic refrigerators

Other sources may also be considered as appropriate and
feasible, such as aerosol  products, solvents, fire suppression,
and explosion inerting.
How Are HFCs Being Addressed in the United  States?
The President's 2013 CAP4 makes phasing down HFCs a
national priority. President Obama calls on his Administration
to purchase cleaner alternatives to HFCs whenever feasible
and transition over time to equipment that uses safer and more
sustainable alternatives. The CAP also directs EPA to use its
authority under the Significant New Alternatives Policy
(SNAP) Program to identify and approve climate-friendly
alternatives while prohibiting certain uses of the most harmful
chemical alternatives. The United States established the SNAP
Program in 1994 to evaluate and  regulate substitutes for the
ODS that are being phased out under Title VI of the Clean Air
Act Amendments of 1990. The SNAP Program has reviewed
over 400 substitutes—including HFCs—for the following
industrial sectors: refrigeration & air conditioning; foam; solvent
cleaning; fire suppression & explosion protection; aerosols,
sterilization; and adhesives, coatings & inks.

To support the CAP, the Obama Administration announced new
executive actions in September 2014 to promote the use of
safer alternatives to HFCs and encourage the development of
and investment in new technologies in the Federal sector. For
example, the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) is
inviting technology  manufacturers and industry stakeholders,
  Executive Office of the President. 2012. "Federal Greenhouse Gas Accounting and Reporting Guidance". Available at:
  files/microsites/ceg/revised federal greenhouse gas  accounting and  reporting  guidance 060412.pdf.
  Executive Office of the President. 2012. "Federal Greenhouse Gas Accounting and Reporting Guidance: Technical Reporting Guidance". Available at:  greenhouse gas accounting and reporting guidance technical support document.pdf. 2011. "FY2010 Federal Government Greenhouse Gas Inventory by Agency". Metadata date April 28,2011. Accessed December 27, 2013. Available
  at http://www.wh and the Federal Government cannot vouch for the data or analyses
  derived from these data after the data have been retrieved from
  Executive Office of the President. 2013. "The President's Climate Action Plan". Available at:

REDUCING HFC EMISSIONS in the Federal Sector
including those that offer HFC alternatives, to submit
information on innovative and transformational building
technologies that can be used in Federal buildings through its
Green Proving Ground (GPG) program. The GPG program
leverages GSA's real estate portfolio as a "proving ground"
to evaluate emerging building technologies that promise to
improve the environmental performance of GSA's portfolio
while reducing operational  costs. Technologies selected by
the program will  be matched with Federally-owned buildings
and evaluated to inform public- and private-sector investment
decisions and accelerate the commercialization and adoption
of such technologies within the Federal Government. Similarly,
the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is providing new funding
for research and development into next generation cooling
technologies to reduce energy use and replace HFC refrigerants
in U.S. buildings.

Executive Order 13693 on Planning for Sustainability in
the Next Decade includes various energy and sustainability
requirements for agencies and departments within the Federal
Government. This Executive Order sets greenhouse gas
emission reduction targets and requires annual federal GHG
inventory reporting for domestic source emissions and the
tracking of such emissions  relative to reduction targets.
How Can Emissions Be Reduced in the Federal Sector?
HFC emission reduction strategies in the federal sector can
include, but are not limited to:

•  Purchase of new equipment containing climate-friendly
   alternatives to HFCs
•  The prevention and repair of leaks through improved
   service and maintenance
•  End of life management and disposal programs
•  Retrofitting of existing equipment with alternative

A proposed amendment to the Federal Acquisition
Regulation (FAR) was designed to implement the Executive
branch policy in the CAP to procure, when feasible, alternatives
to high-GWP HFCs. The proposed amendment aims to promote
the use of safer chemical alternatives to HFCs among service
and vendor  contractors, by relying on EPA's SNAP program to
identify safe alternatives for HFCs, including chemicals with
lower GWPs and non-chemical or "not-in-kind" alternatives
(e.g., pump sprays instead of aerosol cans, aqueous cleaning
instead of solvent cleaning). To help agencies monitor progress,
   Case Study: Lackland AFB Commissary
   In2014the Defense Commissary Agency (DeCA) i:
   retrofitting the refrigeration system at its 117,000
   square foot commissary in San Antonio, Texas
   with an ammonia (NH3)/carbon dioxide (C02)
   cascade system. This system was selected in lieu
   of an HFC refrigeration system in order to control
   future capital and operating costs and help meet
   its energy and sustainability goals. Compared to
   the previous R-404A system, the new system is
   expected to reduce refrigerant and maintenance
   costs by 90% and 40%, respectively.
the proposed amendment will require contractors to keep track
of and report on the amounts of HFCs added or removed during
routine maintenance, repair, and disposal of all government
equipment, appliances, and supplies.
For more information and references,
please see
                                                                                  EPA430F14022 • • August 2015