EU policies that will impact the HVAC&R industry in 2012

By team, Jan 05, 2012, 11:41 3 minute reading

A number of policy initiatives relevant to the HVAC&R industry are foreseen for adoption or debate within the following 12 months in the European Union (EU), with the revision of the EU F-Gas Regulation taking central stage. provides an overview of some EU-level policies that will be significant in bringing climate friendly technologies such as heating and cooling with natural refrigerants faster to the market.

Denmark takes over EU presidency to promote green innovation

In the EU, 2012 has started with Denmark taking over the presidency of the Council of the European Union for the first half of the year. The Danish EU presidency has announced that green growth and promotion of low-carbon technologies are some of the top priorities to be pursued during its 6-month term. Denmark will particularly strive to push for more stringent energy efficiency targets and increased renewable energy use at EU level.

Revising the EU F-Gas Regulation – 1st proposal expected by mid 2012

As also confirmed by the European Commission 2012 work programme, a legislative proposal revising the current EU regulation on fluorinated gases (F-Gas Regulation) that currently puts much of the focus on HFC containment and recovery measures, is expected by summer 2012. A first consideration of the proposal by the European Parliament can be expected within 2012, though adoption of a final regulation will not happen before the end of 2013. Nonetheless, this is the one piece of legislation in the EU that will have a significant impact on the HVAC&R industry, its customers and the adoption of HFC alternative technologies, hence 2012 is likely to see several debates and policy workshops on the revision and its likely impacts.

Future EU Energy Efficiency Directive could require "national heating and cooling plans"

Negotiations and political compromise over a proposal for an Energy Efficiency Directive in the EU is expected to peak in 2012, with the proposal entering consultation talks within the European Parliament in the first few months of the year. The Directive proposes several supply and demand side energy saving options, including a binding annual 3% renovation of public buildings and 1.5% savings for energy companies, as well as the setting up of "national heating and cooling plans" by Member States for the promotion of combined heat and power generation and the use of heating and cooling from waste heat and renewable energy sources.

New Ecodesign measures for heating and cooling

Progress with regards to the adoption of Ecodesign measures including minimum energy efficiency requirements for products placed on the EU market are expected in 2012 for heat pump boilers and water heaters, refrigerating and freezing equipment and domestic tumble driers among other product groups.

Moreover, a new Ecodesign Working Plan for the period of 2012-2014, which will define additional types of products for which Ecodesign measures will be drawn in the future is planned for adoption in 2012.

Towards a CO2 tax for heating fuels other than electricity?

In 2012, the European Parliament and EU Member States will be debating a proposal put forward by the European Commission in 2011 to overhaul the outdated rules on the taxation of energy products that set minimum energy tax levels for heating and transport fuels in the EU. The proposed recast of the Energy Tax Directive introduces a CO2 tax component in addition to a tax on the energy content of fuels.

According to the draft recast, EU Member States would have to levy a minimum rate of €20 per ton of CO2 on heating fuels other than electricity, the latter being regulated already under the EU emissions trading scheme (ETS).

More research funding in climate-friendly technologies

This year will also be significant in making decisions about the structure of the future financial framework for 2014-2020 as well as the major research funding scheme “Horizon 2020” that envisages a substantial share to be devoted to research and development of climate-friendly technologies. The proposal for the new funding framework will be discussed in the European Parliament and the Council in the coming months with its final version expected by the end of 2013. 


By team (@r744)

Jan 05, 2012, 11:41

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