Environmental guidance for your business in Northern Ireland & Scotland

Phase down of F-gases 2015 – 2030

Phase down of f-gases and the 2020 service ban

New guidance from GOV.UK:
Fluorinated gases and ozone-depleting substances: how to do business from 1 January 2021


What is the phase down

The phase down of HFCs is designed to steadily reduce the global warming potential (GWP) of all gasses placed on the market in refrigeration, heat pumps and air conditioning in the European Union. The target is to reduce the CO2 equivalent of all gasses in use to 21% of the baseline by 2030. Individual producers and importers will receive a quota based on their 2009-12 baseline.

2009 - 12 2015 2016-17 2018-20 2021-23 2024-26 2027-29 2030
Baseline 100% 100% 93% 63% 45% 31% 24% 21%


This is not a ban on any particular type of F-gas, and operators can continue to use the equipment that they have at present. By limiting the total GWP of the F-gases in equipment it is expected that the gases with the highest GWP will be eliminated from the market first.

The higher the GWP of a particular gas, the more expensive it will become. Future costs should be considered when planning for maintenance and servicing of equipment.

Service ban

In 2020, a service ban will come into force which will mean that equipment with a charge in CO2 equivalent greater than 40 tonnes will no longer be able to be refilled or serviced with virgin HFCs with a GWP > 2,500.

This ban doesn’t apply to equipment designed for low temperature refrigeration, at temperatures below -50°C

Recycled or reclaimed gases with a GWP > 2,500 can still be used for servicing and maintenance until 2030, if labelled correctly.

Although possible, the use of HFCs with a high GWP will become increasingly expensive, so in the long term it will make financial sense to opt for equipment containing refrigerants with a low GWP.

40 tonnes of CO  equivalent

Refrigerant Charge size threshold of 40t CO2 equivalent
R23 2.72kg
R404A 10.20kg
R507 10.04kg
R422D 14.66kg


DAERA: 2020 ban on F-gas refrigerants

Read the advice from the regulators about the f-gas phase down.

NetRegs has produced a short e-learning tool covering the main points of the 2020 refrigeration F-gas ban

NetRegse-learning tools

 In this Guideline

What is the 2020 refrigeration F-gas ban?

What are fluorinated gases?

Phase down of F-gases 2015 – 2030

Calculating the equipment charge as CO2 equivalent

Stationary refrigeration, air conditioning and heat pumps: F-gas controls

Fire protection equipment

Mobile air conditioning (cars and vans): F-gas controls

Solvent cleaning: F-gas controls

Producing and supplying fluids: F-gas controls

Specialist uses of F-gases

How F-gas regulations are enforced

F-Gas Legislation

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