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EPA approves new coolant for car ACs

Is claimed to help fight climate change and ozone depletion

| | Mar 20, 2011 | 7:56 pm
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Is claimed to help fight climate change and ozone depletion

In an announcement, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has issued final approval for HFO-1234yf, a new refrigerant for use in motor vehicle air conditioning systems, that it claims does not deplete the ozone layer and helps protect the environment and people’s health.

According to the announcement, the new chemical may now be used in air conditioning for new cars and light trucks. When used appropriately, the chemical can reduce the environmental impact of motor vehicle air conditioners and has a global warming potential that is 99.7% less than the current chemical (HFC–134a) used in most car air conditioners, and is, therefore, an option available to automakers, the announcement added.

“This new chemical helps fight climate change and ozone depletion,” said Gina McCarthy, Assistant Administrator for EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation. “It is home-grown innovative solutions like this that save lives and strengthen our economy.”

EPA said that prior to HFC-134a, car air conditioners generally used CFC-12, a potent greenhouse gas and ozone-depleting substance that depleted the stratospheric ozone layer, which led to higher levels of UV radiation reaching the Earth’s surface. UV radiation has several harmful effects, including skin cancer, cataracts, immune system suppression, and premature ageing and wrinkling of the skin, EPA added.

The announcement highlighted that EPA assists in the transition to green technologies by identifying alternatives that are better for people’s health and the environment.

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