International Institute of Ammonia Refrigeration AIM Act

What is the AIM Act?

On December 27, 2020, Congress enacted the American Innovation and Manufacturing (AIM) Act, which directs Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to address hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) through:
  • Phasing down the production and consumption of HFCs by 85% by 2036
  • Facilitate the transition to next-generation technologies through sector-based restrictions
  • Establish regulatory requirements for the management of refrigerants to maximize reclamation and minimize releases from equipment
Learn more about the regulatory differences between safe and sustainable natural refrigerants and the phasing down of synthetics by reading the IIAR Green Paper or viewing the AIM Act Resources below. 

Experts on AIM Act and Natural Refrigeration

What is the AIM Act Phasedown Timeline?

AIM Act Phasedown Timeline

Contact Us About the AIM Act

Latest News

Over 50% of METRO Stores Now Exclusively Using Natural Refrigerants in Refrigeration Systems
International food wholesaler METRO has told that over 50% of its global stores and distribution centers now exclusively use natural refrigerants in their refrigeration systems. Read More

Transcritical CO2 Cuts Energy Use at Minor League Hockey Arena by 55% Compared to R22
The Santander Arena – an ice rink and multi-purpose venue in Reading, Pennsylvania – has seen its energy consumption reduced by 55% after replacing its R22-based refrigeration system with a transcritical CO2 (R744) system, according to a case study from CIMCO, the project’s contractor. Read More

Chemours ends US sales of R404A and R507
Refrigerant producer Chemours is to cease sales of high GWP HFC refrigerants R404A and R507A in the USA. 

Chemours says it has taken the decision to align with the HFC phase down regulations under the American Innovation and Manufacturing (AIM) Act and Canada’s Ozone-depleting Substances and Halocarbon Alternatives Regulations (ODSHAR). Read More

Study Links HFOs to Formation of Super Greenhouse Gas HFC-23
A new study points to a link between the long-term fate of HFO degradation products in the atmosphere and the formation of HFC-23, a potent global warming gas with a 100-year GWP of 14,600 (IPCC, AR6).

The study – “On the Chemical Pathways Influencing the Effective Global Warming Potential of Commercial Hydrofluoroolefin Gases” – was published April 4 in the journal ChemSusChem. Its author is Gabriel Salierno, a Green Chemist at the Toxics Use Reduction Institute at the University of Massachusetts/Lowell.  Read More

EPA reaches settlement with Resonac America for illegal import of super climate pollutant at Port of Los Angeles
Today, March 21, 2024, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced a settlement with Resonac America Inc. to address the company’s illegal import of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) at the Port of Los Angeles on four occasions in 2023 and 2024. Resonac America, which is a subsidiary of the Tokyo-based Resonac Corporation, will pay a penalty of $416,003 and destroy 1,693 pounds of HFCs to resolve EPA’s allegations of violations.

“EPA continues to prioritize enforcement against companies that illegally import refrigerants that damage our climate and imperil future generations,” said David M. Uhlmann, Assistant Administrator for EPA’s Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance. “This case is the largest penalty imposed to date for importing super-polluting HFCs as part of EPA’s National Enforcement and Compliance Initiative on Mitigating Climate Change—and the first to require the company to destroy the HFCs.”  Read More

New York State Official Addresses ‘Misconceptions’ about Proposed HFC Regulations
In a public online hearing on March 13 to address proposed HFC regulations for New York State, Suzanne Hagell, Climate Change Policy Analyst II at the state’s Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), addressed what she called “misconceptions” and “misinformation” among stakeholders who have pushed back against the regulations.

Regulations in the proposed rule, which would amend New York’s 6 NYCRR Part 494, “Hydrofluorocarbon Standards and Reporting, include 20-year GWP limits of 10 for many new HVAC&R systems by 2034 and thereby supports the adoption of natural refrigerant-based applications. Read More

Supermarkets are tackling emissions from their freezer aisles
Snaking through every American supermarket are miles of refrigerator piping, keeping unsold food cold in the fridges of the dairy, meat and frozen food aisles. Those pipes contain some of the most potent global warming chemicals produced by any industry on earth. The hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) within them are typically between 1,400 and 4,000 times more powerful as greenhouse gases than carbon dioxide. Read More

NASRC and Steamfitters Local 449 Launch Free Natural Refrigerant Training Summit in Pittsburgh
With an urgent need to prepare for the future of eco-friendly refrigeration, the North American Sustainable Refrigeration Council (NASRC) and Steamfitters Local 449 have announced a pivotal initiative. Set to take place in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, from March 19-21, 2024, this free training event is designed to advance the skills of refrigeration technicians in handling natural refrigerants. Read More

San Diego man first in US charged with smuggling greenhouse gases
Michael Hart, 58, was arrested earlier Monday and charged with smuggling hydrofluorocarbons, a "highly potent greenhouse gas" also known as HFCs, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office. The indictment added that Hart then sold the HFCs for profit on various online marketplaces. Hart violated federal regulations set in 2020 that ban the importation of HFCs, U.S. Attorney's Office said. HFCs are a group of powerful, synthetic gases that are primarily used in refrigerators and air conditioners, according to the Climate and Clean Air Coalition. Read More

New York State Welcomes Comments on Its Ambitious Proposed HFC Regulations
The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is accepting comments on its ambitious proposed rule amending regulations of HFCs, which would include GWP limits of 10 for many new HVAC&R systems by 2034 and help foster the adoption of natural refrigerant-based applications. Notably, in new refrigeration facilities, regulated HFCs with a 20-year GWP of greater than 10 for equipment with more than 50lbs (23kg) of refrigerant would be prohibited as of January 1, 2025. Read more

Aldi US commits to natural refrigerants
Aldi has announced that it will transition to “natural refrigerants” across all of its US stores before the end of 2035. This new goal builds on the grocer’s use of “environmentally friendly” refrigerants in more than 600 of the 2,357 stores it operates across the USA. Aldi says it will deploy a purchasing strategy that incorporates the best refrigerant solution for each region’s distinct climate – including both CO2 and propane refrigerants. In a press statement, Aldi said: “Beginning this year, Aldi will purchase environmentally friendly refrigerants for all new and remodeled stores and replace the current refrigerants in existing stores with refrigerants that have low global warming potential.” Read more

2024 Brings Sweeping Changes to the HVACR Industry
Happy New Year! And welcome to the second stage of the HFC phasedown as mandated by the AIM Act. As of January 1, 2024, the production of high-GWP HFC refrigerants, such as R-410A, R-134a, and R-404A, has been reduced by an additional 30% of the baseline, which is on top of the 10% cut that took effect on January 1, 2022. The previous cut did not have a significant impact on the HVACR industry, but the 40% total cut this year is likely going to hurt. Indeed, experts predict that this large cut could lead to shortages and significant price increases of popular refrigerants, such as R-410A. Read more

Countries Agree on a Nearly Billion-Dollar HFC Phasedown Fund
Countries took big steps to protect the ozone layer and the climate at the 35th annual Meeting of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol (MOP)—the treaty that includes every nation on earth—in Nairobi, Kenya, late last month. They agreed on a record amount of $965 million in funding for developing country actions in 2024–2026, as well as additional studies on various topics, such as hydrofluorocarbon-23 (HFC-23) emissions, lifecycle refrigerant management (LRM), and geoengineering technologies like stratospheric aerosol injections; also discussed were further assessments of concerning chemicals and the advantages of improving energy efficiency while phasing down HFCs. Read more

Amazon Fresh store in Seattle becomes world’s first grocery to win Zero Carbon certification
An Amazon Fresh store in North Seattle is the world’s first grocery store to be certified as Zero Carbon by an international nonprofit promoting sustainable buildings. It’s also the first Amazon site to land the designation, the company announced on Thursday.

The 35,000-square-foot store includes a refrigeration system using natural refrigerants, a kitchen and hot water heating system powered by electricity instead of natural gas, floors made of a low-carbon concrete, and electric-vehicle charging for customers. Read More

US tackles climate-warming HFC industrial gases with new rules
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Friday announced two new measures aimed at reducing climate-warming chemicals used in refrigerators and air conditioners that can help the U.S. meet its goals to halve its greenhouse gas emissions this decade.

The agency issued a final rule that restricts the use of gases known as hydroflourocarbons, or HFCs, used in 40 types of imported or domestically-manufactured foams, aerosol products, and refrigeration, air conditioning, and heat pump equipment, setting compliance dates from 2025 to 2028.

HFCs are significantly more potent than carbon dioxide in contributing to global warming.

The EPA also issued a proposal that aims to improve how HFCs are managed and reused, setting requirements for repairing leaky equipment, rules for using reclaimed HFCs and leak detection rules for large refrigeration equipment.
Read more

US HFC phasedown proceeds as states mull potential bans on substitutes

The US programme that will phase down the use of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) in refrigerants and blowing agents used In polyurethanes will hit some major milestones in the upcoming months – while states consider broad bans on fluorinated materials that could encompass the new chemicals that will replace them, hydrofluoroolefins (HFOs).

The US and other countries in the world are phasing down HFCs because they are exceptionally powerful greenhouse gases. Read more

Norway moving towards natural refrigerants
One of Norway’s largest property administrators, Oslobygg, has mandated the use of natural refrigerants in all comfort cooling systems and heat pumps installed in Oslo’s municipal buildings. The company’s previous requirement was that a refrigerant’s global warming potential (GWP) value should be below 10, which often led to the use of synthetic refrigerants. Read more

Final Rule - Allowance Allocation Methodology for 2024 and Later Years
This final rule establishes the methodology for allocating HFC production and consumption allowances starting with calendar year 2024 allowances. Through this rulemaking, EPA will continue applying a similar methodology to allocate production and consumption allowances for calendar years 2024 through 2028 as the Agency did in the Framework Rule for calendar years 2022 and 2023. EPA also amended the consumption baseline to reflect corrected data submitted to the Agency and made other adjustments to the HFC phasedown implementation, compliance, and enforcement provisions. EPA will start using the approach established through this rulemaking to issue calendar year 2024 allowances by October 1, 2023Read more

ATMO America: U.S. EPA to Propose HFC Management Provisions by End of Summer

 The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will publish its proposed HFC management provisions under the American Innovation and Manufacturing (AIM) Act by the end of the summer, according to Cindy Newberg, Director of the agency’s Stratospheric Protection Division. The proposal will consider several factors, including requirements for leak repair, leak-detection equipment and refrigerant reclaim, she said. Read more

US Court strikes out disposable cylinder ban

The US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit has struck down the Environmental Protection Agency’s rule that would have banned non-refillable cylinders in the US.

The US AIM Act to phase down the production and consumption of HFC refrigerants, which signed into law in late 2020, included provisions to ban the sale of non-refillable (disposable) cylinders after December 31, 2024. It also required QR code tracking for individual cylinders through the supply chain. Read more

Natural Refrigerants Codes & Standards Progress

A lot has happened since 2019.

IIAR, in its continuing mission to promote the safe and sustainable use of natural refrigerants, produced the ANSI/IIAR CO2-2021 Safety Standard for Closed-Circuit Carbon Dioxide Refrigeration Systems. As the phase-down of F-gas refrigerants continues to accelerate worldwide, CO2 technology has become an increasingly popular option utilized in the industrial refrigeration sector and, more recently, in the commercial refrigeration sector. Read more

EPA takes first-ever federal Clean Water Act enforcement action to address PFAS discharges at Washington Works facility near Parkersburg, W. Va.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has ordered the Chemours Company to take corrective measures to address pollution from per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in stormwater and effluent discharges from the Washington Works facility near Parkersburg. The order on consent also directs Chemours to characterize the extent of PFAS contamination from discharges. Read more

EPA Finalizes SNAP Rule 25, Proposes SNAP Rule 26

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently published a final rule and proposed a new rule that would allow the use of A2L refrigerants in some new air conditioning and refrigeration equipment. In September 2022, the EPA proposed adding several new low-GWP refrigerants to its Significant New Alternatives Policy (SNAP) program for some comfort cooling and refrigeration equipment. In April 2023, EPA finalized the rule — known as SNAP Rule 25 — which lists seven refrigerants as acceptable, subject to use conditions, or acceptable, subject to narrowed use limits, in the refrigeration and air conditioning sector. Read more
Read EPA's Fact Sheet on SNAP 25

European Parliament Approves Bans of HFCs and HFOs in Multiple Applications and HFC Phase Out by 2050

In an historic vote, the European Parliament adopted an ambitious position on the revision of the EU F-gas Regulation, supporting an HFC phase out by 2050 and multiple bans on fluorinated greenhouse gases (f-gases, both HFCs and HFOs) in applications such as heat pumps and stationary refrigeration. In particular, in Annex IV – Placing on the market prohibitions on new system – a number of amendments banning f-gases, which were subject to fierce debate among political groups, were adopted. Read more

EPA Announces Enforcement Actions to Control Hydrofluorocarbon Imports

Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced several enforcement actions that support national and international goals to reduce the use of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) in our fight against climate change. These civil penalty actions include three landmark settlements with HFC importers who failed to report their imported quantities in violation of the Clean Air Act’s (CAA) Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program: Artsen Chemical America, LLC ($247,601 penalty), Harp USA, Inc. ($275,000 penalty), and the IGas Companies ($382,473 penalty). EPA is aggressively pursuing similar actions against several other importers that failed to report their HFCs. Read more

What’s All The Fuss About PFAS In Refrigerants?

The latest refrigerant transition is well underway, with the 10% cut in the production of HFC refrigerants that went into effect last year. A much steeper cut happens next year, when production of HFCs must be reduced to 60% of the baseline established by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). There is no question that this stepdown will be a challenge for the HVACR industry. Read more
EPA PFAS Strategic Roadmap

PFAS ban affects most refrigerant blends

The banning of just five refrigerants under the new PFAS regulation proposals would lead to the banning of virtually all the current lower GWP HFC/HFO alternative refrigerant blends. Excluding the current refrigerant blends that are already banned in Europe for containing CFCs or HCFCs, only 13 of the remaining 106 current ASHRAE-listed R400 series blends would escape a PFAS ban. Those 13 outside of the scope are predominantly hydrocarbon blends. Of the 500 series blends, only two, both hydrocarbon blends, are outside of the scope. Read more

EU PFAS ban may include exemptions without viable substitutes

A number of HFC refrigerants and low GWP HFO alternatives could be banned under new PFAS chemical restrictions proposed to the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA). However, exemptions have been proposed for refrigerants considered PFAS substances used in HVACR equipment in buildings where national safety standards and building codes prohibit the use of alternatives. In what has been described as one of the largest bans on chemical substances ever in Europe, some HFCs including R134a and R125, along with the low GWP alternatives R1234yf, R1234ze(E) and R1233zd(E), are set to be included in a ban under the European REACH regulations. Read more

EPA Proposes Rule to Advance Transition to Safer, More Efficient Heating and Cooling Technologies

Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a proposed rule under the American Innovation and Manufacturing (AIM) Act to advance the transition to more efficient heating and cooling technologies by restricting the use of super-polluting hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) in certain products and equipment where more climate friendly alternatives are available. The proposed rule, which would apply both to imported and domestically manufactured products, will help ensure a level playing field for American businesses that are already transitioning  to next-generation, safer alternatives and more energy efficient technologies. Read more

Proposed Rule – Technology Transitions Restrictions on the Use of Certain Hydrofluorocarbons under Subsection (i) of the American Innovation and Manufacturing Act

The American Innovation and Manufacturing Act (AIM Act) authorizes EPA to address hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) in three main ways: phasing down their production and consumption, maximizing reclamation and minimizing releases from equipment, and facilitating the transition to next-generation technologies through sector-based restrictions. This proposed rule focuses on the third area – the transition to alternatives through sector-based restrictions. Read more

Judges Probe Limits of EPA Authority in Hydrofluorocarbon Rule
A D.C. Circuit panel on Friday probed technical language in a popular law to regulate hydrofluorocarbons, examining claims that the EPA exceeded its authority in implementing portions of the law. Heating and cooling wholesalers and manufactures met the Environmental Protection Agency at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit for oral arguments in a lawsuit over portions of the agency’s hydrofluorocarbon phasedown plan. Read more

Joe Biden just signed an international climate treaty. And Mitch McConnell voted for it.
The Montreal Protocol also had a massive unanticipated side benefit. CFCs are also potent greenhouse gases, with some varieties that are more than 13,000 times more powerful than carbon dioxide when it comes to heating up the planet. The Montreal Protocol has thus been the single most effective action taken to date to mitigate climate change. There was an unanticipated problem as well. CFCs were replaced with another class of chemicals called hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) in many applications. While HFCs aren’t as damaging to the ozone layer, they are powerful greenhouse gases. The Kigali Amendment, drafted in 2016, aims to zero out HFCs as well. Read More

EPA Opens Comment Period on New HFC Allowance Allocation Rule
Companies that import, produce, or reclaim HFCs should carefully review – and consider submitting comments on – a new rule proposed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which will determine not only the process for allocating HFC allowances but also obligations relating to import notifications and recordkeeping. Read More