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Hydrofluorocarbons: Government Departments

Volume 502: debated on Monday 14 December 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what recent assessment he has made of progress by departments in reducing the use of hydrofluorocarbons on their estate; and if he will make a statement. (305882)

The Government's view is that the use of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) with high global warming potential is not sustainable in the long term. The Government's “Buy Sustainable: Quick Wins” procurement standards state that HFCs should only be used where other safe, technically feasible, cost-effective and more environmentally acceptable alternatives do not exist. All central Government Departments are required to comply with these procurement standards. Support for delivery and compliance with “Quick Wins” by central Government Departments is overseen by the Centre of Expertise in Sustainable Procurement in the Office of Government Commerce.

Data are not collected centrally on HFC use or emissions but the Government are currently reviewing the targets for the sustainable operations on the Government estate, and are considering expanding the scope of the climate change targets to include the six key greenhouse gases, including HFCs, in departmental carbon budget allocations for estate and operations from 2012 onwards.