Today (1 January 2019) the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol enters into force. Both developed and developing countries have taken on mandatory commitments to reduce the global production and consumption of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), harmful man-made greenhouses gases.
The EU has made a promising start. In 2017, HFC consumption in the EU was 12% below its first stepdown agreed under the Kigali Amendment.
This agreement is expected to reduce global warming up to 0.4°C by 2100, which will make a significant contribution to the Paris Agreement objective to limit the temperature rise well below 2°C.
197 Parties to the Montreal Protocol agreed on the Kigali Amendment in October 2016 to gradually reduce global production and consumption of HFCs. Developed countries start in 2019 with a reduction to 90% of the baseline and decreasing in further steps until a 15% level is reached from 2036 onwards. Most developing countries follow in 2024 with a deferred phase-down schedule.
Twenty parties had to ratify the Amendment for its entry into force. This threshold was achieved in November 2017. To date, over one-third of the 63 parties to the Kigali Amendment are Member States of the EU, which itself ratified on 26 September 2018.
The EU is leading the world in taking action on fluorinated gases (F-gases), which are dominated by HFCs. The EU phase-down of F-gases, which goes into its fifth year now, is fully on track. The F-gas Regulation aims to cut the EU’s F-gas emissions by two-thirds by 2030.