ARTICLE

F-Gas update and membership offer

08 March 2018

BCAS (British Compressed Air Society) explains an update to the EU Fluorinated Gas (F-Gas) regulation and gives details of a free associate membership offer that will be launched at Air-Tech 2018

The Fluorinated Gas (F-Gas) regulation aims to move end users away from using harmful refrigerant gases to more environmentally friendly options, by limiting how much HFC-style gas can be sold each year.

The quantity of HFCs that can be placed on the EU market will be cut in stages and by 2030, only 20% of the volume of HFCs that were sold in 2015 will be available. In 2018, about 40% of supplies will be cut meaning that HFC refrigerant prices are likely to rise sharply as the market starts to feel the effect of supply shortages.

Although it is not illegal to continue using HFC gas, it is against the law to knowingly top-up refrigerant equipment with the wrong gas, but there are a number of ways that end-users can reduce the impact on their business.

The best long-term solution is, of course, to convert systems to lower GWP alternatives or to swap out the equipment where financially viable.

If capital investment is not feasible, a good short-term measure is to use recovered gas. This can be carried out until the 1st January 2030 if the gas has been reclaimed from the same type of system. Best practice must be used when recovering gases if they are to be used during routine maintenance after 2020. This is when the ban comes in for using virgin gases with a global warming potential (GWP) above 2500.

It is illegal to knowingly allow refrigerant equipment to leak gas, so continuing with routine servicing is critical. In particular, as long as the gas is ‘compliant’ the maintenance provider can still recharge – which means customers can use cheaper, recovered gas too.

Free associate membership

At this year’s Air-Tech exhibition (10th to 12th April 2018), BCAS is offering 12 months’ free associate membership – worth £975. Relaunched for this year’s show, the offer is available exclusively to customers of current BCAS members and has proved popular with many end-users.

Free membership provides UK companies with a host of BCAS benefits, including discounts on training and publications, as well as access to compressed air codes of practice and the society’s social events.

Commenting on the offer, Vanda Jones, BCAS executive director said:  “For those who use compressed air, there are many benefits to be gained by becoming a member the British Compressed Air Society.

“BCAS membership gives access to a comprehensive range of products and support services, which have been developed specifically to meet the needs of the compressed air and vacuum industry. Put simply, it can help companies perform better and raise their profile. It also enables companies to get involved with the industry’s engineering and technology community, from networking to contributing to government consultations and submissions.”

Experts will be on hand throughout the show to advise customers on improving the safety, reliability and profitability of their vacuum and pressure installations, and will have details on:

•  The latest BCAS training courses available for your team – from online learning to classroom training and the diploma in compressed air management

•  A wide range of technical data produced by the society, including best-practice guides, white papers and technical updates

•  Updates to the latest regulations that could impact on your business, including the pressure systems safety regulations, the new fluorinated gas (F-Gas) regulations and the phase out of HFCs.

For further information on the free associate membership offer, please contact Vanda Jones, stating your company name, along with the name of the supplier of your compressed air services – vanda@bcas.org.uk, Tel: 020 7935 2464.

 
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