CFC recycling from fridges hampered by lack of facilities

Local authorities face an uphill struggle in recovering CFCs from redundant refrigerators and preventing illegal venting, a conference in London heard in April. Even those councils which are tackling the problem are at best recovering one-fifth of the total CFC content of fridges because Britain has no facilities for reclaiming CFCs from insulation foam. However, a Danish recycling firm says it may have a cost-effective answer.

The Environmental Protection Act 1990 gives waste regulation authorities (WRAs) the power to prosecute anyone found venting CFCs to the atmosphere. Cambridgeshire's waste regulation officer Keith Stonell told the meeting that CFCs do appear to qualify as "controlled waste" under the Act, but the legislation is unenforceable because CFC venting leaves no trace. WRAs, he said, are waiting for Government action "to force people to deal with CFCs

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