Project at a Glance

Title: Developing a California inventory for ozone depleting substances and hydrofluorocarbon foam banks and emissions from foams

Principal Investigator / Author(s): Vetter, Arnie A.J. & Paul Ashford

Contractor: Caleb Management Services, Ltd.

Contract Number: 07-312

Research Program Area: Climate Change

Topic Areas: Greenhouse Gas Emissions


Caleb and its project team undertook the development of an inventory of foams and their related blowing agents for California. The inventory provides data on greenhouse gas emissions and banks (greenhouse gases contained in existing foam, and not yet released to the atmosphere). The data and research findings will be used in support of establishing baselines and potential emission reduction approaches (if feasible and cost-effective) to meet the goals of AB 32, the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006. The inventory involved the development of a comprehensive foam characterization requiring the following elements: 1. An understanding of the current building stock, appliance inventories and other items containing foam and related blowing agents in California by type and age profile 2. An historic picture of annual foam sales and installations in the State of California 3. An historic understanding of the blowing agents used in these foams and the timing of any transitions that may have occurred 4. A current inventory of foam processing activities being practiced in California A number of sources were consulted including foam manufacturers, blowing agent suppliers, specifiers, users and end-of-life operators such as refrigerator recyclers, demolition contractors and waste processors. The project focused on characterizing the populations of these groups and, by means of pre-selection, screening interviews and in-depth follow-up interviews with key sources, sought to establish the inputs required to generate a State-wide model. This was then used to assess current emissions and forecast future emissions from on-going activity and existing banks. In addition, the model was used to assess the value of a number of
mitigation strategies.

For questions regarding this research project, including available data and progress status, contact: Research Division staff at (916) 445-0753

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