China China releases draft list of recommended HCFC alternatives

24 alternative chemicals to 3 HCFCs proposed

China’s Ministry of Ecology and Environment on November 23 released a draft list of recommended HCFC alternative chemicals to solicit comments, which will be accepted until December 31. The list has been prepared to implement the Montreal Protocol and phase out hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs). It contains 24 alternative substances to the following three HCFCs, the main HCFCs produced and used in China:

  • Chlorodifluoromethane (HCFC-22)
  • 1,1-Dichloro-1-fluoroethane (HCFC-141b)
  • 1-Chloro-1,1-difluoroethane (HCFC-142b)

The 24 chemicals on the list are grouped into three categories as follows:

  • Alternative refrigerants (nine chemicals)
  • Alternative foam blowing agents (six chemicals)
  • Alternative cleaning agents (nine chemicals)

All the chemicals have an ozone depletion potential (ODP) of 0 and most of them have a GWP of less than 20.

As an example, the table below shows part of the alternative refrigerant list.


Alternative chemical name Ozone depletion potential (ODP) Global warming potential (GWP) Main products

HCFC replaced

Refrigerant Propane (R290) 0 3 Room air conditioners, domestic heat pump water heaters, commercial independent refrigeration systems and industrial refrigeration systems HCFC-22
Refrigerant Isobutane (R600a) 0 3 Commercial independent refrigeration equipment HCFC-22
Refrigerant Carbon dioxide (R744) 0 1 Domestic heat pump water heaters, industrial/commercial heat pump water heaters, industrial/commercial refrigeration equipment and refrigeration equipment for cold storage warehouses HCFC-22

In an explanatory document, the Ministry of Ecology and Environment says it will supervise relevant industries and companies so that they will conduct research and development for the alternative chemicals as well as using them, in part by presenting the main products using those substances, some of which are shown in the table above.


The full draft list of the HCFC alternatives is available at

Author / Responsibility

AOKI Kenji

Senior Consultant, EnviX Ltd.
General Director, E&H Consulting Co., Ltd.

Business Performance

Expertise in EHS (environment, health and safety) consulting in ASEAN region.
- Environmental regulations updating
- Chemical regulations consulting


MSc in Earth Science, The University of Tokyo

AOKI Kenji