Commonwealth legislation

About the legislation

The Ozone Protection and Synthetic Greenhouse Gas Management Act 1989 and related Acts (the Ozone Acts) protect the environment by reducing emissions of Ozone Depleting Substances (ODS) and Synthetic Greenhouse Gases (SGGs). The Ozone Acts control the manufacture, import, export and end use of ODS and SGGs and products containing these gases. These gases are commonly used as refrigerant gases in refrigeration and air conditioning equipment.

The Ozone Acts are supported by the Ozone Protection and Synthetic Greenhouse Gas Management Regulations 1995 and related regulations.

Ozone Acts Review

Australia has a long history of success in reducing emissions of ODS and SGGs through working in partnership with businesses that supply and use these gases. While the Ozone Acts have been successful to date, they have not been reviewed since 2001 and so it is timely to assess their appropriateness, efficiency and effectiveness. The objectives of the review are to:

  • Identify opportunities to improve and streamline the operation of the Ozone Acts including reducing regulatory compliance costs for business and the community
  • Identify opportunities to reduce emissions of ODS and SGGs in line with international efforts.

Consultation on the Terms of Reference

On 23 May 2014, the Government invited submissions on the Terms of Reference for the review of the Ozone and Synthetic Greenhouse Gas Management Act 1989 and related legislation (the Ozone Acts). The public consultation period ended on 18 July 2014.

The Terms of Reference for the Ozone Acts review are available for your information.

Submissions

The Department would like to thank all those who provided submissions on the Terms of Reference.

Submitted by

Interim Report

Submissions on the Terms of Reference will help guide the review of the Act and inform the Interim Report of the review, expected to be released for public consultation in late 2014/early 2015.

Technical Working Group

The Technical Working Group is to provide detailed comments and technical advice to the Department throughout the review. The Technical Working Group’s advice will be in addition to the opportunity to make submissions throughout the review. The Technical Working Group will be established by the Department and will reflect a range of industries impacted by the legislation.

Current Act amendments

The following information provides a summary of amendments to the Ozone Acts that are currently being considered by the Parliament.

2014 proposed Repeal Day amendments

The Ozone Acts will be amended by the Omnibus Repeal Day (Autumn 2014) Bill 2014.

The amendments will:

  • Allow regulations to be made to exempt low volume importers from the requirement of holding an ODS/SGG equipment licence. Until the regulations are made importers should comply with the current ODS/SGG equipment licence requirements. Further information on current licence requirements.
  • Narrow the scope of the current HCFC and CFC refrigeration and air conditioning equipment ban. When the amendments come into force, the ban will cover HCFC or CFC refrigeration and air conditioning equipment that operates using only these gases. Further information on the current ban.
  • Ensure that heel, the unrecoverable gas left in bulk cylinders once they have been decanted, can be considered in calculating HCFC quota and levies to be paid under the Acts.
  • Move the requirement to provide quarterly reports where no imports have been made from licence conditions to the Act. The detailed requirements for these reports will be set out in the regulations. Until the regulations are made, reporting should comply with the current reporting requirements.
  • Simplify the process of surrendering an import, manufacture or export licence.
  • Amend the ozone depleting potentials listed in the Act for dibromofluoromethane and methyl bromide to align with the Montreal Protocol.

Further information