From the Editor's Desk
Welcome to the March issue of The Halon Herald! There are exciting changes going on at our company. As you can see from one of the articles below, we have done some reorganization of our sales team. We are working on other changes as well and will share news as we have it.
Back this month is our Best of the Web, where we share a hot topic and some of the responses concerning that topic. We also have a profile of Pam Boyer, who is being presented with the FSSA Leadership Award, as well as other industry news.
As always, please feel free to direct to me any questions, comments or suggestions as they are always welcome!
ODS Importer Pleads Guilty, Faces Fine, Probation
INTERNATIONAL REFRIGERANT GAS SUPPLIER PLEADS GUILTY AND IS SENTENCED FOR FALSE STATEMENTS IN THE IMPORTATION OF OZONE DEPLETING HCFC-22
Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Maureen O'Mara, Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Criminal Investigation Division, Atlanta Area Office, and Anthony V. Mangione, Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), Miami Field Office, announced that defendant Harp USA Inc. (Harp), a Florida corporation, pled guilty and was sentenced February 11, 2011 in connection with false statements made in entry documents for the importation of ozone depleting refrigerant gas, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 542.
Harp pled guilty before U.S. District Judge Jose E. Martinez to a one count Information that charged Harp with knowingly and intentionally introducing into the United States approximately 1,874 cylinders of the ozone-depleting substance hydrochlorofluorocarbon-22 ("HCFC-22") using false invoices and statements. HCFC-22 is a widely used refrigerant for residential heat pump and air-conditioning systems.
Click here to read the entire article..
Amerex Completes Acquisition of Solberg Scandinavian AS
Acquisition Adds Global Offering of Class A and Class B Firefighting FoamTRUSSVILLE
, Alabama - March 1, 2011 - Amerex, a leader in the manufacture of hand portable extinguishers and fixed special-hazard fire suppression systems, today announced that it has completed the acquisition of Solberg Scandinavian AS, one of the largest independent firefighting foam agent manufacturers in Europe.
"This strategic acquisition enables Amerex to uniquely bring advanced, environmentally sustainable firefighting foam technology to the Americas, and will give us a global footprint as a full-line manufacturer serving the fire protection and firefighting industry," explained Amerex Corporation president Bill Beyer. "We are excited to add the Solberg staff, its manufacturing operations, and firefighting foam research capabilities to our family."
Solberg Scandinavian AS, based in Bergen, Norway, has been involved with the manufacture of firefighting foams since the 1980s. Solberg is recognized throughout Europe and the Asia Pacific Region for its environmentally sustainable fluorosurfactant and fluoropolymer-free products that are an innovation in Class B firefighting foam. Additionally, Solberg manufactures a complete range of traditional Class B synthetic Aqueous Film Forming Foams (AFFF) and Alcohol Resistant Concentrates (ARC), as well as U.S Forest Service approved Class A and High-Expansion concentrates. Solberg enjoys significant market share sales in Northern Europe and Australia, where its unique technology is preferred by customers in the aviation, petroleum, oil and gas markets.
Click here to read the full article..
FSSA Awards Pam Boyer Leadership Award
The Fire Suppression Systems Association (FSSA) presented its Leadership Award, the association's highest honor, to Pam Boyer, BFPE International. Boyer received the award at a special President's Dinner on February 28, 2011 during the FSSA Annual Meeting, which took place February 25 - March 1 at the Gran Melia Resort in Rio Grande, Puerto Rico.
"We're pleased to have this opportunity to recognize Pam Boyer and her many achievements within the fire protection industry. Throughout her outstanding career, she has been the model for high professional and ethical standards," said FSSA President Rick Scott. "She possesses the entrepreneurial and innovative spirit that is still a vital part of America's businesses. Pam has been a friend and mentor to so many people in our industry; it's truly an honor for FSSA to bestow this award upon her."
The FSSA Leadership Award honors individuals that have been responsible and great leaders, through their personal and business accomplishments, in the special hazards fire protection industry. To qualify for nomination, individuals must have contributed special attributes to the special hazards fire protection industry through dedication in and longevity to the industry, a sense of integrity and fairness, business acumen, a fostering learning, innovation and change, and a cooperative spirit. This was the third presentation of the award; the first Leadership Award honored Bernie Bischoff in 2008; the second Leadership Award honored Ernie Horvath in 2009.
For the full article on Pam Boyer, click here..
Wesco Reorganizes Sales Territories
Changes at Wesco!
The New Year has brought not only sleet and snow our way, but also changes in Wesco's Sales Team. We've got a new addition on the sales force and we know everyone will welcome Joanna Zachodna aboard!
Joanna, while not "new" with Wesco, as she currently handles our international sales, has been given the responsibility of handling the West Coast sales. She will now be our "go-to girl" for California, Oregon, Washington, Utah, Nevada,Hawaii and Alaska. She is looking forward to servicing those areas with her winning attitude! Look for her at NAFED-Las Vegas and CAL-SAFE this year, as well as other west coast conferences!
There have also been some changes for Shannon Esopenko and Heather Mastrull. Heather, in addition to handling her Northeast territory, will now be handling the entire east coast, from Maine to Florida! Heather is excited at the prospect of being able to work with the Southern states! Look for her at both the FFEDA and GAFSED conferences this year, as well as NAFED Atlantic City and Indianapolis!
As for Shannon, she's been given the task of adding the states of Ohio, Indiana and Kentucky to her territory, as well as concentrating on the future opening of yet another Wesco Location. Right now, we'll keep that a bit of a secret but it's going to be a terrific spot and Shannon is revved up and looking forward to getting the word out on how Wesco will be able to make it even easier to do business ...EVERYDAY!
Stay tuned for even more wonderful things to come from Wesco HMB, Inc.!
The Air Up There
By John Demeter
We are traveling extensively these weeks but will return to these pages next month.
Best of the Web
|As Discussed On a Linkedin Forum:
Topic: Has the forthcoming substantial increase in the Price of FM200 from DuPont gone below the radar? It seems that it has just been accepted by the industry with little or no comment.
Response #1: It looks like it's no longer forthcoming... it's landed!! Increase in December followed by huge increase now!
Response #2: It has certainly not been accepted, but what it has done is bridge the gap between FM200 and Novec. For most people it now makes better business to offer Novec, as it is a more sustainable product with much higher safety margins.
Response #3: The price for FLUROSPAR have gone up high globally. This is not only applicable to FM200 but to all refrigerants, welding materials and so on.
NOVEC also required FLUROSPAR by the way!!
Response #4: I have not heard of Flurospar before? But I had heard that a raw material component of FM200 was the cause of the problem, caused by an event at a production facility. I agree that the higher price of Novec had been keeping FM200 in the game. I feel this is a game changer for the industry.
Response #5: Fluorspar is a key raw material for fluorochemicals, which continues to be constrained globally. Additionally, demand for hexafluoropropylene (HFP) in new and existing applications continues to grow, placing ongoing pressure on a limited global supply.
Global HFP supply was further impacted by an explosion earlier this summer suffered by a Chinese plant in the production chain. These product pressures are resulting in higher product cost and for some shipments longer lead times.
Current DuPont production plans indicate that available quantities of FM-200� in 2011 will be slightly less than what was available from DuPont in 2010, hence the price and lead times will be on a higher side
The options are NOVEC 1230, Argonite, INERGEN and Water Mist.
EPA HFC Stakeholder Meeting Results
On Thursday, January 20, the State Department and EPA hosted a stakeholder meeting to begin discussions for 2011 on the issue of HFCs in the Montreal Protocol. Participants included Gina McCarthy, Drusilla Hufford, Cindy Newberg, and Tom Land of EPA, and Dan Reifsynder and John Thompson of State. There were about 50 attendees representing industry and environmental NGOs.
It appears that the US, Canada, and Mexico will again propose an amendment by the May deadline to add HFCs to the Montreal Protocol and slowly phase down their production. The amendment is likely to be similar to the 2009 and 2010 proposed amendments, but they are considering potential modifications to the baseline years (currently 2004-2006), interim reduction steps, and control of byproduct emissions. Any proposed amendments would be discussed at the Open-ended Working Group (OEWG) meeting scheduled for August in Bangkok and at the Meeting of Parties (MOP) scheduled for November in Indonesia (Bali).
Although State and EPA admitted that the 2010 MOP was "terrible" because they were blocked from discussing the HFC amendments by a small number of countries that included India and Brazil, they are encouraged by the 90 countries that signed the HFC declaration and by some recent "breakthroughs." In bilateral climate discussions between the US and India, Special Envoy for Climate Change Todd Stern raised the HFC issue with the Indian Environment Minister and now two workshops on HFCs have been scheduled, including one on February 18 in India (Delhi). US business representatives were encouraged to participate in these workshops to provide information to developing countries on the availability of HFC alternatives.
There was one rather surprising public statement from a representative of Ford Motor Company. He said that Ford is against putting HFCs in the Montreal Protocol because they are not ozone depleting substances, HFC-134a has a much lower GWP than CFC-12 which it replaced in car air conditioning, and HFCs are not a main driver of climate change. This was the first real opposition to the HFC amendment expressed at one of these stakeholder meetings over the last two years.
In response to a question, EPA stated that they believe they have the legal authority to implement a Montreal Protocol amendment on HFCs without legislation from Congress.
It's No Laughing Matter
Laughing gas - known to scientists as nitrous oxide - is now the biggest threat to Earth's ozone layer, according to a new study.
The ozone layer, part of Earth's upper atmosphere, protects plants and animals from harmful ultraviolet radiation from the sun.
In 1987, countries around the world united to ban chlorofluorocarbons, or CFCs-gases that were commonly used in refrigerators and air conditioners. These gases made their way into the atmosphere and thinned the ozone layer by about 5 percent worldwide.
CFC emissions drastically dropped following the ban and the ozone layer has been on track to largely recover by mid-century, according to the World Meteorological Organization.
But nitrous oxide emissions, which are being released at a rate of about ten million tons a year, may thwart that progress.
An expansion in farming and soaring numbers of livestock may increase emissions of the gas, which comes mostly from fertilizer and animal waste.
"The ozone layer would be prevented from recovering by the time we thought it would," said study leader A. R. Ravishankara of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in Boulder, Colorado.
Click here to read the full article..
HTOC Issues 2010 Assessment
The following sector summaries show that despite the introduction of new halon alternatives and the remarkable progress in switching to them, there is still an on-going need for halons. As such, halon recycling is becoming even more important to ensure that adequate stocks of halons are available to meet the future needs of the Parties.
E.2 Global Production and Consumption Phase-out of Halons
As of January 1, 2010, halon production and consumption, as defined by the Montreal Protocol, for fire protection ceased. Additionally, there has been no essential use halon production since 2000 (as authorised by Decision VIII/9). However, halon 1301 (CF3Br) continues to be produced in China and France for use as a feedstock in the manufacture of the pesticide Fipronil. The current total halon feedstock production quantities in these countries are not known to the HTOC, but have been increasing annually in China since 2005.
Since 2006, nine Parties have reported a negative production of halons for fire protection, indicating that they have been destroying halons. In addition, the last two producers of halons for fire protection, China and South Korea, reported no exports in 2008 or 2009. However, some halons may have been exported as fire extinguishers and or fire extinguishing systems. Only eight Parties operating under Article 5 reported importing newly produced halons in 2008, down from sixteen in 2006. The global trade in recycled halons is robust, but as would be expected, the trade in recycled halons by Article 5 Parties has been limited, since they were allowed to import newly produced halons through 2009.
Now that there is no global production of halons for fire protection uses, management of the remaining stock becomes crucial for ensuring sufficient halons for applications that need them.
Click here to read the full article..
If you have any questions, comments, would like to be featured in a future Halon Herald, or would like to be added to our mailing list for this newsletter, please contact Kari Buser at [email protected]
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