The Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol, which would restrict production of many commonly-used refrigerants on the grounds that they contribute to global warming, was signed by President Obama in 2016 but still needs to be submitted by President Trump to the Senate for the required two-thirds ratification before becoming law.
The lobbying effort aimed at both the President and Senate is ramping up, led by Honeywell and Chemours, which have patented a number of compliant refrigerants that cost significantly more than the ones that would be restricted under this measure. They and other corporate supporters have claimed that the environmental agreement will create thousands of American jobs, but have had less to say about the impact on the cost of new air conditioners and refrigerators.
An industry letter urging President Trump to send the Kigali Amendment to the Senate for ratification has recently been circulated. This week Energy and Environment News obtained a letter signed by thirteen Republican Senators sent to the president on June 4th. Honeywell’s refrigerant manufacturing plants are located in Louisiana, so it’s no surprise that Louisiana’s two senators, John Kennedy (R) and Bill Cassidy (R), lead the list of signers. The other Republicans are Lisa Murkowski (AK), Lamar Alexander (TN), Jerry Moran (KS), Roy Blunt (MO), Todd Young (IN), Susan Collins (ME), Lindsey Graham (SC), Johnny Isakson (GA), Marco Rubio (FL), Tim Scott (SC), and John Boozman (AR).