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EU Parliament backs gas ban

The European Parliament today agreed to ban gases for car air-conditioning and sports shoes as part of new EU clean-air rules that may cost businesses hundreds of millions of euros. The fluorinated-gases legislation will prohibit HFC-134a, the current refrigerant for air-conditioning in cars. It will also ban SF6 in the running shoes of sportswear makers such as Nike Inc. that use this gas to create bounce. “These fluorinated gases became recognized as a major contributor to the greenhouse effect,” Avril Doyle, an Irish member who steered the legislation through the Strasbourg-based EU assembly, said in a statement. The bloc's 25 national governments have already backed the draft rules. Fluorinated gases account for 2% of EU greenhouse-gas emissions, which the bloc aims to reduce by 8% in 2008-2012 under the Kyoto Protocol against global warming. The legislation will cut emissions of fluorinated gases by at least 20% a year.