MD statehouse
(Credit: Bestbudbrian / Wikimedia)

To provide cooling, most refrigerators and air conditioners use refrigerants called HFCs. When this type of gas escapes to the atmosphere, it traps heat.

Grumbles: “It’s a super-polluting greenhouse gas.”

More than a thousand times more potent than CO2.

Ben Grumbles, Secretary of the Maryland Department of the Environment, says getting rid of HFCs is important for the climate … and doable.

Grumbles: “There are alternatives to HFCs that are climate friendly and still get the job done.”

Three years ago, more than a hundred countries agreed to reduce the use of HFCs. But the Trump administration has not submitted the agreement to the Senate for ratification, and is attempting to roll back other HFC regulations.

So several states have taken matters into their own hands. Washington and California have passed laws to limit HFCs, and Maryland, New York, and Connecticut have also committed to developing regulations.

Grumbles: “States have significant authority and ability in working with citizens and businesses and communities to make real progress, and sometimes that hits a threshold where the federal government is then convinced to move forward as well.”

Reporting credit: Sarah Kennedy/ChavoBart Digital Media.